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Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Updated NL Playoff Picture

5 games to go!

1. Chicago - NL East Champ (4 game lead) and overall #1 seed (2 game lead)
2. Memphis - clinched NL South Champ and overall #2 seed (1 game lead)
3. Helena - clinched NL West Champ and at least overall #3 seed
4. Kansas City - NL North Champ (2 game lead) and overall #4 seed
5. New York - Clinched at least Wild Card #2
6. Louisville - Wild Card #2 (2 game lead)

Everything is up for grabs! Chicago, Memphis, Helena, and New York are all still alive for the #1 overall seed. KC is being chased by two teams in the do or die North. Louisville is hanging on for dear life and their first playoff berth.

So, the two best races are still the #2 Wild Card and the NL North championship.

NL North Analysis

The Standings
1. Kansas City 75-82
2. Cleveland 73-84
3. Detroit 72-85

The Contenders

Kansas City
So the two teams that KC is chasing have both dealt their stars mid-season. Does anyone want to win this division? Enter mwelker and his, until now, perennial doormat Crusaders. mwelker has his detracters (that will happen with 5 consecutive seasons of losing 100 games or more), but he has a plan and has shown improvement in 3 consecutive seasons. He looks primed to take over for davidlove at the top of the North. The Crusaders are led by the offense of David Wanatabe and the pitching of, well, nobody. His pitching has improved a bit, and they will need it now to hold off the challengers.

davidlove has dominated the North, winning 9 out of 16 division championships. A trade of 8x all-star Louis Spence signaled a rebuilding effort, but the offensive efforts of Quinn Portugal and the pitching of Ken Howington have kept them just 2 games out of the division lead.

mtorab has 1 divsion title and 1 world series win in his 21 seasons in 1530 Homer. His Tigers were the off-season champs and looked primed for a run at a World Series title. A mid-season trade of Benji Neill likely ended those dreams, but a division title is still within grasp. MVP favorite (and a very tired) Cristobal Mantalban leads the offense while Gustavo Melo is the best of the SP's. They will need better production out of Benji Pulido if they are to make the playoffs.

Remaining Schedule
Kansas City - 2 vs. Detroit, 3 vs. Pittsburgh
Cleveland - 2 vs. Pittsburgh, 3 vs. Detroit
Detroit - 2 vs. Kansas City, 3 vs. Cleveland

I'll still take the experience of davidlove and Cleveland, but they will need the help of Detroit.

Wild Card #2 Analysis

The Standings

1. Louisville (85-72)
1. Los Angeles (83-74)
3. Houston (80-77)

The Contenders

batgecko is finally seeing his work pay off after 5 disappointing seasons. Will the WIS gods ever stop punishing him with injuries? Welington Chavez leads a potent offense while Julio Lopez is the most productive on a very good staff. The returns of Antonio Graves and Jeff Woods have improved their chances.

Los Angeles
Is the tytabs era over? He has won 6 of the last 8 division titles, but is having his worst year in 10 seasons. The Hollywoods are led by silky smooth mustachioed Rube Swann and newly re-signed Orval Gonzales. Luis Morales is the key to LA catching Louisville.

pmuehlenkamp has.......nevermind, look it up for yourself. If you care enough to be reading this you know that he is the most successful owner in 1530 (all due respect, nhollan). The Hangovers are led by the smooth sounds of The Goose and the pitching of future HOF'r Dave Darr. Geraldo Mendez must pick it up if they are to keep from missing the playoffs for the 2nd time in franchise history.

Remaining Schedules
Louisville - 2 vs. Houston, 3 vs. Memphis
Los Angeles - 2 vs. Helena, 3 vs. SF
Houston - 2 VS. Louisville, 3 vs. Montgomery

Louisville is in teh driver's seat, but has a brutal remaining schedule. Houston must sweep the remaining games to have a chance, and LA may sneak in if it can sweep SF. My money is still on Louisville.

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