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Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Next Season's Free Agent Class

After a record spending year in Season 21, next year's class is just as formidable. As of this post, the following are scheduled to be free agents

Position Players

Francis Herzog - All-decade CF will be 34 at the start of FA. Career .973 OPS.

Louis Spence - Considered for all-decade LF, Spence will be just 32. Career OBP of .427 and OPS of .959.

Esteban Owen - All-decade RF will turn 34 over the off-season. He is a career .307 batter with a .991 OPS.

Todd Frey - Another former Wahoo, RF Frey has 1000 career runs and RBI's and a career .886 OPS.

Benji Pulido - Only 30 years old, SS/3B Benji is a plus defender with plenty of power at the plate

Pitchers

Dave Darr - Surely he won't hit the market? A member of both all-decade teams and the best pitcher that the game has ever seen, Darr still has a couple of good season left in the tank.

Brian Williams - Just 30 years old, Williams has questionable stamina, but is still a very good pitcher.

Paulie Fox - A 29 year old lefty, Fox has had a very good season since being traded to Boston.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Playoff Races - NL

Here are two races to keep an eye on.......

1. NL West Race - Helena/Honolulu/Los Angeles

A 3-way battle for the division title, with the two losers in the lead for both wildcard positions (but not by much)

Records - Honolulu (91-61) 1-up on both Helena and LA (both at 90-62)

Tiebreakers - Helena is up 5-2 on Honolulu and 4-3 on LA. Honolulu is up 7-3 on LA. Helena is 15-9 in the division, Honolulu is 14-10, and LA is 8-16.


Remaining Schedule Strength -
Helena (.502) - 4 vs. Detroit (55-97), 3 vs. LA (90-62), 3 vs. Honolulu (91-61)
Honolulu (.544) - 4 vs. Chicago (90-62), 3 vs. San Fran (63-89), 3 vs. Helena (90-62)
LA - (.531) - 4 vs. Memphis (87-65), 3 vs. Helena (90-62), 3 vs. San Fran (63-89)

The stakes - LA has won the division for 5 straight seasons. Helena has not finished better than 3rd since Season 13. Honolulu has not won the division since Season 15.


2. Wild Card #2 - NL West/Dover/Memphis/Hartford

A full-on scramble for the last 2 spots in the play-offs will likely go to one NL West team, leaving one spot for 4 deserving teams. Since the NL West teams are explored above, let's take a look at Dover, Memphis, and Hartford

Records - Dover (88-64) leads Memphis (87-65) by 1 game and Hartford (85-67) by 3.

Tiebreakers - Dover leads Memphis 8-2 and Hartford 5-2. Memphis leads Hartford 6-4. Dover is 17-7 in the division, Memphis is 16-8, and Hartford is 13-11

Remaining Schedule Strength -
Dover (.550) - 4 vs. Houston (95-57), 3 vs. Hartford (85-67), 3 vs. Buffalo (67-85)
Memphis (.503) - 4 vs. LA (90-62), 3 vs. Montgomery (67-85), 3 vs. Louisville (68-84)
Hartford (.532) - 4 vs. Montgomery (67-85), 3 vs. Dover (88-64), 3 vs. Chicago (92-60)

The stakes -

For Dover, it would be the 1st playoff appearance since season 11 and only the second ever. For Memphis, is would be a 2nd straight appearance for bencap. For Hartford, it would be a return to the palyoffs after a 3 year absence.

Playoff Races - AL

We're coming down to the wire, with some spots still up for grabs. Here are the best races -

1. AL Wildcard #2 / Montreal vs. Boston

Two heavyweights are battling for the last spot in the AL Playoffs. Here is what you need to know:

Records - Boston leads by 1 game with a record of 86-66. Montreal is 85-67

Tiebreaker - The series was split 5-5. Montreal owns the next tiebreaker with a 18-6 division record to Boston's 11-13

Remaining schedule strength -

Boston (.540) - 4 vs. New Orleans (76-76), 3 vs. Baltimore (76-76), 3 vs. Durham (96-56)
Montreal (.543) - 4 vs. Durham (96-56), 3 vs. Salt Lake (52-100), 3 vs. Cincy (95-57)

The stakes -

Boston has made 17 straight playoff appearances and Montreal has made 15 straight. This is likely to be the first season since Season 5 that the playoffs will not include both of these teams.

2. AL East Champion / Durham vs. Philadelphia

A surging Philadelphia squad tries to reel in the fading Tar Heels.

Records - Durham leads by three games with a record of 96-56. Philly stands at 92-59

Tiebreaker - Durham leads 4-3 with 3 head-to-head games remaining. Durham is 15-9 in the division and Philly is 14-10.

Remaining Schedule strength

Durham (.577) - 4 vs. Montreal, 3 vs. Philly, 3 vs. Boston
Philly (.526) - 4 vs. Vancouver, 3 vs. Durham, 3 vs. Baltimore

The stakes

A division title and a possible 1st round bye. Not to mention bragging rights in the toughest division in the league. For Philly, it would only be the 2nd division title in franchise history.

Week 8 Rankings

1. Cincinnati Redlegs (94-57) Prev #1 - 1st in run differential, expected win percentage, 3rd in overall record, and 8th in wins for the week.

2. Durham Tar Heels (95-56) Prev #2 - 1st in overall record, 2nd in both expected win percentage and run differential, 13th in wins for the week.

3. Houston Hangovers (95-56) Prev #5 - 1st in overall record and wins for the week, 4th in expected win percentage, and 5th in run differential.

4. Philadelphia Bacharach Giants (92-59) Prev #4 - 3rd in wins for the week, expected win percentage, and run differential. 5th in overall record.

5. Helena Hustle (89-62) prev #9 - 3rd in record for the week, 4th in expected win percentage and run differential, 9th in overall record

6. Jacksonville TIMUCUAN'S (94-57) Prev #7 - 3rd in overall record and wins for the week, 9th in run differential, and 10th in expected win percentage

7. Chicago Black Sox (91-60) Prev #6 - 6th in overall record, 7th in run differential, and 8th in wins for the week and expected win percentage

8. Los Angeles Hollywoods (90-61) Prev #3 - 7th in expected win percentage and overall record, 8th in run differential, and 13th in wins for the week

9. Dover Red Stockings (87-64) - Prev NR - 1st in wins for the week, 9th in run differential, 10th in overall record, 11th in expected win percentage

10. Boston TEA PARTIERS (86-65) Prev #8 - 5th in run differential, 6th in expected win percentage, 12th in overall record and wins for the week

11. Memphis
12. Hartford
13. Montreal
14. Honolulu