Saturday, June 27, 2015

A Good Day at the Park

My friend Jeff Tritthart had a great story to tell about his day, watching the Trenton Thunder (a New York Yankees minor league team) play -- Good story about how players can still be down to earth.

I enjoy hearing stories like this -- it really shows you a day in the life of a top prospect still being humble & loving the game they play, while making it a great fan experience such as this.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Madness at the Metrodome!

The (56-37) Detroit Tigers will now get to relax a bit, as they travel back home to Detroit to host the lowly Kansas City Royals (43-51).

Thursday, June 18, 2015


Veryl Lincoln, one of the original employees at APBA, just passed away this week. I think it's definitely good to know the names & faces that have helped made this game & company a success, thanks Veryl for doing your part, you obviously made an impact on people in the world of APBA.

Kevin Cluff from APBA - Between the Lines on Delphi Forums, also shared on June 17th.

VERYL LINCOLN (1945-2015)

"It is with great sadness that we learn longtime employee and APBA Legend Veryl Lincoln has passed away this morning. Many APBA fans' experiences were benefited by Veryl's dedication to the game he loved, and Veryl was inducted into the APBA Hall of Fame in 2002 for his immeasurable contributions. We will provide more details about his service as we receive them. Our condolences to his friends and loved ones; He will certainly be missed by the APBA Family"

Thanks Veryl, Let's roll some 66's for Veryl, gang! 

Baseball, Baseball & MORE Baseball...

Image courtesy of Thomas Nelshoppen, you can purchase at Zazzle.
Plenty to come over the next week or so...

  • The conclusion of the 2014 Boys of Summer APBA Baseball World Series, between the Fairgrove Tigers and the Portland Microbrewers.
  • More highlights on my 2007 Detroit Tigers Season Replay, their series results against the Minnesota Twins at the Metrodome & the visiting Kansas City Royals. After that the Tigers go to the windy city, Chicago to play the Chicago White Sox for a five-game series? Must have been a rescheduled rain out; going off the schedule on Baseball Reference. 
  • The WHAT IF World Series of 1984 continues between the Chicago Cubs and Detroit Tigers...
  • Latest on my Fantasy Baseball Team, the Gotham City Rogues, plenty of changes were done to the roster.
  • Information on the Toledo - Glass City APBA Baseball Tournament, hosted by my friend, Ron Emch
  • Plus the latest on the Crazy 48's Baseball League; Only 20 games left, plenty of updates, standings & league stats to come...

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

APBA Pittsburgh Tourney: Video & Pics

Group photo of everyone that participated at the Pittsburgh Tournament.
Here are some pictures taken from numerous people at the 2015 Linda B. Schulz - Pittsburgh APBA Baseball Tournament (hosted by Ken Schulz), that took place on June 13th at Penn Brewery in Pittsburgh, PA.

First here, is the video if you have not checked it out (you can also find it on youtube) ....

Now here are some of the pictures taken at Penn Brewery, video footage provided by Ron Emch, who also provided video footage at the Greater Michigan APBA Baseball Tournament. Emch, will also be hosting his own APBA Baseball Tournament - The Glass City APBA Baseball Tournament in the Toledo, Ohio area in late August -- more details to come provided by Boys of Summer.

A look of the lay-out, 1960 World Series (projected) playing on back wall -- Nice touch!
Plenty of long tables, and elbow space to roll those 66's.

Another shot of the layout at Penn Brewery. 
The smile on Ken Schulz's face (Pirates Uniform) says it all. 
Plenty of Pirates logos naturally flashed around the scene.
A couple of APBA players writing down game results.
One of the greatest things: The older vets teaching the young rollers of the future.
Greg Wells was all smiles, winning the inaugural championship Saturday.

Looks like a blast, I love watching these tournaments succeed, watching everyone have fun, I plan to make it to the Steel City for at least one of these tournaments someday -- May have to go through Ontario, through New York, swing by Cooperstown along the way, and then a great day with my APBA brothers -- to play the game that we love.

To many more successful APBA Tournaments in Pittsburgh & beyond!

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

The WHAT IF World Series of 1984 (Cubs / Tigers)

Many have wondered what would have had Leon Durham fielded that ground ball, many Cubs fans for sure. Some wonder, would they have been better competition for the Detroit Tigers, could have anyone stopped those Tigers?!

The good thing is we can play out these scenarios through the amazing world of APBA Baseball. I decided to do that, by knocking out some games for a couple mornings.

In 1984, the National League hosted Games 1 & 2 (and would have hosted Games 6 & 7, if necessary). So the Tigers would have to start off the series at Wrigley


Sutcliffe: Dialed in.
The Chicago Cubs send their ace to the mound in Rick Sutcliffe (Grade B-XZ), he was tied for the Majors' lead, with 20 victories (20-6), going 16-1 (.941 winning percentage) with the Cubs after he was acquired from the Cleveland Indians; sporting a 2.69 ERA & 155 K's in 150.1 innings -- his numbers with the Indians were horrendous, leaving some Indians fans wondering if he just wanted out. He will face off against Jack Morris (Grade B-Y) of the Detroit Tigers, 19-11, with a 3.60 ERA, 148 K's in 240 innings; Sutcliffe's combined season ERA was 3.64 -- making this an equal match-up for Game 1.

Bottom of the 1st - After a one-out single by Ryne Sandberg, Leon Durham hits an RBI double to right to score in Sandberg. Ron Cey grounds out to move Durham to third. Keith Moreland's RBI single makes it 2-0 early for the Cubs.

The Tigers would go on to have trouble figuring out Sutcliffe, oddly, because Tigers have seen him aplenty in the A.L. East when he pitched for Cleveland. Sutcliffe records 5 K's in the first three innings, while the Tigers didn't record their first hit, until the 4th, a two-out single by Darrell Evans.

Durham had a huge game for Cubs.
Bottom of the 4th - The rain comes down, and the game is delayed for an hour -- We'll see if they are rusty... [the starting pitchers have been downgraded to Grade C's to make it interesting].

The Tigers would have men on from the 4th through the 6th inning, but failed to get the runners home, with two of the innings ending on double plays.

Bottom of the 7th -Leon Durham added a solo HR in the bottom of the 7th off of Juan Berenguer, who is being used as relief; Durham was already having an impressive day, he would finish going 3-for-5, HR, 2 doubles & 2 RBI.

Top of the 8th - Rick Sutcliffe cruised through 7 innings, before giving up a solo HR by pinch-hitter Rupert Jones, Cubs still leading 3-1.

Bottom of the 8th - Davey Lopes hits a two-out pinch-hit double off of Aurelio Lopez, it's been all Cubs in this one.

Top of the 9th -  Lee Smith comes in to attempt to close this one out, the Wrigley fans are excited. Smith's pitch gets away from him, brushing back the 9th inning lead-off man Kirk Gibson; Gibson didn't like that so much, and sent a fly ball over the right field fence -- even in APBA land Gibson lives for the dramatic! Chet Lemon comes up and singles to right, the Tigers are in business, tying run is at the plate in Darrell Evans.

As the Cubs manager, I decided to have the Tigers intentionally walk Evans, I have seen Evans with a man on, so many times cause trouble, his card seems to play better than its worth, and he already has a single, while Lance Parrish (batting 6th) has been quiet, 0-for-3 with a K -- plus I have seen Parrish many times hit into a double play. It turned out to be a mistake on the Cubs' part, Parrish hits a ball into the opposite corner, and races around to third, a two-run triple, the Tigers have now tied the game! Dave Bergman adds salt to the wounds, with a RBI single, to take the 5-4 lead! Wrigley is in shock, as if they saw a ghost, or better yet a billy goat. No outs, Rupert Jone would fly out, while Rusty Kuntz pinch-hitting for the reliever Lopez would hit into an inning-ending double play.

Sparky: Man & team on a mission "This is our year."
 Willie Hernandez who has been phenomenal -- shut down the Cubs (Sandberg, Durham & Cey),
1-2-3! Cubs fans leave sick to their stomachs, can they even recover after this.

Postgame rumors swirled of a few Tigers fans that happened to make the trip to Wrigley, were making "BAAAAHHHHH!!!" noises at Lee Smith before he headed out to save the game for the Cubs; nothing has been confirmed, Smith scoffed when asked such a question.

Kirk Gibson afterwards described the quick change of momentum as if the Cubs were hit by an un-expecting freight train. Sparky quickly made his rounds through the dugout, telling his team to not get too cocky, but to stay hungry.

He walked away and said "This is our year."


Tigers Play Four in Northwest

More on my 2007 Detroit Tigers Season replay, only match-ups between the Tigers can dictate the differential in the overall standings by season's end.

Mag's batting average has dipped to .400 now, with a OBP of .496 & a 1.187 OPS that is through the roof!

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Greatest Teams Debates

Dave McNally & Jim Palmer of the Orioles.
Now a few months back, I remember from time to time people bringing up best three-year period or five-year period from a MLB franchise. It had some of the usual suspects bouncing around there from the Baltimore Orioles (1969-1971), Oakland Athletics (1972-1974), The Chicago Cubs (early 20th Century), the two different Philadelphia A's franchises from Connie Mack, the WWII era St.Louis Cardinals, among others.

The wife and I went to the public library, in which I once again, rented out "The New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract" (by Bill James) -- Another book, I like to rent from there is "The Biographical Encyclopedia of Negro League Baseball" (by James A. Riley) -- Both great books! This time, it was just Bill James' books with a handful of Walking Dead Graphic Novels.

Now when it comes to Bill James, I will say this much the guy's formulas and his Win Shares that pretty much (or did, depending on who you ask) created the WAR stat concept (Wins After Replacement) -- and many of his formulas really do finish many debates on comparing players, teams and what-not. He may not be a guy that remembers watching that player back in the day, in fact he kind of approaches that aspect of the game with a half-glance approach, he's more of mad scientist who loves the game, will take the criteria, make strong cases -- while at the same time, he may not watch the game as the average die-hard baseball fan does... he's most likely not going to play in any fantasy baseball league, but he's partly responsible in many of the stats that we find helpful in choosing our fantasy baseball teams, plus his findings are also helpful to any APBA Managers out there, who are evaluating their rosters, making certain trades & drafting certain players.

Is he always right? No. Do I like reading his theories, and watching many of them make sense? Most definitely! By the way, my right arm is all oiled up with Tiger Balm, since my whole right arm is really sore from doing computer work for my APBA League & rolling some dice games -- but after reading one of his sections in this book, I had to share, and discuss this.

So back to Greatest Teams debate, he made a simplistic 6-point system to measure a team, of course this does not take in an effect if a team is a great base-stealing team, has a great pitching staff, or great lineup -- it's just a simple system, to start with.

The 6-point system is like this, for each accomplishment by the team, it will make a check by each statistical accomplishment, and the team gets one point each.
  • Finishing over .500
  • Winning over 90 games.
  • Winning over 100 games.
  • Winning the Division.
  • Winning the League.
  • Winning the World Series.
These qualifications are definitely not going to paint an over-all picture of a franchise, but when you use this system, for certain criteria, let's say for a 5-year period debate, this is how the very top franchises ranked using these accomplishments & six-point system presented by James.
  • New York Yankees (1935-1939)          25 pts
  • New York Yankees (1949-1953)          25 pts
  • Chicago Cubs (1906-1910)                   24 pts
  • St. Louis Cardinals (1942-1946)           24 pts
  • New York Yankees (1960-1964)          24 pts
  • Philadelphia Athletics (1910-1914)      23 pts
  • Oakland Athletics (1971-1975)             22 pts
  • Atlanta Braves (1995-1999)                  22 pts
  • Cincinnati Reds (1972-1976)                21 pts
  • Baltimore Orioles (1969-1973)             20 pts
  • Boston Red Sox (1912-1916)                20 pts
  • Brooklyn Dodgers (1952-1956)            20 pts
It's impressive, while at the same time it all makes sense, these are the teams we usually are chatting about, and debating over. For pre-1969 teams, he counted League Championships (with an extra point, for the division they would have won, which makes sense). 

Another point made, is that with this system, there has only been 6 teams to have had back-to-back six-point seasons, they are...
  • Philadelphia Athletics (1910-1911)
  • New York Yankees (1927-1928)
  • Philadelphia Athletics (1929-1930)
  • New York Yankees (1936-1937)
  • Cincinnati Reds (1975-1976)
Once again, uncanny, looking at this list, all makes sense, and these 5 teams are always in the thick of the discussion.

Now this book is copyrighted in 2001, not sure if he has any more updated books, which this book was an update as well. So he did not add any more recent teams, so I decided to go do some research myself.

Now we all know how much San Francisco Giants fans love bragging about their pesky Giants, not to mention all their "dynasty" talk, which I often have to point out their two missed playoff years, that are wedged in between their 3 recent World Championships. Taking in this system, this is how what we ended up with...
  • 2010 Giants: 5 pts     (only failed to win 100+ games)
  • 2011 Giants: 1 pt     (Missed playoffs, finished over .500)
  • 2012 Giants: 4 pts     (only failed to reach 90+ & 100+ wins)
  • 2013 Giants: 0 pts     (76-86, failed to reach post-season - 2nd time in period)
  • 2014 Giants: 3 pts     (Wild-Card, wins 3rd World Title, fails to reach 90 wins) 
That's a grand total of 13 pts -- Hardly great when comparing to these teams that had more points, during a five-year period...
  • Detroit Tigers (1907-1911)                     14 pts
  • Kansas City Royals (1976-1980)            15 pts
  • Los Angeles Dodgers (1962-1966)         17 pts
  • New York Mets (1984-1988)                  16 pts
  • Philadelphia Phillies (1976-1980)           17 pts
  • Pittsburgh Pirates (1901-1905)                16 pts
The Giants have won 3 World Series in the last 5 years, but where do they fit in history?

Some people may look at these teams and say, you know those are some good solid teams --Of course they are not better than some of those! Granted that the 2010-2014 Giants can spin the debate, and note that they have more titles than each of these (above six) teams. But to put it into perspective, they barely edge their 1962 counterparts, the 62' Giants who scored 12 points from 1962-1966 -- let it be known though, that I am NOT saying the 62'-66' bunch of Giants are better than the current group, no way!

In the book, he brings up the 1919 Chicago White Sox ("Black Sox") squad of 1916-1920; He mentions there is no foundation to consider the White Sox among the all-time greats. They managed to score only 12 points, their multi-year accomplishments rank them lower than the...
  • Detroit Tigers (1907-1911)
  • Boston Red Sox (1901-1905)
  • The Tigers of the 1930's.
  • The Indians of the 1950's.
  • Baltimore Orioles (1979-1983)
  • Kansas City Royals (1976-1980)
  • Detroit Tigers (1983-1987)
...and dozens of other teams, and suggests that no one would list these teams above among the all-time greats. We do know if the Chicago White Sox didn't throw the 1919 series (and won the World Championship) & didn't have 8 players banned from the game in a close 1920 pennant race, that they may have even won, giving them another shot at a title, that those would add only a few more points to the system, and still would fall short of all the teams listed above. Once again, I am not going to imply that the 1979-1983 Orioles are better than the 1919 White Sox, or the period of the 1983-1987 Tigers are better; I will say that the Tigers' 1984 World Championship season alone succeeds over any one year accomplishment by those White Sox teams though.

Say it ain't so? Not one of the best teams ever?

By the way, good news Giants fans -- You can say that your 2010-2014 teams are at least better than a historical team in the "Black Sox"; The White Sox were a good, strong team, but not among the all-time greats -- their reputation for the scandal makes people consider them great. But the 1916-1910 White Sox or the 2010-2014 Giants, are not anywhere close to be overrated than say...

... possibly the most over-rated team of all-time, when we are talking about greatest team debates...

The 1961 New York Yankees

I'm so glad when I read this book that Bill James hammers on many key points when discussing this team. I often have to bite my lip on the APBA Facebook Group, when people often bring this team into the greatest teams of all-time discussion -- they are nowhere close! The 1976-1980 Yankees may be a stronger group even. Now let me point out that the six-point system is the only thing that helps the 1960-1964 New York Yankees bunch, they are tied for second-most with the 1906-1910 Chicago Cubs & 1942-1946 St. Louis Cardinals with 24 pts.

But at this point, James just wants to point out the 1961 season -- before we head on to the 1961 season, I would like to note the 1960-1964 period for the Yankees was really their twilight period from their dominant 1950's -- The 1960's teams are a far cry from that bunch.

The Yankees ended up choking in the 1960 World Series to the Pittsburgh Pirates (even though they outscored the Pirates that series), they dominated a Cincinnati Reds team in the 1961 World Series, 4-1 -- a Reds team that really wasn't the best team from the National League, according to Pythagorean Records, the 93-win Reds were the equivalent of a 83-win team, and that the 3rd Place San Francisco Giants (a Pythagorean N.L. best 89 wins) would have been a much-better challenger to the somewhat declining Yankees. The Yankees would barely edge those Giants in 1962, 4-3 in the 1962 World Series. In 1963, the Los Angeles Dodgers would sweep the Yankees & they would lose the 64' Series to St. Louis.

Now I am not saying that their 1960-1964 period was not impressive, they went to the World Series all five years -- winning two World Championships.

But once again, we are focusing on the 1961 World Series team, so back to James' points. Three points he would put detail into...

1) Their offense is completely one-dimensional (Lots of HR's).
2) No bench (besides Johnny Blanchard).
3) Whitey Ford - Only quality arm on the team.

In MLB history (as of 2001) there have been 40 teams to lead the league both in runs, and to lead in fewest runs allowed; Many teams that have done this, are among the best ever...

  • 1927 New York Yankees (213)
  • 1936-1939 Yankees (averaging at least 143 runs per year more)
  • 1953 Brooklyn Dodgers (216)
  • "The Impossible Dream" - 1967 Boston Red Sox (123 runs)
The only thing Yankees did well in 1961 was hit many HR's, the only thing that they led their league in -- compare that to the 1976 Cincinnati Reds, who led nearly every offensive category; Reds had 212 more runs than the N.L. average.

The 61' Yankees pitchers, 6 out of their 11 pitchers on their staff, went on to win 35 games or fewer for the remainder of their careers. 

Another interesting note, their record was 7-2 at home against the expansion Washington Senators in their home run park; Against the Senators (in their pitching park), they went 4-5 against the Senators.

The M&M boys (Roger Maris & Mickey Mantle) paint this image of the 1961 Yankees as some great powerhouse of the past, when in reality we should be giving more credit to their 1962 team possibly, which beat a much tougher World Series contender.

Anyways, when you take much of the statistical proof provided by Bill James, it's easy to see that the 1961 team was indeed overrated & do not belong with the absolute greats; Good team, and a Yankee fan favorite for sure, but a little too much ticker-tape if you ask me.

Saturday, June 13, 2015

A Job 'Wells' Done for 77' Phillies

News from the Linda B. Schultz Memorial - Steel City/Pittsburgh APBA Baseball Tournament in Pittsburgh today. Which finished maybe over an hour ago...

Greg Wells won with the 1977 Philadelphia Phillies, edging the 1927 New York Yankees, 4-3 in the Championship game, over Ken's older brother Darren Schultz. You know they made their momma proud, by bringing friends of the APBA community together.

Great job guys! More pictures to come....

2007 Tigers at the All-Star Break

Mags had one of the best seasons in Tigers history in 2007; In APBA he is taking it one step higher.
It's been awhile, but here is an update of my 2007 Detroit Tigers Season Replay, my goal is to make the difference in wins (especially face-to-face with Cleveland) to see if we could have won that division that year. We are ahead of pace, but it's going to be tough to keep it up, we have slumped before, and got behind the May portion of the schedule -- but looking at everything, I do believe the true team did win the division that year. Cleveland probably should have not choked against Boston as well.

Here is the standings at the All-Star Break.

If the season ended today, these would be the four playoff teams (the ones in red), with today's new setup, Cleveland would be the 5th team in the scenario -- if that happened to be the playoff setup then, that is.

The Minnesota Twins have been a pain in our butts, winning 6 of 9 so far from us. They also beat us in some heart-breakers, we have played them in extras three times already, in which they have a 2-1 record against us there as well. I do know that we love playing the Texas Rangers, we are 5-1 against them.

Magglio Ordonez has been on fire, I really can do no wrong with this card of his. In real life, he won the 2007 A.L. Batting Title (.367); In my replay, he's batting .397, 23 HR & 71 RBI with a 1.182 OPS! He is on pace for 43 HR's & 134 RBI's, while flirting with .400 right now -- We'll watch that carefully. Gary Sheffield, like many of the Tigers, tore it up in June -- Currently is batting .297, 20 HR's, 79 RBI & (the biggest surprise stat) 23 stolen bases! "Sheff" hit 11 HR's in the month of June alone, and could become the newest member of the 40/40 club if he keeps at the rate he's going.

By the way, back to "Mags", he has 230 total bases, while on pace for 433. 400+ total bases has only happened 29 times in MLB history by 19 different players; Led by Lou Gehrig, accomplishing the feat five times!

The remainder of July is going to be rough, the Tigers will be on the road 17 of their next 20 games, only hosting the Kansas City Royals for 3 games at Comerica Park. They kick off the second half in Seattle to play the Seattle Mariners for 4 games, and then those blasted Twins at the Metrodome.

More to come, since I will have more time to finish this project.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

The Steel City Rolling This Weekend, Be There!

Giving a shout out for all who are seeking APBA TOURNAMENT fun!

There is still one more opening in the Pittsburgh (Steel City) APBA Baseball Tournament, happening this Saturday in the Pittsburgh area -- JUNE 13th; Be one of the 28 teams that will walk away with the first tournament championship!

Contact Ken Schultz, (he's one cool cat by the way) via Facebook!

Pittsburgh APBA Tournament Divisions are in for June 13. Still room for 1 more manager to fill out the Blass division:
Steve Blass Division
Tucker Mcbride 2001 Seattle Mariners
John Schoeb 1968 St. Louis Cardinals
Randy Kromer 1969 Baltimore Orioles
Barry Bonds Division
Ron Emch 1909 Detroit Tigers
Shawn Firster 1998 New York Yankees
Mitchell Briscoe 1920 Cleveland Indians
Brian Droz 1902 Pittsburgh Pirates
Roberto Clemente Division
John Cress 1995 Cleveland Indians
Gilles Thibault 1994 Montreal Expos
Ken Schulz 1957 Milwaukee Braves
Mel Maricic 2014 Pittsburgh Pirates
Andrew McCutchen Division
Matt Radlinski 2013 Detroit Tigers
Bill Lilley 1968 Detroit Tigers
Roy Langhans 1905 New York Giants
Timothy Nytra 1979 Chicago Cubs
Ralph Kiner Division
Darren Schulz 1927 New York Yankees
Mark Mcdonel 1971 Pittsburgh Pirates
Mike Schulz 1975 Cincinnati Reds
Jared Garman 2014 Los Angeles Dodgers
Willie Stargell Division
Tim Rounds 1931 Philadelphia A's
Jerry Shinsky 1953 Brooklyn Dodgers
John Mikulas 1998 Atlanta Braves
Blake Del Gouffre 1948 Cleveland Indians
Honus Wagner Division
Aaron Radlinski 1927 Pittsburgh Pirates
Greg Wells 1977 Philadelphia Phillies
Bob Stanton 1964 Chicago White Sox
Rob Schwarz 1985 St. Louis Cardinals

There is also a Toledo APBA Baseball Tournament in late August, more details to come on that.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

2015 BoS World Series (Games 1 & 2 )

It's now time for the BoS World Series between the Portland Microbrewers and the Fairgrove Tigers, for Portland this is their second consecutive trip to the "Fall Classic", while for the Tigers their first trip. Portland lost the series to South Shore last season.

Lowrie was rolling in Game 1 for the Fairgrove Tigers.

GAME 1 (at Portland)

Portland sends Bartolo Colon (17-7, 2.07 ERA, 8 CG's with 127 K's) to the mound to face off against Madison Bumgarner (20-6, 2.16 ERA & 208 K's) . Colon by the way, had a ridiculously low WHIP of 0.818! Both pitchers are Cy Young candidates in their respective leagues.

6th InningJed Lowrie breaks the silence in the top of the 6th for Fairgrove, with a RBI double off of the Brewers' Bartolo Colon, the game's first run. Carlos Gonzalez would even things up for Portland in the bottom of the inning with a solo HR off of Madison Bumgarner.

Top of the 8th - Jed Lowrie strikes again, with another RBI double. Adam Jones scores in Lowrie with RBI single, as Fairgrove takes 3-1 lead.

Madison Bumgarner goes 7 innings, allowing only 4 hits, a run & BB, with 4 K's. The Tigers' bullpen holds down the victory, with Joe Nathan closing out the game with 3 strikeouts, striking out Mike Trout, Carlos Gonzalez, allowing a one-out single to Freddie Freeman, and then striking out Alfonso Soriano.

Portland could only manage 5 hits; Bumgarner gets the win, Colon credited with the loss

FINAL SCORE: Fairgrove 3, Portland 1

GAME 2 (at Portland)

The Fairgrove Tigers will send Jarred Cosart had an impressive limited stretch (8-1, 1.81 ERA in 12 starts / 74.2 innings) this season, as he will face Hisashi Iwakuma (13-10, 3.06 ERA & 171 K's) of the Portland Microbrewers. Portland will try & even things up at home, before moving out east to Fairgrove, Michigan.
"CarGo" doing his best to keep Portland afloat.

Top of the 1st - Paul Goldschmidt sends a two-out solo homer to left, to get Fairgrove off to a 1-0 start to Game 2.

Top of the 3rd - Elvis Andrus and Howie Kendrick hit back-to-back home runs off of Hisashi Iwakuma, as Fairgrove increases their lead to 3-0.

Bottom of the 3rd - Jarred Cosart runs into trouble for the Fairgrove Tigers; After recording an out, Cosart loads up the bases all on walks to Coco Crisp, Jason Kipnis & Mike Trout. Carlos Gonzalez hits a two-run single; that's 3 hits & 3 RBI's for "CarGo" in this series. With runners on the corners & one out, Cosart strikes out Freddie Freeman. Alfonso Soriano hits into a force.
Fairgrove 3, Portland 2

Bottom of the 5th - Carlos Gonzalez collects his 4th RBI of the series, with a one-out sac fly, driving in Jason Kipnis to tie the ballgame, 3-3.

The game remains 3-3 for a few innings, Fairgrove's Jarred Cosart did not have his best stuff -- he went 4.1 innings, allowing 4 hits, 4 walks & 3 runs, with 4 K's; His bullpen calmed things down with good pitching by Robbie Ross and Craig Stammen over the next 2.2 innings. For Portland, Hisashi Iwakuma, settled down after allowing 3 runs in the first 3 innings, he would pitch 3.2 more scoreless innings -- finishing the night with 6 hits, 3 ER's, a walk allowed, with 8 strikeouts.

Top of the 8th - The game gets away from Portland, a RBI double with no outs for Adam Jones, as Jason Heyward follows with a two-run jack to right-center -- The Portland crowd is now silence. Lonnie Chisenhall would tack on another two-run HR; all 5 runs coming off usually-effective Glen Perkins.

Louis Coleman gets Fairgrove out of a bit of trouble in the bottom of the 8th, and clamps down the save for the Tigers, while Portland finds itself in a 2-0 series hole; Stammen gets the win, while Perkins gets the loss with 5 runs & 4 hits allowed in only 2/3 of an inning.

Every player (except for Andre Ethier) records a hit for the Tigers, while Portland's bats do slightly better than previous game, with 7 hits (12 hits in 2 games).

The series continues, as we head out to Fairgrove for at least Games 3 & 4, Portland is hoping they will get to play a Game 5, and bring the series back to Portland.

Fairgroves leads World Series, 2-0

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Can't Break Even

Who knew?! Kimbrel suddenly looking like odd man out.

The Gotham City Rogues can't seem to ever break even, every single time. We started the season 0-2, but then evened our season up at 2-2, but then lost to go 2-3, then won a big week against a tough opponent to even 3-3.

I thought my opponent for Week 7, would be a easy victory because their team has been struggling, and I just came off a big win against the Brownbeard's Drunken Pirates -- but I got my butt whooped 440-292!

Recent activity: I released Gregory Polanco -- I happened to have the starting outfield for the Pittsburgh Pirates this season, but Polanco finally had to go. Marcell Ozuna (Marlins), you need to step it up, you may be next! Picked up Josh Reddick; Released Nathan Karns - SP (TB) for Jered Weaver of the Angels.

Placed Craig Kimbrel on the trading block, who would have imagined that?! He was my team's 3rd overall pick I believe (after Andrew McCutchen & Max Scherzer)... but he's only my 3rd best reliever out of 3 relievers, plus heading down the road when Jose Fernandez comes back from the Disabled List, I will have to certainly go with two relievers only. Kimbrel is being outplayed by my other two relievers, Jeurys Familia and Glen Perkins (who I drafted, released at one point & signed him back).

Kimbrel, by the way, as of press time, had 12 Saves, but a 5.00 ERA & 1.39 WHIP -- a WHIP that is mediocre or average at best for a starting pitcher -- Relievers' WHIPs are generally not higher than 1.000, especially a good one like Kimbrel, whose career WHIP as of this moment & due to the 18 bad innings this year, is 0.930!

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