Friday, January 29, 2016

Pastor Rich Keeps on Rolling!

Pastor Rich Zawadzki has been at it again, this time its a tournament of all the World Champions in MLB history. This is the latest two updates, one including a 3rd no-hitter!

Some pretty cool stuff, I was also glad to see that the 1935 Detroit Tigers pulled off the upset against the 1998 New York Yankees. The Yankees franchise actually has taken a beating in this tournament, Rich's New England Patriots got knocked out in the AFC Championship this past weekend, so he's taken that energy by knocking out the 'Evil Empire' for New England / Red Sox Nation.

We'll keep you posted on more to come.

Rich Zawadzki 2015 World Series Winners Single-Elimination Tournament

World Series Winners (1903, 1905-1993, 1995-2015)
Single Elimination Tourney (Ace Throws, pitcher hits)
Lower Seed is the Home team

111 Teams

Games # 1-79 are in the books

Lowest Seed remaining – 1986 New York Mets (5)
Highest Seed remaining – 1987 Minnesota Twins (110)
Oldest Team remaining – 1903 Boston Americans (23)
Newest Team Remaining – 2002 Anaheim Angels (65)

Franchises represented

5 (A’s)

1911 Philadelphia A’s (18), 1913 Philadelphia A’s (48), 1929 Philadelphia A’s (10), 1930 Philadelphia A's (21), 1972 Oakland A's (73)

4 (Cardinals, Dodgers, Giants, Yankees)

1931 St. Louis Cardinals (25), 1942 St. Louis Cardinals (11), 1944 St. Louis Cardinals (14), 1964 St. Louis Cardinals (92)
1955 Brooklyn Dodgers (34), 1963 Los Angeles Dodgers (63), 1981 Los Angeles Dodgers (93), 1988 Los Angeles Dodgers (88)
1905 New York Giants (12), 1921 New York Giants (61), 1922 New York Giants (72), 1933 New York Giants (77)
1941 New York Yankees (26), 1949 New York Yankees (43), 1956 New York Yankees (45), 1978 New York Yankees (62)

3 (Red Sox)

1903 Boston Americans (23), 1912 Boston Red Sox (15), 1918 Boston Red Sox (80)

2 (Tigers)

1935 Detroit Tigers (59), 1968 Detroit Tigers (35)

1 (Cubs, Royals, Mets, Twins, Marlins, Angels)

1907 Chicago Cubs (7)
1985 Kansas City Royals (102)
1986 New York Mets (5)
1987 Minnesota Twins (110)
1997 Florida Marlins (96)
2002 Anaheim Angels (65)

3rd Round (Round of 32)

Game # 80 – 1997 Florida Marlins (96) Vs. 2002 Anaheim Angels (65)
Game # 81 – 1918 Boston Red Sox (80) Vs. 1913 Philadelphia A’s (48)
Game # 82 – 1922 New York Giants (72) Vs. 1931 St. Louis Cardinals (25)
Game # 83 – 1988 Los Angeles Dodgers (88) Vs. 1972 Oakland A's (73)
Game # 84 – 1981 Los Angeles Dodgers (93) Vs. 1921 New York Giants (61)
Game # 85 – 1933 New York Giants (77) Vs. 1956 New York Yankees (45)
Game # 86 – 1964 St. Louis Cardinals (92) Vs. 1986 New York Mets (5)
Game # 87 – 1930 Philadelphia A's (21) Vs. 1905 New York Giants (12)
Game # 88 – 1963 Los Angeles Dodgers (63) Vs. 1955 Brooklyn Dodgers (34)
Game # 89 – 1911 Philadelphia A’s (18) Vs. 1912 Boston Red Sox (15)
Game # 90 – 1941 New York Yankees (26) Vs. 1907 Chicago Cubs (7)
Game # 91 – 1903 Boston Americans (23) Vs. 1929 Philadelphia A’s (10)
Game # 92 – 1978 New York Yankees (62) Vs. 1968 Detroit Tigers (35)
Game # 93 – 1987 Minnesota Twins (110) Vs. 1944 St. Louis Cardinals (14)
Game # 94 – 1985 Kansas City Royals (102) Vs. 1935 Detroit Tigers (59)
Game # 95 – 1949 New York Yankees (43) Vs. 1942 St. Louis Cardinals (11)

2015 World Series Winners Single-Elimination Tournament
We have our 3rd no-hitter of the tourney.
Curt Schilling 
Ron Guidry
Artie Nehf
Games # 1-79 (of 110) are in the books
Game # 30
2004 Boston Red Sox (71) – 3 – 4 – 1
1906 Chicago White Sox (58) – 0 – 0 – 0
WP: Curt Schilling (B XZ – Grade Advancement – A)
LP: Doc White (A&C Z)
Game # 45
1971 Pittsburgh Pirates (75) – 0 – 0 – 1
1977 New York Yankees (54) – 1 – 4 – 2
WP: Ron Guidry (A XY)
LP: Steve Blass (B YZ)
Game # 84
1981 Los Angeles Dodgers (93) – 0 – 0 – 0
1921 New York Giants (61) – 2 – 5 – 1
WP: Artie Nehf (B – Grade Advancement – A)
LP: Fernando Valenzuela (A XZ)

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Then There Was Four...

Both the Swatara Eliminators and Urbana Locomotives moved on after each winning 4-0 in their respective Game 5's. The Traverse City Panthers, who made big moves in attempt to win a World Championship fall short, while rookie manager Matt Hoeppner & his A.L. East Divison Champs fell to the American League Wildcard.

The Eliminators (managed by Brandon Matlock) will have to face #1 seed A.L. West Division Champs - The Chicago Nine (managed by MWBL & MWWL Commissioner - Stray Corrado), while in the National League Championship Series we have the Locomotives taking on the Portland Microbrewers (who have reached the NLCS all three seasons), managed by Brad Stark

Thomas Nelshoppen (of the APBA Blog) manages the Urbana Locomotives, by the way... I couldn't have lost to a nicer guy!

Congrats to all four teams getting this far, should be an excellent series!

Saturday, January 23, 2016

The Stars & Stripes All-Star Game

The Stars & Stripes Game (for the "Crazy 48's") is underway, an All-Star accumulation of talent from this season; All-Stars from all 48 teams are here in attendance.

Satchel Paige will start for the Stars, as he comes in with a 7-0 record at the All-Star Break for the 1935 Pittsburgh Crawfords (the lone Negro League team in the league); He pitched a no-hitter earlier this against the 1942 St. Louis Cardinals. Paige will face Buck O'Brien of the 1912 Boston Red Sox; O'Brien also comes in with a undefeated record of 7-0, with a league-best 1.11 ERA.

Top of the 2nd - Babe Ruth leads the inning off with a double off of O'Brien for the Stars' first hit of the game. Although Rafael Palmeiro would follow by hitting into a double-play, Hack Wilson would score the first run with a solo blast. STARS 1, STRIPES 0

Bottom of the 3rd - A lead-off double by Billy Martin; Frank Chance follows by striking out against Satchel Paige. "Shoeless Joe" Jackson would knock in the Stripes' first run with a RBI single. The Stars would go to the pen, and bring in Denny McLain to face George Brett; Brett hits into a fielder's choice, as the Stars get Jackson out at second. Barry Bonds would single off McLain, moving Brett up to third; Bonds steals on next pitch. With runners on 2nd & 3rd, Albert Belle smacks a home run to deep center, as the Stars take the lead with his three-run blast. Duke Snider would ground out for final out of the inning. STRIPES 4, STARS 1

Belle brought his big bat to the All-Star Game.

Bottom of the 4th - With Dizzy Dean now on the mound for the Stars, Miguel Tejada leads off by drawing a walk, Jorge Posada would do the same. With runners on 1st & 2nd and no outs, Billy Martin would hit into a force, as the Stars get the Stripes' runner (Posada) out at second. With runners on the corners, Frank Chance would collect an RBI on a sac fly, with Tejada tagging up.

Top of the 5th - With one out, Mark Koenig hits a triple (off of Early Wynn) into right field corner; Pete Rose drives him on the very next at-bat. Rogers Hornsby and Lou Gehrig were not able to do anything more for the Stars that inning. STRIPES 5, STARS 2

Bottom of the 5th - George Brett hits a lead-off double off of Christy Mathewson. Barry Bonds, already with a single & steal in the game, would send a homer over the center field fence, giving the Stripes a commanding, 7-2 lead. Albert Belle flies out for first out. Duke Snider would add to the Stars' misery with a home run of his own, a solo shot; Mathewson is replaced by Nelson Briles.

The remainder of the game would be uneventful, as both teams' pitching staffs kept the game scoreless from then on out.

Albert Belle of the 1995 Indians (1-for-3), would walk away with the game's MVP honors for his game-changing three-run homer during the bottom of the third. Bonds was a close second, going 2-for-3, with a HR, single & stolen base. Belle currently leads both leagues with 17 HR in 24 games.

STRIPES will have home-field advantage for the World Series, which is good news for the following teams in the STRIPES playoff hunt: 1906 Chicago Cubs, 1912 Boston Red Sox, 1917 Chicago White Sox, 1953 New York Yankees, 1953 Brooklyn Dodgers, 1984 Detroit Tigers, 1998 New York Yankees and 1998 San Diego Padres -- plus the 1977 Philadelphia Phillies and the 1995 Cleveland Indians who are sitting outside of the playoff bubble.

So it turns out that Albert may have helped his own team's causes, which can mean bonus for him -- The Indians have heated up as Albert has heated up.

It's all division match-ups from here on out, Cleveland's chances could get better if the 1917 Chicago White Sox, or one of the other teams start stumbling in the other divisions as well.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

BoS League Division Series: Both Going the Distance

The playoffs have been rolling for the Boys of Summer APBA Baseball League -- it's our 2015 Season (2014 BBW files), our 3rd season as a league.

In the National League, we have a familiar cast -- three teams that all have been to the playoffs in previous season, the Urbana Locomotives and Traverse City Panthers are playing in the NLDS, in which either winner will have a NLCS rematch with the Portland Microbrewers (the back-to-back National League Champions).

In the American League, the cast is fairly new, with the Swatara Eliminators are the only team returning to the playoffs from this bunch -- while the Chicago Nine and South Side Spartans taste post-season blood for the first time. 


[Additional game recaps provided by league owners Matt Hoeppner & Brandon Matlock]

In Game 1 -- Down 4-2, the Swatara Eliminators would score 6 runs during the top of the 7th, as the South Side Spartans' bullpen imploded. Once again, the 7th Inning would not be nice to the Spartans in Game 2, as they blown a 2-0 lead, by allowing 4 runs to the Eliminators. 

Worthy of their name, the Eliminators after the first two games, had the Spartans on the brink of elimination... with the series shifted to Swatara's home field.


Game 1 would watch the Urbana Locomotives almost surrender, not just one commanding lead, but two leads. The Locomotives had a commanding 5-0 lead, entering the bottom of the 7th, and that's when the Traverse City Panthers started scratching back. The Panthers would score three runs in the bottom of the 7th, including a two-run HR by Miguel Cabrera.

The Locomotives would answer back with 4 runs during the top of the 8th, thanks to a three-run HR by Welington Castillo

Once again, that would not stop the Panthers from trying to make it a game; Scoring 5 runs in the bottom of the 9th, to make a 9-3 game, suddenly 9-8. Jonathan Papelbon would close it out though in the ninth for Urbana.

In Game 2, both Tanner Roark (Urbana) and Adam Wainwright (Traverse City) were brilliant by pitching 10 innings each on scoreless ball. The game would come down to whose bullpen can last the longest, it would be decided in 13 innings with a walk-off single by Matt Carpenter, driving in Brian Dozier from second.

Series tied 1-1.

Miguel's 2015 Izzy Baseball Card.


GM 3 - South Side 9 Swatara 7 (12 inn) - It's not even possible to do a write up on a game that was this unreal,but I will try.
Buster Posey of the Spartans.

The Eliminators would have runners gunned down at 3rd and home in the first two innings to keep the game scoreless.  RBI's by Denard Span and Buster Posey would give the Spartans a 2-0 lead in the 3rd.  Eliminator starter Jose Quintana would get chased with the bases loaded and nobody out in the 5th.  Reliever Bryan Shaw would deliver a meat ball to one Buster Posey who promptly put it over the fence for a GS, extending the Spartan lead to 6-0.  Again, the Eliminators would show heart and rally.  Zach Wheeler would enter the bottom half of the 7th with a 6-0 lead but he would not survive the inning.  After a Victor Martinez double drove in Lorenzo Cain, the Eliminators were within 6-4, no outs and runners on 2nd and 3rd.  Justin Turner would follow with a walk to load the bases.  Andrew Miller would get Anthony Rendon to ground into a DP which would score Charlie Blackmon.  The Eliminators would score no more in the 7th but the deficit would be down to 1.

In the bottom half of the 9th, Cain would get a lead off walk, steal 2nd, and eventually score on a VMART SAC fly and the game was nodded at 6 headed to extra innings.

Then, in the bottom of the 10th, the two Spartan offensive heroes, Buster Posey and James Loney would collide attempting to catch an IF fly.  Both would have to be removed from the remainder of the contest.

With one out in the 11th, VMART would make an error at 1st, Martinez is playing first for the once again injured Anthony Rizzo, allowing Adam Eaton to reach 2nd on the error.  Tom Wilhelmsen would walk the next two batters to load the bases with no outs.  Kyle Crockett would bring the Eliminator faithful to their feet as he got out of the jam but striking out Neil Walker and Hanley Ramirez to end the threat.

It seems as if the momentum of getting out of the jam carried over to the bottom half of the inning.  Billy Hamilton would lead off with a bunt single followed by a steal of 2nd.  Cain would get a SF to right field allowing Hamilton to move to 3rd.  With the IF in and the game on the line, Charlie Blackmon would scorch one back up the middle only to have Spartan reliever Scott Atchison catch it.  VMART would be intentionally walked and Ian Desmond failed to win it after grounding out to end the inning.

The 12th would be the downfall of the Eliminator bullpen.  Mark Trumbo, who replaced the injured James Loney, would get a one out walk.  This would lead to a 3 run inning from the Spartans.  Angel Pagan would stroke an RBI double, an Anthony Rendon error would allow another, and finally Denard Span's squeez bunt would give the Spartans a 3 run cushion.  It turned out that they would need those 3 runs.

The Eliminators would not go quietly.  With two outs on and two on, the Eliminators would turn to Aramis Ramirez in hopes of some more late inning magic.  Ramirez would hit a single driving in Anthony Rendon.  This would bring the winning run to the plate.  However, Sergio Romo would strike out Lorenzo Cain to end the threat and push the series to Game 4.

Buster Posey had 3 hits and a GS in the win while Yadier Molina and Brandon Phillips had 3 hits apiece in the loss.

GM 4 - South Side 6  Swatara 1 - RA Dickey would allow two hits and one run over 7 innings to force a GAME 5.   The Spartans trail heading into the 7th but would push across 6 in the final 3 frames.  Denard Span's one out triple would get things started for the Spartans. Despite the IF playing in, Span would beat Ian Desmond's throw home and the Spartans would grab the lead.   Adam Eaton, who hit the previous grounder, would score from 1st on a Neil Walker single.  The final run of the inning would come on a KUNG FU PANADA SF.   The Eliminators would try and rally again.  They would get runners on 2nd and 3rd with two outs in the 8th but Charlie Blackmon would fly out to CF to end the inning.  The Spartans would tack on two insurance runs in the 9th and the series will go back to South Side for the 5th and deciding game.  

In Game 5, it will be Jon Lester facing Zack Grienke.  On a personal note, I dislike Jon Lester greatly so its only poetic that he decides my fate in this playoff series.  As an Oakland A's fan, I dislike Lester over the Cespedes trade and his inability to finish off the Royals in the 2014 WC game.   Despite that, I did trade for him in my FTF league this year as I looked for another pitcher to pair Chis Sale with in my push the WS.  In the regular season, Lester went 0-5 with an ERA of almost 8.  Then, in the post season he was 0-2 with an ERA over 6, so I'm sure in Game 5 he'll pitch a perfect game to put a nice bow on the 2-0 collapse.  Despite all that, there is nothing better than dropping dice or playing BBW.

Good luck to SS in Game 5.

Our team is ready for Game 5.

Swat Elim


I'm glad that I played Wilmer Flores for both games, I thought about using Jean Segura at short for Game 4 on the road. 

The series is now knotted up 2-2, a piece.

The decisive Game 5's are next...

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

"The Stars & Stripes Game" Team Rosters (Crazy 48's)

The Crazy 48's is 28 games through its 48-game season, and have officially entered their All-Star Break. The official name of the league is known as the Stars & Stripes League, but over time during the project, I have often referred to it as the "Crazy 48's" (Due to being 48 teams & now a 48-game season); The league contains all of the teams from the two Greatest Teams of the Past sets I & II, plus 8 other teams that I own in APBA.

Like the Major League, the "Crazy 48's" is separated into two separate leagues - The Stars League and the Stripes League....

So this is why the All-Star Game is called the "Stars & Stripes Game". The winner will get home-field during the World Series; Stripes are the home team for this event.

Let's take a look at the teams and players, who were elected to this All-Star Game; Each team in each league had at least one representative, which made the All-Star picks a little interesting as the teams were finalized.



The 1927 New York Yankees, I believe have the most players representing them on the Stars side, with 3 players in Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig & Mark Koenig (all in the starting lineup). I made a rule that no one player can be duplicated, otherwise Lou Gehrig would have his 1937 self there as well.

The Stripes team has 3 teams representing 3 players:
  • The 1953 New York Yankees with Billy Martin (starter), Yogi Berra & Hank Bauer
  • The 1953 Brooklyn Dodgers with Duke Snider (starter), Jim Gilliam & Clem Labine.
  • The 1906 Chicago Cubs with Frank Chance (starter), Harry Steinfeldt & Mordecai "Three-Finger" Brown.

The Stars Team has a tough lineup, from Hornsby through DiMaggio, the APBA cards are simply monster cards, while the Stripes Lineup has a few small ball-type bats. The Stars also have more A pitchers on the roster as well.

Both teams have some interesting players representing their teams as lone All-Stars. Wally Backman (86' Mets), Storm Davis (83' Orioles) and Jimmy Ripple (37' Giants) who are all playing for some bad-record teams -- Who would have guessed out of some of the stars on those teams, that these guys would be representing their ballclubs?

The Stars are favored over the Stripes, it's a good thing the Stripes are at home.

* * * The results of the game will be in the next post * * *

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Building Blocks

Brian Dozier celebrating a career year by him & the team.

With playoff baseball upon us in the Boys of Summer APBA Baseball League, I was browsing my past articles on the league and fell onto my piece about my Traverse City Panthers' hopes entering the 2nd Season (2014) -- We are currently in the playoffs of the 3rd Season.

It was a great article, about how most of this team has been put together. I feel the article paints the details of how a General Manager/team owner went to work, and is trying to build a champion out of a team that was in the ashes.


I'm adding to the article, the updates (after the original) -- [Original ARTICLE in Green]

*  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *

NOVEMBER 28, 2014
Panthers are ready for Josh Donaldson to release his pure awesomeness.
The top pick went to my Traverse City Panthers, for they had the worst record in the entire league at 46-116. When I drafted this team in the inaugural draft, I thought I drafted really well for them, I thought that I could compete in my division at least, I solely drafted for 2013 MLB players instead of 2012 players, so I knew that would be reflected somewhat, but it really wasn't until putting the rosters together that I realized how little power that my lineup had. Before the season began, I felt we would be in the losing half of the league, but more like 70-92, mid 60's in wins, at it's worst -- I was obviously wrong.

In the 2013 Inaugural draft (which took place in February 2014) and was of 2012 players -- I drafted players that would emerge in 2013, in Josh DonaldsonMatt CarpenterBrian DozierBrandon BeltDevin MesoracoChris Johnson & Julio Teheran. I also drafted some great pitching in Yu DarvishMatt HarveyAlex Cobb, and a No-Card in Scott Kazmir. Drafted bullpen studs Cody AllenLuke Gregerson & Kelvin Herrera.

When I realized that things were going south, I traded players like my center fielder Austin Jackson, who at that point was one of my few constant contributors on offense to Portland with starting pitchers Matt Harrison and Brandon Morrow. Both Harrison & Morrow had pretty good seasons in 2012, so they will help Portland's staff now with a little offense & great defense in adding Jackson. I would acquire Corey KluberNathan Eovaldi & Ryan Raburn in the deal. Portland also acquired my 4th Round Draft pick (basically a late 3rd Round pick). Kluber, as we know would win the 2014 American League Cy Young Award, while Eovaldi has potential, dialing it up in the high 90's; Raburn will be a plus for this season, our 2014 Season (2013 stats) -- Raburn had a .901 OPS in 2013 playing part-time for the Indians, with 16 HR's in only 243 at-bats, which will come in handy off the bench for the Panthers.

Excited about Kluber: By the way, the man only has one face.

At the trade deadline, I made another deal that would help transform this team and set them up for the future, a trade with Boston. Trading Austin Jackson was tough for my Panthers, because it left a vacancy in the outfield, I had Giancarlo Stanton in left, and after that there was a considerable drop-off. I still had Alejandro De Aza (who was solely drafted for 2012 & 2013 MLB stats) and Jarrod Dyson (a part-time speedster), the other guys ended up being released after the season. At this point, I told myself we are drafting starting pitcher Jose Fernandez if we end up with the worst record. Could you imagine a rotation with Darvish, Harvey, Fernandez, Teheran & Kluber?! But my senses kicked in, and I realized I need some outfield studs, and some offense -- who is more exciting than (the other Cuban) Yasiel Puig? Nothing was confirmed, there was my team along with a few other teams that had a legit shot at the #1 overall pick, nor was I trying to lose, who really wants to be the worst? But realistically, I knew I was going to get a good pick regardless, it was a great draft for rookies.

Pence wants to bring his MLB winning ways to Grand Traverse.
So back to the Boston deal, I traded for Hunter Pence. Pence was struggling for Boston, and at that moment was sitting in the minors, he had good numbers in 2012 & better numbers for 2013 & 2014. He is a consistent offensive player, with good glove, that bats around .285 that hangs around the 20/20 club. So my thoughts starting going with a great fielding OF in Giancarlo, Pence & the possibility of Puig. I traded 3B-Chris Johnson, who will help Boston now in their playoff race, and be even better in 2014 (2013 MLB stats), he was traded along with NC (no-card) Scott Kazmir who transformed his career from almost out-of-baseball to sudden back-on-track ace, and a lefty in Jonny Venters (who has had some health issues), but should help in his playoff push. I traded a 6th Rd pick I believe, and received a 15th Rd (last round) draft pick. I would re-acquire my 6th Rd pick back, by trading starting pitcher Matt Garza.

Eventually, we ended up with the #1 overall pick, I drafted Yasiel Puig. He will go along with Stanton & Pence like planned, and I added some depth to De Aza & Dyson with sleeper Scott Van Slyke and surprise Tampa Bay Rays youngster Kevin Kiermaier. Van Slyke, is in an interesting MLB situation, he's in a crowded Dodgers outfield, that has been in middle of trade rumors -- if he was able to get playing time somewhere, he could emerge like Jayson Werth did in Philadelphia, then again, he could also just be another Ryan Raburn, who can never take advantage of his full-time status (better as a platoon option).

T.C.'s alternate logo.
We added Wade Davis in the 2nd Round of the 2014 BoS Draft, that will go nicely in 2015 with Kelvin HerreraCody AllenLuke Gregerson, and Tyler Clippard.

We should be better this season, it will be tough in this N.L. East though with the Hannibal Cavemen & Holland Hitchhikers -- plus the Urbana Locomotives hope to defend their division title as well. Looking forward to seeing how much the Panthers have improved -- I really believe we can finish with a winning record, so I guess it's safe to say that I expect my team to improve it's win  total by 35-40 games. We'll have to see how that all plays out, really stiff competition this season, the league I believe has more parity this season.

*  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *

In 2014, the Traverse City Panthers did improve as I expected, not by 35 or 40 games, but by 44 games! The team went from league doormat to a 90-win N.L. Wild Card team over one season. The emergence of young players like Donaldson, Carpenter, Dozier, Belt, Kluber, Teheran and others, plus the addition of Yasiel Puig (#1 overall pick in 2014) helped solidify this sudden-championship contender.

The Panthers defeated its division rival, division champs - Hannibal Cavemen in the American League Division Series, and then gave the eventual back-to-back National League Champion - Portland Microbrewers a run for their money; Forcing the National League Championship Series to seven games.

The off-season would watch the Panthers further evolve, by adding more talent in the draft, and conducting a few trades. The team drafted prospects Brandon Finnegan, Dalton Pompey, and Nathan Karns -- while adding young free agent Wilmer Flores; The Panthers traded Jordy Mercer to the Buffalo Yankees that set-up the pick to acquire Karns, while the Panthers went younger to get Flores to go along with Jean Segura at shortstop. The drafting of Karns would help in acquiring a bigger, up-coming mid-season piece (but we'll get to that in a bit).

Leading up to the 2015 BoS Annual Draft (which includes rookies & free agents), a few big trades went down. The Buffalo Yankees got the young starting pitcher they wanted in Chris Archer, and added a solid second baseman in veteran Ian Kinsler -- in exchange for Miguel Cabrera and Wade Miley. Cabrera's numbers in the BoS was down in 2014 from his A.L. MVP season in 2013, and with the team having another star at first in Adrian Gonzalez, and the pressing need that they wanted to add to their rotation -- it all made sense. I know Buffalo wanted a young starting pitcher for some time, they inquired about my Julio Teheran at one point.

So after hearing of the trade, being the Commissioner, I was a bit surprised when Stray started messaging me about the possibility of myself owning the Major League Triple Crown winner. I definitely was not feeling comfortable of playing Brandon Belt for most of the season on down-numbers for the upcoming season (although I loved Belt's upside, that's if he could stay healthy).

Chicago would acquire Yasiel Puig from Traverse City prior to the 2015 BoS Draft in a blockbuster trade that watched the Nine send Miguel CabreraDrew SmylyJosh HarrisonLeonys Martin & a Chicago 3rd Round Draft Pick (that ended up being Dalton Pompey) to Traverse City; Puig was sent to Chicago with pitchers Yu Darvish and Cody Allen, plus first baseman Brandon Belt T.C.'s 1st Round Pick (Rusney Castillo). 

Overall, if I was to redo this trade, I would give up a little less, but am more relieved that my little brother now owns Puig -- Acquired in separate mid-season deal.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

The Nutty Professor

So here is the continuation from the one of my last posts...

As I mentioned before, I have many APBA projects, that is no secret to all of you that follow my posts on this site. I am trying to get many of them or at least the biggest ones wrapped up, before doing any continuation with any of the others. It's kind of like when I was a kid, my mom used to always say, clean up your mess or pick up your toys before you move onto the next game (or project)...

So moms usually know best...


  • All-Time Franchise League - A league involving the original 26 franchises with their all-time best players (BATS1); The season was a 64-game season, that I started in late 2004 and finished in early 2008. The All-Time Chicago Cubs won the World Series over the All-Time Detroit Tigers; The Tigers defeated the Yankees in the A.L. East in a tie-breaker (Game #65). The Tigers swept Oakland in the ALCS, in which the Cubs went 7 games with the Giants in a NLCS classic. So... CUBS WIN, CUBS WIN! (check it out) .
  • Heritage Baseball League - The first season or I should say, season cut-short, ended with about 20 games. The league was BATS1 APBA cards with 2007 fringe relievers and some stars from that set, on 36 teams. The teams were old school team names or defunct team names of Baseball history or names that were similar. The Buffalo Bison went on to win a tournament to win the title. 
  • The 2007 DETROIT TIGERS Season Replay - The Season and playoffs has actually been completed, I just have not relayed the news of the results to my followers yet. We left off, with the Boston Red Sox winning the first two games of the 2007 ALCS at home against the Tigers. The Tigers return to Comerica Park in hopes of making it a series; The Detroit Tigers came back & defeated the Los Angeles Angels in the ALDS to face Boston.
  • The Amazing April Tournament (2014) - A March Madness single-game tournament involving 64 teams. The inaugural tournament's championship came down to the 1927 New York Yankees defeating the Cindarella - 1993 Philadelphia Phillies team.
  • Mid-West Baseball League & Mid-West Winter League - I resigned from both leagues, to give my computer league (The Boys of Summer APBA Baseball League) more needed attention. I felt that my last season in the both leagues were filled with distractions, and that I couldn't fully commit to either one of those leagues, it was not fair to my friend, who commissioned both leagues as well -- not to mention the fact that the league has waiting lists with eager owners waiting to make it into these two great leagues. My Traverse City Crusaders (MWBL) were improving each year, after a complete fire sale entering my first year, while my Traverse City Tigers (MWWL) won their division a few years ago, in their debut season, for the 1988 retro season. My goal is to eventually return, but that is all up to the Commissioner and myself, when that time comes.

  • Crazy 48's League - The Crazy 48's started in a strange way, I was in the middle of my "Tournament of Champions" tournament, which involves 64 teams in a March Madness-style bracket (but done with actual series, not single-games), involving the 60 GTOP teams provided in the GTOP I, II & III sets. I got plenty of the first round match-ups done, except for the games that involved the GTOP III set (that I have yet to purchase). Due to finances at the time & not being able to play those games yet, I decided that I would play the 40 GTOP teams that I did own, adding 8 other teams to the mix. The original name for the league was the Stars & Stripes League, which the individual leagues are still labeled as that, one Stars league & one Stripes league (in same sense as American & National). The "Crazy 48's" label came with the fact that it was a crazy, aggressive project by me & partially inspired by the Kill Bill movies ("Crazy 88's) , I made a schedule for about 156 games each for each team; The league was created in March 2013 and I would go on to play at least 24 games a week to about 30 games a week -- from March until October that year. I don't think I never played so many games in such a stretch, and I planned to continue that rate for about 3 years, my goal was to finish the league by the time I turned 40, in October 2016. Then I went to the Chicago World Series in Winter 2013, and then I was thinking about APBA BBW (Baseball for Windows) & then checked out the APBA Online League, and ended up starting & commissioning my own computer APBA Baseball League named The Boys of Summer APBA Baseball League. Then I joined two other computer leagues in the MWBL and MWWL. Safe to say, I ran into some time-eating projects that would eventually lead me to re-tinker the schedule to 48 games each -- The league is about to have its All-Star Game ("The Stars & Stripes Game") and then finish its last 20 games, involving all division match-ups to finish the season, which will make the divisions races even more interesting. The top 8 teams in each league move on to the playoffs, four division winners, and the next best 4 teams of each league. The division match-ups should spark new life into the league, and I should finish by the end of 2016 as originally planned (just with less games).
  • The 2007 DETROIT TIGERS Season Replay - The Season and playoffs is actually over & completed, I just have not relayed the news of the results to the site yet. We left off, with the Boston Red Sox winning the first two games of the 2007 ALCS at home against the Tigers. The Tigers return to Comerica Park in hopes of making it a series; The Detroit Tigers came back & defeated the Los Angeles Angels in the ALDS to face Boston.
  • The Amazing April Tournament (2015) - I was going to skip the tournament in 2015, due to my computer league obligations and my trip for the GMABT tournament in Jackson. Then on my two days off in mid-April, we lost internet, and I quickly started the tournament anyways. The tournament than got sidelined, but I have recently got the tourney down to the Sweet Sixteen.
  • The Boys of Summer APBA Baseball League (Computer) - will always be "In the process", it's a league with 16 individual team owners (friends) that compete year after year for the BoS World Championship. It's a keepers league with year-to-year drafts, with rosters trimmed down each season to a degree with free agents -- The Annual Draft involves both rookies and free agents. We are about to wrap up our third season, and have had two World Championship teams in the South Shore Fighting Imps (Bill Gilliam) and the Fairgrove Tigers (Robert Mosher). This season has had the tightest playoff races in league history and are going down to the wire as we speak. 
  • The BoS APBA Baseball League Statistical Database - An on-going project of logging all the league's all-time career statistics for players, pitchers, managers & team histories.
  • The ALTERNATE 1993 BBW Project - It's a computer league in an alternate 1993 in which expansion stopped with the Mariners & Blue Jays, and where no Florida Marlins, Colorado Rockies & eventually no Arizona Diamondbacks or Tampa Bay Rays. The players from those "expansion teams" would be drafted year-after-year, and those players will serve their new teams during their actual stints with those "expansion teams". For the computer files, I also go with the rosters the seasons ended with, so that made Gary Sheffield a Marlin, in which there was no Marlins in the alternate world, making him a free agent for the draft. The Los Angeles Dodgers had the worst overall record in real-life 1992, which gave them the first overall pick in which they drafted Sheffield. Some other recognizable faces -- The Mets drafted Andres Galarraga, the Royals took Dante Bichette, Vinny Castilla is with the Angels, while the Phillies added Bryan Harvey to an all-ready tough bullpen. The season is at it's All-Star Break with big trades that took place -- Check out the latest (click here) .
  • The 2015 TRANSACTION BBW League - A computer league that starts on opening day each season with the computer file APBA teams in place, with up-to-date actual MLB transactions, basically a replay with a twist. The 2014 Transaction (2013 MLB Season files, but 2014 final rosters) season ended with the Boston Red Sox winning it over the St. Louis Cardinals -- the same two teams that faced off against one another in the 2013 MLB World Series.
  • WORLD SERIES Replays (BBW) - World Series replays, thanks to APBA's World Series disks of every World Series teams, involving teams from 1901, 1902, 1904 & 1994. Bought 11 disks for a deal on the site worth $60! -- Currently in the middle of the 1904 World Series.
SMALLER DEALS (in the Process)

With no time line destination
  • I have a computer BATS2 Season going, about 12 games through, will eventually finish -- A one-shot deal to finish at around 162 games (no following seasons to be done).
  • The DEBUT League  - Players play with their MLB teams that they made their MLB debuts with, I have done this in the past, with 2011 & doing it again with 1993. For example, my God, so many good relievers made their debuts with the Mets, think about that one -- Also could you imagine the Mets in the mid-1980s in a DEBUT LEAGUE format, with Dwight Gooden, Tom Seaver, Nolan Ryan, Mike Scott and Ron Darling in the rotation?
  • The STATE of MIND League - Players placed in the states that they were born, and teams duke it out.
  •  A possible World Baseball Classic tournament with players playing for their respective countries.
So many things to do, in so-little time, and its because of all these things that I feel like a nutty professor of sorts, when it comes to APBA.

Thursday, January 7, 2016

An Accumulation HOF Material on Boys of Summer

Here is an accumulation of my Hall material in recent years, some of the dates, and the fact that I'm laying arguments for guys who have now been added, may also not make sense... but the debated stats for other players such as Tim Raines, Alan Trammell, Edgar Martinez, Lou Whitaker and others are here....


* * * * * * * * * * January 8th, 2014 * * * * * * * * * *

Personally, the guys all listed above on my ballot are HOF'ers, also I should add Edgar Martinez with the 12th spot, he is a representative of the DH era, and he did not get his first actual break until age 27! He was the solid force behind the emergence of the Seattle Mariners franchise, he had 5 seasons over a 1.000 OPS (Bagwell had 5, Piazza had 4 -- to put it in perspective). Mitch Williams, former reliever for the Philadelphia Phillies & current MLB analyst said it best, "If there is a position created in the game of baseball, such as the DH, then there needs to be a position for that in the Hall of Fame as well."

* * * * *

Edgar Martinez is among the 4th best all-time in OBP for players who made the Major League debuts after World War II (.418). To put it in perspective for Edgar's career, think about the season that Victor Martinez just had with the 2014 Detroit Tigers -- V-Mart led the A.L. with a .974 OPS; Edgar surpasses Victor Martinez's career year, with 10 total seasons that were better than that. That's nuts! 

His 147+ OPS just trails that of Joe DiMaggio (155+) and is right with Mike Schmidt (147+). He is a career .312 hitter with a .933 OPS.

Now when people keep discussing Designated Hitters, everyone and their mother would mention David Ortiz & how Ortiz will represent the DH in the Hall of Fame. If they did their research, They would see that Edgar has him beat in many categories.

  • Edgar Martinez

  • David Ortiz

"Big Papi" only has Edgar beat in HR's (466 to 309), RBI (1,533 to 1,261), Slugging (.547 to .515), and runs (1,267 to 1,219).

* * * * *

Some Tigers fans, such as myself, have been very outspoken about the fact that Jack MorrisAlan Trammell & Lou Whitaker not being in the Hall of Fame. Out of the three, yeah.. Morris is the least deserving, yet he has come the closest of the three to making it.

One of the guys in the Facebook Group went on to say: Morris was not quite HOF material. He had a career 3.90 ERA, and went on to mention the silly Curt Schilling assessment,"If you have to think about whether a player is a Hall of Famer or not, he's not." The person also went on to mention that not only is Morris not a candidate, but Jeff Bagwell, Jeff Kent, and Mike Mussina were not HOF'ers as well, despite their good career numbers.

He goes on to say you can't make the remark "that so-and-so is in the HOF, so so-and-so should be as well." Yes & No, I say to that. Yeah, we can't do anything about Rabbit Maranville or Dave Bancroft, or a good handful of others, at the same time you have to look at some (not all) of these guys as representatives of it's era. Joe TinkerJohnny Evers & Frank Chance are also three that, stat-wise would not be in the Hall of Fame. My father's idea of the Hall of Fame should be a 26-30 man roster, and when one came around, another got bumped out -- Maybe make the Hall a perfect 300, and bump people out afterwards, that sounds crazy. Overall, the damage has been done, it's funny to me that Tinker-Evers-Chance basically got in for the famous poem about them. They were great fielders for it's time, and fielding conditions were far worse then, before the day & age of ground's crews. I believe Tinker, Evers & Chance are more deserving than the likes of Maranville or Bancroft, but we can't change history. We can't change the fact that they are in, but I feel they DO represent the era, an era in which mostly are pitching dominant figures, the only offensive guys that really stood out in the first 1900-1910 decade was Ty Cobb & Honus Wagner.

Plus for anyone who has played APBA replays of that early era such as a guest blogger on The APBA Blog in Scott Fennessey (also the 2nd Chicagoland World Series Tournament Winner), he can argue that the Tinkers, Evers, were the superstars in their days. Should they really be punished out of the Hall, because they didn't average 37 HR's a season?

So my reply to Jack Morris is this...

  • Pitched half of his starts in one of the most offensive-hitting stadiums ever (Tigers Stadium), during one of the best offensive eras in baseball history.
  • He pitched for a manager that was nicknamed "Captain Hook" in Sparky Anderson, Anderson was well-known for yanking his starters by the 6th and getting his bullpen ready to go. Morris was maybe the only starting pitcher that could give Sparky the look -- turn back to the dugout! So Morris could have hurt himself in this regard.
  • Morris was obviously pitching hurt for his 89'-90' campaigns, which could have easily hurt his career ERA. Plus if you take strictly from his Tigers' years, which best represents him, he had a career Tiger ERA of 3.73!
  • Most Wins in the 1980's: 177, while playing in possibly the toughest division stretch per talent in the division era, since 1969. Yankees for example: Dave WinfieldDon MattinglyRickey Henderson; Brewers - Two HOF'ers in Robin Yount & Paul Molitor (who Lou Whitaker & Alan Trammell were just as instrumental in their roles for their franchise as those two), Boston was loaded, the Jays were strong throughout the 80's (especially from 84'-90')! Orioles had Ripken & Eddie Murray. Morris had to play these guys the majority of his career. These divisions were so loaded that many races came down to the very end. Cleveland was the only constant cellar-dweller. 
  • Pitchers like Jim Palmer loaded up on wins, by the early division formats, Baltimore dominated during it's time, with no real contenders until mid 1970's when the Yankees came back into focus. The A.L. East in the 1980's had far more competition.
  • Won three World Titles for three different teams.
Also check out the Article I did about a year ago..

During my reply that I respected Curt Schilling as the player, even saying that he may be Hall worthy, but didn't agree with his assessment. The counter-argument to that, was that Morris & Schilling are not on the same levels that of a Bob Gibson, Sandy Koufax, Tom Seaver, and Jim Palmer. Yeah? So is the same for about half of the starting pitchers already in the Hall of Fame. Those 4 among a few others, are one of a kinds, they come once in a generation! 

Here's an interesting argument in favor for Curt Schilling...
  • Didn't get started really until 1992, 1994 & 1995 combines for one season (due to injuries) and he was a consistent force from 92-2007, leading the 93' Phillies to the World Series, while leading the 2001 Arizona Diamondbacks2004 & 2007 Boston Red Sox to World Championships (3 rings).
  • 300 or more strikeouts, 3 times! Back-to-back seasons of the accomplishment for a 619 K's combination in two years!
  • 3,116 K's (15th All-Time), 216 career wins with a winning percentage of .597. Sure it's not the magical 300 wins number, but he was a dependable winner. Almost a 1,000 more K's than Jim Palmer, Palmer only had two rings (66' & 83').
  • Schilling's ERA of 3.46 was not that of Palmer's 2.86. But here's some food for thought, Palmer didn't get 300 wins either (268) and Schilling has him beat in the WHIP area 1.137 to 1.180!
The reason that I started arguing WARs (which I don't care for, but can be used as an interesting tool to compare) and Jim Palmer. Is because this person brought up both in regularity in his argument towards my points, so I used his tools of argument & of course, I still was clearly wrong LOL!

I brought up the career WAR's over Jim Palmer of players NOT in the Hall of Fame. Of course, players like A-Rod & Pujols are not retired yet.
  • Alex Rodriguez (115.7)
  • Albert Pujols (93.0)
  • Chipper Jones (85.2)
  • Jeff Bagwell (79.5)
  • Pete Rose (79.4)
  • Bill Dahlen (75.3)
  • Lou Whitaker (74.8)
  • Larry Walker (72.6)
  • Rafael Palmeiro (71.8)
  • Derek Jeter (71.6)
  • Bobby Grich (71.0)
  • Adrian Beltre (70.5)
  • Alan Trammell (70.4)
  • Scott Rolen (70.0)
  • Tim Raines (69.1)
  • Manny Ramirez (69.1)
  • Edgar Martinez (68.3)
  • Ivan Rodriguez (68.3)
The Hall of Famers below these the Career (70.0) WAR mark?
  • Gary Carter
  • Ed Delahanty
  • Tony Gwynn
  • Al Simmons
  • Carlton Fisk
  • Eddie Murray
  • Fred Clarke
  • Ryne Sandberg
  • Roberto Alomar
  • Duke Snider
  • Joe Cronin
  • Pee Wee Reese
  • Goose Goslin
  • Andre Dawson
  • Willie McCovey
  • Dave Winfield
  • Billy Williams
  • Richie Ashburn
  • Billy Hamilton
  • Lou Boudreau
and much more...

Let's go to Richie Ashburn, now
He had 2,574 career hits, a .306 career batting average, and an outstanding On-Base Percentage of .396! He was an outfielder in a HOF field that had many outfielders, with a career OPS of .778, with only 29 career HR's from a "power position".

Now enter Alan Trammell into the equation...
He had 2,365 career hits, I think sometimes people look at hits too much, in the same way people read career wins for a pitcher, you need to look at the other numbers people.
Let's point out that his WAR (70.4) is higher than Ashburn's & Barry Larkin (70.2), the HOF SS... now overall, once again I'm not a WAR guy, so let's look at other numbers. Trammell had 185 career HRs for a position until the 1980's was not known for having pop. Trammell didn't hit double-digits in HR's until 1983, and got the bulk of his HR's between 1983 & 1990. Trammell's 236 career steals, beats Ashburn by 2. Trammell also had a respectable .286 career average, not Ashburn's .306, but certainly better than HOF'er Gary Carter's .262!

Lou & Tram: Bless You Boys!

Alan Trammell had a career OPS of .767, Carter had .773 & Ashburn .778. People often harp on the fact that Trammell was injured a lot at the end of his career, and that he was beyond his peak years for some time, yet that never stopped Carter from being elected, who was clearly past his prime after 1987. Carter stuck around until 1992.

Someone else brought up points in what faith do we have in WAR when Lou Whitaker's WAR is higher than that of Ryne Sandberg and Roberto Alomar. Simple, Sandberg really was compacted to a period from 1982-1992, he was basically a ten-year deal.... where Lou was consistent as well, and was more a factor longer from 1978-1993. Roberto Alomar was a factor from 1988-2001, he stuck around until 2004, and probably had negative WARs to drain his career WAR. I don't think anyone thinks Whitaker was better than Alomar, as a Tiger fan I could argue that Whitaker was just as relevant for the Tigers as Sandberg was to the Cubs, and for American League 2B standards, Whitaker was really the Joe Morgan of that league, until the 1990's came around offensive 2B were unheard of, unless you dig towards the Eddie Collins days! Ryne Sandberg's period of 1990-1992, is what makes the difference in the argument between Sandberg & Whitaker, besides that.
  • Whitaker: .276 AVG, 244 HR's, 2,369 hits & career .789 OPS.
  • Sandberg: .285 AVG, 282 HR's, 2,386 hits & career .795 OPS. Note: Sandberg, got 92 of his career HR's from 1990-1992.
Sandberg also narrowly beats Whitaker in fielding pct (.989 to .984). Sandberg does beat him in Gold Gloves 11 to 3, just off the top of my head I do want to think Whitaker had stiffer competition at the position, but I could be wrong. The Gold Glove is rewarded for the silliest things anyways, offensive stats at a position come into factor, and it's a bit of a popularity contest.

Just some interesting perspectives, yet some people would make you think many of these players are not similar, just because the ones that have been in, grown bigger than their actual legends. I have been meaning to do the entire Hall of Fame for a post, who's in, who should be, and who's out.

Who knows? There was actually a time when people didn't think of Ryne Sandberg as a Hall of Famer, how crazy is that?

* * * * * * * * * * January 10th, 2013 * * * * * * * * * *

The thing is this, Morris won the most games in the 1980's, 5-time All-Star, 4-time World Champion1991 World Series MVP, a career no-hitter & 2-time Babe Ruth Award Winner (for best Post-season, in 1984 & 1991). So what more does he need to do, to get in? Is this the writers or media's way to get back at Morris, who wasn't too fond of interviews after a game? There is really no explanation why Morris is not in the Hall.

He had 254 wins & a career 3.90 ERA, the ERA is what some of the voters have stated that they feel he doesn't belong, but if you take out the fact that he had basically four seasons that destroyed his career ERA (89'-90' & 93'-94' were rough areas -- not to mention this time was the actual birth of the steroid era for sluggers like McGwire & Canseco). Now I know some people will argue, well that's his fault and he should have pitched better -- my argument is that he is even more dominant than his career numbers suggest!

It's about the era, who stands out?!
But look there are hitters in the Hall of Fame that really only flashed for 8 seasons, two come straight to mind -- both have deserved their place in the Hall, one died prematurely (but who's to say how the rest of his career would have went?) and the other was a Yankee (of course, this helped a bit). The two players are Joe Gordon (Yankees) & Ross Youngs (N.Y. Giants), who died of Bright's Disease at age 30! My point I guess is that Morris had a stretch from 79' to 88' that was consistently good, and shows that he was indeed a dominant ace in the game of baseball and in his era. That's what it should be about, how you did in your era. I'm glad Jim Rice finally made it a few years back, it was ludicrous that he was out as long as he was, he was one of the most feared sluggers in his era!

Just from some brief research here is a bit of my argument, I'm going to post Jack Morris's career up against two Hall of Fame pitchers that come straight to mind, one is Bob Lemon's who, I have a baseball card that compares the two players similar numbers, and also Red Ruffing's 3.80 ERA came straight to mind as well.

  • Jack Morris (254 Wins, 186 Losses / .577 winning pct): Morris pitched half of his career games basically at Tiger Stadium, notorious for offensive numbers, he had a career 3.90 ERA, 175 Complete Games, while collecting 2,478 K's in 3,824 innings.
Pitched for a great run by the Indians.
  • Bob Lemon (207 Wins, 128 Losses / .618 winning pct): Bob Lemon missed the beginning of his career from 1943-1945 due to Military service, but didn't do much in MLB until his breakthrough 1948 Season, so it's safe to say that he really didn't lose any years there, so his career numbers are what they are. He has a better winning percentage than Morris, but even though Morris played on a few winning teams of the Tigers, most notably seasons like 1984 & 1987 -- he wasn't with a consistent winning team like the Indians were for Lemon, nor did Morris have pitchers like Bob Feller and Early Wynn constantly to take the pressure off him. Jack Morris had Dan Petry! Petry was good, but Feller & Wynn are Hall of Fame pitchers!  Lemon wins convincingly in ERA (3.23 ERA), but also note the era that Lemon played and having the constant pleasure to play for a winner. Morris was definitely a better strike-out artist, nearly doubling Lemon's 1,277 K's; and all though Lemon still has 13 more complete games (188), it's once again about the era, where there was only 3 relievers tops, and they aren't used the same way as today.
Ruffing's similar 3.80 ERA to that of Morris.
  • Red Ruffing (273 Wins, 225 Losses / .548 winning pct): At first glance, I was going to slam on Ruffing for only having a career winning pct of .548 when most of his career he pitched for the Yankees, and having those lineups supporting him; In all fairness he played for some lousy Red Sox teams in the late 20's (ones that played the Yankees many times through the years) in which he led the league back-to-back in losses with 22 & 25! Then again there are two ways of looking at this, he may not even came close to 273 wins if it wasn't for playing for the Yankees; he had a career record of 231-111 with New York (.675 winning pct! -- the equivalent of a baseball team going 109-53 for the season). He had 1,987 K's in 4,344 innings, the strikeout rate per 9 innings, quite lower than Morris. The only area I can't debate against Ruffing, is his ridiculous 335 complete games -- sure pitchers completed their games much more then, but still impressive!

Now to make things clear, I am not saying that either Bob Lemon and Red Ruffing don't deserve to be in the Baseball Hall of Fame, because they totally do -- I'm just bringing up two similar careers to that of Jack Morris. A player that deserves to be in the Hall, and I feel the fact he has played for Detroit does play a part in that (for being an unattractive market), if he wore pinstripes (a Yankees jersey), he would already be in there --- the same goes for his two teammates shortstop Alan Trammell and second baseman Lou Whitaker (Major League Baseball's longest running double-play combination in history!), not to mention they were far superior to that of Joe Tinker and Johnny Evers (who basically got in for a famous poem and the 1906 Chicago Cubs historic season)! Those two players On Base Percentage + Slugging (OPS) barely eclipses that of utility/journeyman Aaron Miles! But this is the thing, Tinker and Evers were from the "deadball era" and so they are a reflection of their era, meaning so is Morris in his era -- so with that Tinker and Evers are Hall of Famers.

Trammell and Whitaker tipping their hats off to each other.

These arguments can go on and on.

We shouldn't be measuring up players to other players overall totals, if this is the case, no one before 1987 has a chance to make the Hall. It all should be a reflection of it's era. Plus once you open the door to a player, it does open up about other similar players that played in that era. Andre Dawson was held out for awhile, due to a relatively low career On-Base Percentage (.323) for a slugger in his day, where OBP was a thing in it's day -- he eventually got inducted in 2010. Since the door opened for Dawson though... now comes new debates. For example, Harold Baines...
  • Andre Dawson - 2,744 hits, .279 Avg, 438 HR & 1,591 RBI (.806 OPS / .323 OBP): Dawson was also a 8-time All-Star selection, 8 Gold Gloves, as well as the 1977 N.L. Rookie-of-the-Year for the Montreal Expos & 1987 Most Valuable Player for the Chicago Cubs. He had 4 seasons of at-least 100 RBI's! Dawson also had 314 stolen bases.
Baines & a very underrated baseball career.
  • Harold Baines - 2,866 hits, .289 Avg, 384 HR & 1,628 RBI (.820 OPS / .356 OBP): Baines was also a 6-time All-Star selection, who would get a World Championship ring as a coach for the Chicago White Sox in 2005. He didn't have as many awards or trophies as Dawson, and he didn't have the speed (only 34 career steals), but he only had 54 fewer HR's, while beating Dawson across the board in everything else. Plus even though, Baines played plenty of DH later in his career, let's not forget that Baines was actually a pretty good fielder with an excellent arm during peak form. It's also seems to me, that the American League during both of these guys' careers (that happened during the same period) had far more superior outfielders, so this also means that Baines may have gotten more All-Star nods if he played in the National League. Baines had 3 seasons of 100 or more RBI's.
Carter: Always a class act, always smiling.
Once again, Dawson in my book is a legit Hall of Famer, letting him in, has opened this debate -- Same goes with Gary Carter, he opens the door for other hitters' careers. Carter, for a catcher he should be in the Hall, but as a straight-up hitter? That's another answer. His career numbers read nothing special when you think Hall of Famer -- .262 Batting Avg, 324 HR's (great for a catcher) & 1,225 RBI's; go deeper with a decent .335 OBP & an average to pretty-good star's .775 OPS. Some may say, hey that's an OPS just .031 lower than slugger Andre Dawson! Sure, but Dawson compared to other outfielders in the Hall of Fame is really low in comparison. Plus Carter has only 2,092 hits.

Now back to Trammell, he batted .285, 185 HR &1,003 RBI's, he had more hits (2,365 hits) and a higher On-Base Percentage of .352 than Carter; plus a similar OPS of .767 to him as well. It seems to many that Carter would have had more Gold Gloves than three, he really stood out as his position -- Trammell? He had four Gold Gloves sharing a league with Cal Ripken and Tony Fernandez! Some can argue that comparing catchers to shortstops, is like comparing Oranges to Apples. Yes, both positions were not known for their power then -- but if you want to see one more comparison, than let's compare Trammell to the "Wonderful Wizard of Oz" -- Ozzie Smith!

Ozzie batted .262, 28 HRs & 793 RBI, with 2,460 hits in 9,396 at-bats -- which is only 95 hits more than Trammell, with 1,108 more at-bats and opportunities! His .262 career average and .666 OPS pales in comparison to that of Trammell's .285 Avg & .767 OPS. Oh, what's that? Ozzie was a better fielder than Trammell? He certainly had more Gold Gloves with 13, and also was selected to the All-Star Game (which is a bit of a popularity contest) 15 times! Trammell with more competition made only 6 selections. But when it came to fielding they were almost exactly the same in fielding percentages (Smith .978 to Tram's .977), double-plays (Smith 1,590 to Tram's 1,307) , and assists (Smith 8,375 to Tram's 6,172); it's also safe to note that Ozzie played in 3,500 more innings, and could do many more acrobatic back-flips!

McGriff gets a lot of grief for playing with so many teams.
It's all interesting and very fascinating when it comes to debating, who should be in and who should not? The way I look at it, why not put more people in, instead of having the grasp too tight! We need to see a bigger perspective of the Hall of Fame, so that players like Morris, Trammell, Whitaker, Tim RainesFred McGriff, and Albert Belle (oh yes, I said it!) are not forgotten about. The game of Baseball's Hall of Fame should be more of a time capsule, so that 200 years from now, people can get an idea about the time and it's era, how can you reflect the 80's without Jack Morris?

Not to beat a dead horse, but it's all about the reflection of the era that these players come from.

* * * * * 

Tim Raines

The fact that Tim Raines is still waiting, is downright ridiculous -- compare him with Lou Brock, and it's a no-brainer. I made a quick post a year ago on the Brock comparison.
Now compare Tim Raines to Tony Gwynn, Raines was not as great as Gwynn of course at the plate. But Raines certainly was more close to Gwynn in patience at the plate.
  • Tony Gwynn

  • Tim Raines

To put it in perspective, Gwynn just eclipses Raines .385 OBP by .003 -- Gwynn did this by collecting 536 more hits, while Raines could have put it in play at times, knew how to draw many more walks (1330 to Gwynn's 790). Gwynn who stole 319 bases, Raines would steal almost 500 more bags: 808 to 319. Gwynn has only 158 more career RBI than Raines, despite having 500+ more hits. Raines is 5th among all LF's in WAR since 1900.

Interesting thing I saw on MLB Network the other morning.... Personally, I don't think Tim Raines should be punished for what he was taught to do in the game of baseball, and that's to get on base.
Tim Raines
Lou Brock

This concludes the accumulation of Hall material I have on site, for more in-depth, check out my The Ongoing Hall of Fame Debate feed to the right on this site or CLICK HERE.

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