Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Brookens Continues to Surprise (1981 Tigers)

Tom Brookens continues to surprise in my 1981 Detroit Tigers Season Replay for APBA Baseball, while the Tigers continue to roll over the American League with a 33-14 record through the first two months.

Brookens is batting .261 with 4 HR & 29 RBI (.674 OPS) through 45 games (165 AB)... To some these stats may not knock you over, but considering that in real life, he only batted .243 with 4 HR & 25 RBI through the entire 1981 season (71 games & 239 AB)... this is pretty good.

Brookens currently ranks 2nd on the team in RBI (behind Parrish's 40), which is higher than better hitters such as Steve Kemp (27), Kirk Gibson (26) & Alan Trammell (22).

The Tigers just finished a 21-7 month of May & now prepare to kick off June, by hosting the Milwaukee Brewers (25-21, 7.5 GB / 3rd Place).

Other Tigers' news

  • Lance Parrish has been out-slugging his 1981 Season through APBA, by hitting 16 HR & 40 RBI through 47 games; Parrish led the Tigers in 1981 with 10 HR, along with 46 RBI (2nd to Kemp) through 96 games of action. Parrish's .895 OPS is also better than his real-life .704 OPS.
  • Aurelio Lopez's scoreless innings streak has officially came to end at 31.2 innings pitched, he currently has a 0.24 ERA with 22 K & 7 walks... not bad for a Grade D(C*)-Y pitcher.
  • Dan Petry has improved to 9-1, with a 2.08 ERA & 60 K's through 91 innings of work.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Start of the 1994 Atlanta Braves' Season (Out of the Park)

Tony Phillips might be key to Atlanta's success.
The Atlanta Braves fell short in 1991 to Jack Morris & the Minnesota Twins... Then through the magical world of Out of the Park, the Braves would get a chance at a repeat against the Twins, only to choke and lose the series (yet) again.

Another thing to keep in mind, this an alternate league without 1993 expansion teams, such as the Colorado Rockies & Florida Marlins... with the original 1969 Division setup & playoff system.

The Braves would almost slide and miss the playoffs in 1993 -- narrowly defeating the Houston Astros for the N.L. West Division title, only to again fall short of a world title -- as Andres Galarraga (returning from a one-year hiatus in St. Louis) leads the Montreal Expos over the Oakland Athletics in the 1993 World Series.

The Atlanta Braves strengthened their lineup by acquiring on-base machine Tony Phillips to be their lead-off man. The team also made sure it kept John Smoltz (9 years / $38.6 million) & Tom Glavine (6 years / $33.6 million) around for some time.

The team also picked up two Rule 5 Draftees in Mike Timlin & Jeff Juden; Timlin will be working out of the pen, while Juden will log some innings in the 5th slot of the rotation.

What's the skinny, Giambi?
The Braves traded Bob Tewksbury away in a salary dump move to acquire third base prospect Jason Giambi from Oakland; Tewksbury went 6-6 with a 3.60 ERA in 17 starts for the Braves, but his results were limited due to injuries... Tewksbury can opt out of Oakland after the 1994 season. Giambi will likely play first base in the future, once Fred McGriff becomes to expensive to keep (McGriff can opt out after 1996).

The Atlanta Braves' bullpen is strong with Roberto Hernandez as its closer. Mark Wohlers and Mike Maddux provide strength in the setup roles, to go along with the rest of the pen that contains Mike Stanton, Kent Mercker & Pete Smith.

The Atlanta Braves have started the season, 7-2, with their only losses to the Houston Astros (Season Opener) and the San Diego Padres; They have been strong with series victories over San Diego (3-1) and the Cincinnati Reds (3-game sweep).

Phillips has proved to be a great signing so far, batting .314 (11-for-35) with 2 HR & 5 RBI to go along with his 11 bases on balls. Chipper Jones has been ice cold though, batting .129 (4-for-31) with only 2 RBI & a .385 OPS to date; Jones was sat out April 19th in favor of Giambi that day.

Through 2 starts each, the Braves' top four pitchers have been excellent...
  • Greg Maddux: 1-0, 0.64 ERA, 9 K / 1 BB, 0.857 WHIP in 14 IP.
  • Tom Glavine: 2-0, 2.70 ERA, 16 K / 4 BB, 1.050 WHIP in 13.1 IP.
  • John Smoltz: 1-0, 1.26 ERA, 18 K / 6 BB, 0.698 WHIP in 14.1 IP; left game pitching a no-hitter against the San Diego Padres through 7.1 innings... which bullpen surrendered hit.
  • Steve Avery: 2-0, 1.69 ERA, 11 K / 4 BB, 1.125 WHIP in 16 IP.
Next up... The Los Angeles Dodgers (4-5) come to Atlanta.

Monday, January 8, 2018

2014 Detroit Tigers Off to Great Start (Out of the Park)

Albert Pujols has added tons of punch to lineup.
So I tried rewrite all the wrongs that Dave Dombrowski made, I have succeeded at keeping Max Scherzer for a bit longer, while not trading away players like Devon Travis. I also have made great additions without costing the team too much of its future as well, with players like Kole Calhoun and a relatively cheap signing of Albert Pujols.

A 11-3 start is the result, and although we are predicted to win the A.L. Central this season, I am not taking it for granted.

This is how my lineup is doing....
  • 1) Devon Travis (2B): .333 AVG, 3 HR, 10 RBI, 3 SB (.893 OPS) in 66 AB.
  • 2) Nick Castellanos (3B): .258 AVG, 2 HR & 8 RBI with 15 runs (.749 OPS) in 62 AB.
  • 3) Miguel Cabrera (1B): .327 AVG, 4 HR & 11 RBI with 13 runs (.979 OPS) in 55 AB.
  • 4) Justin Upton (LF): .345 AVG, 5 HR & 16 RBI with 15 runs (1.104 OPS) in 58 AB.
  • 5) Kole Calhoun (RF): .294 AVG. 2 HR & 11 RBI (.859 OPS) in 51 AB.
  • 6) Albert Pujols (DH): .370 AVG, 4 HR & 17 RBI with 10 runs (1.100 OPS) in 54 AB.
  • 7) Austin Jackson (CF): .357 AVG, 1 HR, 8 RBI & 7 doubles (.991 OPS) in 56 AB.
  • 8) Zack Cozart (SS): .245 AVG, 3 HR & 8 RBI (.737 OPS) in 49 AB.
  • 9) James McCann (C): .207 AVG, 0 HR & 5 RBI (.682 OPS) in 29 AB.
I'm thinking about doing a tweak to the lineup soon, with Austin Jackson possibly hitting second, with Nick Castellanos falling to the 7th slot; Castellanos' On-Base Percentage (.311) & .258 Batting Average is too low for my liking at the #2 slot. I will also be moving Albert Pujols to the 5th slot, switching with Kole Calhoun; Pujols is batting .556 (10-for-18) with 2 HR & 7 RBI during his last five games.

The rotation seems to be doing its job for the most part, Max Scherzer (2-0, 3.98 ERA, 20 K) & Justin Verlander (2-0, 3.38 ERA & 7 K) head the rotation, while Yovani Gallardo & Rick Porcello may not have been consistent, they have shown signs of better things to come.

The bullpen (like in real-life) was the problem last season, and I feel we may have finally got it stabilized with the addition of Andrew Miller (2.89 ERA, 14 K, 1.07 WHIP & 154 ERA+); Miller joins last season's Rule 5 pickups up Dellin Betances (1.23 ERA, 8 K in 7.1 IP) & Brandon Kintzler (2-0, 4.76 ERA in 5.1 IP), along with closer Joaquin Benoit (6 SV, 1.42 ERA). 

Don't get me wrong, I loved Dombrowski for the most part, he helped make Detroit baseball relevant again, but I felt at the end we just started throwing away too much of our future away, which now has cost us... the upcoming 2018 season, is going to be an ugly one for the Tigers.

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

All Zeros for Aurelio

Aurelio "Senor Smoke" Lopez
I mentioned in my last post that Aurelio Lopez has been spectacular for me during my 1981 Tigers Season Replay, in which has allowed no earned runs (or runs for that matter) through 22.1 innings of relief work.

Did I mention that his APBA pitching grade is a D (C*)-Y ?!
No Z's even...

Now Aurelio enters the Tigers' 41st game, having to do an emergency start for the rotation, due to the double-header against Baltimore that through the rotations' rest out of sync... which means his scoreless innings streak will definitely be in jeopardy with his Grade D starting grade.

The Detroit Tigers start their road stretch and will have to go to Milwaukee to face a lineup that has been giving American League pitchers fits through recent years. I go with the actual boxscores for the opponents I play, and even though the Brewers appear to be without Paul Molitor (probable injury), they still have a tough lineup with the likes of Robin Yount, Cecil Cooper, Ben Oglivie, Gorman Thomas, Ted Simmons & Jim Gantner.

What appeared to be a tough day in store for Lopez, it ended up being just that for his Milwaukee counterpart Jim Slaton; The Tigers' bats jumped all over Slaton during the first two innings (7 runs) which gave Lopez some breathing room.

Throughout the game, Milwaukee definitely had its scoring chances against Lopez --  with 7 hits, runners on bases due to two errors & a wild pitch that advanced a runner to second... Most of these scoring chances came with only one out, while they had big bats in Oglivie, Cooper & Thomas up... but somehow by the graces of the APBA gods, Lopez kept dodging bullets.

Lopez would eventually advance from a Grade D to a Grade A, but I decided with one out, a runner on second & Cecil Cooper up in the 8th Inning, that I would not risk the scoreless streak and bring in Kevin Saucier from the pen.

Sure, it would have been cool to watch Lopez pitch a shutout in possibly his only start of the season, but I didn't want to push his luck against a lineup at any moment that could ruin the streak. 

Saucier would complete the combined 10-0 shutout of the Brewers, as Milwaukee falls to 6.5 games back (5th place) of Detroit.

Aurelio Lopez: 1-0, 0.00 ERA, 16 games, 1 GS, 22 K / 6 BB & .708 WHIP in 29.2 innings.

The Detroit Tigers have 3 games remaining in this series with the Brew Crew, and a up-coming home series in about a week against them as well...

Meanwhile, talks of a MLB Strike looms over the season.
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...