Dynasty Great Teams League Update AL Division B Report

Starting this week the updates of the various Dynasty Leagues that I run will be one league (AL or NL) at a time due to the futility league completing their season. This week Division B in the All Time Any Time Great Teams League. American League. All individual stats were current at the time of writing.

All franchise are currently full if you are interested in picking up a team if one becomes available or to join the expanded Futility league when it starts up again leave a comment to this post.

American League

Texas Rangers 47-28 1st

When last we left the Rangers they had lost four of seven and asked if their rally was ending. With the team now almost 20 games over .500 I think it’s safe to say they intend to stay.

Heroes: Nelson Cruz leads the league in both batting .361 and slugging .625 and as you might Guess OBP oddly this is despite not making the top ten in either 2B or 3B & only 7th in HR (17) but 51 Runs & 66 RBI’s sets and clears the Texas table. Josh Hamilton (.310 15 HR 51 Runs scored) & Vladimer Guerrero (.317 12 HR 65 RBI) are doing their part to set and clear the table as well.

Zeroes: Matt Treanor has not only been unimpressive at the bat (.199 4 HR 14 RBI in 171 ab) but has allowed 26 of 29 runners who have tried to steal to get away with it. Meanwhile while Tommy Hunter’s record and ERA have improved his ERA is still 6.50 has still can’t muster an avg of 5 innings from his 14 starts likely due to the 23 HR given up, more than a 1/3 of the 67 Texas has allowed.

Wild Cards: Texas shines at night a full 20 games over .500 vs a losing record in day games. Texas’ owes a lot of their success to Division C where they are 19-5 while holding only a .500 record vs division opponents.

Coming attractions: The 1998 Oakland A’s and the 2013 Boston Red Sox finish up the current homestand then it’s off on the road for a trip to Detroit vs the 1968 Tigers followed by a stop in DC to take on the 1924 Senators.

Injury Report: All are whole and ready to go in Texas


1954 Cleveland Indians 41-37 7 GB 2nd place.

The Indians remain in second place where they were before but find themselves five games farther back and holding the 2nd rather than the 1st wild card spot. Will slow and steady win the race or will the tribe find themselves left behind?

Heroes: Larry Doby continues to pound the ball leading the league in RBI’s (80) 5th in HR (20) 4th in Slugging (.584) ads the league in both batting .361 and slugging .625 while hitting a more than respectable .308. Bobby Alvia .335 is 4th in the league his 62 runs 3rd and and his 112 hits 2nd. 4 e. Bob Lemon (11-4 2.18 ERA 1.09 WHIP) & Mike Garcia (8-7 3.03 ERA 1st in HR per 9 inn 0.30) lead a spectacular starting rotation.

Zeroes: Don Mossi despite 8 saves in 11 chances ERA of 8.08 & .301 avg against is a disaster waiting to happen. On most teams Early Wynn’s 5.32 ERA & 7-8 record with a .275 avg against would be no big deal but on Cleveland it is. Wally Westlake’s .182 avg .280 OBP 6 HR & 29 RBI’s is bad but his .942 fielding percentage with 8 errors in right, is worse.

Wild Cards: Only Baltimore has a lower ERA in the AL than the Indians and their great rotation leads the majors in complete games (29) It’s a good thing too because their 11 saves is 2nd worst in the league and with 8 blown in 19 chances is near the bottom.

Coming Attractions: Cleveland finishes a road trump in DC vs the 1924 Washington Senators before heading home for 3 each vs the 2015 Kansas City Royals, , the 2005 Chicago White Sox the 1993 Toronto Blue jays and the 1970 Baltimore Orioles.

Injury Report: The Indians are back to full strength again.


2013 Boston Red Sox 35-43 13 1/2 games back 3rd place

The good news for the Boston Red Sox is that for the 1st time in a while they are not at the bottom of the division albeit by only a half game. The bad news is instead of six games below .500 & 8 games back they’re 8 games below .500 & 13 1/2 games back. The Rangers went from the bottom so the RedSox, particularly once back to full strength can too, but clock is running.

Heroes: Daniel Nava leads the AL with a .429 OBP and his .332 batting avg is tied for 5th. David Ortiz (.318 18 HR 60RBI’s ) has found his stroke Closers Koji Uehara (1.84 ERA 5-7 in save chances 0.65 WHIP) and Craig Breslow (3.02 ERA 5-6 in saves 1.20 WHIP) are getting the job done, when they get to them that is.

Zeros: Jon Lester (4-8 5.63 ERA .310 avg .297 avg against ) isn’t doing the job to start but Matt Thornton 6.31 ERA, .310 avg against 2.05 WHIP) , Junichi Tazawa (6.45 ERA .294 avg against ) and Andrew Bailey 8.53 ERA .291 avg against 1.97 WHIP) aren’t getting the team to the closers. Will Middlebrooks & Mike Napoli are both hitting the ball far (10 HR each) but batting .198 (Middlebrooks) & .214 (Napoli).

Wild Cards: Boston’s team ERA of 4.94 is dead last in the AL and the 2nd worst in the majors. They also don’t seem to be able to handle daylight (6-13) or left handed pitchers (3-9)

Coming Attractions: It’s three games in Texas vs the 1st place 2010 Rangers then back home for series vs the 2002 Anaheim Angels , the 2009 NY Yankees and the 1998 Baltimore Orioles.

Injury Report: Time heals all wounds and pitchers Andrew Miller and Clay Buchholtz will be back in time for the homestand. Stephen Drew however will not be back until the Sox head back on the road


1968 Detroit Tigers 36-45 14 GB 4th Place

Detroit’s freefall has continued all the way to the bottom of the standings from the top where they began. With another full half to the season what comes down but what goes down can also go back up and they have 81 games to do it with. Can they?

Heroes: Willie Horton (26 HR) & Norm Cash (20 HR) lead the AL with a .429 OBP and his .332 batting avg is tied for 5th. Danny McLain is 5th in the AL in wins (9) and 3rd in innings pitched (143 2/3 ) 2nd in strikeouts (127) and walks per 9 innings (1.88) Mickey Lolich is right behind him in strikeouts (118) and 1st in the k’s per 9 innings (8.70)

Zeros: Earl Wilson’s troubles continue. His record is now 3-7 with a .285 avg against & 6.42 ERA remains among the worst of Detroit’s starters. Joe Sparma ((2-7) 1.78 WHIP 5.81 ERA .318 avg against) is the bottom fo the barrel. At the plate Don Wert has reached the Mendoza line at .200 with a .244 OBP. is bad news. Ray Oyler is down to .152 and consequently isn’t getting much playing time. Dick McAuliffe however is getting plenty but is only managing .206.

Wild Cards: Thanks to Cash, Horton and Jim Northrup (11 HR) the Tigers are 2nd in the league in HR behind the surging yanks however their .240 avg & .308 OBP are 2nd from the bottom in the AL. Their 4.84 is 3rd from the floor and no team in the majors throws out a smaller percentage of players trying to steal 094%.

Coming Attractions: The Tigers finish a long home stand with 3 vs the 1st place 2010 Texas Rangers, the 2002 Anaheim Angles and the 2009 New York Yankees before hitting the road again for stops in Oakland (1998 A’s) and Boston (2013 Redsox).

Injury Report: The tigers are back to full strength the question is can Al Kaline who has made two Trips to the DL already this season stay off it during the 2nd half?

Dynasty All Time Great Teams League “B” Division Update

The weekly update of the various Dynasty Leagues that I run. This week Division B in the All Time Any Time Great Teams League. (Note this post was written before the results of Saturday’s interleague games were complete). All individual states were current at the time of writing.

American League

2010 Texas Rangers 29-19 1st

When last we left the 2010 Rangers they were in last place in division B and the question was: “Is this the start of better things to come? Or will the team without a manager continue to be rudderless?” Well Texas has a manager( David H of Lake Forest California) and while they have lost 4 of their last seven they preceded that with a 13 game winning streak. So the question is, Is this the start of the return to earth or will Texas remain at the top of the heap?

Heroes: Vladimer Guerrero tears up the league with 42 RBI’s despite only five home runs. His .339 average is even more impressive with runners on base (.398) runners in scoring position (.394) or the bass loaded .429). By comparison Nelson Cruz has “only” driven in 34 runs but has hit 9 homers and boasts of batting avg of .353 to go with it.

Zeroes: Starting pitching remains an issue. Cliff Lee’s 6-3 record comes despite a 5.12 ERA virtually unchanged since last month and a .306 avg (down from .347) Meanwhile Tommy Hunter’s 3-3 record comes with a 7.05 ERA & 17 HR in 37 innings and an avg of less than 5 innings per start

Wild Cards. Texas’ 13 game winning streak is the longest of any team this year but included only two wins vs division rivals. They are 19-5 against AL teams out of their Division. Texas’ has 35 starts from pitchers whose ERA’s are 4.84 or worse (the 4th worst team ERA in the majors is currently 4.85)

Coming attractions: The Rangers welcome the Division rival 1968 Tigers and then the division C leading 1924 Washington Senators that they handled so well last time before heading off for a 12 game road trip which starts in Kansas City to face the 2015 Royals

Injury report Josh Hamilton Injured during a series with Boston will be back for game 2 vs the Tigers. Pitcher Matt Harrison who missed the pass 3 series with injuries suffered vs the Yankees will be available for the Cleveland series.


1954 Cleveland Indians 27-21 2nd 2 GB

The Defending AL champs find themselves in almost exactly the same sport they were in a month ago 2nd place a mere 2 games out (vs 1 1/2) holding the 1st wild card spot un-phased by the Rangers rise or the Tigers fall. Will slow and steady win the race or at least a home playoff game?

Heroes: Bobby Avila has the AL batting lead at .361 but just is tied for the lead in hits 3rd in OBP and 5th in the league in runs. Larry Doby has solid triple crown numbers .314 avg 14 HR 51 RBI putting him at or near the league lead but his 29 walks give him a .406 OBP and a 1.017 OBP good for 2nd in the league. Plus a .994 FPCT with 5 assists.

Zeroes: There not much to complain about on the mound when your team ERA is 4.10 but Hal Newhouser has posted a 5.59 ERA while blowing 3 saves in as many chances. Meanwhile Billy Glynn (.197) and Jim Hegan (.184) remain easy outs but not as easy as Wally Westlake whose .127 is as bad as it gets for an everyday player more than 50 points below the last time he made the zero list (.184)

Wild cards. Don Mossi’s ERA of 6.04 is the worst on the team and his .283 avg is the 2nd worst but at the same time he’s converted seven of eight save chances. the Indians lead the majors with 17 complete games, are 2nd in triples, 3rd in walks and 4th in runs

Coming Attractions: The Indians have three games vs the 1924 Senators at home and then hit the road for 12 games starting with 3 at Kansas City vs the 2015 Royals and then to Chicago for 3 more vs the 2005 White Sox

Injury report: Why is Wally Westlake still in the lineup likely because Vic Wertz has been out since game one vs Oakland and won’t be back until late in the Chicago White Sox series. Jim Hegan’s Backup Hal Naragon was hurt in the Nationals series as SS Sam Dente. Nagron will not back until after the Senators series while Dente will be available in game 3.


1968 Detroit Tigers 26-22 3rd 3 games back

The Tigers have played steady .500 ball since the last time we checked in, unfortunately for them both the Indians and Rangers have done better. Can the get out of neutral and get back into drive?

Heroes: Willie Horton is leading the league in HR with 19 and up there in RBI’s (49). Norm Cash is right behind with 16 and sits at 9th in RBI’s with 39. Denny McLain is tied for the league lead with 8 wins tied for 2nd in strikeouts with 77 all of this with a 3.49 ERA with 6 CG in 11 starts over 87 2/3 innings (3rd in AL)

Zeros: Earl Wilson’s mound troubles continue since 2-2 record has become 3-6 with a .296 avg against. His 6.28 ERA remains the worst of Detroit’s starters. Don Wert remains the easiest out on the Tigers hitting .187 with a .219 OBP but the saddest story is Ray Oyler whose 1 error at SS in over 100 innings. Everyone knew his .364 could not last but nobody had an idea that it would become .156 so quickly.

Wild Cards: Home is where Detroit’s heart is. They are 16-8 in Tiger Stadium. KC is the only AL team that has hit more HR than them

Coming Attractions: The Tigers go on the road 1st trying to rise again vs the 2010 Texas Rangers before heading off to Anaheim for a shot at the 2002 Angels before finishing off in NYC against the 2009 Yankees.

Injury Report: Al Kaline who has been average Al after an MVP season last year has just gone on the DL. He’ll miss the road trip and will miss the series plus a home series vs the 1998 Oakland A’s back home. He may be back for the end of their trip vs the 2013 Boston Redsox.


2013 Boston Red Sox 21-27 8 GB

Like the Indians the Redsox remain where they were a month ago at the bottom of division B. It doesn’t help that they were the only team in the division with a losing record over the last month and have been racked by injury. Will they remain in the cellar or can the start to climb back in?

Heroes: Danial Nava continues to get on base hitting .352 with an OBP of .446. Jacoby Ellsbury leads the team in runs, the AL in SB, is 5th in hits (oh and he’s hitting .314 with 8 outfield assists 3 defensive double plays and a perfect fielding percentage. Injuries have limited John Lackey but in seven starts his ERA is only 2.16.

Zeroes: Last time we checked Jon Lester was 1-2 record an ERA of 6.00 a hitting against avg of .309. It’s gotten worse. He’s now 2-7 with a 6.41 ERA with batters hitting .313. Mike Napoli is still in the dumps batting .213 but at least he has 4 HR to compensate. Will Middlebrooks may have 5 HR & 20 RBI’s but with a .172 avg & a .214 OBP he remains the easiest out on the Sox.

Wild cards: Boston has many problems but fielding isn’t one of them, their .992 fielding percentage is the Major’s best but their 5.04 ERA is tied with the Angels for the worst in the AL. At the plate no in the majors team doubles more (114) but neither does any team strike out as much .419.

Coming Attractions: With a .333 winning percentage at Fenway the Redsox are happily off on the road 1st to Aneheim to face the 2002 Angels then to the Bronx to face their hated rivals the 2009 New York Yankees and finally out west to take on the 1999 Oakland As before returning for an 18 game home stand.

Injury Report: No team has been more crippled by injury than the Red Sox. Stephen Drew will miss all of the Angels and Yankees series. Shane Victorino will not be back until more than half way through that homestand and that pales before both Andrew Miller and Clay Buchholz will miss over 30 more games each before they are back.


National League:

1985 St. Louis Cardinals 29-22 1st place

The Cardinals may not be Dominating the NL as they were were but they still hold a four game lead vs their closest rival. Now that the other teams in the division have found their legs can they keep their lead?

Heroes: Willie McGee continues to score at will while hitting .351 with 3 triples. Tom Herr is doing well a .340 avg, 45 RBI’s and 25 stolen bases with a .441 OBP. On the mound John Tudor is 9-1 with 9 complete games and ERA of 2.15 a WHIP of 0.85 with hitters only managing a .178 avg against.

Zeroes: Kurt Kepshire as a starter and reliever has been completely ineffective a 1-2 record ERA of 8.69 and a WHIP over 2 (2.03). If you’re going to be a closer you don’t want Jeff Lahti’s numbers 4 saves in seven chances and hitters hitting .291 against. Darrell Porter has not managed to work it out at the plate hitting .175 with only 2 HR in 97 AB

Wild Cards: St. Louis is leading the NL in triples and the majors in runs and stolen bases, but St. Louis is not just leading the majors in stolen bases, but with 115 is 57 higher then the next closest team.

Coming attractions: The Cards finish a short homestand against a tough 2016 Chicago Cubs team before beginning a 12 game road trip starting 1st in Philadelphia to face the 2008 Phillies before heading to Flatbush to face the 1955 Brooklyn Dodgers.

Injury Report: Willie McGee was hurt during the series against Milwaukee and will miss the series vs the Cubs but should be back before the end of the Phillies series. Pitcher Danny Cox was also hurt in that series but might just make it back before the Cubs leave time.


1957 Milwaukee Braves 25-26 2nd place 4 GB

The Braves despite losing 2 of 3 to St. Louis last week find themselves only 4 games back but hovering at .500 a game behind for the 2nd wildcard The question remains can they reach beyond the record of a fringe playoff team?

Heroes: Warren Spahn has done double duty with 10 starts & 7 relief appearances posting a 5-3 record with one save & a 3.31 ERA. With an ERA of 4.24 and a 2-1 record you wouldn’t expect Don McMahon on this list but when you’ve converted seven of eight save chances you’re generating wins. Hank Aaron continues befuddle pitchers at .344 11 HR and 44 RBI’s

Zeros: Ernie Johnson’s status as a pitching workhorse (25 appearances) hasn’t changed but neither has his ineffectiveness with a 7.14 ERA and a .323 avg against. Frank Torre remains in his rut at the Mendoza line with only 2 HR and 7 RBI’s to show in 32 games.

Wild Cards: Milwaukee leads the NL in hits and is 2nd in runs scored in the league but tend to stay where they are with 1 stolen base in 4 attempts. Alas for them they are 2nd to last in the majors in WHIP at 1.55.

Coming Attractions: Their long 27 game road trip will finally end with stops at Houston to play the 2005 Astros and San Francisco vs the 1962 Giants before finally returning to Milwaukee to host the 1975 Reds before hitting the road again.

Injury Report. Del Rice who suffered a minor scrape vs St. Louis will be back for game 2 vs Houston


1997 Florida Marlins 23-25 3rd place 4 1/2 GB

The Marlins like the braves find themselves hovering near .500 still unclear as to what kind of team they are both hitting and being hit. Will they make up their mind before the weather heats up?

Heroes: Moises Alou has the batting title currently hitting .357 while adding 12 HR and 36 RBI’s You wouldn’t think that Kevin Brown’s 3-5 record and 3.85 ERA would qualify for this list but when your team ERA (4.95) and you lead it in starts, innings and strikeouts by a large margin that sounds heroic to me

Zeros: Devon White’s .190 avg makes his 4 HR and 19 RBI look even worse Six saves in 8 chances looks pretty good for Robb Nen but couple it with a .374 avg against a 7.08 ERA and a WHIP over 2 and a save ratio like that can’t last.

Wild cards: How odd is this team? They lead the majors in OBP at .357 and their .271 avg is 2nd in the league but their .272 avg against is 2nd worst in the league along with their 4.95 ERA. They lead the Majors with 16 saves (in 21 chances) but at 1.57 have the worst WHIP as well.

Coming attractions: The fish have a home series against a tough 2016 Chicago Cubs team before going on the road for 12 starting in Philadelphia to face the 2008 Phillies and then Brooklyn to take on the 1955 Dodgers

Injury Report: Cliff Floyd who was injured early in the year will finally be returning. He is scheduled to join the Team in Philly and is expected to play before the series is over.


2019 Washington Nationals 18-30 4th place 9 1/2 GB

Washington no longer has the worst record in the majors, only the worst in the National league but if they’re going to get out of the cellar the’re going to have to start beating teams in their division.

Heroes: Trea Turner with 66 hits 17 stolen bases and 39 runs scored is setting the table for the others while hitting 6 HR and driving in 24 as well. Juan Soto has been happy to clear it at .321 12 HR and 33 RBI’s at least when he not being walked (40 2nd in the league).

Zeros: If anyone told me that after 10 starts Max Scherzer would be 1-7 averaging only 5 1/3 inning per start with hitters batting .346 vs him and an ERA of 7.88 I wouldn’t have believed you. And when he or Anibal Sanchez (2-5 5.55 ERA in 10 starts) comes out Tanner Rainey (6.91 ERA 1.90 WHIP) and Daniel Hudson (4-5 5.55 ETA 0 saves in 3 chances) don’t make things better.

Wild Cards: The Nationals are 4-14 in their division but remain a terror to NL Div a at 8-4 and absolutely destroy left handed pitching with a 12-4 record. But the worst ERA in the majors (5.29) and a horrible save percentage (10 in 18 chances) will have to change for this teams fortunes to)

Coming Attractions: the Nats continue their road trip vising Houston to take on the 2005 Astros then San Francisco for the 1962 Giants before visiting Cincinnati to play the 1975 Reds before a long home stand.

Injury Report: The one saving grace for the Nats, the whole team is healthy

Dynasty Players Choice League AL / NL Div B Report

Continuing our weekly reports on the teams in the various Dynasty leagues I run this week Division B in the all time any time great teams league

AL Div B

1968 Detroit Tigers

After a slow start the tigers find themselves at the top of the AL B standings with a game and a half over the defending AL champ Indians. Can they keep this winning pace up?

Heroes: Willie Horton is has been a one man wrecking ball with the bat with 8 HR and 22 RBI while playing an errorless left field adding an outfield assist into the mix. Denny McLain has gone 4-0 only allowing a .208 batting avg while leading the league in wins, and being top 5 in 3 other categories. Ray Oyler being perfect in the field at short is no surprise as his reputation for defense is well known but seeing him add a .364 to the mix has been a shocker.

Zeroes: Don Wert isn’t known for his bat so his .170 Avg might be forgivable but combine it with a .925 fielding percentage with as many errors as his net two teammates combined, now that’s a worry. Mickey Lolich & Earl Wilson both with 2-2 record as starters wouldn’t seem like likely candidates for this list but if their ERAs were not 6.84, and 6.17 respectively Detroit’s lead might be a lot bigger.

Wild Card: Detroit’s next three series are against teams with a combined 22-29 it’s s great chance to widen that league.

Coming attractions: The Tigers travel to Yankees Stadium for a 3 game set aginst the 2009 Yanks before heading back home for a 9 game homestand facing 1988 Oakland and the 2013 Redsox who are with striking distance before finishing the stand against the 1970 Orioles.


1954 Cleveland Indians

The defending AL champs are right in the thick of it again, a game and a half out of 1st place and currently holding a wild card spot which isn’t bad for a team that has played 80% of their games on the road to this point but can they turn on the heat on the surging Tigers?

Heroes: With a team ERA under 4 (3.97) it’s hard to name a single pitching hero but Bob Lemon with a 3-0 record and a 2.88 ERA certainly fits the bill, and that .750 batting avg in interleague play and a perfect 1.000 fielding percentage isn’t too shabby either. There are people hitting for a higher avg on the team than Larry Doby but when you are leading the team in both runs scores AND runs batted in along with HR, Slugging and OB+Slugging you are the really doing the job (oh and by the way 1.000 fielding plus two outfield assists and a range factor of 2.62)

Zeroes: It doesn’t look at that good for Billy Glynn as he both leads the team in errors and is sitting below the Mendoza line with a .195 batting avg but he has one thing going for him, at least he’s not Wally Westlake because not only is he batting a mere .184 but unlike Glynn who is hitting .286 with runners in scoring position Westlake is hitting a mere .130 when the big moment comes.

Wild Card: They only have one series against a division opponent in their next 8.

Coming attractions: the Indians bask in the glory of a brief 3 game homestand against 1st place 2015 Kansas City Royals before hitting the road agai to battle the 2005 White Sox and the 1993 Blue Jays.


2013 Boston Redsox

Boston had lost 4 series in a row before taking two of three from their arch rival New York Yankees. Will that be the spark that puts the team back on track?

Heroes: If anyone told you that after 18 games Danial Nava would lead the Red sox with a .389 average .500 OBS a .593 slugging percentage and be the only player on the team with an OPS over 1.000 1.093 while hitting only one HR you wouldn’t believe it. On the other hand John Lackey’s ERA of 2.38 and modest .264 batting avg against in 4 starts, that’s entirely believable.

Zeroes: Jon Lester was expected to be the Redsox ace but he’s so far been more akin to the twenty minuters  of WW1 infamy with a 1-2 record an ERA of 6.00 a hitting against avg of .309 along with five homers, one every 5 1/3 innings. Meanwhile Mike Napoli is not only devoid of HR with only 5 RBI in 16 games but with runners in scoring position is hitting an anemic .222, .125 if there are two outs.

Wild card: Boston has only seen a left handed starter once every six games, which is a good thing because they have yet to win a game against a lefty but at 4-2 they have the best record in the American league in one run games.

Coming Attractions: A quick trip to Oakland to visit the 1988 A’s is followed by a 3 game homestand against the 1970 Orioles before going head to head with Detroit and a chance to close the distance a bit.


2010 Texas Rangers: The Rangers broke a six game losing streak in style with a sweep of the (then) 1st place Washington Senators. Is this the start of better things to come? Or will the team without a manager continue to be rudderless?

Heroes: Vladimir Guerrero‘s reputation as one of the most feared bats in the game has not been affected by the Rangers poor record. His .408 avg and 18 RBI’s talk and opposing pitchers are listening. Even though the starting rotation has been a horror the Texas Bullpen has put up good number with Michael Kirkman leading the way. In six appearances he’s held opponents to a .205 avg while striking out 17 in 11 1/3 innings with a 1.50 ERA and no homers allowed and a win to his credit.

Zeroes: While his play behind the plate has been acceptable Matt Treanor has impressed nobody with his .216 avg and .313 OBP not to mention .200 with runners in scoring position but if you want to talk Zeroes you have to talk the starting rotation with Cliff Lee’s 5.13 ERA and .347 avg (despite a 2-1 record) C.J Wilson’s 16 walks in 28 innings and 5.97 ERA and if that’s not bad enough you have Tommy Hunter who has in 18.2 innings over 4 starts struck out fewer batters (6) than he’s given up homers (7) with a horrible ERA of 7.81.

Wild Card: Rich Harden was recently promoted back to the majors after a short stint down, can he return a semblance of steadiness to a rotation with a damaged reputation?

Coming Attractions: It’s a time away from the division for Texas as they conclude an 18 game road trip with three at the 2015 Royals and 3 more vs the 2005 Chicago White Sox before heading home to welcome the 1993 Blue Jays before facing a division foe again.


1985 St. Louis Cardinals

After a 9-0 start they have returned to earth going 5-7 since. Can that early lead hold up when the month of April is over or will they cool as the weather warms?

Heroes: Tom Herr’s line is deadly .407 avg 3 HR 26 RBI 10 sb with only one caught and an OBP of .484 and an OPS 1.089. Oh and he’s been perfect at 2b in the field with a range factor of 4.59. It’s the kind of performance that makes opposing pitchers crazy. It that wasn’t bad enough for St. Louis’ foes John Tudor is 5-0 with five complete games in six starts with a 1.94 ERA to drive enemy batters absolutely nuts.

Zeroes: It’s hard to find zeroes on a team that’s performed so well but St. Louis’ Catchers sure helped me along. Darrell Porter with a .138 avg in 12 games he wasn’t doing much before his injury and has failed to catch the only person trying to steal against him. Meanwhile while he was out Tom Nieto did the job and while his .209 avg was slightly better than Porter he not only was batted .200 when men were in scoring position but allowed seven of nine people to steal off of him while committing 2 errors.

Wild Card: St Louis has been patient at the plate, their 103 walks are a full 60% ahead of the #2 team and their stolen base total of 61 is 44 greater than the current runner up. That’s likely why they also have the most hits in the league

Coming Attractions: A huge series at Brooklyn against the defending World Series Champion 1955 Dodgers is followed by the 1986 Mets at home and then they travel to Florida for a shot at the 2nd place 1997 Marlins who are itching for revenge. Can the NL Div A do what Div B could not?


1997 Florida Marlins

If the 1985 St. Louis Cardinals did not Exist Florida would have both a winning record and the lead in their division. Instead they are at .500 and if the season ended today would not even snag a wildcard. Can they manage to expand their winning ways to include the Cards?

Heroes: Felix Heredia has stood out in a staff that hasn’t with two saves in as many chances, a 1-0 record more strikeouts than innings pitched and an ERA of 1.86 while in a team full of hitting hitters Moises Alou stands above the rest hitting for avg (.378) power (7 HR) and leading the team in RBI’s Runs scored and Walks.

Zeroes: While Devon White and Luis Castillo have both been excellent in the field they are hitting .131 and .183 respectively which is unimpressive to say the least although in fairness to White his eight walks have contributed to nine runs scored. Meanwhile in a team where no starter has more than one win there are many zero candidates but the biggest has to be closer Rob Nen with two blown saves a WHIP of 1.86 and a 6.43 ERA in the most critical moments of a game.

Wild Card: With Al Lieter injured and out for at least two starts can anyone in the rotation step up?

Coming Attractions: It a visit to the NL east with series at Brooklin vs the 1955 Dodgers and the 1986 Mets before coming home to face the 2013 Arizona Diamondbacks before their big rematch with St. Louis. Will they have a permanent manager by then?


1957 Milwaukee Braves

The Braves managed to turn things around after a dismal 1-9 start, but is that turn about permanent or was their defeat by the 2005 astros in their last series a sign of things to come?

Heroes: Nobody will be surprised to see Hank Aaron at the top of this list. With a .351 Avg 5 HR and 12 RBI the advice on how to pitch pitch to him: “Make sure nobody is on when he hits it out” seems awfully accurate. The second non surprise is Warren Spahn whose 3-1 record 2.54 ERA and 28 1/3 innings in five starts have done the trick.

Zeroes: Ernie Johnson certainly has been a workhorse for Milwaukee appearing in 10 of their 18 games. Unfortunately he’s also been a disaster in the bullpen with more than twice as many hits as innings pitch and ERA of 13.50 and a .417 avg against. Many people thought it would be a fight between Frank Torre and Joe Adcock for the starting job at 1st, but Torre’s .111 avg no runs batted in and two hits on the season certainly hasn’t given anyone a reason to leave him in a lineup.

Wildcard: Bill Burton’s injury is going to keep him out of the lineup for at least the next three series forcing Aaron to play center. This means that the Braves will see more of Andy Pafko’s unimpressive bat .171 avg but steady defense (2 assists) or Wes Covington deadly bat .318 avg but lead glove .846 fielding percentage in right.

Coming Attractions: The Braves visit the streets of San Francisco to face the 1962 Giants before coming home for 9 against the 1975 Reds 2013 Arizona and Division rival 2019 Nationals.


2019 Washington Nationals

Washington has lost 10 of their last 12 and are owners of the worst record in the majors, which is kind of what was the case in 2019 before the stormed back to win 1st the Pennant and then the series. Can history repeat itself?

Heroes: There is plenty of blame to go around for Washington’s start but neither Trea Turner nor Juan Soto deserve any of it. Turner has hit .342 stolen 3 bases in 4 tries and hit three HR while scoring almost double the runs of the next leading player who would be Soto who has crushed 5 HR and walked enough to get an OBP of .405

Zeroes: Max Scherzer has been a pleasant surprise at the plate with a .400 avg and a pair of RBI’s but the nats would happily trade that for the pitcher they expected as an ace. With a 1-3 record a .347 avg against and a .887 ERA and fewer strikeouts than runs allowed 19 vs 22 it’s been a dismal start. Meanwhile don’t let the fact that Daniel Hudson owns 2 of Washington’s 5 wins fool you. in 11 appearances his ERA is 11.68 his WHIP is a solid three and he’s managed to blow two saves in as many chances.

Wild Card. Both Gerardo Parra and Anthony Rendon have spent time injured early and Washington has a new manager who took over during their losing streak. Can these three men make the difference for a team that is 1-10 against right handed pitching this season?

Coming Attractions: Home has not been where the heart is for the DC team (2-10) while they’ve played .500 ball on the road, so a trip to Cincinnati to face the 1975 Reds might just be what’s needed, then after a brief stop back home to face the 2013 Diamondbacks it’s back on the road for 3 against the 57 Braves in Milwaukee and 3 against the 2016 Cubs at Wrigley.

Sunday Morning Under the Fedora Media vs Brady, Kyrie addition by subtraction, Tampa Bay Lightning not striking twice, Betts as Ruth Redux and Games on paper vs games on paper

Are we still after last year seeing sports casters saying that even if the New England Patriots win against the hapless Dolphins today that the only question in the playoffs is: “Do the Patriots lose to Patrick Mahomes and the Chiefs at home or in Kansas city?”

Now don’t get me wrong, Kansas City is a good team and as demonstrated earlier in the year they are quite capable of beating any team including the Patriots, but I can’t think of anything that is more likely to motivate an already great Patriots defense and Tom Brady back into “Deflategate revenge tour” mode than stuff like this.


It’s still very early in the season but I’d like to point out that last year the Brooklyn Nets finished the year at 42-40 with a .512 winning percentage without Kyrie Irving as the 6th seed while the Boston Celtics finished at 49-33 with a .598 winning percentage as the 5th seed in the east with Kyrie irving.

This year Irving left the Celtics and the team is currently the #3 seed at 22-8 with a .733 winning percentage and even with the #2 Miami Heat in the Loss Column. Irving signed with the nets who are currently 16-15 with a .516 winning percentage and 7th seeded in the conference, but more importantly is 12-8 with a .600 winning percentage since an injury sidelined Irving after a 4-7 start.

This man is the anti-Brady


Last year in the NHL during the Regular Season the Tampa Bay Lightning simply dominated the league in a way we hadn’t seen in years until the playoffs came around. I remember driving home after game one listening to sports radio as they declared that despite that loss Columbus had no chance right up until they finished the lightning off.

It’s a year later and the team that managed 128 points, a solid 20 above every other is now currently at 42 points five points behind the last wild card team. Now there are still 46 games to go but it’s an important reminder that you have to take advantage of any opportunity you have because you just might not get another chance.


Speaking of not getting another chance as the year ends and the 2020 season draws near we are still getting “the trade or don’t trade Mookie Betts” debate in Boston.

It’s been a pretty quiet off season for the Red Sox with three players from last world series win (Brock Holt, Mitch Moreland, Rick Porcello ) currently testing free agency and Catcher Sandy Leon traded to Cleveland for minor league pitcher Adenys Bautista. As of today their current offensive depth chart looks like this (via redsox.com):

With the exception of Pedroia this is pretty much the Red Sox offence that tore up the league last year but was betrayed by injuries in the rotation and weakness in the bullpen. Or to put it another way, this team is one closer and perhaps one healthy rotation away from fielding a team more than capable of dominating the American league with a monster offense, a zipper outfield and a rotation as good as any other in baseball.

So to those who say forget 2020 and trade Mookie let me remind all these people who have forgotten the lean times of a little history.

Exactly 100 years ago another Red Sox had an off season at 66-71-1 (one game called after 10 innings never made up) where they had dropped to sixth a year after winning the world series. They decided to get rid of their star right fielder, who could also pitch a bit, before the start of their next season selling him for a price higher than the entire payroll of the the previous year’s team. More money than the combined salaries of the top 8 players in the league.

That team had won five World series in the 20th century at that point, they would not win another.

Now Mookie Betts is no Babe Ruth but the point of the story is when you have a chance to win a World Series take it, because it might be another 86 years before you win another.


Finally as I mentioned before the old table top face to face fantasy baseball league that I started 32 years ago (the year before I got married) was revived this year. Going into Friday I had a record of 8-4 having won my 1st 4 series with a pair of series coming up against two relative newcomers with one season of experience between them both with losing records.

Over the next two days I lost 4-6 including a 9th inning blown save by Kimbrel, a 14th inning marathon, and had a team with Mookie Betts batting 1st and Anthony Rendon hitting 3rd shut out for the final 20 innings of the last two games against a sixteen year old kid who was playing in his 1st baseball simulation league 50 years after I had gotten my 1st baseball simulation game, Milton Bradley baseball for Christmas in 1969 (great game btw you can get it on eBay here) at the ripe old age of six.

This demonstrates a sports rule that extends even to games on paper. No matter what the betting line or the prognosticators say there is a reason why you actually play the games.

9/11 Silence, Election? What Election? Pizza? Please, Antonio Brown Suit, Playing it out Under the Fedora.

You’ll note that I didn’t do anything to commemorate 9/11 this year at all, not even the great victory on Lake Champlain in 1814 that I’ve occasionally mentioned.

I think constantly morning the dead in big ceremonies is a bad idea while we are still fighting any of these guys, all it does it give hope to our foes. Granted we are closer than we’ve ever been to them being utterly crushed, but till I think a smaller ceremony is a better idea.

Some might object and that’s your right but my take is a lot better than the NYT trying to pretend that airplanes attacks us on their own.

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Speaking on 9/11 the MSM hit Donald Trump for hitting them on 9/11. I’m not surprised, it sure beats having to report on the special election in NC where they were anticipating victory for weeks, until the President showed up the day before.

Then the 18 point deficit became a 1 1/2 point win for Dan Bishop and the media was no longer smiling

and election suddenly was no longer newsworthy.

Unexpectedly of course.

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Ok one more 9/11 thing can someone please tell me what was so offensive about this pizza? that it couldn’t be tweeted out on 9/11?

It’s one thing to want to be respectful, it’s another thing to be anal. This is anal.

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Antonio Brown is now been accused of rape in a civil lawsuit alleging that these events took place last year and in 2017.

I have no idea if this is true or not and I’m sure this is going to be topic #1 on sports media concerning the NFL, and frankly Brown’s statement concerning the event doesn’t inspire a lot of confidence in him, but regardless of how you feel about Brown who is likely one of the least popular players in the league at the moment, it seems to me that this is well within the statue of limitations so I don’t understand why the person launching this suit is not filing criminal charges in addition to the civil suit.

Whatever your opinion of Mr. Brown I think that’s a valid question that deserves an answer.

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As of this writing (9/11) the Boston Redsox tragic number for wild card spot elimination is 9. On the radio two days ago the I heard a sports talk guy say the day they were official eliminated by the Yankees for the division that you would see the players tone it down. This suggestion insults me for two reasons.

Firstly until you eliminated. Teams have been known to collapse at the end so until you’re out of it you should play like you’re in it, not just for the your own team and fan’s sake but to force the guys in front of you earn it.

Secondly as professional athletes who are paid millions of dollars to play this game you are expected to play to win. This is entertainment and in a sport whose fan base isn’t what it was you can’t afford to mail it in.

Of course it would be nice if the players were as insulted by this suggestion as I was.