Who will win the American League Pennant in Season 8?

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Season 8 Projections

1st place
Minnesota - Juan Morales left the chilly confines of Minnesota for his new home in sunny Houston. with no major free agent signings or trades, there are still 2 things for certain in Minnesota, 1) Pedro Rosario will still amaze us with his sub 2 era and 25+ wins and 2) Alfredo Mendoza will continue to own AL pitching with his power and crush 40+ homers. In the first 7 years of Metropolis, Minnesota has managed to win 6 division titles, so until someone can knock off the talented Zbrent and the magic he workds with his pitching staff, i give the advantage in the AL North and first place to Minnesota
(Minnesota Projected Record 94-68)
2nd Place
St. Louis- coming off a 91 win season, and a surprise trip to the ALCS, Stiller comes into this season looking to knock off the Mystique and calim their first Division Title. The major question will be how will newly acquried Rafael Lee peform this year? will he be able to find his rhythym in a new ballpark, and how will his efo fair knowing that he will be 3rd in the rotation behind studs Mark Wilhelm and Kiel Holmes. my guess is he will do just fine, and the race for the AL North will be extremely close, with St. Louis falling just a little short this year
(St. Louis Projected Record 92-70)
3rd Place
Vancouver- the most improved team in the AL North this year, VAncover was tired of sitting around and letting St. Louis and Minnesota bully them all year long so they went out and signed Power Hitter Brady Watkins, and traded for Ace Barry Meadows. But that wasnt all for Vancover, they also called up SP Matt Aurilla, and LF Jason Michaels. With the addition of these for members to the starting lineup, who knows how hight ceiling is for Vancouver? Is it enough for Vancover to make a playoff push this year? My guess is no, but its certainly enough for Vancouver to finally get out of the cellar. Many good things are in store for this franchise, and it starts this season
(Vancouver Projected Record 78-84)
4Th Place
Toronto- Ahhhh the good old days of Bosco Sterns, Steve Beckett, Ross Owen, Alex Gonzalez, Hootie Flores are long gone, welcome in the new crew in Toronto, they'd have a tough time beating Canada in the little league world series. A bunch of new faces are in the farm system in Toronto and also on the ML roster looking to compete for playing time and help the rebuilding Galactus return to their former glory of just falling short to Zbrent and his Mystique every year.
Incumbents Trevor Tyson, Todd Ashley, Yeico Palmeiro and PT Domingo return for an 8th Season, but thats just about it for Toronto, with no major Free Agent acquistions this season, it looks like Toronto is headed for the cellar. Rookies Gordon Maybin, Miguel Cela, and Ricardo Unamuno should provide some youth and excitement to this team. expect 100+ losses for the Galactus this year
(Toronto Projected Record 54-108)

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Top S8 Free Agents

We are just getting under way in Season 8 and this year's free agent class looks to be one of the better in recent memory. Impact players are there to be had for teams who are ready to spend the big bucks and prepare for that championship run. With no further ado, let's take a look at the top five position players as well as the top five pitchers available.

Position Players

Don Fields

Some might call him an underachiever, but Fields is still the premier bat to be had at shortstop. Fields would provide an offensive boost to any team and expect his next contract to reflect that.

Glen Walters

While Walters career numbers are not very impressive, his stats are on the upswing the last two seasons. After playing for three different teams over the last two years, the third baseman is finally looking for his chance to score a big contract and find a permanent home.

Juan Morales

Morales already has two championship rings and just made two consecutive All-Star rosters. Now entering his seventh season and with only a few more dominant years left, Minnesota decided to let Morales walk, calling him "not worth his demands" and also saying "we'd rather have the Type A pick." Suitors are hoping this will motivate Morales towards more All-Star appearances.

Brady Watkins

Widely considered the best pure hitter available this offseason, first baseman/designated hitter Watkins is going to see serious cash coming his way from many directions. Expect Watkins to go to the team where he thinks he has the best chance of winning a championship.

Jae-Kuk Martin

Martin is certainly one of the lesser known first baseman in the league. His zero All-Star appearances is a testament to that. So why is he on this list? Well, before he saw very limited playing time in Houston last year, Martin was a lock for 30 home runs and 90 RBIs. Martin might not be the most high-profile guy available, but he's certainly ready to contribute to a contender.


Denny Hasegawa

He might be 36 years old, but you try telling Hasegagwa that he's lost a step. He has had one of the best careers in Metropolis history, highlighted by a ridiculous Season 2 campaign during which he won the NL Cy Young. He told us just last week that "I feel just as good I ever have."

James Kimura

At 34 years old, Kimura is starting to look towards his life after baseball. He wants to get paid and he wants to sign with a team he knows he'll retire with. After finally finishing with an above-.500 record with St. Louis for the first time in four years, Kimura wants to see where his services are needed most and wants to help someone win a championship.

Ismael Montero

Montero gears up for what might be his second big payday. After scoring a huge contract from Chicago in S4, he largely struggled and has since regretted the decision. Colorado bought out his $18M option for this season and could very well bring him back for less, even considering the buy-out.

Mac Lincoln

Last year, Lincoln won 15 games, but much of that can be attributed to his 37 starts. "Being in a four-man rotation may have helped," he joked with us earlier. Even so, put with the right team, he feels he can achieve similar results for at least another two years.

Frank Kwon

Kwon had 159 saves during his first five seasons with Ottawa, during which time period the team was borderline shameful. But the emergence of relievers Norberto Vazquez & Matt Gibson diminished Kwon's role in the bullpen and this past winter, Ottawa elected to let him go. Kwon says he is ready to close again and would like to play for a team where he can be a large contributor as well as a clubhouse leader.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Dominican Brothers

Though they hail from the same country, they were a study in contrasts growing up. Today, however, they share at least one common trait - they are among the most dominant and effective pitchers in the World.

Both born into relative poverty in the Dominican Republic, S4 Cy Young winner Pedro Rosario is from the small rural community of Moncion. At the time of his birth 25 years ago, that town boasted a population of only about 5,000 people. As a child, Pedro helped support his family by begging and acting as a child guide for the many tourists who came to visit the nearby Parque Nacional Armando Bermúdez. On longer tours, he would often find himself on the Pico Duarte, standing atop the Caribbean and imagining he could see the promised land of America off in the distance. He dreamed of following in the footsteps of his countryman Jose Mesa and firing fastballs by befuddled batters as a career.

By comparison, S4 Cy Young runner-up Miguel Cora grew up in Sabana Grande De Boya as the son of a sugar baron. Though he sampled the sugar from the preferred plantation a bit too often - leading, no doubt, to the intense and somewhat hyper gaze he wears even today - he was nevertheless an excellent student. He frequently accompanied his father on business trips to the United States and knew one day that he would make that trip on his own. Like many young Dominican pitchers at the time, Miguel followed the career of Pedro Martinez closely and knew that one day he too would become a major league pitcher.

But for baseball, the two boys' worlds would never have met. As you may know, however, baseball is like a religion in the Dominican Republic, and it brought these two budding stars together, even before their shared destiny in America. First facing one another on travel teams throughout their childhoods, it wasn't until they met one Fall afternoon in a tournament in 2004 that their rivalry began in earnest.

In the championship game, the starting pitcher for Pedro's team was knocked out in the first inning - literally - by a fierce line drive up the middle. Though he had pitched in relief for the three games prior, Pedro was nevertheless called upon on short notice yet again to keep his team in the game. He did so in thrilling fashion, posting shutout inning after shutout inning in relief. Unfortunately for him, Miguel matched his impressive display inning-for-inning and the game lasted well into the evening. 17 innings later, it became clear to both managers that no batter had a chance to hit either pitcher in the dwindling twilight - after all, they had hardly been able to do so in the full sunshine - and so it was agreed that the teams would share the title.

Both Pedro and Miguel, competitors to the end, found this result distasteful and so they organized as many of their teammates as they could and vowed to continue the epic battle the next day. Tragically, the matchup was not meant to be, as the deadly Hurricane Jeanne plowed into the island the next day and baseball become an afterthought as the players all rushed home to help their respective families.

The next season, a damper was put on the highly anticipated rematch between the teams, as Miguel Cora was no longer in the Dominican Republic, having been signed by the Colorado Kryptonite Kids to a Major League deal. Miguel spent that first season (the records of which were all destroyed in a blazing inferno) pitching in Low A and High A for Colorado, but it was only a matter of time before he made an impact at the ML level. Without Miguel in the way, Pedro's team went on to win the tournament the following season, but it was a hollow victory for Pedro, because his greatest rival was missing.

After that season in the Dominican Republic, Pedro's coach was approached by a scout from the Minnesota Mystique. Though the scout was sent to find an Ace SP, he returned instead with something even better - Pedro and his fellow teammate Willie Amaro. Two iron-man relievers with rubber arms and fantastic stuff.

Minnesota quickly inked them both and the duo eventually led the Mystique to a World Series Title in Season 2. Most satisfying for Pedro? The fact that the Mystique went through the Kryptonite Kids - and his rival Miguel - in the ALCS to get there. Now, 2 seasons later, Miguel is trying to return the favor, having torn through the Mystique in the DCS. Miguel and the Kryptonite Kids stand on the cusp of a World Series title of their own, leading the best-of-7 series 1 game-to-0 over the Portland Green Arrows. Though it is far from over - and with the Green Arrows, it really isn't over until the final out is recorded - the Kryptonite Kids are the betting favorite to take down the title.

If they do so, it would be one World Series title each for Pedro and Miguel. With their childhood teammates scattered across the World and the world, it is unlikely that their epic 17-inning battle will ever be concluded, so perhaps the race to World Series titles will act as a worthy substitute. After all, any team with one of these studs has a better-than-even chance of playing deep into the post-season.