2018 Fly-By-Night Team Article Archive


MAINE (ARIZONA) YAKS- 3-5

Every year I move the D-Backs out and put all my guys into Arizona in Strat Major Leagues. Then I play one game against each of the other MLB teams, AL away and NL at our spring home in Arizona. Typically we win as many as we lose and learn something about the new season's Yaks. This year we finished with our best record ever.

Spring Record 19 wins, 10 losses. We hit .290 with 53 HRs. Our ERA was 4.76

Ryan Zimmerman impressed his new mates, hitting .333 with 8 HRs and 21 RBI, all leading totals.

Marcell Ozuna was not far behind, hitting .303 with 8 HRs and 19 RBI.

Alex Avila played only against RHP and hit .364 in 55 ABs.

Three Yaks had 6 homeruns in spring: Stephen Souza, Manny Machado, and Eduardo Nunez.

Dee Gordon had 7 SBs and 11 doubles. Eduardo Nunez had 6 SBs.

Marty Foltynewicz led starters with a 3-0 record, matched by Trevor Hildenberger in relief.

Scott Solis did not allow an earned run in 5.1 IP, Trevor Hildenberger had an ERA of 1.00.

Carlos Asuaje earned an opening day roster spot with clutch RBIs, postponing my scheme to reserve a roster spot for pinch runner Jacoby Jones.

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

US JARHEAD SCUTTLEBUTT- 3-31

The US Jarhead 5 year playoff run includes a Final 4 appearance in the 24 team division in 2013, 4 NL Championship Game appearances which included 2 NL Crowns and the 2014 World Series Championship. This season's 7-13 start puts that USJ playoff streak in serious jeopardy. The biggest problem is the pitching staff which has a 5.94 era after 20 games. The hitting is slowly coming around with the team average creeping up to .236, but the pitching staff can't expect any helpful reinforcements from AAA Parris Island.

The one highlight of the pitching staff has been 2018 draft pick Brandon Woodruff. He is 2-0 in 3 starts with a 1.80 era and a whip of 0.85. Woodruffs last start was a CG 4 hit shutout of the CT Blue Devils. The downside is Woodruff will last one more block before his innings are exhausted.

USJ Walk Off Celebrations:
On Opening Day Adam Rosales delivered a 2 out, PH, 2 run double off Aroldis Chapman giving the Jarheads a 5-4 victory.
Chad Pinder hit an 11th inning walk off Homerun vs the Navigator's Abad for a 2-1 Jarhead win.

USJ Walk Off Blues:
The Chiefs Joey Gallo called his shot against the Jarheads. Leading off the bottom off the 9th in a 1-1 game, Gallo stepped out of the box and pointed over the wall to the Citgo sign at War Memorial Coliseum. On Matt Belisles' first pitch Gallo delivered, blasting a 420 foot game winning Homerun.

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

DEVIL DOODLES- 3-31

Connecticut opened play in their 32nd season in the FBN with their new manager Don Mattingly replacing Lou Piniella who retired at the end of the 2017 season. The team split all 4 series played going 8-8 (4-4 both home and away). Although certainly not inspiring, it was a big improvement from last year's start at 5-11. The Blue Devils played mostly close games with 9 of the first 16 games decided by 2 runs or less. This trend is expected to continue as CT should have some pretty good pitching all year but the offense appears to lack power to be able to come back from larger deficits.

The pitching staff opened strong posting a 3.02 team ERA. Starters Robbie Ray, Jimmy Nelson, Alex Wood and Alex Meyer combined to go 7-2 with a 2.13 ERA. Only one starter struggled - Brad Peacock going 0-4 with a 7.43 ERA. Consideration may be given to move him to the bullpen but Mgr. Mattingly committed to giving Peacock another block of games as a starter to show improvement. Mike Minor, who missed the last 2 seasons with injuries, was installed as the closer and was perfect in his first 5 appearances getting a win and 4 saves allowing 1 base runner in 6 innings with 8 K's.

Offensively, Jose Reyes surprised with a great start batting .383 with 5 doubles, 3 HR's, 6 RBI and 8 runs scored. Mitch Moreland has provided power leading the team with 4 HR's and 11 RBI. Jacoby Ellsbury continued his solid play from last year batting .347 with 4 doubles, 2 HR's and 7 runs scored. On the negative side, SS Freddie Galvis has struggled batting just .159 but he's made his few hits count with 5 RBI. Surprisingly, Galvis has also struggled on defense making 3 errors in 15 games. (SS-1 e7 hmm . . .)

The Blue Devils finish Block 1 on the road against a very tough 89ers squad before facing some long-time rivals in Block 2 including the Chiefs, Klub and Angels.

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

HEARD ON THE STREET- 4-30

Prior to the start of FBN season Wall Street was hoping to avoid 100 L's, yet the Barons finished block II, 25-19. Management still firmly believes it's just an illusion. - Mgr. Weaver, "We neither have the startiing pitching nor offense to continue this pace." Wall Street will have to use some slo-pitch starters as the season progresses and regression will occur.

T Olsen 5-0, & rookies R Devers, N Williams, & M Smith have been leading the way but all have have limited IPs or ABs.

Looking to next season - Of Barons 5 SPs 2 have gone down with Tommy John operations (JC Ramirez & D Lamet) one is pitching in Korea. 3 additional pitchers are also recovering from TJ operations & who knows if G Bird will ever play for NYY. As of 5/1 Barons only have 23 MLB players active!! On to Block III.

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

DEVIL DOODLES- 4-30

At 24-16, Connecticut is off to its best start since 2014. The Blue Devils have not lost a series yet splitting 7 series, sweeping one series and taking 3 of 4 in two other series. Winning close games continues to be the key as Connecticut is 10-6 in one run games.

Robbie Ray has led the pitching staff with a 7-0 record and 2.47 ERA striking out 73 batters in just 58 innings. Alex Wood hasn't been too far behind going 5-1 with a 2.68 ERA. Mike Minor has been solid as the closer going 3-2 with 13 saves striking out 23 batters in 19 innings. Tommy Kahnle added 23 K's in just 16 innings in relief. Overall, the Blue Devil pitching staff has struck out 377 batters in 356 innings - almost 10 K's per 9 innings which offsets a few too many walks 3.5 walks/9 innings.

Offensively, it has been a team effort with 8 players having 10 or more RBI and 9 players scoring 10 or more runs. Mitch Moreland, despite just a .229 BA, has been productive with 7 HR's, 24 RBI and 18 runs. Jose Reyes continued his hot start batting .320 with 6 HR's and 16 RBI while leading the team with 23 runs scored. Nori Aoki leads the team with a .350 BA. On the down side, Trevor Story (.170), Logan Forsythe (.127) and Freddie Galvis (.187) are all struggling to get to the Mendoza line.

The Blue Devils finish Block 2 on the road against Burlington before battling in the AL. Both top starters - Ray & Wood will be resting in the next short block as CT hopes to survive and not lose too much ground gained so far. Rookie 1st rd pick Jeimer Candelario is expected to make his debut vs. the AL.

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

BATON ROUGE NOTES- 4-30

With about a quarter of the season done, the Silver Bullets have been a disappointment with a sub-.500 record (21-23). The fear going into the season was that we didn’t have enough hitting - lots of walks and some power but not enough percentage hitting. Great defense, very good relief, a couple good starters, some power, some on base, but low team batting average. The current team average of .245 is probably about what we will do over the season. Our defense and relief staff - our strength - has been our downfall so far this year. We should do well in close games - should. In 44 games played so far this season we are 6-15 in one run or extra inning games. Against the top 4 teams in the AL, we have a record of 3-13 with 7 of those games being one run games. We lost all 7.

On a more positive note, DJ LeMahieu started slow but has been killing it lately to raise his average to .345 with a .414 on base average. He has yet to hit a home run but 7 of his singles were N-HRs. Sean Doolittle has an ERA of only 0.47. He has struck out 25 with only 3 walks and no home runs given up over 19 innings. He has given up 1 earned run and 1 unearned run - which accounts for his 2 losses.

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

SCHOOL YARD NOTES- 5-8

After a 9-11 Block One start, GM George Weiss and Manager Casey Stengel had to decide on holding steady or to bring up a few players from Triple A, West Broad Street. The team average was .243. The team ERA was a very respectful 3.27. 89'ER management decided to hold steady going into Block Two. The only change was replacing starting pitcher Matt Shoemaker with starting pitcher Mark Leiter and this change was only done because of inning restrictions.

The team rewarded management by bouncing back in Block Two with a 17-7 record. The team hit .308 to improve the overall average to .277. JD Martinez was a key factor, improving from .234 with 8 HR's and 12 RBI in Block One. In Block Two he hit .386, 13 HR'S and 22 RBI bring his 44 game total to .306, 21 HR's and 34 RBI.

The pitching stayed about the same with a 3.38 ERA in Block Two. Overall the team ERA after 44 games was 3.33. CC Sabathia lead the team at 6-3, 3.34 ERA. Next, coming into his own was Trevor Bauer at 5-3, 2.70 ERA. The bullpen has been a very strong so far which has surprised management. But, Pitching Coach Al Jackson and Bench Coach, Roger Craig have said all along, they were not surprise with the fine start. Adam Warren 3-1-1, 1.13 ERA with 32K's in 24 innings lead the relievers. Warren has been sent to West Broad Street for Block Three to get a rest due to early overuse. Brad Brach has chipped in at 1-0-3, 1.42 ERA with 24K's in 19IP. The lefty, righty combination of Hoby Milner and Luis Garcia has worked well for Stengel. Milner at 0-0-0, 2.00 ERA has done the job against tough left handed batters while Garcia at 0-1, 1.85 ERA with 18K's in 19IP has done the job against the tough right handed batters that he's faced.

Block Three has just started and with a two game sweep at Baton Rouge, a three game sweep of New Hampshire and a split at Lake Wobegon the team is at 6-1, with games left at Urpaign and home games with California and Yorktown.

Milestones:
Player - Robinson Cano 1000th Run.
Team - 50,000th Hit, 25,000th Run, 1500th Triple and 5000th Home Run.
 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

US JARHEAD SCUTTLEBUTT- 6-2

The Other Clayton

The US Jarheads have the saddest collection of pitching, possibly the worst of all time.

Coming off 23-7, 3.31 in 2017, Rick Porcello maintains his Status as "Ace of the Staff ", with a 2018 record of 4-9, 6.40era. Yovani Gallardo has cracked the Win column, checking in at 1-10, 9.29. (92ip 126h 57w 25hr). Wade Miley and recent callup Matt Harvey are still chasing that elusive first W. Harvey has had only 4 tries at it and sits at 0-3, 11.17 (19ip 37h 9w 6hr). Miley has been a rotation mainstay all year with 14 starts. But so far he's "Maggies Drawers", going 0-11,10.06. (71ip 101h 47w 10hr). With 102 innings remaining, Miley will have chances for that win, and Harvey with 82 innings is hopeful as well.

But one Jarhead starter is posting numbers for the record books. He has 3 All Time Single Season FBN Records in his sights. Three records held by 3 different pitchers, that have stood for many years, may all be eclipsed by one man, potentially earning him the title of The Worst Pitcher in FBN history.

Gentlemen, I give you,
Clayton Richard 4-10, 10.84 (100ip 189h 30w 31hr)

How did he win 4 games? His last start was a typical win for him. 5ip 13h 7r 1hr 1w 3k in a 15-7 rout of The Klub.

The FBN Single Season Record Holders:
Hits Allowed 342 David Wells, California Dreamers 2001
ER Allowed 199 Glendon Rush, Orlando Red Sox 2002
HR Allowed 64 Curt Young, Fla Sun 1988

With 117 innings and 20 Starts remaining, Clayton Richard is projected to break all 3 records, obliterating 2 of them in the process.
Hits Allowed 412 +70
ER Allowed 261 +62
HR Allowed 67 +3

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

DEVIL DOODLES- 6-14

Connecticut had an up and down start to the NL block losing 3 out of 4 to the Kegs before rebounding to sweep the Angels. But then dropped 3 out of 4 to the 89ers and split with the Jarheads. When the dust cleared, the Blue Devils were 8-8 so far in the block remaining 7 games over .500 at 41-34 right in the middle of the playoff chase. CT finishes the block with series vs. Wall Street and Norwich.

Mitch Moreland continues to lead the offense in production with 14 HR's and 42 RBI - both leading the team. Veteran Brandon Phillips has contributed with a .286 BA and leads the team with 41 runs scored. Newly acquired veteran Seth Smith got off to a very rocky start batting just .125 in his first 13 games.

Pitching continues to be the strength of the team with a 3.56 overall ERA. Blue Devil pitchers have struck out 722 batters in just 75 games. This pace would give them 1,560 K's for the season which would smash the team's franchise record of 1,354 K's in 2013. Robbie Ray recently struck out 15 Angels in 7 innings taking over the team lead with 104 K's in just 78 innings. Ray also just lost his first game of the season against Hazardville. He gave up just 2 hits but they were solo HR's and the CT offense couldn't score as Ray suffered a 2-0 defeat. Recently acquired relievers Steve Cishek and Matt Belisle have combined for 1.69 ERA in 21 innings but have already lost 3 games giving up game winning HR's in the late innings. But both will be relied on heavily going forward giving the bullpen some needed depth.

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

HEARD ON THE STREET- 6-14

Barons still using smoke & mirrors Management anticipates stock market crash to occur soon.

Not quite 1/2 way thru MLB season & only 11 of WS's 40 man roster has managed to remain active for the entire MLB season. Barons SP saga continues - D Lamet didn't make it thru spring training due to TJ operation. JC Ramirez (147 mlb ip in '17) 2 starts - tj operation. A Reyes, tj operation in '17 missed season - finally activated May 29 pitched 4 inns - ripped a lat muscle - operation - out for rest of season. J Urias - LAD prospect - TJ operation in '17 missed season - not yet making rehab starts in minors. WS down to 3 active SP's!!

Pen has caught the arm trouble bug also - N Goody & D Leone 60 day DL. B Wood tj operation. J Grimm 50+ days on DL. Consolation comes knowing MLB DL list has over 200 members every day !!! All FBN teams must also have problems.

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

DEVIL DOODLES- 7-14

Upon returning to NL play in the last 2 blocks, Connecticut has treaded water going 18-18 - nothing special but good enough to stay in the middle of wild card contention. As has been the case all season, most games have been close but the Blue Devils are only 5-8 in one run games in this recent group of series vs. the NL. Overall, they are only 3-6 in extra inning games as well. In a particularly rough series, CT lost 3 one-run games to the Klubber juggernaut.

Connecticut had beefed up their bullpen with a recent trade with the Jarheads acquiring two solid veteran relievers - Steve Cishek and Matt Belisle. Unfortunately, the two combined to lose 5 games since arriving - not what was expected. Alex Wood (10-2 2.82) and Robbie Ray (9-2 3.02 142K's in 101 IP) continue to be co-aces leading the pitching staff to a team ERA of 3.49. Alex Meyer has been a nice surprise pitching as well going 5-2 with a 1.48 ERA in 9 starts. He's allowed just 27 hits in 50 IP with 49K's. But his command needs improvement with 28 walks. Brad Peacock has been the biggest disappointment going 1-9 6.39 in 14 starts despite having strikeout type stuff.

The offense continues to be middle of the road uninspiring. No one is having a big year as most of the hitters are batting between .220 and .270. The team scores a little over 4 runs per game. The defense, however, has been excellent. CT is on a pace to only commit 65 errors for the season – that would be the 2nd best mark in team history behind the 1992 team that made only 55 errors. The pitching staff is quite thankful . . .

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

NEWS FROM THE SCHOOL YARD- 7-16

The 89'ERS have been playing above Pre-Season expectations so far this season and the bullpen is a big reason why. The bullpen has been stellar posting a record of 23-10-31 with a 2.94 ERA. Alex Colome who was forced into the closer's role when Mark Melancon went down in spring training with a shoulder injury. Colome has performed well with a record of 6-1-18, 2.65 ERA. Close behind is Brad Brach at 6-2-6, 3.20. In middle relieve Adam Warren 4-3, 1.58 and Luis Garcia 3-2, 1.74 have done the job well from the right side of the rubber. From the left side of the rubber Hoby Milner 2-0, 3.58 and Taylor Rogers 1-1, 2.37 have done the job.

The starting pitchers are 40-30 with a 4.09 ERA. Only three starters have winning records. Jhoulys Chacin who goes against most teams Ace is 8-7, 3.70. Trevor Bauer who is becoming the Ace of the staff has been super. He is 11-4 with a 2.99 ERA. Andrew Cashner at 7-5, 3.47 has held his own. The fourth starter, CC Sabathia started the season 5-1 but has gone 2-6 over his last 10 starts. If CC can return to his early season form we may have a chance to catch Taxachusetts.

The offense has been the best the 89'ERS have put together in many years hitting .275 lead by JD Martinez at .313. Josh Reddick .310, Roinson Cano and Jose Ramirez both at .306. The team is averaging over 5 runs a game. Martinez has 72 RBI, followed by Eddie Rosario 67 and Ramirez 65. The team has hit 138 homeruns lead by JD Martin 38 and Rosario 25.

All Time 89'ER Records record so far in 2018:
1. Rajia Davis stole his 300th base.
2. Robinson Cano recorded his 483 BB to pass Lance Berkman for 5th All-Time.
3. JD Martinez got the teams All-Time 1500 Triple.
4. Cano record his 1000th run.

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

NAVIGATOR NEWS- 7-27

Turn around by Chris Davis has the Gators on a winning streak.

After 70 games Chris Davis had 9 doubles and 17 homeruns but was batting .215 with 100 strikeouts. Interim manager Frankie Frisch and Interim GM Bill Terry talked it over and decided to demote Davis. "We had faith in Chris. We knew he was better than that. We felt that reassigning him to the minors could jump start him", said Terry.

Since returning from the minors Davis is 15 for 32, a .469 batting average. His 15 hits include 2 doubles and 5 homeruns, a 1.000 slugging percentage. "His plate discipline has improve too, said Frisch. He has 3 base on balls with only 3 strikeouts in the 35 plate appearances."

The rest of the team has caught fire too. The team has 32 homeruns in the 12 games a 2.67 average. Mike Moustakas has hit 8 homeruns since Davis returned. "They either have to pitch to me or Davis, said Moustakas. I'm seeing more fastballs and I'm just glad that I'm putting some of them into the seats for or fans to take home", said a smiling Moustakas.

The team is 9-3 since Davis has returned. His near flawless play at first base has given the pitching staff faith in throwing strikes. In the 12 games the staff has 109 strike outs an average of over 9 per game.

Other team news:
Matt Olson who is leading the team with 36 homeruns will have to be rested. "He's just exhausted, said Frisch. We'll rest him for the remainder of the season and get him ready for 2019. (He'll be out of at bats after block 6.)

Clayton Kershaw has enjoyed the second halve of the season as he's turned a 4-5 start into a 10-7 record. He has lowered his ERA from 6.15 to 4.86, which is now the best on the staff. He has 48 strikeouts in 36.1 innings while walking only 10. He's improve greatly on reducing the long ball. He had allowed 24 homeruns in his first 89.1 innings, that's 1 every 3.7 innings. He has cut that down to 6 in his last 36.1, that's 1 every 6 innings.

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Whippets Pythagorean watch, late July 2018:- 7-29

  Runs Scored: 703
  Runs Allowed: 520
  Pythag Pct: .646
  Pythag W-L thru 116 games: 75-41
  Actual W-L: 65-51

As you might guess, LW is 11-18 in 1-Run games, 5-8 in extra inning contests (might be some overlap there). Some of this is a distribution problem. Somehow we've scored Zero or 1 run in 15 games, so 692 runs in the other 99 games. The Whippets will need to do somewhat better in the last 46 games to make their first playoff run since the 2008-2012 seasons. Steven Strasburg has arrived for the last two blocks to help out.

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

DEVIL DOODLES- 8-14

Connecticut continued its middling play for another block going 7-8 vs. the AL finishing at 64-54 -- tied with Maine in the battle for a Wild Card spot. Once again, several close games did not go the Blue Devils way -- 2-5 in games within 2 runs. Connecticut rested two of their better starting pitchers in the AL block (Alex Wood & Jimmy Nelson) so hopefully with a full, healthy pitching staff for the stretch run, the Blue Devils hope to turn around their recent weak record in close games.

Rookie 1st rd pick Jeimer Candelario has given management strong hope for the future as he has produced a .339 BA with 12 doubles, 9HR's and 27 RBI in just 124 AB's hopefully leading to a full time 3rdbase position in the future. Veteran Logan Forsythe on the other hand continues a very disappointing season batting just .180 with only 16 RBI in 183 AB's.

After missing two seasons with a shoulder injury since being acquired by Connecticut, Mike Minor has made a solid return this season heading up the bullpen. Minor has appeared in 55 games going 4-5 with 30 saves and a nifty 2.27 ERA. Management is hoping to move Minor into the starting rotation next year to assume his normal role. Veteran Steve Cishek since being acquired from the Jarheads has been excellent allowing just 20 hits and 6 walks in 34 innings with 25K's and a 1.31 ERA.

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

GUNNER GOINGS ON- 8-30

Interesting year for the Gunners, where we are again about a 500 team. Not good enough for the playoffs, but not bad enough to get the draft picks needed to move up.

Decent year for the "Big 3", Stanton, Carpenter and Harper. There are some single season records where Harper and Stanton have a chance to move into the Top 10 all time of single seasons in Gunners history. Bryce Harper, is currently batting .321 on the season. If he finishes there he would have tie Ellis Burks (1998) for the 5th best batting season in franchise history. He does have a chance to move up, with Barry Bonds .322 in the 2001 season, or Barry Bonds' 2003, .324 season. He is some way off of the Gunners all-time record of .373 set by Barry Bonds in 2005.

Giancarlo Stanton has a chance to break into the top 10, with Homers and RBI. Stanton's 47 on the season, currently have him on the outside of the top 10 looking in. With a few more homers, he can move up the single season HR list and can move into the top 8 all-time with 4 more. He will pass both Barry Bonds and Javy Lopez, who both hit 50 in 2004. Bonds also hit 51 in 2003. All-time Gunner record for homers in a season is Barry Bonds' 75, in 2002.

Giancarlo Stanton can also move up the all-time top 10 season list for RBI. Stanton sits at 113 right now. If he can get to 129 he will match Barrys Bonds' 1998 and 1996 seasons. If he can get to 130 RBI, he will match Barry's 1999 season.

On the all-time list. Colby Rasmus' homer against Manchester this week, was his 100th for the team. That places him 9th on the all-time list. In his last season as a Gunner, if he hits 2 more he will tie Dante Bichette for 8th, and 3 more, Jay Payton for 7th. Bonds leads all Gunners with 551.

Giancarlo Stanton's 47 homers move him up the list to 3rd all time, passing Javy Lopez (219), and Andres Galarraga with (230). When Stanton hits his next homer, it will be his 250th, with the club. Bryce Harper's 130 homers has him 6th on the all-time homer list.

Mike Stanton has moved to 7th on the all-time list for AB's with 3546. Mid next year should see him pass Andres Galarraga for 6th on the list. Matt Carpenter's next start will see him pass Devi Cruz for 9th on the all-time AB list with 3116.

Mike Stanton's 90 runs this year has him passing Placido Polanco for 6th in runs all-time, as he currently sits with 554 runs. Matt Carpenter has moved up the all-time hits list with 797 hits, moving him to 9th all-time after passing Devi Cruz (774).

Matt Carpenter's 21 doubles on the season have seen him move up the all-time doubles list to 4th all-time, passing both Javy Lopez(208) and Andres Galarraga (205). Next season, Matt Stairs (249) should be in his sights for 3rd all-time.

Bryce Harper is also moving up the charts. 6th all-time in homers and during this season, has passed Brady Anderson(381) for 6th on the all-time list for walks in the franchise's history. He has 415 at this point in the season. 2 more doubles will move him to 10th on the all-time list, pushing Jay Payton(149), out of that spot. Lastly, his 75 RBI this season have moved him to 9th all-time with 410 at this point, where he recently past Dante Bichette 351 for that spot.

Lastly Chase D'Arnaud, the journeyman infielder has 13 stolen bases this season, moving him to 7th all-time with 59. With a few more he can move up the list to 6th, if he can pass Dante Bichette's 66.

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

DEVIL DOODLES- 10-2

After competing for a playoff spot all season, Connecticut choked it up in the last block going 8-12 to finish at 84-78 -- the same record as last season and same finish in 6th place just out of the playoffs. On the positive side, it was the franchise's 28th winning season in 32 years but on the negative side, it was the 5th year in a row missing the playoffs -- the longest stretch by far in franchise history.

The most disappointing part of the poor finish was that the team was in position to win several games including two key games against Wild Card leader Wall Street but the bullpen, solid all season long, imploded numerous times down the stretch. CT closer Mike Minor, excellent all season with 36 saves and 2.15 ERA lost 3 games himself in the last 2 series reducing his final record to 5-10 2.82 with 37 saves. Overall, however, the pitching was great most of the year. The team ERA of 3.77 was their best result in over 20 years since 1995. The team strikeout total of 1,568 shattered the previous franchise record of 1,354 in 2013 by over 200 K's. Total hits allowed of 1,306 also was the best since 1995. The team found two aces in Alex Wood (14-3 2.86) and Robbie Ray (13-5 3.36). Blue Devil management had dreams of sneaking into the playoffs and having a chance with those two pitching 4 games in a 7 game series. But it was not to be .....

Offensively, the Blue Devils struggled mightily to consistently score runs. The team BA of .245 was the lowest in franchise history -- almost 30 points below the franchise average of .274. The 695 runs scored was the 3rd worst in the 32 season history. Only two players hit higher than .270 and 5 players hit .230 or below. Mitch Moreland led the team in production with 20 HR's and 70 RBI . . . numbers that simply aren't good enough and must be improved. One bright spot was the play of Rookie 1st rd pick Jeimer Candelario who flashed promise as their 3bman for the future hitting .321 BA with 13 doubles, 9HR's and 31 RBI in just 140 AB's. Finally, Jose Reyes completed his franchise record 14th season with the team and went over the 1,000 runs scored mark scoring 77 runs for a club record 1,034 runs scored -- the only player to exceed the 1,000 runs mark in club history. He also went over 2,000 games played and 7,000 AB's -- all franchise records.

Good Luck to all the playoff teams and Have Fun! We're jealous!

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

STATE OF THE KLUB- 10-2

Transcript of Klee's State of the Klub Address, October 2, 2018

Alright, people, sit down and shut up. This isn't a press conference. I'm the one who's speaking here and you're the ones who listen. Got it? Good. I don't want any fake news coming out of here, so no questions.

At the beginning of the year, I thought we'd be good for 70-75 wins, tops. We were dealing with a lot of injuries and what not. Didn't want to mislead the fans or anything and certainly didn't want them all over my back if we stumbled a little bit.

But then we surprised everyone and got off to a rip-roaring start, 17-11 at one point; the Klubbers hardly ever get off to good starts and I thought, what the hell, maybe we can contend when our best pitchers come back, Hamels, Hill, Bumgarner, all of those guys.

And they did come back and they did pitch well. The staff ERA was 5.03 at the half and 4.02 in the second half. But what happened? The damn hitters stopped hitting. I'm gonna give you some numbers, so if you don't have a good brain, like mine, and frankly, I don't think many of you do, just go to sleep; we'll wake you up afterwards.

So, anyway at the half we were slashing .272/.333/.440, pretty good numbers, and scoring 5.04 runs a game, also good. But then it all fell apart and the second half slash line was .247/.311/.386. It was like everyone left town for the golf course, or something; I'll have it looked at, believe me. We were scoring 4.32 runs a game and would've been a lot worse if we hadn't gotten Grichuk from the MFers. He was magnificent with 11 homers in 43 games and he got to 30 on the year.

So, bottom line is we finished 76-86 and got killed in August with that 11-game losing streak. We wound up in 10th place and missed the playoffs for only the second time in 6 years. Getting shut out on 2 hits in the last game was a real kicker, in my opinion, very bad. There were some highlights. Arenado drove in over 100 runs for the third year in a row, even though he was one of those who killed us in the second half. Abreu too, another killer, but he got 96 RBI. Overall, we had 5 guys with over 70 RBI and that doesn't include Grichuk who was with us for only the last quarter of the season.

We made a big trade last winter, for Mark Belan. . . I mean Orlando Arcia, and we got hosed by Chrome Dome Glen but I liked the name Orlando because it's the Spanish name for Roland but it was a bad deal, one of the worst of all-time, #klee-too. We're going to change that, let me tell you; no more will we get taken by that guy. He gives us a glove but not much else. And we're hoping he steps up to the plate in the future. He cost us most of the upcoming Draft plus a top notch reliever and all we got back was a reliever who busts his hand punching a wall, not smart.

Next year looks very interesting. We looked at the rosters in the NL and it looks like every team in the league has a lot of holes to fill. So, it's wide open, folks, that I can tell you. That's why we're glad that we got Grichuk and we got Hundley in that same deal with the MFers, so we filled 2 holes on that one.

People are telling me that our latest deal was spectacular, maybe one of the greatest coups in the history of the FBN, honestly that's what they're saying. So, we fill a few more holes with a second baseman and leadoff hitter, Zobrist, and a frontline starting pitcher, Sanchez and now we’ll be making the Klubbers great again, just you wait, it's really happening, folks. It might mean we won't have much of a draft until 2021, that's what the fake news will tell you, but we'll worry about that later, won't we?

Oh, before I forget, about Ralph Kramden, who's been our field manager, since we started way back on Asylum Hill. There's been talk, ugly talk to be quite frank, that he's been fired. Thirty years and no championships. Well, I've decided to keep him because he's been loyal and he's the only one who knows how to drive the team bus; he's changing the oil right now. So, we'll see how he does.

That's all I have right now. I have quite a lot on my plate today, as I'm sure you know. Let's see, my tee time is. . . oh, gotta run.

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

WALL STREET INSIDER INFO- 10-11

Wall Street is playoff bound despite opponents scoring 65 more runs, hitting 46 more 2Bs, 45 more HRs and receiving 163 more BBs!!! Leading RBI man Kole Calhoun 79. Wall Street slash 252/317/408, opponents 261/343/444!!!

Wall Street SPs 42-52, staff era 4.57, whip 1.43. Opponents era 4.19, whip 1.29. Barons needed 24 pitchers to cover season innings. Aaron Nola (13) and Dom Leone (12) are the only pitchers with double digit wins .

 

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------