Archive for August 2014

Big Sky Alumni Season 32 Preview – Twitter Edition

So I’ve recently been using Twitter (as a Cavs fan, I was among the Twitter obsessed during the Lebron James saga and it hooked me) and I’ve found that 140 characters sometimes is pretty difficult for me.  But when you are trying to say something meaningful (because that’s what social media is all about, meaningful thought), 140 characters forces you to focus in on what’s important.  So it gave me the idea to try this out for the BSA blog and since I never have the time to do a full on season preview, let’s do it in 140 character per team.  I will order the teams in my prediction of where they will end the season and write a highlight, question, or thought about their upcoming season in 140 characters or less.  Oh, and you don’t even have to follow me @vzweeks to get these tweets!

NL North

1. Burlington Ents – Eugenio Sosa signing an extension was the most shocking move of this offseason.  Losing Patrick Lewis hurts but still the favorite in the NL

2. Montreal Tim Raine’s – Always has a surprise in this division and the additions of SP B. Hoffman and D. Hernandez could revive baseball in Canada #whendoesNHLstart

3. Columbus Script – Adding Priest and Carroll were great moves, but they really need another starting pitcher or two to make a run at a World Series return

4. Augusta Warriors – Is their anyway Juan Park can pitch too? And someone find out where the John Clark of 4 seasons ago disappeared to

NL East

1. Richmond Poes – Jeff Rogers and Sadie Grim need to step it up for Richmond to become title contenders.  Patrick Lewis signing provides needed stability

2. Toledo Black Sheep – The decline begins with the loss of Hoffman.  Still a contender come playoff time, but win total will drop this season and even more next

3.  Cincinnati Communists – Queen City left staring north at Toledo yet again #Ohiogeography Should see an improved record from the Commies, maybe a run at .500

4. Washington D.C. Huskies – Tike Henson will fit right into the DC culture #chicsdigthelongball Still searching for someone to step it up and break out in the rotation

NL South

1. Mexico City Sombreros – Hardest division to pick, but the most talent resides in Mexico City.  Oliver Blanks has to live up to potential for this team to contend

2. Tampa Bay Tritons – Unamuno and Thompson are the new wave of talent Tamp has pinned its hopes to, but it needs pitching to move back to the top

3. Austin City Limits – Could have the best pitching in the division which might push them above 85 wins and into the driver’s seat of division. Soto could explode

4. New Orleans Swim – New ownership will have to decide what it is going to do with all its young talent, which could easily push them towards the top of division

NL West

1. San Diego SAMCRO – Andrea Parker had a really down year last year but still got a huge extension.  He needs to be an anchor in the order #breakoutseason

2. Honolulu Noka Oi – Need Javier Arroyo to pitch like he did in s30 and Enerio Fuentes to cash in on his potential to really emerge into true contender status

3. Los Angeles Freaks – Jamison is a good signing, but team is aging with no pitching, so they’ll need angels in the outfield to get into the race #signtonydanza

4. San Fransisco Sequoias – Owen and Purcell improve the top of the lineup and should make the youngsters better but the lack of pitching depth will keep them down

AL North

1. Ottawa Pride – Mitch Morehead and Trot Harmon were the best free agent haul of anyone and should keep Ottawa at the top, but end of dominance is coming

2. Scranton Skeddadlers – This youth has to mature eventually, right? Galahad Morris is the key to this team moving from potential promise to the promised land

3. Trenton Twins – Losing Morehead hurts, but adding Alfonseca and Yamamoto helps make up for it.  Needs more offensive punch somewhere from the lineup

4. Vancouver Vipers – Vancouver has some young talent but still lacks any kind of starting pitching to move above .500. Do have the best curling squad in the BSA

AL East

1. Huntington Catholics – Early contender for AL World Series representative.  Pitching looks good but should add another bat to really be a contender #CansecoforMVP

2. Boston Bombers – 2 first ballot HOFers (Coleridge, Sherman) on the pitching staff with a third potential candidate (Guerrero), any life left? #retirementhome

3. Pittsburgh Ghosts – Huston Thurston and Luis Arias are desperate to get out of AAA and show the world what they can do on the big stage. Rosado contract stings

4. Baltimore Fire – Antithesis of Boston with a stunning youth movement (and more is coming), but the young talent is not yet ready to translate into wins

AL South

1. Nashville Redbirds – Give me one reason they wouldn’t repeat? #tobethemanyouhavetobeattheman #Torresisamazing #SchultzforCyYoung #havingTaverastooisntfair

2. El Paso Border Patrol – Was Steve Laffey overhyped or will he move closer to the force he was can be? It’s a battle for second place #anythingcanhappenintheplayoffs

3. Charlote Panthers – Frank Burton is still a stud, but he can’t carry this team into the playoffs.  Fans are clamoring for Albert Donahue

4. Kansas City Monarchs – Is this Thames last go around for the Monarchs? Will the front office look to move Piper? Any gas left in Ramirez? Lots of questions in KC

AL West

1. St. Louis Brown Stockings – Rebuild is officially over.  Amassed loads of young pitching talent and several promising hitters. Could be a candidate for a huge trade

2. Las Vegas Spittin Vermin – Mickey McGuire could top to 1000 stolen base mark this season, a remarkable feat that will probably never be truly appreciated properly

3. Fresno Reds – Orval Farley should hit the majors this season, but they are still in talent acquisition mode and will be for a few more seasons

4. Colorado Dusters – Tony Castro and Joaquin Amaral finally give the Colorado fans something worth watching, but they want to know when Takada is coming too

 

Hall of Fame Ballot for season 32

To start, I believe all of the following players could have a case made for them to be placed in the Hall of Fame (n0t that they all belong, but that a case could be made):

Tony Bonilla, Philip Buford, Johnnie Bush Luis Canseco, Toby Darnell, Odalis Franco, Rafael Franco, Andruw Hartzell, Kevin Lim, Al Lunar, R.J. Milton, Eduardo Mota, Ernie Price, Shawn Radlosky, Edwin Saveur, Felix Sexton, Juan Tavarez

Here is my ballot:

  1. Andruw Hartzell – Hartzell accomplished a rare offensive feat in his career in finishing with career averages above. 300 batting average, .400 OBP, and .500 slugging.  While 473 homeruns is not an eye popping number in this game, he has nearly 3000 hits, (#4 all time), and 483 doubles which shows he did have that extra base power and wasn’t just a singles hitter.  Not to mention that he played almost all of his career in the hitter’s death trap of Tacoma.  With all of those factors, Hartzell is one of the best all around hitters to ever play in the BSA and deserves a HOF plaque.
  2. Kevin Lim – Lim was not the all around hitter Hartzell was, but he could hit the long ball with the best of them.  With 687 home runs and over 1800 RBI, Lim is the kind of power hitter Hall fo Fame visitors expect to see.
  3. Odalis Franco – Franco is pretty much a carbon copy of Lim.  His power numbers are just a little behind him and he lacks an MVP award, but he did have a better average, OBP, and slugging percentage along with more doubles and over 2500 hits.  I think Franco has waited long enough and is ready to punch his ticket to Montana (that is where the BSA hall of fame is, right?)
  4. Shawn Radlosky – Radlosky was as consistent a starter as anyone could hope for. With over 250 wins, he ranks among the top 10 all time.  Looking at pithers already in the Hall of Fame, Radlosky compares to Mitch Singleton (he’s actually better than him in every major category).  Radlosky is another who has paid his dues waiting around and his time is due to receive the acknowledgement that he deserves.
  5. Toby Darnell – The 5th spot is always the hardest as there are always a number of deserving candidates and this is the guy you end up comparing them all to.  I have been voting for Darnell for a few years for a couple of reasons.  First, I regard him as a second baseman and in that light, he is offensive output is impressive.  While he didn’t quite get to 400 home runs, his slugging percentage is above .500, and he hit above .300 with over 2500 hits.  He’s a top all time hitter in the BSA.

If we could extend our ballots to 10 votes like the MLB hall, this would be the rest of mine in order:

  1. Rafael Franco – DH and durability aside, this guy could flat out mash.
  2. Juan Tavarez – More wins would have made him a shoe in
  3. Luis Canseco – and underrated and overlooked all around hitter
  4. Ernie Price – 2 MVPS alone puts him here
  5. Felix Sexton – One of the top offensive threats from shortstop ever
All Time Leaders

Hits
1. Luther Aldred 3031
2. Alfonzo Cruz 3004
3. Ugueth Moya 2830
4. Orlando Lee 2736
5. Alan Vickers 2643

Home Runs
1. Alfonzo Cruz 811
2. Dan Thompson 749
3. Ugueth Moya 686
4. Jerome Duran 633
5. Ivan Mantalban 602

OPS
1. Rusty Laker 1.021
2. Dan Thompson 1.020
3. Ugueth Moya .989
4. Matty Bennet .984
5. Emil Wilkinson .975

Wins
1. Fernando Neruda 352
2. Geronimo Flores 310
3. Esteban Cubillan 275
4. Frank Dehart 263
5. Shawn Radlosky 257

Strikeouts
1. Fernando Neruda 5038
2. Geronimo Flores 3866
3. Frank Dehart 3356
4. Esteban Cubillan 2955
5. Shawn Radlosky 2871

Saves
1. Jesus Torrealba 694
2. Hal Wagner 636
3. Charles Hall 575
4. Cole Alexander 488
5. Augie Martin 478