Sunday, October 28, 2012
Wednesday, October 24, 2012
Manager of the Year
Rookie of the Year
Congratulations to all of Season 23's award winners!
Friday, September 28, 2012
Sunday, September 23, 2012
Friday, June 22, 2012
Manager of the Year
Rookie of the Year
Stolen Base Leaders
Congratulations to all the winners.
Thursday, June 14, 2012
Tuesday, June 5, 2012
Big bonuses became the norm with 9 players getting something bigger than $8M. Those players: Odalis Tatis (Iowa City Mancs) $14M, Wille Rivera (Scottsdale Four Seasons) $12.4M, Mariano Espinoza (Nashville Quitars) $9.9M, Jesus Julio (Rochester Redwings) $9.6M, David Matos (SF Balco Boys) $9.0M, Cristobal Moreno (Philadelphia Independence) $8.5M, Pascual Tapies (Seattle Depressions) $8.1M, Matty Oliva (Monterrey Sultanes) $8.1M, and Olmeldo Duran (Honolulu Momboosa) $8.0M. Five pitchers and three shortstops comprised the bulk of the players, but who went on to become a star?
Odalis Tatis (SS) spent his early career with the Iowa City (et al) franchise before leaving as a free agent to join the Las Vegas Sell Outs. In his 17 year career he was a defensive standout up the middle playing SS and CF.
Hits: 2245 Runs: 973 HR: 163 RBI: 781 BA: .294 Fldg: .969 (SS)/ .994 (CF)
Willie Rivera spent his career moving from city to city and filling many roles on each pitching staff. Never considered a dominant pitcher, Willie was content to be a role player. But at $5800 per inning in signing bonuses was he really worth it?
Wins: 110 Save: 15 K: 1449 WHIP: 1.37 ERA: 4.21
Mariano Espinoza spent his time with just two franchises showing that his play had the kind of staying power we seldom see in "real" baseball. Solid defense and a reliable bat were his trademark throughout his 18 year career that was highlighted by four Silver Slugger awards and three WS Rings, but no HoF nomination as yet.
Hits: 2861 Runs: 1873 HR: 303 RBI: 1204 SB: 689 BA: .303 Fldg: .965 (SS)
The remaining six players I will leave to the reader to look into and decide their fate as Boom or Bust.
The season the flood gates opened and six players received bonuses greater than $10M! What the hell were we thinking, or did we finally figure this thing out? The top five player bonuses went to Carlos Mercado 1B (Nashville Quitars) $18.1M, Victor Carrasco SS (Rochester Redwings) $16.5M, Carlos Pinzon 2B (SF Balco Boys) $16.2M, Deivi Manual 1B (Fargo Forgetaboutit) $15M, Gary Smyth SS (Minnesota North Stars) $12.5M. Huge numbers for some but what did these players bring to their franchises?
Carlos Mercado has been one of the dominant power hitters in this league with 867 home runs in a career that is still in progress. Assured a first ballot entrance into the HoF this is one player that definitely gets the BOOM status.
Hits: 3248 Runs: 1918 HR: 867 RBI: 2288 BA: .328 Fldg: .997 (1b)
Victor Carrasco spent 11 seasons in Rochester before testing the free agent waters. Three Gold Gloves, 2 Silver Sluggers and 1 WS Ring highlight a career that has not yet ended for this utility infielder.
Hits: 2777 Runs: 1526 HR: 369 RBI: 1525 BA: .299 Fldg: .969 (SS)
Carlos Pinzon signed with the Balco Boys as an 18 year old phenom and is still proving his worth today in Toronto. A five time AS at second base, Pinzon also adds three Silver Slugger awards and a WS Ring to his resume.
Hits: 2789 Runs: 1498 HR: 207 RBI: 1128 BA: .329 Fldg: .980 (2b)
Manuel and Smyth are also still active with the jury still out on whether they were well worth the money they signed for in season 5.
Maybe we got scared or maybe the overall IFA talent pool became shallow, but whatever the reason we saw the money being spent drop off in season 6. Only two players received bonuses greater than $10M (the new basement) and both were pitchers.
Davis Arias signed with the Nashville Quitars for a cool $10.5M bonus. After two minor league seasons he became a reliable back of the order pitcher before moving to the bullpen late in his career. Still taking the mound with the Beet Farmers, Arias has proven to be an asset to the teams he has played for, but was he worth that bonus?
Wins: 162 K: 1749 Win %: .620 WHIP: 1.34 ERA: 4.27
Augie Huang was 18 when he signed a lucrative contract that included a $10.1M bonus with Minnesota. After nine seasons and two WS Rings he left via free agency but never seemed to produce the same results he did in the Land of 1000 Lakes. Still taking the mound south of the border in Mexico City, Huang has not lived up to the hype when he signed but continues to be counted on to take the mound every fifth day.
Wins: 123 K: 1699 WHIP: 1.49 ERA: 5.09
Coming next: Seasons 7-9
Monday, June 4, 2012
We were all rookies back then and really didn't know what to expect. $6.8M was the top bonus offered by the then Chicago White Sox for Javy Arroyo. Javy went on to log the following numbers:
Hits: 2060 Runs: 1204 HR: 454 RBI: 1377 BA: .287 Fldg: .971 (3b)
Boom or bust? Javy has been on the HoF ballot but has yet to get the votes to enter the Hall leading this reported to think that his career was just short of the BOOM it could have been.
A little more ambition but still not ready to go crazy with our money the top signing bonus was offered by the Louisville Diamond Kings to SS Mac Nakamura. MacNak spent the next 16 seasons with the same franchise and moving to center field where he put up some solid numbers:
Hits: 2617 Runs: 1272 HR: 218 RBI: 978 BA: .271 Fldg: .982 (CF)
Boom or bust? MacNak has not even been nominated for the HoF but does that keep him from being a star player for his franchise?
Nobody else from S2 was over the $8M basement number.
Looks like this was the season we lost faith in the amateur draft and started looking towards the international stars, or maybe we just changed how we budgeted a little so that more IFA were noticed. Whatever the reason we had four signings over the 8M limit; Jose Park received a $15M bonus from the Seattle Depressions and became the first IFA pitcher signed, Jesus Cordero got a $13.4M bonus from the Rochester franchise, Nashville signed Aramis Cabrera offering a $10M bonus, and Seattle weighed in again signing a second pitcher in Rafael Oliva with a $9.6M bonus. Were any of these players worth the investment in the first season of big spending?
Jose Park- Spent 10 seasons with Seattle before testing free agency and seeing a mild revitalization of his career.
Wins: 197 K: 2537 WHIP: 1.30 ERA: 3.94
Jesus Cordero- Also spent his first 10 seasons with the franchise that signed him before going the free agent route and in his career earned 3 Gold Gloves (3b) and 3 Silver Slugger Awards (3b) and stole 498 bases
Hits: 2282 Runs: 1336 HR: 268 RBI: 1249 BA: .283 Fldg: .978 (3b)
Aramis Cabrera- Signed at age 18, this guys is still playing today and winning games for the Milwaukee Cheesers. Even though his career has not yet ended, his numbers have been impressive including 3 World Series rings.
Wins: 217 K: 2735 WHIP: 1.32 ERA: 3.98
Rafael Oliva- Seattle's second IFA signing is also still an active player with the Buffalo Wild Wings. Spending most of his career in the bullpen, Rafael didn't amass great numbers but was his contribution significant for the teams he suited up for? Might want to ask the bullpen coach in Buffalo what he thinks.
Wins: 86 Saves: 28 WHIP: 1.52 ERA: 4.71
Next we'll look at Seasons 4 through 6 as more and more players started to see big bonuses while GM's found themselves reaching for the medicine cabinet (or their own big bonus).
Friday, June 1, 2012
Friday, May 18, 2012
The Americans plated two runs in their half of the second inning off the NL pitcher leading the league in BA against, Jackie Creek. One more run in the bottom of the second helped the NL hold on to the lead. The third inning showcased pitching with no runs being scored.
And then the AL bats came alive with 12 unanswered runs through the remaining six innings. MVP Omar Estralla lead the hit parade with a 2-run single and a 3-run home run enroute to best in this game honors.
All in all the fans got to see many of their favorite stars play in the midsummer classic and after the rest it is time to return to the chase for the playoffs. Congratulations to all the players who made the All Star team.