8
December

Rod’s Replay Insider: The benefits of using a pitching performance chart

ppc

Keeping individual pitching performance chart can give you extensive feedback and adds volumes to what you get out of a replay

First off, you can get instant feedback of how an individual pitcher is performing. Are they on a winning or losing streak? Are they running up a streak of consecutive scoreless innings or getting bombed every time they appear? This information jumps off the page when you glance at the chart.

Second, you have a valuable means of tracking down record-keeping errors that may have occurred during the replay. For example, if your team’s won-lost record and the team’s total number of pitcher starts are not equal, you can dig into the pitching chart and find out where the error occurred. I recently completed a 1911 replay and ran into this challenge…and the pitching chart helped me to locate and fix the error in less than 20 minutes time. The alternative is poring through page after page of box scores to locate the error.

Finally, the chart adds to your overall enjoyment of a replay.

Not every team is a replay is going to perform great. With a chart, tracking how pitchers for some of the second-tier teams winds up being just as much fun as tracking the great performers.

For example, if a last-place team has a pitcher with a 10-game losing streak, that pitcher’s next start becomes vastly more interesting. But you wouldn’t know it without a chart to see what he is doing and seeing the streak unfold. The variety of info you can derive from the chart is entertaining and really adds to the personality of an individual pitcher’s performance.

Take the attached example of Ed Walsh from his 1906 season.  That’s the kind of info the pitching chart can generate.

Next: Tracking fielding performances

Read all of Rod’s Replay Insider articles!

Posted by: | Category: replay | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

6
December

Scott Fennessy: Cubs crush Pirates in series opener

298px-Miguel_Montero_on_July_16,_2016April 20, 2015
PNC Park
Pittsburgh, PA

The Cubs travel to Pittsburgh in a highly anticipated series with the Pirates. Both teams are within percentage points of each other and trying to keep pace with the Phillies, who continue to surprise in second place in the early going.

Tonight’s game sees Travis Wood against Jay Happ. I am not sure what to expect as there is almost no wind, and it’s a bit humid so the air has a heavy feel to it. The lineups are set and the umpire is motioning for leadoff man Dexter Fowler to come to bat so we can start the game.

Dexter flies to Andrew McCutchen in center for out number one and Starlin Castro, who has been surprisingly efficient at the plate this season hits a high fly ball to right field. This one hits the warning track and bounces over the wall for a ground rule double.

He is still on second with two out when Kris Bryant hits a grounder just out of Jody Mercer’s reach for an RBI single. A quick stop by Francisco Cervelli in the grass before the next batter settles Happ down and the inning ends with the Cubs getting just the one run.

Travis Wood is firing bullets early on and has two quick outs before McCutchen clubs an inside fastball and this one just stays fair and the Pirates have tied the game at one each. Wood gets the next batter and the game is tied at one each after an inning of play.

Neither team gets even a runner in the second, but the Cubs bats exploded with one out in the third. Dexter Fowler gets a leadoff double to center field and scored on Castro’s RBI single up the middle. Castro then steals second on a very close play. Anthony Rizzo draws a walk and Kris Bryant hits a weak grounder that third baseman Jung Ho Kang tries to barehand, but can’t get the handle and the bases are loaded.

The bullpen gets busy as Miguel Montero steps to the plate. Happ and Montero have a great duel but eventually a tiring Happ gives in and Montero crushes it into the left center field bleachers for a grand slam. That is Miguel’s third homer of the season, and just the second grand slam in team history. (Joe Tinker had the other in 1905).

That ends Happ’s day as an unhappy manager asks for the ball and Chris Volstad comes in. He allows a single, but keeps the Cubs from doing further damage and the inning ends with the Cubs now comfortably on top 6-1.

Wood relaxes a bit and nearly pays for it after walking two hitters that were now on second and third with two outs but pitched his way out of trouble. Unfortunately for the Pirates the Cubs were not yet done hitting. Deolis Guerra is now in for Volstad who was pinch hit for in the bottom of the inning.

Fowler gets his second hit of the night with a sharp single to right. Dex is off with the first pitch and Castro goes with the pitch. This one is hit hard and rattles around in the right field corner. Fowler scores, and a solid relay throw keeps Starlin at second with his second two bagger of the game.

Rizzo then strikes out, but Bryant draws a walk and runners are on first and second with just one out. Montero is pitched more carefully this time and hits a weak fly to short left that Mercer makes a great running catch on for two out. Unfortunately for Guerra he gives too much of a pitch for Coughlin to hit and this one is crushed into the bullpen in left field for his team leading 4th homer of the year. The bullpen is up again, but the inning ends quickly afterward and the Cubs now well on their way to victory with a 10-1 lead in just the fourth inning.

Wood strikes out two more as the Pirates are scoreless again. Thankfully for Pittsburgh Guerra pitches a little better this inning as he gets through the fifth inning and the Pirates still way behind.

The home fans have pretty much emptied the stands, but the few still caring enough to watch get something to cheer about in the bottom of the fifth when Cervelli gets a leadoff single to left. He is wiped out in a force play that sees Mercer take first base.

Unfortunately he gets caught stealing, but pinch hitter Chris Stewart hits a single to right and then steals second base. Sterling Marte rips a double that scores Stewart, but Gregory Polanco whiffs and the Pirates still trail by 8 after five innings.

Guerra is relieved by Joe Blanton who puts in three strong innings, and Travis Wood goes into cruise control and the score is unchanged as the Cubs come to bat in the top of the ninth inning with Arquimedes Caminero in to try closing this disaster out.

Starlin Castro rips a slider into the left field gap for his fourth hit of the day and his third two base hit of the night. Rizzo gets his first hit of the game with a double of his own and Castro scores. Rizzo was on third with one out when Montero gets an offspeed pitch and he rips the third double of the inning that scores yet another run for the Cubs. He was still on second with two out when Austin Jackson, who has been kind of silent this year hits a single to right that scores another run and moved to second as Russell draws a walk. Wood pops up and the inning is finally over.

Travis Wood goes the distance and finished the game by striking out two of the final three hitters. So this one is in the books with the Chicago Cubs defeating the Pittsburgh Pirates 13-2. Wood picks up his first win of the year and strikes out nine. Starlin Castro is player of the game, going 4-5 with three triples, drives in two runs while scoring four times. The Cubs now improve to 8-3 and are now just a game behind the Phillies for second place.

Around the horn:
The Rockies and Dodgers had a wild evening in Chavez Ravine with the league leading Dodgers winning 13-7. Yasmani Grandal and Howie Kendrick 4 hits each. Carlos Gonzalez had 3 HR, 6 RBI in in the loss.
Rasiel Iglesias gets a 3 hit shutout of the Cardinals in St. Louis.
Yordano Ventura tosses 3 hit shutout as the struggling Royals beat the Twins 1-0.

[photo]

Posted by: | Category: replay | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

5
December

Prairieland 2 Tournament finalizing plans for April 1 (note location change)

champ-300x200With the Chicagoland World Series Tournament in the rear view mirror, it’s time to look forward to the new year.  Specifically, the Prairieland APBA Baseball Tournament organizers are busy getting ready for the second annual tournament on April 1, 2017.

Location change (for the better)!!

  • Date:  April 1, 2017 9am
  • Place: Drury Inn and Suites 905 W Anthony Drive, Champaign, Illinois
  • Cost: $15

Please note:  the location has changed.  We will be holding the event at the Champaign Drury Inn and Suites at 905 W. Anthony Drive Champaign, IL.  The new location is much larger and nicer.

Tournament Team and Fantasy Player Announcement/Draft

Also, mark your calendar for February 18th (J. Richard Seitz’ date of birth, by the way!).  That will be when the Prairieland 2 announcement/draft day begins.  This is something new we’re trying.  How will this work?  Once all the participants are lined up, we will establish a random draft order.  There will be two rounds (in snake fashion).  The draft will be conducted via email, Facebook messaging or text.

In the first round, each player can pick either a team (1970-2000) or a deadball fantasy player (1900-1920) to use in the tournament.

In the second round, each player will round out their selection by choosing a player or team (whatever they didn’t pick in the first round).

Again, the draft will begin on February 18.  Start thinking of your team and players!

 

IMG_2488

Tournament Rules

The actual tourney rules will be similar to the first Prairieland tournament.  The organizers will send out a final draft of the rules well in advance.  Once we get a good estimate of the number of participants, the organizers will form the divisions structure.  There will not be a losers’ round this coming tourney.

No foolin’.  Two APBA tournaments on April 1st!

It was bound to happen.  With the popularity of APBA tournaments, a weekend with TWO APBA tournaments was bound to happen sooner or later.  Yes, the Twin Cities APBA Baseball Tournament is also taking place on April 1st.  While TCABT didn’t officially announce this date till after we did, it was traditionally the date that they have it.  I’ve spoken to TCABT organizer Jim Fraasch and we’re both good with it.

At first, I was a little bummed that this happened.  The more I thought about it though, I saw it as a great opportunity.  I mean, it says a lot about the game of APBA and its community.  We’re going to have two tournaments on the same day!  Jim and I are even talking about some inter-tournament activity.  Perhaps, we’ll have a Skype video chat from Prairieland and TCABT!

So now is the time to put your name in for the Prairieland 2 Tournament.  You can send me an email or even better, join the Prairieland 2 Tournament Facebook event.

We hope to see you in April!

Posted by: | Category: Tournament | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

5
December

League Profile: Indian Hill APBA Baseball Club

apbalogo1.pngAfter doing The APBA Blog for over ten years, it’s amazing to me that there are still leagues in my general area I don’t know about.  Yet, the Indian Hill APBA Baseball Club has operated for over 30 years out of Naperville, Illinois which is the same town that my league held its conventions for years.

Scott Erickson contacted me about the IHABC.  Formed in 1981, it is a workplace league based out of the Indian Hill AT&T Bell Labs facility.

Some quick facts on the Indian Hill APBA Baseball Club:

League Name

Indian Hill APBA Baseball Club

Contact Person Scott Erickson
Sport Baseball
# of teams 10
Year of inception 1981
Basic/Master/Computer/ Combination Computer
Does your league play… out of the box
Geographic location Across the U.S. and U.K.

 

Scott says: 

“The league started with co-workers at the AT&T Bell Labs “Indian Hill” facility in Naperville, IL.

We rolled dice at lunch in a conference room (with the door closed to maintain the appearance of professionalism (we all know what the dice can do to a person). 2 original members are still in the league. 8 of the 10 managers are current or former Bell Labs employees.

Our league is continuous ownership, has a 6-round draft (with 6 non-playoff teams having a lottery-style round 0 and the playoff teams getting a their 6th pick at the end of the draft), and a 33-player roster.

Originally, we played 80 games with dice but have played 162 since the computer version arrived. One interesting note is that we had to add a rule after the first season when a manager intentionally walked 14 straight batters in the final game of the season to ensure a loss and a better draft pick”

 

Thanks for all the great info, Scott!

If you want to brag about your league, we’re listening!  Tell us all about the league you are in and we’ll post a profile about it.  In the meantime, read about other leagues who have written in.

Posted by: | Category: League Directory | Tags: , | 1 comment

3
December

1966 NL replay: No stopping Don Sutton and the Dodgers

May 12, 1966

After a long hiatus (maybe playing a game or two here or there), I’ve picked up my 1966 NL replay (basic game, actual schedule, lineups and rotations) with a vengeance.  I’ve gotten through a full calendar week in the past couple of weeks.

standings

Here are a few highlights from each team.

w1.  Los Angeles Dodgers  20-7

Ok, it’s too early to call it but the Los Angeles Dodgers are staking their claim to run away with it.  After losing the first two games of the season, they have been practically unbeatable.  They have done by their pitching.  Led by wins leader Don Sutton (7-0) and strikeout leader Sandy Koufax (63 K), they have a team ERA of 2.03 ERA compared to runner-up Pittsburgh who isn’t even close at 3.31.

And imagine this… Without Claude Osteen who is 1-5 with an ERA that almost ranks in the league top ten (2.88), the Dodgers would be 19-2.

Jim Lefebvre is tied for the league in homers with 7 and bats a nifty .356.

 

2. Pittsburgh Pirates 14-10

While in second place, a 14-10 mark seems so far away compared to the Dodgers.  That said, they just eked back into second after a series win against the Giants.

No question about it, Bob Bailey is the big bopper.  He leads the NL in batting (.414), slugging (.736) and is second in rbis (18) and OBP (.480).  Every game, I think his average is going to have to go down and it wouldn’t.  In fact, it wasn’t until the game I played five minutes ago when he reached mortality and went 0 for 4.

It was in that game, when Willie Stargell hit a two-run homer and tied Bailey for rbis with 18.  Donn Clendonon and Roberto Clemente are close behind with 16.

Starting pitcher Bob Veale is third in strikeouts with 51 and sports a 2.96 ERA but only has a 2-4 record to show for it.  Relief me Pete Mikkelson (5-1) is getting the lion’s share of wins.

 

hr3.  San Francisco Giants 14-13

Lots of hitting on this squad.  Willie Mays is tied for the lead in homers with seven and leads the league in rbis with 19.  Willie McCovey hasn’t played every day but he is still among league leaders in homers (5) and rbis (13).  Singles hitting Jay Alou does his part (.351).

Juan Marichal has done his part, of course.  He has a nice 1.73 ERA with 47 Ks.  Still working on his fifth win though.

 

4.  Atlanta Braves 15-14

The Braves check in right over .500 with some good hitting and a solid bullpen.  In fact, pitcher Clay Carroll is second with five wins all in relief.  Tony Cloninger paces the NL in both walks and homers but still has a respectable 3.65 ERA (he’s hitting .318 with two homers too!).

On the hitting side, Hank Aaron has scored 24 runs, most in the league.  Felipe Alou is third in the league in homers with 6, second in doubles with 10 and first in triples with 5.

A side point, starter Blasingame ranks as the pitcher with the highest ERA among qualifiers with a 10.30 mark.

 

ERA5.  New York Mets 10-10

The Mets are a bit of an anomaly in my 1966 scheduling.  It must have rained a lot that year since they have only played 20 games so far (the Dodgers have won as many games as the Mets have played).  Still, the Mets who came in 9th in real life, are off to a decent start at the .500 mark.  They have made their move as of late and just hit .500 in the last series.

Speaking of anomalies, guess who the NL leader in ERA is?  Mets starter Tug McGraw who is a DW.  He started out with two shutouts and currently owns a 1.01 ERA even better than Koufax’s 1.48 mark.  Jack Fisher is also 3-0 with a 3.72 ERA.

Ed Kranepool is batting .362 with 16 rbis while Ken Boyer has driven in 16 runs.

 

6. Houston Astros 13-14

The Astros have riding the middle of the pack for most of the spring.  Larry Dierker was off to a good start (3-0, 1.50 ERA) but he hasn’t made a start for a while.  Robin Roberts is making the most of his last year in the bigs with a 3-3 record and a 3.27 ERA.  Turk Farrell has yet to give up a walk in 23 innings.

Jim “Toy Cannon” Wynn has 18 rbis on five homers.  The league leader in hits Sonny Jackson (.339) sets the table for him.  Houston needs Jim Gentile to pick it up.  He’s hitting .134 in 84 at-bats.

 

ba7.  Cincinnati Reds 12-13

The Reds are a team that really should be doing a whole lot better.  With Rose, Pinson, Edwards and Cardenas plus a superior pitching staff, there is no reason this team can’t contend.

One reason is Sammy Ellis.  He is a D but his 7.47 ERA isn’t helping matters.  On the other hand, Jim Maloney is pitching more.  In four starts, he’s won three with a 2.12 ERA.

The Reds just aren’t powering the ball.  Only the Phillies have less homers.  Johnny Edwards has three and leads the team.  Tommy Harper is batting a nifty .367, good for second in the league.  He also leads the NL in OBP with a .486 pct.

 

8.  Philadelphia Phillies 9-13

Ah yes, the Phillies.  The Phils were in the in middle of the pack till they dropped three a row to the Dodgers.  Richie Allen does have 4 homeruns and bats .333 which accounts for a full one-third of the team’s production.  Right now, Dick is apparently on a break.

The Phils’ star pitcher Jim Bunning pitches as advertises.  He is 5-1 with 43 Ks and a 2.65 ERA.

 

sb9.  Chicago Cubs 9-15

Oh my precious Cubs.  They are in a prolonged battle with the Cardinals for last place.  At this moment, they are on the right side of things.

Santo has hit well (.297, 14 rbis) and is still among the top ten in OBP (.413).  Adolfo Phillips who was acquired from the Phillies, leads all baserunners with 12 steals and is hitting .298.   Don Kessinger has been a nice surprise at .333.

Some of the bad… Randy Hundley is batting .159.  Billy Williams is hitting .194.  Ernie Broglio has an 8.87 ERA.  Bill Hands managed to get his ERA down to single digits to 7.88.

Dick Ellsworth has impressed me though.  He went 8-22 in real life and is a DZ.  So far, he has a nice 3.75 ERA with a 2-1 record.  He has become one of my favorites on the team.

 

10.  St. Louis Cardinals 8-15

The Cardinals have grown tired of the George Kernek experiment at first base.  They have gotten themselves a real first baseman in Orlando Cepeda from the Giants for the price of Ray Sadecki, a DZ pitcher who can hit.  As a Cub fan, I fear this is exactly what St. Louis needed to help them.

Honestly, this team should not be this low in the standings.  Lou Brock (.350, 17 runs, 6 HR) and Julian Javier (5 HR, 12 rbi) are off to very good seasons.  Tim McCarver is also hitting well (.324).  Dal Maxvill’s batting average (.059 in 34 ab) shouldn’t surprise anyone.

Bob Gibson’s pitching numbers won’t surprise you either.  He’s 4-1 with four complete games and a 2.09 ERA.

St. Louis owns the player with the lowest qualifying batting average:  Alex Johnson .114 in 84 at-bats.

Posted by: | Category: replay | Tags: , , | 6 comments

1
December

My first look at APBA Go Baseball

apbago

I got a chance to try out APBA Go Online Baseball game yesterday.  I thought I would give you my initial thoughts on the game.  This is just a quick review since I only played against the computer and haven’t taken on a live opponent yet.

I really had a positive experience with the game and think APBA is heading in the right direction.  There are some things to work on.  I believe APBA is pretty upfront that this release will have issues and hopes fans will help them work them out.  Overall though, it was fun to play and was a quite different experience from the APBA Baseball aka “BBW” game.

I played a game between the two teams that were made available for free, the 2016 New York Mets and the 2016 Kansas City Royals.  I decided to take the Mets.  The Royals were skippered by the Micromanager which I could “buy” for free.  I am assuming APBA wants us to go through the checkout procedure so that we comfortable with the process of shopping in their environment.

What you are getting with the game is the APBA Basic Baseball Game played on the computer.  What is displayed in the game screen are:

  • A virtual representation of the APBA card
  • A scoreboard front and center surrounded by the two lineups
  • A backdrop image of a baseball field
  • the roll of the dice
  • the same result as the APBA Basic Baseball Game (more on this later)

roster

The game interface is bright, colorful and for the most part visually pleasing.  I am pleased to see that APBA is making changes in how navigation is done in the game.  One of my pet peeves of BBW is moving from one Window to another is accomplished by closing it and opening another.  If my short experience is any indication, it looks like APBA is learning to hyperlink related windows.  If this game is to be used for replays or leagues, I encourage the Company to use “Previous” and “Next” links when dealing with boxscores, teams etc.

A few shortfalls which I’m sure are already being worked on:

  • As mentioned by others, there does seem to be a 5-10 second lag after “rolling the dice” each time.
  • For the most part, the result description after the dice roll result seems to be short and to the point.  Mostly similar to what might read on the boards.  For example, “Lorenzo Cain strikes out”.  On occasion though, I got a result that was written in very descriptive, “friendly” language.  That is ok except I saw that result again the next inning.  I’m sure that just due to this product being so new.  The text still needs to be populated.  apbagodyson
  • A few of the boolean formulas still need to worked on.  (See right)
  • If you haven’t played BBW, making roster moves isn’t intuitive and it wouldn’t hurt for APBA to include an in-game help tutorial (because no one reads the help file).

I’m not picking on the game.  It’s a new product and bound to have issues right off the bat.  The web interface of APBA Go allows you to “challenge” other APBA fans.  It also keeps track of your overall won-loss record and of course, you can purchase other seasons that are compatible for APBA Go.  The cost to try it is free.  Here is the link for APBA Go.

Again, I see good things coming from this.  Am I throwing away my dice?  No way!  However, I do see a market for those who have been looking for a computer game that is based on the actual APBA Basic Baseball Game.  With a few tweaks and improvements, this could be it.

win1

 

Oh, by the way, I beat the Royals.

Posted by: | Category: Computer APBA | Tags: , | 5 comments

28
November

Monster Card Monday: Hall of Fame Babe Ruth

Ruth HOF

The new APBA Baseball Hall of Fame set is out!  Mike Whiteman ordered a copy and was happy to see that Babe Ruth is still the same slugger he always has been.  This is his card from the 345-card Hall of Fame set.

Ruth’s Hall of Fame card has power numbers 1-1-1-4-6 with six 14s (one with an asterisk).

A couple things about this Hall of Fame Baseball set that set it apart from other APBA sets:

“Normalized” stats

According to APBA, “The players are carded based on “Normalized” statistics.  Each player season stats are based on multi years performance.  These stats are then “normalized”. APBA is vague about exactly how many years are used for each card.  Even when normalized, I don’t think Ruth would have three 1s on his card.  Then again, this card is certainly not up to Ruth’s Monster standards, say 1921 Babe Ruth.

The key here is the use of the word “normalized” which can have many uses.  The set could be normalized for the era or normalized for the talent within the set.  There is a very good thread on APBA-Between the Lines discussing this topic.

Position-specific outfield ratings

You might notice that Ruth is rated as a RF-2 and a LF-2 as opposed simply an OF-2.  All outfielders are rated for their specific position that they played.  That’s a big change.

Rumor has it that this change is just for this set.  That said, I’ll bet the APBA Company will be paying attention to the response this gets from APBA fans.  If it gets positive feedback, my guess is that we may see it on all baseball sets soon.

You want my opinion?  The more I think about it, I like it.  It seems more accurate and realistic.  The biggest issue I see is that some APBA leagues may have to adjust.  But the beauty of APBA gaming is that it is very customizable.  Even in times of transition, it is easy to modify the game so it works for your needs.

Hey wait, the 12!

I just noticed that the 12 is not at 23 but at 26.  APBA had announced a couple years ago that the 23 would be the permanent home for the 12.

***

Overall, the Hall of Fame set looks very interesting but until I get my hands on the full set of cards. I’m going to wait for a full review.  If you are interested, here is the full roster of the cards you receive.

For now, that Ruth card looks pretty nice.  Thanks, Mike!

Posted by: | Category: Card Analysis | Tags: , , , | 7 comments

26
November

Fennessy’s pitching goes all Black Friday on Thunderchicken batters

20161125_161734_011

While many people were out shopping on Black Friday, I thought it would be a good time to take in some APBA.  My family was in Chicago for Thanksgiving and since I had an upcoming series with new Illowa APBA League manager Scott Fennessy, I thought it would be fun to stop by and play him.  Scott has been in the league for only three months and it would be our first official series.  Scott was up for it so I headed to Des Plaines via the Metra and took on the Three Rivers Gamblers (soon to be renamed Des Plaines Dragons after the season’s end) for a nine game series. 

Well, Scott wasn’t a very good host.  Well to be more specific, his pitchers weren’t good hosts.  After we lost the first game 7-5, the Gamblers’ hurlers were unhittable.  In the next five games, my Thunderchickens scored only three runs.  Colin McHugh and Carlos Rodon (both Bs) pitched shutouts but Jeff Locke (a D) only gave up just one run.  We just couldn’t score no matter who was pitching. 

The Thunderchickens finally won their first game in game 7 of the series.  Jeremy Hellickson pulled out a 5-inning win, 7-4 against Tom Koehler a CW.  In game 6, McHugh was on again and kept the T-Chicks to one run winning 7-1. 

But game 9… I won’t forget game 9 for a long time.  It was like my Twin City batters had enough and wanted to send a message.  The Thunderchickens defeated the Gamblers 24-4 on 25 hits and seven walks.  We scored 7 runs in the first inning, 6 in the seventh and 7 more in the 8th. 

It was everyone’s turn to get their stats in that game.  Bryant had 5 rbis, Hosmer had 4 hits and 4 rbis, Austin Jackson had 3 hits, 3 rbis and scored 3 runs, Markakis rapped 4 hits and scored 4 times… all in the same game. 

Overall, we scored a somewhat respectable 40 runs in the nine games.  However, the 24 runs we scored in game 9 was significantly more than we scored in games 1-8 combined (18).  Guys, it was a fun game but you need to learn to spread them out a little.

Seriously, I had a lot of fun despite the 2-7 series score.  It was the first time I had visited Scott at his apartment.  I just remember laughing a lot (I guess mostly at my lack of hitting).  I got a chance to see some of Scott’s Cubs memorabilia which was pretty impressive. 

***

kipI have since calculated my stats from this series.  It has come to my attention that Jason Kipnis has 52 doubles with nine games left in the season.  With some luck, he might crack the top ten of the Illowa APBA League’s single season record for doubles. 

Three players, 1980 Fred Lynn, 2003 Magglio Ordonez, and 2006 David Wright are tied for ninth all-time with 59 doubles in one season.

With seven (or more) doubles, Kipnis could get on this list.  Kipnis is currently batting .288 with 5 homeruns and 56 rbis. 

thanks for the great time, Scott!

Posted by: | Category: League Updates | Tags: , | 1 comment

22
November

Scott Fennessy: Padres hold off Cubs for victory

640px-Yangervis_Solarte_on_June_22,_2016April 19, 2015
Wrigley Field
Chicago, IL

The Cubs face the Padres in the final game of the home stand and with the Phillies being defeated by the Nationals today they have a chance to move into second place. Today’s game features Tyler Ross against Kyle Hendricks.

Hendricks gets off to a good start by striking out the leadoff hitter, but Melvin Upton singles up the middle and Yangervis Solarte hits a fastball that was a no doubter from the moment it hit the bat. Matt Kemp strikes out for number two, but Yonder Alonso then hits a shot to deep right field for a solo homer and the Padres now have a three run lead and the first inning is not yet over. Fortunately he gets the third out, but the Padres already have a good head start.

Ross gets the side in order and neither team does anything in the second. Hendricks finally looks to be in form and the Cubs come to bat in the bottom of the third trailing 3-0. In the bottom of the third and Addison Russell gets a pitch to hit and he delivers a big fly ball to deep into the left field seats for his first major league home run! Congratulations abound, but the Cubs still trail by two as the inning ends.

Hendricks continues to pitch well and Ross is beginning to struggle as the Padres go down quickly and Starlin Castro hits a single to left to start the inning. Rizzo moves the runner to second and with two outs Miguel Montero gets a hanging curve and hits a game tying two run homer. Chris Coughlin grounds out to end the inning but now the game is tied at 3 each after three innings.

Neither team does anything in the fifth inning, but the Padres get a leadoff single from Solarte and he moved to third on Alonso’s one out single. Derek Norris rips a double into the right field gap and the Padres take a 5-3 lead. Hendricks gets the next two batters but the damage has been done as the sixth inning comes to a close.

The Cubs had a chance in the bottom of the inning after Dexter Fowler hits a single to right and moved to second on a ground out. Rizzo walks and moved to second with two out, but Montero comes up with a strikeout to end the rally and the visitors still lead 5-3.

From this point on the bullpens take over with Pedro Strop and Justin Grimm each providing one inning of hitless relief for the Cubs, but the Padres bullpen was up to the task with Shawn Kelley and closer Craig Kimbrel firing bullets to get the save in the ninth inning. The Padres get a much needed victory and the Cubs have to watch their chance to catch the Phillies go by.

Around the horn:

The Rays destroyed the Yankees 7-0. Nathan Karns strikes out nine on the mound and hits the game winning homer in the 3rd inning.

The Red Sox and the Orioles had a true slugfest today with Boston coming out on top for a 12-11 victory. Blake Swihart went 4-6, and hit the game winning HR in bottom of 10th.

Noah Syndergaard shut out the Marlins for a 4-0 victory.

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18
November

Rod’s Replay Insider: Inside the pitching performance chart

The pitching performance chart tracks individual pitching performances.

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First of all, let’s get past what, at first glance, looks like extra work. A replay, after all, has a lot of administrative demands, but maintaining a pitching performance chart is an administrative chore that gives back a multitude of feedback.

Recording pitching performances on the chart takes about 30-60 seconds to fill out the information for an individual appearance. However, it’s time well spent when you weigh the benefits of what this information reveals.

Take a closer look at the chart to get better acquainted with what you have to fill out. A sample chart, tracking Chicago White Sox ace Ed Walsh’s replay performance in a 1911 replay, is attached, by way of illustration. Walsh provides a good example because he both started and relieved in 1911, which means that both types of appearances have to be noted.

The chart tracks two different categories of information.

The first category is information about when the pitching performance occurred. This includes the appearance number (first appearance, second appearance, etc.) and the type of appearance (start or relief). Also noted is the date of the appearance (date on your replay or game number, your preference) and the opposing team.

The second category is what happened during the appearance. This includes all the basic information including a win or a loss, the score, whether or not it was a complete game (if a start) and the usual line score information one would find a box score. Home runs are not shown simply because I ran out of room when I put this chart together. I record home runs given up under “Notes,” which also notes anything else of interest.

That’s a lot of information. But, as your replay unfolds, it’s information that will, at a glance add to your understanding and enjoyment of what is happening in your replay.

Next: The benefits of using a pitching performance chart

Read all of Rod’s Replay Insider articles!

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