Rod’s Replay Insider: The importance of maintaining daily standings

baseball_standingsThe most important statistic you can keep in your replay is the daily standings.

Maintaining daily standings sound easy. It is surprising, however, how easily one can transpose a number or flip-flop a win or a loss. Once an error occurs, it will continue replicate itself in your daily standings until you either locate and correct the error or, worse, fail to notice the error and wind up with inaccurate standings.

Believe me, from personal experience, when you record an error in your daily standings, count on spending a frustrating hour or two or so poring through your box scores and records to see where the error occurred.

So how do you keep the daily standings and how do you avoid (or correct) any mistakes?

Some suggestions:

  • Record the daily standings in a separate notebook on a day-by-day basis.
  • As you play a series, update the daily standings immediately after each game.
  • At the end of each “month” of your replay, compare the cumulative pitcher’s won-lost record with the won-lost record in your daily standings. Also, compare the number of starts for each pitcher with the number of games each team has played. The number of pitcher starts must equal the number of games each team has played.
  • After each series, record the win and loss in a team-vs-team box, which gives you a back-up system to ensure accuracy in the won-lost standings.

Next: A post-game protocol for recording replay information

Read all of Rod’s Replay Insider articles!

Posted by: | Category: replay | Tags: , | 4 comments


IAL update: Miguel Gonzalez is not happy with his IAL manager

480px-Miguel_González_on_July_1,_2012Some APBA games just go your way.  I was playing an Illowa APBA League series with my Pittsburgh pal Todd Ventresca and his Three Rivers Gamblers tonight.  He won the first three and I won the next.  What happened in the next game is one for the record books.  

It was game five.  Rookie Eduardo Rodiguez vs. Josh Collmenter.  My Twin City Thunderchickens immediately scored three runs on Collmenter in the first inning then one more in the second.  In the fourth, we added four more runs. It was during that inning when Todd pulled Collmenter for reliever Miguel Gonzalez. 

Poor Miguel Gonzalez.  

It was then when the floodgates let loose.  With homeruns by Jung Ho Kang and JD Martinez, we plated seven more runs in the fifth inning.  Eleven batters came to the plate that inning.  By now, it was 15-1 (Pedro Alvarez hit a solo homer for the Gamblers in the fourth). 

With our shutout gone, I decided to pull Rodriguez and save his graded innings for another day.  Tanner Roark came in after five exemplary innings by E-Rod.  Two hits allowed with just one run allowed.  Roark gave up a solo homer to Adrian Beltre who hadn’t gotten the memo yet. 

Twin City wasn’t done scoring though.  Martinez drove home another run in the seventh inning.  In the eighth, the Thunderchickens scored three more on a rally started by double by Tanner Roark himself. 

A summary of the damage done

  • Score: 19-2
  • 27 hits by the Thunderchickens.  Four hits for the Gamblers.
  • Every Twin City batter except PH Adam LaRoche got a hit AND scored a run (that includes Rodriguez and Roark)
  • Seven batters had two or more hits and five had three or more hits
  • Three (Nick Markakis, Jung Ho Kang, and Austin Jackson) had four hits
  • The line on Gamblers’ reliever Miguel Gonzalez:  4 1/3 IP, 16 H, 11 R, 11 ER
  • Five rbis for Kang
    Roark (a DZ) did a great job as a reliever and earned his four inning save.  Like Rodriguez, he allowed just two hits, one a solo homer. 
    After a while, the offensive barrage just became funny.  I would have felt bad for Todd except I knew that regardless of how much how I was beating him, I would still be down 2-3 when the game was over. 
    The Gamblers and the Thunderchickens will resume their series on Saturday morning.  Do the Gamblers have vengeance on their mind?

      Posted by: | Category: League Updates | Tags: , | Leave a comment


      Jim Welch pilots the 1941 Red Sox to victory at The Prairieland


      The 2016 Prairieland APBA Baseball Tournament is now in the books.  We had a total of fifteen participants that traveled from as far away as Michigan and Nebraska to Urbana, Illinois to play APBA baseball.  At the Hampton Inn, we broke into two divisions and played our opponents (one game each). 


      When the dust settled, there were four left, two from each division.  From the Lou Boudreau Division (named as such since Boudreau was a University of Illinois alum), two teams from the 1940s were left.  Bob Eller’s 1948 Cleveland Indians (including Boudreau himself) went 5-2.  Jim Welch and his potent lineup of the 1941 Boston Red Sox also went 5-2. 


      In the Robin Roberts Division (named because Roberts hails from Springfield, Illinois), both winners were from the modern era.  Tom Fulton’s 2015 Toronto Blue Jays went 5-1 as did Joe Schall’s St. Louis Cardinals of 2001. 


      Semi-finalists, Bob Eller and Joe Schall ponder what could have been as Tom Fulton congratulates winner Jim Welch

      In the semi-finals, Fulton’s Jays battled with Eller’s Indians and the Jays won out.  Jim Welch beat out Joe Schall’s 2001 Cards and the finals were set.  A crowd gathered for the championship final and while Tom Fulton’s Blue Jays battled, Jim Welch and the 1941 Red Sox won out and took the Prairieland Tournament championship. 

      IMG_2498Congratulations to Jim Welch!!  Jim not only won the traveling trophy but a set of Negro League APBA cards donated by Eric Berg. 

      “The Prairieland” also had a consolation tournament for those who didn’t advance to the playoffs.  It was a simple single elimination tournament.  Congratulations to Kyle Daniels!  His 1954 New York Giants were unlucky during regulation with a 1-6 record but they powered through the consolation round.  Kyle took home a dice tower donated by Tom Fulton. 

      How did my 1930 New York Giants do? 

      We started out hot, winning three of our first four.  Once Christy Mathewson of Lew Ramey’s 1908 New York Giants shut us out, we kind of went downhill.  By end of regulation, we were 3-4. 

      Our big man was Mel Ott who had three homers and ten rbis in those first four games.  With Bill Terry and Fred Lindstrom batting ahead of him, he had runners on base to drive in.  Second baseman Hughie Critz managed to hit an rare homer with his two zeros and three ones in the second column. 

      Carl Hubbell went 0-3 for the day.  I don’t blame him for his appearance in the consolation round.  He gave up two runs in the first inning against Kyle Daniels’ 1954 Giants then proceeded to pitch eight no-hit innings only to still lose the game. 

      Some of the tournament highlights from my perspective


      Meeting co-organizers Dave Rueck and Tom Fulton for the first time.  See, both Dave (above left playing G.F. Korreck) and Tom (above center) live in my area and Dave even works across town but I’ve never met either of them in person.   In addition to Eric Berg who unfortunately could not attend, both were very helpful in planning the event.  Thanks guys!! 

      Tom Fulton’s infectious enthusiasm.  The week before the tournament, things were hectic for me in general and I was not sure if this tournament was going to go as planned.  Then a few days before the tourney, I get a message from Tom Fulton saying, “Thanks for making my dreams come true”.  That gave me extra resolve.  Tom F. was a lot of fun at tournament and I’m glad he did well seeing the tournament was his idea in the first place. 


      John Roels’ quick wit and humor.  He had this folksy way about him yet his one-liners had me in stitches.  John (above left) seems to be making a funny with John Kalous in the above photo as well.  

      Chatting with John Kalous on the APBA scene.  I took a moment to catch up on the APBA situation with John.  He started going to the national APBA conventions at about the time I last went to one.  His perspective was really helpful.  I’ll be in touch, John!

      IMG_2515Kyle Daniels’ Chico’s Bail Bonds jersey from The Bad News Bears was a hit at the tournament as well as with those who saw his photos on Facebook.  Kyle (right, playing Doug Bedell across from Lew Ramey) and I were talking during the break and he told me he played at vintage base ball tournaments.  Well, it turns out I have photographed a few tournaments myself.  We were looking through my online galleries and found a few photos of him and his brother. 

      Talking to Dick “don’t call me Richard” Butler.  Dick is not only one of nicest guys in APBA but is helpful too.  He stepped up to lend a hand organizationally when it was needed. 


      Hanging out with Bob Eller at the Illini baseball game Friday night.  Sometimes it’s nice to step outside the APBA realm especially if it is still baseball related.  Even better when the Illini win. 


      L to R: Darrell Angleton, Lance Freezeland, Kyle Daniels and Dick Butler

      Seeing a bunch of guys from different backgrounds all sit down and play a game we love.  In attendance, we had a lawyer, an IT guy, a store clerk, an accountant, retirees among others.  It is the midst of election season and no one talked about politics that I recall.  The most heated debate was what baseball team was our favorite or who was better, DiMaggio or Williams.  That’s pretty cool. 

      I’m calling “The Prairieland” a success.  For a first-time tournament, everything went as smooth as possible and everyone seemed to have a great time.  The few hiccups that we had were easily resolved because participants pitched in with their ideas.  I got reacquainted with some old friends and met some new ones.  I approach these tournaments as not an event to win but rather an event to foster friendships and have a great time.  I think both were accomplished. 

      Again, congratulations to Jim Welch for winning the first Prairieland APBA Baseball Tournament!  There will more to come! 

      Posted by: | Category: Tournament | Tags: , | 8 comments


      Divisions set for The Prairieland Tourney

      loubOne week from today, sixteen APBA fans, boards and dice in hand, will converge on the college town of Urbana, Illinois to participate in the first Prairieland APBA Baseball Tournament or as it is now simply called “The Prairieland”. 

      That’s right, sixteen.  With one more late addition, we now have a nice round number.  A few days ago, the the divisions were set.  Let’s take a look at the field of managers and their teams…


      Gary Gaetti Division  
      Eric Berg 1969 Minnesota Twins
      John Roels * 1920 Cleveland Indians
      Tom Fulton 2015 Toronto Blue Jays
      Dave Sachs 1982 Milwaukee Brewers
      Lou Boudreau Division  
      John Kalous * 2015 Houston Astros
      Thomas Nelshoppen 1930 New York Giants
      Jim Welch 1941 Boston Red Sox
      Bob Eller 1948 Cleveland Indians
      Jim Thome Division  
      Lew Ramey 1908 New York Giants
      G.F. Korreck 1930 St. Louis Cardinals
      Joe Schall 2001 St Louis Cardinals 
      Lance Freezeland * 1977 LA Dodgers
      Robin Roberts Division  
      Dave Rueck 2015 Pittsburgh Pirates
      Doug Bedell  1981 Montreal Expos
      Dick Butler * 1908 Chicago Cubs
      Darrell Angleton 1972 Pittsburgh Pirates

      * denotes division captain

      If it isn’t obvious, division names were chosen based on baseball greats who have a connection to central Illinois.  Gary Gaetti is from Centralia, Illinois.  Lou Boudreau’s hometown is Harvey, Illinois and is a University of Illinois alum (Go Illini!).  Jim Thome (the nicest man in baseball) hails from Peoria.  Finally, Robin Roberts is not only from Springfield but has a stadium named after him there. 

      It’s a good mix of modern teams, those from the golden era and deadball teams.  I am quite looking forward to seeing if it will be pitching or hitting that will win this one.  Eric Berg has done a write-up on his team, the 1969 Twins on his blog Red 11.  Watch out for the tough pitching! 

      As for me, I’m taking the 1930 New York Giants.  The Giants actually placed third in the NL in 1930 but I contend that they have one of the best teams on paper.  I count a total of five Hall of Famers on that team (six, if you include Dave Bancroft who probably won’t be included on the 20-man roster).  Freddie Lindstrom and Bill Terry have two of best APBA cards of all time.  Pitching ain’t bad either led by Carl Hubbell and Fat Freddie Fitzsimmons.

      Everyone seems very excited about the event.  Last minute details are being taken care of including some rule tweaks. 


      To give us Prairieland competitors some inspiration, here is a good read from Jim Fraasch about last weekend’s Neil Ess Memorial Twin Cities APBA Baseball Tournament.  There were a total of THIRTY people who vied for the tourney championship!  But they don’t put you in the APBA Hall of Fame for nothing.  Kevin Cluff proved why he’s the best by winning the whole thing with the 2011 Texas Rangers.

      Congrats, Kevin!! 

      Posted by: | Category: Tournament | Tags: , , | 5 comments


      Kevin Cluff takes the TCABT-V with the 2011 Rangers!

      It’s definitely APBA tournament season.  While people are still talking about Pastor Rich Zawadzki’s Greater Michigan APBA Baseball Tournament which took place in March, the big talk now is last weekend’s Neil Ess Memorial Twin Cities APBA Baseball Tournament-V in Minnesota.  Not only that, in less than two weeks, the Prairieland APBA Baseball Tournament will kick off its first tourney in Urbana, Illinois. 


      (photo courtesy Eric Berg)

      Congratulations to Kevin Cluff!  The APBA HoFer took the TCABT-V crown.  That was no easy feat considering that there was a field of no less than 30 teams entered in the tourney.  Cluff (above right) won it with the hard hitting 2011 Texas Rangers. 

      Eric Berg tells his TCABT story on his blog, Red 11.  It’s a good read for everyone especially those interested in trying their first competitive tournament.  Even with the pitching and defense heavy 2015 Royals, Eric went 5-5 so you know the competition was tight. 

      Berg, by the way, isn’t done rolling the bones yet.  Along with Tom Fulton, Dave Rueck and myself, he is helping organize the Prairieland Tournament which will take place in Urbana, Illinois on April 16th.  The field of teams is now set with fifteen participants: 

      Manager Team
      Dick Butler 1908 Chicago Cubs
      Lew Ramey 1908 New York Giants
      John Roels 1920 Cleveland Indians
      Thomas Nelshoppen 1930 New York Giants
      G.F. Korreck 1930 St. Louis Cardinals
      Jim Welch 1941 Boston Red Sox
      Bob Eller 1948 Cleveland Indians
      Eric Berg 1969 Minnesota Twins
      Lance Freezeland 1977 LA Dodgers
      Doug Bedell  1981 Montreal Expos
      Dave Sachs 1982 Milwaukee Brewers
      Joe Schall 2001 St Louis Cardinals 
      John Kalous 2015 Houston Astros
      Dave Rueck 2015 Pittsburgh Pirates
      Tom Fulton 2015 Toronto Blue Jays


      For those of you looking to participate in a tournament, you can see if there is one in your area.  If there isn’t, I encourage you to start your own.  This spring, Jim Saska pulled one together after moving to Northern Virginia and from all reports, a fun time was had. 

      Looking towards the future:  the APBA National Convention Tournament and the Chicagoland Summer Fantasy World Series.

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


      Rod’s Replay Insider: How to approach playing a replay schedule: recording series


      imageReplays require a systematic approach to compiling information.

      Think about how much information you will be recording:

      • Box scores for as many games are you are playing in your replay
      • Daily standings for your replay
      • Batting and pitching records for several hundred individual players
      • Team batting and pitching records for each team in your replay
      • Identification of anything special happening in your replay

      That’s a lot of information. And recording all that information can take an enormous amount of time unless you have some kind of efficient system in place.

      So, how do you cut down the time required to play several hundred games? Start by playing each series in a grouped fashion.

      For example, suppose Detroit is at New York for a three-game series scheduled May 11-12-13. If you play the games in consecutive order, grouped as a series, you can record each individual stat in your cumulative record-keeping system quickly and efficiently by simply flipping through three consecutive pages of box scores.

      For each series of dates in my replay, I play each series in groups of three or four games, depending on the schedule. The daily standings, of course, are recorded after each game. After three or four “days” of grouped series, the daily standings reflect the cumulative standings at the end of the three or four day period.

      Why is this practical? It minimizes waste motion and saves time.

      If you play games one at a time, by date, there are a lot of moving parts. You must take the cards out of the packet, sort out and lay out the cards, and then put the cards back into the packet three or four separate times. Plus, when it comes time to record the results, you have to flip back and forth in your box scores from each individual “day” to record the cumulative results

      That’s a lot of extra work and time. And all the extra motion eventually results in making some kind of error in record-keeping. Consider playing games in series as a time-saving, efficient way to get through the replay.

      Next: The importance of maintaining daily standings.

      Read all of Rod’s Replay Insider articles!

      Posted by: | Category: replay | Tags: , , | 4 comments


      Monster Card Monday: 1939 Joe DiMaggio


      Nothing says “Monster” like “Joltin’ Joe” DiMaggio.  Pastor Rich Zawadzki passed on this 1939 APBA card which verifies this fact. 

      It was Joe D’s fourth year in the majors and he had already made his mark with the Yankees.  In his first three years, he batted over .300 each year.  He also had one HR crown and led the league in runs scored.  In 1939 though, he won his first batting title with a .381 mark.  With it, he drove in 126 runs and scored 108 plus hit 30 dingers. 

      All that added up to his first of three MVP awards that he would win. 

      1939 Totals 120 524 462 108 176 32 6 30 126 3 52 21 .381 .448 .671
      Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
      Generated 4/4/2016.


      Any time a full time player gets a power number at 44, he gets consideration for Monster Monday in my book.  Joe DiMaggio’s 1939 card has power numbers 1-1-0-0-0. 

      In addition, the Yankee Clipper has more than a few hits on his card.  He has a 55-7 and a 15-7.  With all of the requisite 8s and 9s, that gives him a 64-9. 

      DiMaggio was willing to take a walk, too.  His 1939 card has four 14s including a 26-14.  In addition, he has a 61-22 (based on four HBP) so he’s willing to take one for the team occasionally. 

      Fun numbers:  44-0, 26-14, 64-9

      Not to be overlooked, DiMaggio is fast and a OF-3.  My Boys of Summer commish, Shawn Baier and I were discussing the advantages of having such a player just the other day.  Of course, the player in question, Josh Reddick, is a far cry from Joe DiMaggio but you get my point. 

      thanks, Rich!!

      Posted by: | Category: Card Analysis | Tags: , , | 2 comments


      APBA Blog mailbag: Golf questions

      tgaChris S. has a few questions about APBA Golf.  Rather than go off of memory and slice, I thought I’d post them here and see if the APBA Golf aficionados might chime in.  Even better, I’m going to post this article to Facebook’s APBA Golf Country Club page and see if we get any responses. 

      Chris has a few questions.  He asks:

      I am brand new to APBA golf. I have played a few rounds with the master rules and I have a pretty good feel for the game. But I still have a few questions.

      1. Do you take the ball the entire carry distance into the trees on a mis-hit, or do you stop right where it enters the trees. It seems to make more sense to go the entire distance, otherwise you will never be stymied.

      2. I also assume that the ball never rolls if it lands in the trees on a fly. Is this correct?

      3. The latest version says the balls hit to the outside of a dogleg follow parallel to the centerline instead of applying the dogleg factor? Is this correct? It doesn’t seem logical.

      4. Why are you not allowed to aim on the second shot if you are laying up?


      Now, I’ll leave it up to you Golf experts.  Chris, if you’re on Facebook, you might consider following the APBA Golf Country Club page.  Great and helpful crowd there! 

      Posted by: | Category: golf | Tags: , | 1 comment


      Anyone using the new Starting Pitching Fatigue Chart for APBA Baseball?


      The APBA Company quietly rolled out the Starting Pitching Fatigue Chart with the new season.  Those of you who received new cards may have noticed a new rating with the pitchers’ grade.  The fatigue rating appears as a number right after the strikeout and control ratings on the same line as the pitcher’s grade. 


      See the highlighted fatigue rating on Jake Odorizzi’s APBA card. 

      This fatigue rating is to be used with APBA Starting Pitching Fatigue Chart which is found on APBA’s web site here.  As far as I can tell, this fatigue rating chart is meant to be used as an advanced feature for the Basic Game.  Though it could be used with the Master Game, that game has its own fatigue system with the Q rating. 

      How does it work?  To put it VERY simply, two dice are rolled and added before the game.  You then refer to the chart.  That gives you an idea how many batters the pitcher can face before his grade is affected.  There are additional rules regarding whether or not he retires the following batters which may quicken his demise. 

      As a point of information (because I was confused by this), the numbers in the parenthesis are to be subtracted from the BF Rating. 

      Note that if your pitcher hasn’t given up an earned run, he is still subject to the grade advancements as per usual APBA rules, UNTIL he gives up a run. 

      In concept, I like the idea of a pitchers’ fatigue system especially for replays.  I haven’t had a chance to test this one out yet though.  Has anyone test driven this Starting Pitching Fatigue System out?  I’m curious how it’s worked for you.  If so, post your results. 

      Posted by: | Category: Innovations and Modifications | Tags: , , | 6 comments


      April 16th Prairieland APBA Baseball Tournament: Last call for participants!

      ial2010allstarsat 020The venue has been reserved.  The rules are in place.  The trophy has been ordered and is on its way. 

      The best part…we now have fifteen participants who have committed to the Prairieland APBA Baseball Tournament which will take place at the Hampton Inn in Urbana, Illinois on April 16th.  It’s not too late to enter though.  If you want to join us, the organizers are making one last push to get others to participate.   

      If you’re interested, just choose any team that did NOT win 100 games in real life and let me know by sending me an email or joining the Facebook event

      We already have a great crew coming.   Some participants are coming as far as Michigan and Nebraska.  Here is the PABT lineup as of today…

      Manager Team
      Dick Butler 1908 Chicago Cubs
      Lew Ramey 1908 New York Giants
      John Roels 1920 Cleveland Indians
      Thomas Nelshoppen 1930 New York Giants
      G.F. Korreck 1930 St. Louis Cardinals
      Jim Welch 1941 Boston Red Sox
      Bob Eller 1948 Cleveland Indians
      Eric Berg 1969 Minnesota Twins
      Lance Freezeland 1977 LA Dodgers
      Doug Bedell  1981 Montreal Expos
      Dave Sachs 1982 Milwaukee Brewers
      Joe Schall 2001 St Louis Cardinals 
      John Kalous 2015 Houston Astros
      Dave Rueck 2015 Pittsburgh Pirates
      Thomas Fulton 2015 Toronto Blue Jays


      We are nailing down the details for the tournament now.  You can find the rules and info for the tournament here.  The organizers plan to start announcing the divisions for the tournament by the end of next week so pick your teams soon!

      The organizers of PABT are Eric Berg, Thomas Fulton, Dave Rueck and myself and we are all very excited about this.  We can’t wait to be rolling.  It will be Tom Fulton’s first competitive tournament and his excitement is contagious.  It was Tom’s original idea to have a tournament in Central Illinois and it is soon to coming to fruition. 

      Hope to see you there! 

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

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