25
August

Hunter’s Toon Squad win 2016 Bridesburg League crown

bbchampsThe info below comes from Brian Cavanaugh.  It’s hard to believe that the Bridesburg APBA League has been around for six years now.  It’s one of the best APBA stories around.

What started six years ago as a simple way to keep the kids in his Boys and Girls Club busy with something stimulating and interactive has grown into a six year project.  The Bridesburg group is now being invited to APBA tournaments thanks in part to John Cochrane.  Finally, I read a poignant post on Facebook that one of Brian’s charges (one who I have read about often in Brian’s league updates) is now entering college. 

Wow.

Brian says:

“The 6th season of the Bridesburg APBA League came to an end today with a flurry of games as the post season tournament is set to begin. A number of rookies fielded teams this summer, which is a good sign for the future as the league has gone through a bit of a face lift the past few seasons as many players are out growing their time at the club. Even still, the league remains strong. The final standings:

Schmidt Division

Senators … 23-12

Vermont St… 21-15

A’s … 17 – 17

Rat Pack … 9-13

Horses … 2-13

Rose Division

Toon Squad … 22-7

Red Wings … 22-17

Rockets … 17-6

Hot Spurs … 4-9

Warriors … 1-9

Carlton Division

Eagles … 23-6

Scuba Divers … 5-10

66’ers… 5-11

Angels … 1-5

Money Makers … 0-9

 

Ashburn Division

Convicts … 14-9

Blue Devils …9-6

Under Dogs … 6-6

Spiders … 4-14

*due to attendance issues (vacations, days absent), not all teams were able to reach 35 games.

Playoff Rules

Top 8 teams qualify with division winners being the top 4 seeds. Tournament is win or go home, single elimination.

Playoff Bracket

1. Eagles vs 8. A’s

2. Senators vs 7. Rockets

3. Toon Squad vs 6. Vermont St.

4. Convicts vs 5. Red Wings

Playoff results will be posted at the conclusion of the playoff games (all playoff games will be played 8/18/16).”

The photo above gives it away.  Bob Hunter’s Toon Squad won it all over Gary Brown’s Red Wings.  Congrats to Bob! 

Keep up the great work, Brian!!

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

23
August

Prairieland 2.0 date set for April 1 in Urbana, IL

IMG_2523The date for the second Prairieland APBA Baseball Tournament has been set!  On April 1, 2017, we will re-convene in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois for APBA fun.

This time around, there will be a couple twists. 

First, you can select any MLB team from 1970-2000 (inclusive).  You can also select one fantasy player from the deadball era as defined as 1900-1920.  

The second twist:  There will be a selection draft a few months before the tournament.  In the snake draft, each participant will draft both a team and a player.  It will be up to each person if they want to draft their team first or their fantasy player first.  There will be some choice teams and fantasy players up for picking!

The draft will be randomly selected and will be conducted via a snake draft fashion (i.e. 1-2-3-4-4-3-2-1-etc).  There will be a selection process for latecomers and fill-ins.

IMG_2488

    Getting the details out of the way…
  • Date:  April 1, 2017 9am
  • Place: Hampton Inn 1200 W. University Urbana, IL
  • Cost: $15

Other tournament rules will be similar to the last tournament.  We will NOT have a loser’s round this time though people are certainly welcome to play.  We will get an updated list of rules to everyone BEFORE the draft!

Jim Welch (top) who won this past tourney with his 1941 Red Sox will hopefully be on hand to defend his Prairieland championship.  

If you are interested in attending, sign up at the Prairieland 2.0 APBA Baseball Tournament Facebook event page or just let me know

Dave Rueck, Thomas Fulton, Eric Berg and I all hope you can come.  We’re going to make Prairieland 2.0 twice as fun!

Posted by: | Category: Tournament | Tags: , , | 3 comments

22
August

APBA Fan Profile: Howie and Reese Mooney

  detmooney

APBA has its share of father-son bonds.  In the Illowa APBA League, my commissioner Mike Bunch has passed on his love of the game to his two sons, Marcus and Dan and they are now both in the league.  At the Chicagoland tournaments, I’ve met Joel Pike and his son Matthew as well as Larry and Clark Eichmann.   

This past Chicago tournament, I had the chance to meet Howie and Reese Mooney.  Not only are they father and son but they also hail from Ontario, Canada.  Both traveled all the way to Illinois to play some APBA.  While they were here in area, Doug Schuyler did his best to show them a good time. 

I had been in touch with Howie for quite a while and as usually the case, it was great to put a face to the name.  I asked both gentlemen if they were willing to answer a few questions for a Fan Profile and they graciously said “yes”. 

 

The APBA Blog:  Howie and Reese, I’ll start this interview like I do with every other one.  Tell us a little bit about yourselves outside of APBA.

Reese: Outside of APBA, I am an avid tennis player. I played tennis for my high school team this past year, and play in a league at a local tennis club. I played ice hockey for about 5 or 6 years, and briefly played basketball. I also enjoy playing golf.

Howie:  I’ve done a bunch of things in my life.  For the last 6 1/2 years, I have been a bus driver in Toronto.  The previous 16 years, I was a licensed lawn care guy.  That job took my ex-wife and me (and Reese) from Ottawa–where I grew up–to Seattle (where Reese was born) to Vancouver to Toronto.  In the decade of the 1990s, I did TV work where one of my positions was as the play-by-play and color guy for the Triple A Ottawa Lynx.  The Lynx were the affiliate of the Montreal Expos.  They won the 1995 International League championship and I was there.

howie

Howie chats with Eric Berg at the latest Chicago tournament in July

The APBA Blog:  How did you both get started with APBA? Are you mostly solo players or do play in tournaments or leagues?  Any big projects currently going on?

Reese: I got started with APBA around the time when Dad got back into it in 2013. I am mostly a solo player. Right now, I am playing a 16-team single-elimination tournament.

Howie:  I got started when I was in Grade 8.  1973.  For some reason, I can’t exactly remember why, but about half our class was away and our History teacher brought his APBA game into the class.  I think it might have been a snow day that was called late and some of us ended up at school.  Anyway, Mr. Beaudet had the 1960 season and he divided up the teams among the people in the class.  I loved it right away.  I got my paper route money together, went to the bank and sent a money order to Lancaster, Pa.  I got the 1972 season and played it pretty steadily for a bunch of years.  Now I play pretty much solo.  I am trying to work on getting through my 1955 and 1968 replays. 

CWS Summer Fantasy-8333-001

At the tourney, Reese is all business against opponent Shawn Baier

The APBA Blog:  In July, you both came down to Chicago to play in Doug Schuyler’s Chicagoland Summer Fantasy World Series.  First, how was your overall experience here in Chicago?  Was the APBA tournament all what you expected?

Reese:  We had a great time in Chicago, and the Chicagoland Summer Fantasy World Series was a great way to cap the trip off.

Howie: Reese is exactly right.  That week was our annual summer road trip.  We saw two Cubs games at Wrigley, a White Sox game at US Cellular and a Brewers game at Miller Park.  The tournament was the finishing touch to our week.  I went there to try to get a feel for the whole set up and basically to learn from so many other guys who are giants in our game.  It was a pretty amazing experience.

 

Rapid Fire questions with Reese and Howie!

What irrational superstition do you each have when playing APBA?

Reese:  I don’t really have any superstitions when I play APBA.

Howie:  None.

In your opinion, best current manager in MLB?

Reese:  Joe Maddon

Howie:  Terry Francona

Best W-L APBA record between Reese Mooney and Howie Mooney? 

Reese:  I’m better than him.

Howie:  HA!!

Father-son APBA games… bonding moments or heated matches?

Reese:  Bonding moments.

Howie:  Yep.

You’re pitching Game 7 in the World Series.  Which catcher from any era would you choose to be behind the plate?  Reese:  1975 Johnny Bench.

Howie
:  I was going to just say Johnny Bench too.  He had a lot of good years.  Take your pick.

 

The APBA Blog:  Reese, if you could advise the CEO of The APBA Company one thing about marketing the APBA game to younger sports fans, what would it be?  Also, if you could change anything about the game, what would it be?  (Howie, feel free to chime in)

Reese:  If I could advise the CEO of The APBA Company one thing about marketing to younger sports fans it would be to start advertising on MLB Network or put an ad in Sports Illustrated. I would not change anything about the game.

Howie: I agree with Reese.  I would love to see the game kind of mass marketed and the MLB Network would be a great place to show it off.  I remember seeing it on the back page of comic books (I think it was in comic books) when I was a kid.  Get it into the faces of the younger people in the places where they allow their minds to spend their time.

 

The APBA Blog:  As Canadian citizens, the law requires you to be hockey fans, right?  Have you tried the APBA Hockey game?  Any interest in other APBA games? 

Reese:  I have not yet tried the APBA hockey game. I have heard the football game is really fun.

Howie:  I have never tried the hockey game either.  But I have the football game as well.  My original football game is from 1979.  I also have the newer game but haven’t opened it up yet.

 

The APBA Blog:  Serious question, is baseball culture different in Canada on any level than in the U.S.?

Reese:  Baseball isn’t as popular as hockey here in Canada. However, baseball is growing in popularity.

Howie: It’s true that baseball isn’t as popular as hockey here, but it is definitely a lot more popular than when I was a kid and played in the 70s and 80s.  The opportunities for Canadian kids to do something in baseball are a lot more plentiful now than ever. 

As for the culture?  There are differences and there are similarities.  When I was Reese’s age, the guys I played ball with were the same guys I played hockey with.  Our baseball coach had played a bit in the Phillies system (and also played football in the CFL).  But he was also our hockey coach.  As I got older and grew to play more competitively, I saw that guys looked a little differently at baseball than I had when I was younger.  It was a more complex game when I played it competitively.

But in a way, that complexity made a lot of sense and made the game simpler.  In terms of being on a team, the dynamics of being with the guys are pretty much the same whether we were playing baseball or hockey or football.

Thanks to both Howie and Reese for participating in this discussion!  It was great seeing both of them in Chicago.  I’m hoping that our dice cross paths again someday!

Posted by: | Category: Interview | Tags: , , , | 2 comments

18
August

Divisions announced for Glass City APBA Baseball Tournament-II!

glasscityLooking the APBA tournament calendar, we see that the Glass City APBA Baseball Tournament is almost here.  The second annual GCABT will be held on August 27th at the Maumee-Bowling Green Elks Lodge. 

Organizer Ron Emch has been filling in the participants with the info, rules and of course, the final divisions have been set. 

Here they are.

2016 GCABT-II Divisions
Moses Fleetwood Walker Division

Ken Schulz 1998 Astros
Norm Zavela 1905 Giants
Joe Kaplan 1976 Phillies
Richard Butler 1969 Orioles
Mike ‘Crash Davis’ Hessman Division
David Dawn 1972 A’s
John Roels 1927 Yankees
Robert Wyks 1975 Reds
Bob McCurdy 1931 Philadelphia A’s

Jamie Farr Division
David McCurdy 1937 Yankees
Darren Schulz 1961 Yankees
Ron Emch 1977 Phillies
John Clawson 1984 Tigers

Casey Stengel Division
Zach Zavela 1998 Yankees
Andrew Radlinski 2015 Cubs
Bill Lilley 1968 Tigers
Nathan Mikkelson 2015 Dodgers

Muddy and Madonna Division
Brian Silvis 1901 Pirates
Mike Hill 1986 Mets
Tyler Wyks 1993 Giants
Aaron Radlinski 1927 Pirates

Hensville Division
Joe Perry 1978 Brewers
Randy Egan 1929 Cubs
Matthew Radlinski 2013 Dodgers
Patrick McGregor 1995 Indians

Billy Beane Division
James Scherf Jr. 1912 Red Sox
Tucker McBride 1954 Indians
Darryl Langenderfer 2011 Tigers
Phil Silvis 1902 Pirates

Randy Egan will defend his title with the 1929 Chicago Cubs.  Randy won last year’s tourney with the 1953 Brooklyn Dodgers

The GCABT will be using the APBA Basic Baseball Game with a few modifications such as the error chart and the Unusual Play Card. 

Good luck to all participants!

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

15
August

Monster Card Monday: 1998 Craig Wilson

IMG_3433-003

Sometimes, people suggest cards for Monster Monday and I’ll say, “Nope, I’ve done that card”.  I’ve been doing this column for that long.  So when Ryan Morrison plopped this 1998 Craig Wilson card in my inbox, I was a little surprised.  Wow! This card is quite the Monster! And I hadn’t done it yet. 

The White Sox must have felt they had the next Cal Ripken when rookie shortstop Craig Wilson went 22 for 47 with three homers in September of 1998.

The infielder drove home ten runs and scored 14 while stealing a base.  Native Chicagoan Wilson had five doubles to go with his three dingers.  

Split G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB BB SO BA OBP SLG
1998 Totals 13 53 47 14 22 5 0 3 10 1 3 6 .468 .490 .766
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 8/15/2016.

 

This card has the coveted 55 power number.  Not only did Wilson’s 1998 card received 1-1-0-0-0-0 power numbers but it got five sevens. 

The 7s are in odd spots though.  First, Wilson received a 15-10 so his “first” seven is at 25.  Also, instead of giving him a logical 42-7 (after 31-7, 51-7 and 35-7), APBA moved his last one all the way to 61.  Instead, he received a 42-8, 64-8 and 61-8. 

Wilsons card also received a 13-9 and a 53-9 which moved his error number to a 21-21. 

Fun numbers:  55-0, 53-9, 61-7

Well, Craig Wilson didn’t quite live up to expectations.  He batted .238 in 252 at-bats the next year and by 2000, he only played 28 games and was out of baseball after that. 

Stupid trivia:  There were three Craig Wilsons that played between the years 1993 and 2001.  

Thanks Ryan!!

Posted by: | Category: Card Analysis | Tags: , , | 1 comment

12
August

Rod’s Replay Insider: The team v. team section of your Replay binder book

It took me a while to figure this out, but a section that will help you better enjoy your replay (and save some time when the Replay is finished) is to record the results of team vs. team competition.

In other words, what’s one team done against another team?

I keep an ongoing “box” chart that records wins and losses for each team against the other team.

The team v. team chart serves two useful purposes.

First, it provides you a snapshot of how a particular team is performing against another team.

tmvtm

In the above example (an 1911 American League replay), the league-leading Philadelphia Athletics have recorded five or more wins over the Red Sox, the Highlanders (they weren’t the Yankees yet), the Senators and the White Sox. At the other end of the spectrum, the last place St. Louis Browns have lost five games to everyone but the A’s.  Feel free to download the team vs. team Excel file here

Second, if you have doubts about your standings, you can always add up the wins and losses to double-check the accuracy of your standings. Or vice-versa, you can check your team v. team records versus the won-lost records to see if they match up.

Next: Researching and adhering to player usage at positions played.

Read all of Rod’s Replay Insider articles!

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

10
August

Fennessy’s 2015 Cubs survive 13 innings against Rockies

296px-Kyle_Schwarber_on_July_8,_2015Coors Field
Denver, CO
April 11, 2015

The Cubs continue their stay in the mile high city with tonight’s game against the Rockies. This game features Travis Wood a CY against Jorge De La Rosa, a CYW for the home team. Given the hitting on both teams I am expecting a high scoring game.

De La Rosa appears to be struggling right from the start. He walks Starlin Castro on a 39 that converted to a walk courtesy of his W rating. Joe Maddon is smiling in the dugout already as you really have to work hard to walk Starlin.

Anthony Rizzo draws another walk on 5 pitches and the pitching coach has already made a visit to the mound to see what is happening with his starter. Fortunately whatever he said worked as Kris Bryant hits a grounder that second baseman D.J. LeMahieu makes a good stop on and gets Rizzo for the force play and the runners are on the corners with two outs. Miguel Montero pops up to Nolan Arenado at third and the inning is over with no score.

Charlie Blackmon gets a first pitch fastball and rips it past a diving Addison Russell at short and this rolls near the warning track before Chris Coghlan can cut it off and only a strong throw kept Blackmon for taking three bases. Wood hears the wakeup call and gets LeMahieu on a fly to shallow right field before striking out Arenado and Carlos Gonzalez back to back.

Having had time to relax in the dugout De La Rosa seems like a completely different pitcher as he retires the side in order in the second inning, and Wood does likewise and there is still no score after two innings of play.

De La Rosa continues to stay in a groove and he has now retired eight straight batters as the Cubs go down in order in the top of the inning. Unfortunately for them Travis Wood cannot say the same. Shortstop Jose Reyes slips a grounder to the right side between Castro and Rizzo for a single. He moved to second on a ground out by De La Rosa and then Charlie Blackmon strikes again. He laces a hard shot into center field that clears Dexter Fowlers reach in the enormous center field area and bounces off the wall. Blackmon is now two for two with a pair of doubles and an RBI.

LeMahieu continues the rally with a solid single up the middle that scores Blackmon and Montero makes a quick stop to the mound to keep Wood focused. Arenado hits a fly to left for the second out and Gonzalez strikes out for the second time of the evening and the inning ends with the Rockies on top 2-0.
Rizzo flies to shallow right to start the fourth inning, and De La Rosa walks Bryant on six pitches and the Cubs have their first base runner in a while. Recognizing that this may be a lot lower scoring game than anticipated Maddon orders the sacrifice and Montero delivers and Bryant is on second, but now there are two out. Chris Coghlan gets a slider, and he goes with the pitch and slices it into the left field corner for a run scoring triple. Austin Jackson, who has struggled so far pops up to Ben Paulsen near the Cubs dugout to end the inning, but the score is now 2-1 Colorado leading.

It is now Wood in shut down mode as the Rockies go down in order to end the fourth and the score still 2-1. The Cubs threatened in the fifth but came up short as Russell singled to right and Maddon was most displeased with Travis Wood, normally a very good hitter failed to lay down a bunt before striking out. Fowler takes first on a force play but goes nowhere as Castro flies out to left to end the inning.

Wood continues to stymie the home team, and the crowd is pretty quiet as Blackmon is finally retired for the first time of the evening as the Rockies go down 1-2-3 in the bottom of the fifth inning and the score is still just 2-1 Colorado atop.

Once again De La Rosa works out of trouble in the sixth inning as Rizzo draws his second free pass of the inning and Bryant lays down the bunt and puts the runner in scoring position. Montero struck out, but Coghlan drew another walk and runners were on first and second now with two out but Jackson flied out to left and the inning ended with the Cubs still trailing by one at the half way point.

Wood continues to roll in what is expected to be his final inning of the evening so he let it all hang out and pretty much overwhelmed the Colorado hitters and if this truly was his last inning he finished strong by retiring the final 11 hitters he faced as the Rockies lead 2-1 after six innings of play.

Russell grounds out to start the seventh inning and sure enough, Wood is removed and pinch hitter Kyle Schwarber comes to the plate. Kyle hits a booming drive to right center field and Carlos Gonzales makes the running grab just in front of the warning track for a loud out number two. Dexter Fowler also gets hold of a pitch and drills this to right and Gonzalez makes a great diving catch near the foul line. Had he misplayed that Dex would have had three for sure, and possibly gone for the home run.

Pedro Strop (BXY) is now ready to go and the Rockies take the usual Pedro roller coaster ride of an inning. After getting a quick fly out by Corey Dickerson, Nick Hundley hits a floater to left for a single. Ben Paulsen comes up and draws a walk. Reyes hits a hard grounder that bounces off of Castro’s chest and when he can’t get a grip on the ball the bases are loaded with just one out and the pitcher’s spot up.

Walt Weiss has a tough decision here. While his starting pitcher is clearly tiring, there are no higher rated pitchers in the bullpen, and none have Z’s either. So while there are plenty of C’s to go to, none change what happens on the mound, so he chooses to let his pitcher bat, and to nobody’s surprise he strikes out. Blackmon was clearly swinging for the seats as he also struck out and the inning ends still 2-1 Colorado on top and we will see if the gamble pays off.

Unfortunately it didn’t take long for Colorado to regret the move. Castro makes up for his earlier error and mashes the 2-2 off speed pitch for a homer to deep left field and tie the game at two. Rizzo grounds out to Paulsen, who flips to De La Rosa covering for out number one and then promptly walks the bases loaded (2 were conversions from a W). Thankfully for Weiss, Austin Jackson hits a textbook 6-4-3 double play to end the inning.

Maddon elects to let Strop go another inning and the ups and downs continue. He struck out D.J. LeMahieu, but then allows a single to Arenado. He then strikes out Gonzalez for out number two. Dickerson hits a rocket down the third base line, but Kris Bryant makes a great diving stop, pops up and throws a strike for the final out of the inning.

De La Rosa takes the mound to start the 9th and actually looks great. He gets a perfect inning and the Rockies go to the bottom of the ninth with a chance to try and win this. Justin Grimm (AKW) comes in to try and bring this to extra innings. Justin gets a quick out, but then Bryant’s throw on a grounder by Paulsen pulls Rizzo off the bag and it’s an error to keep the rally going.

Jose Reyes hits a grounder that moves Paulsen to second with two outs, and with the game possibly on the line, De La Rosa’s night is finally over. He did a great job and pinch hitter Justin Morneau comes in and comes right back after striking out to end the inning. We are going to extra innings.

As we go to the top of the 10th inning Boone Logan (CXW) is on in relief. He makes quick work of the Cubs and the top of the lineup comes to bat for the Rockies. Blackmon is swinging for the seats again as he strikes out and the hitting instructor comes over as he returns to the dugout. LeMahieu gets his second hit of the night with a soft single to center. Unfortunately Arenado hits a rocket right at Castro who is able to catch D.J. just far enough away from the bag for the inning ending double play!

Logan comes out for his second inning of work and walks Montero on 6 pitches. Chris Coghlan hits a single to center and Montero tries to make it to third, but Charlie Blackmon’s throw is on the mark and he is gunned down at third base. The next two hitters go down quickly and the Rockies come to bat in the bottom of the 11th in a 2-2 ballgame.

Since Grimm is due to bat first next inning Maddon leaves him in the game and he strikes out Carlos Gonzalez on three straight heaters and congratulations Carlos, here’s your golden sombrero for whiff number 4 on the evening. Dickerson fares no better and he strikes out too. Nick Hundley draws the two out walk to keep the inning alive, and Ben Paulsen hits a bloop single over second to put runners on first and second but Reyes flies to right and the inning is over.

So as the Cubs come to bat in the top of the twelfth inning Logan will pitch his third and final inning should he finish it as he is due to lead off the bottom half of the inning. He is absolutely throwing bb’s as he strikes out the side and Grimm’s night is over as he was lifted for pinch hitter Mark Denorfia.

Not wanting to use his closer just yet Joe Maddon takes a huge risk by bringing in Jason Motte (CZ) for this inning. He gets pinch hitter Tom Murphy on a fly to left, but Charlie Blackmon has made the adjustment the hitting instructor mentioned earlier and rips a double off the wall in right field for his third two bagger of the night. LeMahieu grounds out and Arenado flies out to Rizzo in foul territory near the wall to end the inning still tied at two.

So Tommy Kahnle (CXW) comes in for the 13th inning and Rizzo, who has done his best Frank Chance imitation this game by getting a couple of walks then hurting the pitcher with the game on the line hits a home run just inside the right field foul pole for the go ahead homer. Montero whiffs, then Coghlan rips a double to center. Jackson strikes out and Russell grounds out and the Cubs have the lead for the first time all night as we go to the bottom of the inning.

And now Maddon has everything just as he hoped for. Their closer on the mound, and the part of the lineup least likely to hurt him. Gonzalez, the main worry flies out to Russell in shallow left field for out number one. Hundley was completely overpowered with fastballs for out number two via the strikeout. Ben Paulsen, whom I have never heard of has had a good couple of at bats tonight and gets his second hit of the evening. Jose Reyes hits a weak grounder to Bryant and the third baseman fires to first to end the game and finally the long evening comes to an end with the Cubs victorious 3-2 in their second consecutive extra inning ballgame.

Surprise of the evening goes to tonight’s winning pitcher Jason Motte, who made his first appearance of the season. Rondon got his first save of the year and appears to finally be settling in. Tough luck loser for the evening was not the official loser of tonight’s game Tommy Kahnle, but Jorge De La Rosa, who pitched his heart out only to get a no decision.

 

Around the horn:

The Texas Rangers beat the Houston Astros 4-2 on Mitch Moreland’s game winning, pinch hit home run with one out in the bottom of the 9th inning.

The New York Mets pounded the Atlanta Braves 8-0. Lucas Duda went 4-4 with 2 homers and 5 RBI.

Garrett Cole loses his no hit bid with two out in the bottom of the ninth as Ryan Braun of the Brewers hits a solo home run. The Pirates still win 5-1.

[photo credit]

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

9
August

Terrible Card Tuesday: 2013 Ramon Hernandez

IMG_1704

Ramon Hernandez was sure-gloved catcher with a decent arm.  On occasion, he could jack one out of the park.  In 2013, his last year in the majors though, he just ran out of gas.  He could barely run out those ground balls, apparently.

Hernandez grounded into six double plays in 55 plate appearances while batting .208.  He did belt three homers while stealing one base for the Dodgers. 

Split G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB BB SO BA OBP SLG
2013 Totals 17 55 48 4 10 2 0 3 6 1 6 7 .208 .291 .438
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 8/9/2016.

 

Count them.  There are thirteen 24s on his card.  There are so many that APBA was forced to give him some weird number combos like 32-24, 52-24 and 14-13. 

I almost featured this card on Weird Wednesday.  In addition to the 24s, Ramon has a 15-10 despite being slow. 

Hernandez ended up with 169 career homers (and 757 rbis!) which really isn’t bad for someone who never hit more than 23 in a season.   

thanks to Rod Woodward for the suggestion!!

Posted by: | Category: Card Analysis | Tags: , , | 4 comments

8
August

“Sub-.500” Chicagoland Fall tourney date set for Nov 12 with new guy in charge

CWS Summer Fantasy-8373-002It just seems like once we finish one tournament, it’s time to get ready for another.  For me, that means the Chicagoland Fall 2016 Tournament. 

But check this out!  There’s a new guy in charge!  Mr. Rob Spatz (right) will be calling the shots as the new tournament organizer.  It will be hard to fill the shoes of Doug Schuyler who has been organizing these Chicago tournaments for four years now.  However, I think the idea of building some leadership in the APBA community is great and Spatz is a prime candidate to keep the tourneys going.  He’s a Sox fan but I still think he’s ok. 

Rob already on the ball.  He has the got room reserved.  Here are the details for the time and place for the upcoming tournament:

SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 12, 2016
Comfort Inn – O Hare 2175 Touhy Ave, Des Plaines, IL 60018 (map)
Doors Open at 8:30 AM. Games to start by 9:30 AM, with the Championship slated to be completed by 7 PM.

CWS Summer Fantasy-8319

Rob has been great about getting input from regular tourney participants on theme, rules and such.  With feedback of many, here is the current setup…

Theme

The idea is simple.  Per Rob, “Basic selection premise: Select any MLB team 1901?2015 that ended the season with a sub .500 record. The team must have more losses than wins. Teams that ended with a .500 record or better are excluded.”

This tournament idea has been bandied about by many organizers (including the Prairieland tournament) and every time it’s suggested, it gets good feedback.  Great choice, Rob! 

Agenda

8:30 AM – Doors Open. Games to be played.
9:30 AM – Introductions, blessing, and National Anthem
12:30 PM – 1:30 PM. Lunch. Options will be presented before the day of the tournament
1:30 PM – We will either have a pseudo All-Star game or go back to game play depending on the status of games remaining.
6:00 PM – Championship
7:00 PM – Optional Post Tournament Dinner at Jameson’s Charhouse

 

CWS Summer Fantasy-8328

Rules

Here is a link to the full set of rules.  For those who have played in the Chicagoland tournaments, it is very similar to the most recent ones. 

Here are the important rules that do tend to change from tourney to tourney:

  • 25 man roster. 4 man rotation.
  • No J-4s start
  • Conventional APBA Pitching Increases and Reductions.
  • 3 Game Series (Assuming a 32 Team Tournament)
  • Have Fun!

However the big new change, is this…

  • Standardizing the tournament to the most recent APBA booklet. 

I’m sure this wasn’t an easy decision as it might be a little controversial.  Rob DID poll everyone and most people did agree that was the best course of action.  Personally, I especially like the idea of using one standardized set of boards.  I also am glad it is the newer boards. 

You can find the full set of rules here.

Rob says there is still room in the tournament pool for those interested.  I’ve lost count how many Chicagoland tournaments I’ve attended but I do know I’ve had a blast at each one.  Rob is looking for 32 teams this time around and after two weeks, he’s already got 20 teams. 

Pick your sub-.500 team and let him know you’re coming!! 

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

3
August

Weird Card Wednesday: 1920 Jimmy Austin

austin rich

Rich Zawadzki has a problem.  He’s going to use the 1920 St. Louis Browns in Rob Spatz’ “sub-.500” Chicago tournament which is coming up in November. 

But check out his third baseman, Jimmy “Pepper” Austin.  Something’s a little goofy with his 33 in the 2012 card printing.

Split G PA AB R H 2B 3B HR RBI SB BB SO BA OBP SLG
1920 Totals 84 330 280 38 76 11 3 1 32 2 31 15 .271 .352 .343
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 8/3/2016.

 

I’m no APBA card expert but 15 extra bases in 330 plate appearances works out to about 1.6 power numbers per 36 plate appearances. My guess it that should be a 7.  Rich is looking for a correct card so maybe we’ll get a ruling soon.

The 33-20 on the card is strange enough but I happened to notice that Jimmy Austin hailed from Swansea, Wales.  According to the Baseball Almanac, Austin is one of only three players in the history of baseball to come from Wales. 

In fact, Austin who retired in 1929, is the last Welsh player to play in a MLB game. 

Thanks Rich and “pob lwc” in the tournament! 

Posted by: | Category: Card Analysis | Tags: , , | 3 comments

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