Mid-West Baseball League has an opening!

applicationPosting this for friend and fellow Boys of Summer manager, Stray Corrado  -Tom

The Mid-West Baseball League may have an Opening for the 2016 MWBL Season & is always looking for quality managers, who meet the following requirements.

Do the following statements describe you?

Passionate about the game of baseball….
Interested in both on-field strategy and front-office maneuvering.
Knowledgeable about Major League Baseball players’ worth, beyond their statistics.
Focused on the minor leagues, with a good eye for who the next MLB stars will be.
Capable of giving at least a five-year commitment to a fantasy baseball league.
Willing to put in preseason and post-season work, such as preparing for the draft, making off-season trades and voting on post – season awards and rule changes.
Possesses the time to play weekly series from Friday afternoon through Tuesday morning, as well as the time for short summary write-ups.
Is able to attend the MWBL draft either in person or on-line on Saturday in February 20, 2016.
Has In-depth knowledge of Minor League Players as we draft 150+ each year.
Has E-Mail access for sending and receiving league files.
Owns Baseball for Windows v5.75

If that’s you, then you’re just the type of owner we’re looking for.
You could be one of us. You belong in the best present day league around, and that’s what we’ve have.

Chances are you already know something about the MWBL by now, but in case you don’t, here are a few reasons why you won’t find a better simulation baseball experience:

The BEST league website around, without a doubt. More info, more records, more stats than anywhere other league.
Inexpensive Franchise Fees – only $35 per year. (Cover league expenses).
Great owners- intelligent guys who care about the game and are ready to talk trade any time, all the time.
Twelve-man minor league roster. Build your team form the ground up, but snag those guys early- by the time he’s ready to be a star, chances are someone’s already got him.
In-depth post-season awards- MVP, CY Young, Rookie of the Year, Gold Gloves, Reliever of the Year, enjoy the feeling of watching your player win one of these coveted awards.
The MWBL All-Star game, featuring the best of the best, and rotating yearly to deserving owners.

The Draft- the biggest day of the year. Christmas time for baseball junkies, where 28 guys from all over the country spend hours making the decisions that will (hopefully) put their team in the World Series that year or perhaps five years down the road.

So there you have it- the best league around is, naturally, looking for the best owners around. If you’re one of them, don’t hesitate to send in your application. We look forward to hearing back from you.

Submit an application at:

The Mid-West Baseball League

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Monster Card Monday: 1987 Bob Forsch

bob forsch

Nestled in Tom Fulton’s hand is Bob Forsch’s 1987 card.  Forsch played 16 seasons in the National League mostly with the St. Louis Cardinals.  He was a solid if not flashy pitcher winning 168 games with a career ERA of 3.76. 

Apparently, Forsch was also pretty handy with the stick.  Over his career, he hit 12 homers, 65 extra base hits and 84 rbis.  In 1987, he hit .298 with six doubles and two doubles. 

1987 Totals 34 30 71 57 9 17 6 0 2 8 3 17 .298 .333 .509
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 10/26/2015.


Not surprisingly, Forsch won the Silver Slugger award in ‘87 for his efforts. 

Worth mentioning is that Bob has a second 14 at 13 in addition to his 45-14.  He was  walked three times that season. 

If you’re wondering, Forsch went 11-7 with a 4.32 ERA in 1987.  Typically, that was pretty high for a CZ back then nd the cutoff for wins was 13 or 14.  If memory serves though, 1987 was a pretty offensive year.  The card makers may have adjusted. 

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Rod’s Replay Insider: How to keep stats?

boxscoreKeeping tabs on the numbers likely will prove to be the part of the replay that will give you the most headaches and take the most time.

After more than 10,000 solo games, I can categorically state that keeping stats is THE most challenging part of a replay.

Before you launch into developing a stat-keeping system for your replay, ask yourself three important questions:

  1. How much work do I want to put into keeping stats?
  2. What stats do I want to keep?
  3. How am I going to record, maintain and summarize my stats?

There is no way around it. Stats entail lots of work, no matter how simple a replay you create. However, if the stats are diligently maintained and organized in a fashion that allows you to enjoy the games, will afford you the greatest satisfaction, enjoyment, satisfaction, and memories from your replay.

After all, what sums up your replay? It’s the records, starting with team stats and concluding with the individual performance of each player in the replay.

Think of preparing for a replay (i.e. the stats) as setting the stage.

Replay prep can take up to a month, but it is time well spent. Once you have laid the groundwork, you will be to sprint through the games, more easily keep and manage records, and enjoying a far greater feel for happening within your replay.

The preparation stage will feel like office work and has a certain amount of drudgery to it. I always think of it as the due diligence that will enables one to maximize the enjoyment of what transpires in a replay.

In the next few blog entries, we will focus on specific methodologies for stat-keeping. We will start with the obvious (what do I need?) and finish off with less visible information that addresses how to do the stats as quickly and painlessly as possible.

Next: What stat-keeping tools do you need?

Read all of Rod’s Replay Insider articles!

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2015 Baseball Carded Player List revealed!

apbalogo1Straight from the APBA company we have the 2015 APBA Baseball carded player list.  This is the compiled rosters of all players who will get a APBA card (or a BBW player entry) for the 2015 season. 

You can download the roster in Excel format here

Each Major League Baseball team has 30 players on the APBA roster. 

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Monster Card Monday: 1916 Ty Cobb

cobb 16

I noticed today that I only have one Ty Cobb Monster Monday column to date.  I do have a Terrible Tuesday one in his name (his rookie year) and I don’t like that ratio.  So thanks to Pastor Rich “Grandmasta Monster Card” Zawadzki, here is Cobb’s 1916 card.

In 1916, Cobb led the AL in runs scored (113) and stolen bases (68).  He also hit .370, second only to Tris Speaker’s .386.  He also collected 201 hits for the Tigers, one of nine times he would do so in his career.

1916 Totals 145 637 543 113 201 31 10 5 19 68 78 39 .370 .451 .492
Provided by Baseball-Reference.com: View Original Table
Generated 10/19/2015.


Cobb’s 1916 card probably isn’t as overwhelming as his 1911 card that was featured before.  I certainly wouldn’t bench him either.  As I’ve said before, sometimes it’s the numbers that aren’t outs that impress me rather than the ones the ones that are hits.  In this case, Cobb has a 21-22, a 26-14 and a 46-40.

Experienced APBA fans can get a good read on most APBA cards.  However, if you’re new to the game, cards like Cobb’s might be tough because of the speed numbers like 11s and 10s.  1916 Cobb hit .370 but he has a 55-8.  What gives?

It’s not rocket science but here’s a simple trick I’ve used for cards like this since I was a teenager.  Since 11s are roughly equal in hit value to 7s, pretend for the moment that they ARE 7s.  Then move them to the appropriate spots.  In this case, Cobb’s three 11s would become 7s and would move to 55, 15 and 25.  This normalizes his card (for hit value only, not for steals obviously) compared to other hitters in the league.

So in other words, Cobb’s 1916 card is roughly worth a hitter’s card with a 25-7 (probably a little more since he also has an extra 10 as well).  I’m a little surprised the Georgia Peach doesn’t have at least three 31s.

cobb 16rich

Finally, is it me or there something goofy with the font formatting with the 52-27?  You be the judge.

Thanks, Rich!

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Bruce Norlander takes out his crystal ball again

apbaFor many years, Bruce Norlander has been predicting APBA baseball pitching grades.  He’s posted his predictions on the APBA Between the Lines forum for years but in the last several seasons, he’s posting it on his own site, ArchRivals Baseball

Bruce has a formula for predicting the grades and in my book, he’s gets it pretty close.  He’s a very popular guy this time of year.  Even though his grades are not official in any capacity, APBA baseball fans are clamoring for any idea of what the coming season’s card set will look like. 

Here they are:

Keep an eye on ArchRivals Baseball in case he posts more. 

As a bonus, here’s an interview that Mike Estep did with Bruce Norlander for the APBA Blog back in 2012.  If you read it, you’ll find he’s more than the “predictions guy”. 

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APBA Co. reunites me with my Urbana Locomotives

APBA errorA quick note of thanks to John Herson of the APBA Game Company who helped me save my Urbana Locomotives of the Boys of Summer APBA League which uses Baseball for Windows. 

Early this week, I fired up League Manager to set my lineups and rotations for a BoS road series and I got a nasty “Access Violation” error.  I got a similar error when I brought up the Advanced Draft program too.  It didn’t just affect my Boys of Summer League organization, either.  My 1961 BBW replay was hit with the error.  Even the protected season organizations wouldn’t display. 

After troubleshooting it for a day or so, I contacted APBA.  John Herson asked for the pertinent information and some screenshots of error messages.  Eventually, he needed to me to send him some files so he could investigate. 

It didn’t take him long to find the problem.  An Urbana Locomotive lineup file was the culprit.  It was corrupt and was gumming up the works.  Once I deleted it and loaded the current F-file from commissioner Shawn Baier, I was back in business. Now, my Boys of Summer organization as well as 1961 will load just fine. 


I don’t know, though.  During my “absence” when my Locos were set to autoplay with no intervention from me, they went 3-3 against the first place Traverse City Panthers.  They seemed to do ok without their GM. 

After a miserable start this season, the Locomotives (47-40) are four games back and just three back of a wild card berth as we just passed the halfway mark in the season. 

Thanks again to John Herson and APBA for getting me back on my feet! 

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Rod’s Replay Insider: Organizing and scheduling your replay

Schedule (1)Figure on a full month to organize a replay. Organized preparation will save you lots of time and greatly enhance your replay when you actually start rolling.

Let’s focus on what you will need to do to organize your replay. Basically, you can break a replay down into three parts:

  1. Organizing the replay.
  2. Playing the games.
  3. Summarizing what happened.

Step 1: Determine the magnitude of your replay.

How many teams will be in your replay?  How many games will each team play?  And what kind of structure will you organize in your replay?

Will there be one league? More than one division? Will there be playoffs and a Wild Card?  Will there be a balanced schedule or unbalanced schedule?

Step 2: Create a schedule

Your schedule will depend entirely on how you have organized your replay structure. So, how do you create a schedule?

Some re-players like to follow a particular real-life season’s schedule on a day-by-day basis. Others, including myself, organize their own schedules in a fashion that will allow complete series to be played in a bloc, saving time and making it easier to keep track of what each team is doing.

· Take an 8 ½ x 11 inch yellow legal pad (see the attached illustration, which is a typed version of what I had previously prepared on a legal pad for a 1911 American League replay). And hang onto those legal pads with the schedules, because they are going to be very handy as your replay season gets underway

· Create a schedule page for each month (April, May, etc.).

· List each individual month dates on the lift side and list the teams and their individual games, in pencil on the pad, four teams to each page.

Check carefully to ensure you have the teams playing the required number of games against one another and have a balanced home and away record (the same number of games at home and away).

Next: How to keep stats?

Read all of Rod’s Replay Insider articles!

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League Profile: Sunrise Baseball Association

This past weekend while I was at the Illowa APBA All-Star get-together, I received a Facebook message from Jerry Conca.  I found out Jerry is a friend of Bill Gilliam who is in my Boys of Summer League so I figured he was an ok guy.  Jerry and I messaged back and forth throughout the weekend and I found out that his basic game league, the Sunrise Baseball Association, is looking for managers.  To his credit, he even tried to recruit me to the league. 

The SBA has been around since 1990 and managers can play face-to-face or over Skype. 

More info on the Sunrise Baseball Association:  

League Name

Sunrise Baseball Association

Contact Person Jerry Conca
Sport Baseball
# of teams 12
Year of inception 1990
Basic/Master/Computer/ Combination Basic
Geographic location Nationwide

Jerry says: 

This league is awesome! The ultimate APBA challenge for the true fanatic. Face to face competition with some of the best APBA players across the country.

Give us a shout and see if we have a team opening. 66’s!

Thanks, Jerry for passing on the info!  If anyone is interested in finding out more, leave a comment and I’ll make sure he sees it. 

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.

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Country Gents’ Khris Davis HR, wild 10th, makes the difference in 2015 IAL All-Star Game 4-2


The Game

The 2015 Illowa APBA All-Star Game was a hard fought battle this year.  The Country Gents came out the victors in the end over the City Boys when the dust settled thanks to a two-run homer by Khris Davis of the Moline Upperdeckers homerun in the top of the ninth inning and a disastrous 10th inning by the City Boys’ battery Aroldis Chapman and Yan Gomes.’ 

The City Boys had control of the game for the first 8 innings.  In fact, the Gents only managed two hits for the first eight innings.  Meanwhile, the Kentucky Kernel shortstop Starlin Castro hit a solo homer in the 3rd inning.  In the 8th, Twin City Thunderchicken J.D. Martinez rapped a double and Yasiel Puig of the Three Rivers Gamblers drove home teammate Ryan Braun who pinch ran for him.  That made it 2-0 City Boys and the way the Gents were hitting, it may as well have been 10-0. 

Enter Upperdecker Khris Davis. 


Manager Mark Bunch looks for a pinch hitter… and finds Khris Davis. 


…the roll…


a two run shot!  High fives for the Country Gents!

Davis came in to pinch hit in the top of ninth after Molly Putts’ Scooter Gennett singled.  He launched one into the stands against Huston Street to tie the game 2-2.  Just like that, it was a brand new ball game and it was going into extra innings. 


City Boys’ Manager Chuck Lucas was looking for bullpen after Davis’ HR

In the bottom of the 9th, the City Boys went down 1-2-3 against Clayton Kershaw of the Upperdeckers. Manager Chuck Lucas brought in reliever Aroldis Chapman (A&CKXYW). 

Then things sort of fell apart for the City Boys.  Chapman gave up back-to-back singles to Buster Posey and Matt Kemp (in case you’re wondering, a 44-7 and a 15-10).  Kemp stole second so there were runners on second and third and no outs.  Chapman buckled down and struck out the next two batters.  The City Boys thought they might avoid disaster but the Bombers’ Danny Santana walked to load the bases and the tension increased. 

IMG_0441Then everything unfolded.  With Gennett up, Chapman threw a wild pitch and Posey scored the eventual winning run.  In case that wasn’t enough, Yan Gomes then allowed a passed ball to score Kemp.  The Country Gents were up 4-2.  Kershaw came out for the bottom of the 10th and retired the City Boys for the win. 

Congrats to the Country Gents managers especially All-Star Manager Marcus Bunch who also rolled the homer for his player Khris Davis. 

Country Gents 4  City Boys 2

Box score of the 2015 IAL All-Score

The Weekend


Visitor Scott Fennessy gets a great view of the Cubs game while he fills in for a game

While the All-Star Game is the focus of the weekend, the Illowa APBA League does play a lot of regular season games during our get-together.  In theory, it’s our chance to play the non-division teams that may not live near us.  A bonus:  Scott Fennessy, APBA Blog contributor, stopped by and even played a few games. 


That’s Brando on the tablet looking up at Commissioner Mike Bunch.  He took part in the league meeting via Skype.

We even had our league meeting on Saturday morning. That’s a new thing for us since we’ve moved it from its usual spot during the Draft weekend.  Mike Bunch (above left) does a great job keeping us on track. Even John Brandeberry participated from Montana via Skype.  A lot of important issues were discussed and I’ll probably hit on some of those in future articles.  I will say that some good discussion was had and no one bit anyone’s head off. 

Here are all the photos I took. 

Thanks to commissioner Mike Bunch and vice-commissioner Rob Moore (who set up the weekend). 

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