Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Wild Pitch - Does a "coached" runner advance?

Greetings all!
At the fabulous Chicagoland APBA Fall Tournament hosted by Rob Spatz and won by Rich Zawadzki an interesting question came up.


Slow runner on 1st.

Manger is "coaching" the slow runner.

Result is "Wild Pitch, runner to 2nd."

The rules say:

There is a 6th rule, but it only pertains to 1st and 3rd double steals and the trailing runner.

Does he advance?

Discuss, and GO...........

Sunday, November 5, 2017

Selection Saturday Wisconsin Winter Tourney

Another great APBA Saturday with a Selection Saturday for the Wisconsin Winter Tournament hosted by the gracious Kurt Bergland!

This was a tough one for me.  Had I drafted 1st or 2nd I would have taken the 1953 Brooklyn Dodgers or the 1957 Milwaukee Braves.  However, I drafted 4th and I was left with either a strong Giants or Yankees team, or stay true to the Twins and take a Senators team.  I can't stand the Yankees and I have no connection to the Giants other than Jon Miller as my favorite play-by-play person.  Thus, the 1955 Senators are my choice.

They are not the best Senators team in the 1950s if you look at team record.  The 1952 Senators had 78 wins and the 1955 team only had 53.  Yes, I selected a 101 loss team for an APBA tourney.

Let's take a look at the line-up.

1.  Eddie Yost  (F)           3B4        .407 OBP
2.  Squirrel Sievers          LF 1       .489 SLG
3.  Carl Paula                   RF 1      .447 SLG
4. Mickey Vernon           1B 4       .452 SLG .301 AVG
5. Johnny Groth              CF 2
6. Scrap Iron Courtney    C7           .298 AVG
7. Pepe Valdivielso         SS7      
8. Pete Runnels               2B7         .284 AVG
9. Pitcher *

* O'Shea hits 5th or higher and may pinch hit a bit.  "Grab a bat Francis."


1.  Bear Tracks Schmitz    Cz
2.  Mickey McDermott     Cyw
3.  Spec O'Shea                 D

Pete Ramos C*z

Killebrew (S) 3B3

Ernie Oravetz Pinch Runner (F)
Jerry Snyder Pinch Runner (F)

There is a bit of speed off the bench if needed and Killer as a young player can hit one out.  I can't really help the fielding but I have adequate reserves if an injury hits this team.

Let's talk defense, or not.

Defense is 34 total, with massive adjustments to get to 36.

It should be fun handing the 1953 Dodgers, '57 Braves, and the like a few losses.

Home Field is the massive confines of Griffith Stadium: 388/421/320

Saturday, October 28, 2017

The Chicago Fall Tourney

Well, the Vintage Baseball Season is done and that allows time on Saturday for this blog.

The next big event is the Chicago Fall Tournament hosted by Rob Spatz.  It should prove to be a wild one as the teams are limited to the 2000s, thus we enter the PED era of baseball.

I selected the 2002 Twins.  As usual, I feel pretty good about this team working it out against the 2002 A's (Moneyball), 1977 Yankees, 1909 Cubs, and the 2015 Royals.  They played some tough teams pretty tight and consistently beat the 2002 A's.  However, when I take a step back this team has some weaknesses, especially 5-9 in the batting order, they strike out too much.

The strengths are decent starting pitching: Rick Reed Byz, Santana Bxyw, and Eric Milton Cyz.  I may be optimistic calling that "decent.   Yes! A three man rotation for Chicago!

The Pen is solid by any measure: J.C. Romero A&Cx, Hawkins Axz, Guardado Bxz, and Mike Jackson in a pinch, Bz.

Batting Order:
1. Bobby Kielty  LF F2
2. Jacque Jones  RF  F2
3. Torii Hunter  CF  F3
4. David Ortiz  DH S
5. Corey Koskie  3B5
6. Doug Mientkiewicz  1B5
7. A.J. Pierzynski  C8
8. Luis Rivas  2B F8
9. Christian Guzman  SS F9

They field well, that's for sure.

Some speed at the top and bottom.

And a "motormouth" behind the plate.

Saturday, April 15, 2017

Easter Back from the Dead Mini-Tournament

Over Easter weekend I am going to run a Back from the Dead Mini-Tournament.  What do I mean by that?

I am taking the 4 worst full-season Minnesota Twins teams in the history of the franchise and running them through a 4 team best of 5 bracket tourney.   Winner gets redemption.
Those teams, ranked from worst to best are, with their top player by WAR, Rotation, and Pen:

2016 Twins 59-103  #4 seed

Brian Dozier 6.5

Santana By
Santiago Cw
Duffey Dz
Milone Dz

Kintzler B*z
Pressly B*y
Rogers C*xz
Boshers C*xz

1982 Twins 60-102 #3 seed

Tom Brunansky 5.6

Bobby Castillo By
Frank Viola Dyz
Al Williams Dz
Terry Felton Dxw

Ron Davis C*x (the Vulture is going to get a lot of work)

2011 Twins 63-99  #2 seed

Scott Baker 4.4

Baker Bxz
Pavano Crz
Blackburn C
Liriano Cyw

Perkins A*xy
Dumatrait B*w
Capps C*z
Mijares C*w

On a side note, the 2011 cards are almost paper thin and the print is light.

1999 Twins 63-97  #1 seed

 Brad Radke 6.5

Radke Bz
Mays Cy
Milton Dyz
Hawkins Dz

Miller A*yz
Wells B*z
Trombley C*xz

Sunday, April 9, 2017

Chicago Selection Saturday

The Chicagoland APBA Tournament run by Rob Spatz is a fantastic tourney run by one of the outstanding individuals in the APBA community, and now he has added another event, Selection Saturday!

The summer Chicagoland teams must have a winning percentage below .556. 
I have selected the 2008 Minnesota Twins!   At 88-74 they should be a solid team. 

Mauer .328/.451/.413
Morneau .300/.499/.374
Gomez stole 33

Fielding 1 no matter what pitching moves I make.  

My "Ace": Scotty Baker Bxz

The Terminator: Joe Nathan A&C*kz

Friday, March 17, 2017

Prairieland 2.0 Spring Training

The Prairieland 2.0 takes place the first weekend of April and I am taking the 1991 Minnesota Twins with the addition of the 1911 Shoeless Joe Jackson.  Here is how they stack up:

The defense and batting order:
1.  Kirby Puckett .319/.460/.352  F CF-3.
2.  Shane Mack .310/.529/.363  F RF-3
3.  Shoeless Joe Jackson .408/.468/.590 F LF-2
4.  Chilli Davis .277/.507/.385  DH
5.  Kent Hrbek .284/.461/.373  S 1B-5
6.  Brian Harper .311/.447/.336  S C-7
7.  Chuck Knoblauch .281/.350/.351 F 2B-8
8.  Scott Leius .286/.417/.378 F 3B-4
9.  Greg Gagne .266/.395/.310  F SS-9

Yep, look at Shane Mack's Slugging %.

Team Defense 41

The Rotation:
Kevin Tapani Byz
Jack Morris By
Scott Erickson B
Mark Guthrie Dy

The Bull Pen:
Rick Aguilera A*xy
Carl Willis A*yz
Terry Leach C*z

Dan Gladden F OF-2 Pinch Runner
Al Newman F SS-8, 2B-8, 3B-4, 1B-2 Utility Player and Pinch Runner
Mike Pagliarulo S 3B-5 Pinch Hitter
Randy Bush OF-1 Pinch Hitter
Junior Ortiz S C-8 Reserve Catcher

Field General: Tom Kelly

Home games will be played in the HHH Metrodome.

New Project: Team Ireland

This is a mid-winter project I started in January.  I married into an Irish family and have adopted a love of that culture.  This winter, I decided to create an all Irish team, using only players born in Ireland. I toyed around with the idea of an Irish-American team, but the options were too many, I like a more selective pool to draw a team from.

There have been 47 Irish-born Major Leaguers, a number smaller than I thought, and no player born after 1887 to debut, I expected a handful of players born in the 20th century to make an appearance, but that is not the case. I really have to thank Baseball Reference for the ability to sort players by birth location, what a wonderful option for projects like this.

The project yielded a team of 18 that will be competitive. I downloaded career stats and peak year using mostly WAR to determine peak year.   I'd like to see them match-up against older sets; I have the 1901 APBA and 1894 Skeetersoft  sets. But, knowing how I roll, they will face some 20th century Twins teams.

Equal thanks goes to Steve's APBA Card Computer for generating these cards or sourcing similar players' APBA numbers from, and using his computer, to make the final APBA-like cards.   And, I am sure the talented Howie Mooney will be asked to make envelopes and possibly cards worthy of this team in the end.

Team Name:  Hibernian Baseball Club

Ballpark:  A Boston based team, they will play their home games at the South End Grounds II.  I will make a stadium adjustment chart for this interesting ancient ballpark.  A pull hitter's bandbox; rectangle outfield, no foul territory down the lines and a lengthy 440 to dead center, 450 to left-center, and a ridiculous 250 to left and 255 to right.  Quick corner outfielders to give help to the cathedral that is center are needed, and a quick fielder with a great glove in center would be a big advantage. Too bad Ichiro is not Irish.   How do you position the center fielder?  Normal depth is going to let a lot of doubles or triples go over his head, too deep and a ton of bloop singles are the order of the day. After you position center, it is not a pitchers park when facing pull hitters, so he may not make the difference in every game.  Dream Team outfield for the South End Grounds: LF Erstad, CF Ichiro, RF Kaline.  An intimidating ballpark to walk into, and I expect an intimidating home team.

Field sizeLeft Field – 250 ft
Left-Center – 445 ft
Deep Left-Center – 450 ft
Center Field – 440 ft
Right-Center – 440 ft
Right Field – 255 ft
* Dimensions for South End Grounds II

I've not made the park-adjustment chart for this replay yet but it will be interesting.  In the past, the most I have done is made a few adjustments for The Metrodome, Met Stadium, and Target Field given Diamond Mind (I know, heresy) data and other sources.  For example, it has proven very difficult to hit one out of right-center at Target Field.  

For this fantasy replay, something on the order of a spray chart for dead-away, pull, and opposite field.  R/L will not matter for pull or opposite as the lines are about the same.  Up the chance for a pull or opposite field HR by a set % and reduce it for dead-away.  I may have the manager announce "deep" or "standard" for the center fielder, with standard being the default. If a HR roll comes up short from the park-adjustment, and if the CF was deep it may be a F-8, if positioned normal, a "6".  When "deep" singles that are hit out of the infield may get a re-roll for a 2B unless the runner is slow.  F7s and F-9s will be able to re-roll against the South End Adjustment Chart. If the hitter pulled it or went opposite field, that chart may yield a HR in this park. 

The Hibernians are a deadball team, so playing a team like the 1988 A's in this park may make a circus out of it, but I will have to host one or two expositions in South End. 

Not the greatest revenue producer for ownership seating about 7,000, but a team like this needs a unique historical ballpark.  Now for the team!

The Team:

Rotation with Peak WAR and year

Tony Mullane       11.6   1883
Tommy Bond        9.9    1879
Hugh Daily           6.9    1883
Mike O'Neill          2.9    1904

Position Players
Peak WAR and year

C -   Jimmy Archer              1.7   1912
1B - Jack Doyle                   3.8   1896
2B - Andy Leonard              1.8   1875
3B - Mike Muldoon              2.1   1885    
SS - Barney McLaughlin     1.9   1890
LF - Jako Fields                  1.7   1890
CF - Patsy Donovan            2.3   1896
RF - Jimmy Walsh               1.4   1916