Nov 01 2038: 2038--The Great, Foggy Season - by MukilteoMike on December 20th, 2018
Real life tragedy, as well as miracles, created a massive fog around the season where almost everything seemed to work. We drafted our first ever 15 potential pitcher right out of the gate. While that high potential is largely due to expected exceptional stamina, there are still high hopes that he can be a solid starter that will consistently throw 200+ innings in the future.
We fought for the division league all season and were quite surprised to clinch it with more than a game week to go. 90 wins and a stellar +163 RD (+12 was second best) shocked me a bit. Our inability to win close games was somewhat annoying. We went 15-20 in one-run games and 6-10 in extra innings.
For individual player accomplishments, Perez finished the season with 300 career homers, exactly matching his nickname of 300, which was his dinger goal as a rookie. Chapa battled for the triple crown all season, but slid off just a little at the end finishing third, second, third in the big traditional categories. With a month left in the season, it looked like he would easily win the MVP. Then Daniels went absolutely nuts, ending 2038 in first place for the league in homers, runs and rbi, along with hitting 299. They both have a shot at MVP as does Bismarck's Maples.
Koch threw the best season going 13-2 with a 3.41 ERA. Velazquez had a fantastic bullpen ERA, 2.33, but didn't have many wins, saves or even have a great save percentage.
I'm still mildly upset about losing the Cup finals without having any offense (2 runs in 2 games). Oh, well. I am, however, happy to get back to Legends even though I think age will get the best of us there.
At any rate, while the season was a blur, it was a nice distraction in the midst of real life. Live on. Love more. Peace. And batter up,
Oct 24 2037: Seesaw Season - by MukilteoMike on October 1st, 2018
The back and forth wacky 37 season is finally complete. Several streaks of good and bad ended up placing the Magicians just a little under even on both wins and runs. There was never any sense of how the team would finish due to the wild swings throughout the year. Suffice it to say the vast majority of the club was satisfied, if not pleased, with the outcome.
Manager Weber had this to say, "I'll admit it, this season was a head scratcher. I felt like we had what it took to end up on the positive side of things. It just didn't happen. I'll have a long off-season to look deep in the mirror. I'm sure I must have failed the guys somehow. Most likely with my use of the bullpen late in games. I'll look to correct that in 38."
Offensively the team had their first season with three players with 100+ RBI since MukilteoMike took over the club 20 seasons ago. Perez and Chapa climbed to third and fifth, respectively, for career homers by a Magician.
"300" Perez had this to say about his accomplishments so far, "26 bombs away from my 300+ goal I set as a rookie. I'll get it next year, don't fear. It's going to be rough climbing back to 300 for my average, the second part of my 300 goal, but I just want to keep hitting the ball hard. That's how I help this team. Hopefully we can make a charge for the title next year."
The announced MVP for the season was Chapa. He led the team in average, OBP, slugging, OPS, homers and RBI, making the announcement more of a formality than anything.
The team Cy was a much tougher decision. McMillian and Velazquez both were unhittable from the bullpen at different times of the season, but their bad stretches raised their ERAs half a point higher than they probably should have been. Then there's the double-digit blown saves for each of them. Koch was the best starter if you simply watched the games. Even his 3.22 ERA, 1.145 and 166 Ks testify on his behalf. For whatever reason, however, he couldn't win games, going just 9-11. In the end, Toledo received the honor, largely due his 15-6 record, notching 6 more than any other Magician. His ERA and WHIP were also solid at 3.76 and 1.216.
Nov 01 2035: Screwed by the RNGod - by MukilteoMike on May 3rd, 2018
The rolls of the dice were too strange for the playoffs. Almost nothing made sense. By far the biggest anomalies were from my big three pitchers, starter Koch and end-of-relief-guys Velazquez and Tejada. Here were their WHIPS/ERAS for the playoffs and then the regular season:
2.04/8.68, 3.50/13.50, 1.87/13.50
1.08/3.11, 1.28/3.39, 1.32/3.44
Give me a break. Those three lines are all that's needed to know who won. Absolutely absurd. Somehow they didn't allow a homer.
The rest of the staff was actually better than average as a group with Calvo and Wiley being the only two that were slightly worse than their regular season. Those eight guys put up a stellar 1.03/0.93, but the damage with the Big Three was simply too much.
At the plate, the offense was a little short. Nothing that made you go hmmmm, though, really, other than just hitting one bomb, which didn't occur until the 7th inning of the last game. College Station has great pitching, so there isn't an issue there.
Three one-run loss, blown saves. That's the story, along with Koch's complete failure in both games. I hate losing. Most people do. But losing like that was just wrong. Have me lose in a way that is recognizable and I'm okay with it. That wasn't this series.
Bizarre. Unfulfilling. Dumb. That's baseball. You can count on it being unpredictable.
Jul 28 2030: A New Magic Act - by MukilteoMike on January 22nd, 2017
With the recent release of fan favorites D’Marcus Manning and Charlie McKenzie, it’s obvious the Magicians are looking to the future instead of the now. The M&Ms of the M&Ms formed the identity of the team as the highest skilled players ever for the organization. The owner M&M, MukilteoMike, had this to say about the release and departure of the veterans, “We have nothing but respect for Man and Mac. They played key roles in our rise to Level II, helping us crack the Top 20 list. Unfortunately, we failed to fill out the rest of the roster successfully enough to maintain that status. We want all of our fans to know we share their disappointment about that. That’s precisely why we had to let them go. We can’t look back to the Glory Days a few seasons ago. We have to get back there. That means making tough decisions, like making way for our young talent by saying goodbye to amazing professionals such as ROY and Charlie. We wish them nothing but success as they find new clubs to finish their fine careers with.”
After the short press conference, manager Kenny Doty provided the lineup cards for the upcoming series. New to the majors will be Joaquin Chapa at third and Ernie Gibbs at DH and the outfield. Both have shown the ability to hit in the minors. Gibbs has a .322 career batting average in the lower leagues, while Chapa hit over .300 with an OPS over 900 in both AAA seasons. Every position is filled by a player no older than 28.
On the pitching side of things, Benito Velazquez has been called up, despite the fact his coaches at AAA thought he should stay down there a few more weeks. Doty didn’t hesitate when asked about that, “It’s simple—that guy has stuff. Have you seen him? His skills are good enough right now. I think my AAA guys might be a little too cautious due to recent call-up failures. He’ll show his worth and will be ready to fire on all cylinders next spring. We’re excited.”
The rest of the innings will be thrown by 28 year old arms or younger. The one exception is Tadeshi Yakoitowo, who was recently claimed. He’s 31 and is basically being given a shot to make next year’s club.
Jul 16 2029: Halfway Point 2029 - by MukilteoMike on November 3rd, 2016
At the midway point, Augusta looks strong as they sport a 3 game, 49 run lead over Jacksonville. However, the Trojans are still in the Cup, so they might sacrifice a little to continue their run there. New Britain is only 5 games out, but their negative run differential suggests it will be a tough climb for them. Pittsfield and Margate appear to be headed for a season-long fight to avoid relegation. The Armadillos have a one game lead, but are 42 runs worse than the Magicians. Jersey City rounds out the East 5 games out of relegation and have -105 RD.
There there’s the West; anything can happen on the left. Bellevue has snuck into first, despite only having a +2 run differential. A game back is Pasadena and then another game back is Tempe, with +46 and +28 RD, respectively. Ventura leads the West in bad luck, as they have a division-leading +56 RD, but sit 5 games out of first. Denver and Oceanview Woods are both 7 games back with OW being the only negative RD team at -51.