Thursday, January 2, 2014


Scottsdale Schizoids (NL)
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LAST YEARS PREVIEW:  Things didn't go as planned last season for my Zoids. I improved this team in every catagory but they still finished below .500. We won 78 games with Great defense (73 errors,.988 FPct-3rd) good pitching (4.23 ERA, 1.43 WHIP-11th) and average hitting (.271 BA-11th). My team seemed to be good in all 3 parts of this game, maybe it's the fact we only scored 735 runs.I never thought I'd pay 20 million for a player .....but I did. I let several long time Ziod pitchers go to free agency and decided to replace them with 1 really good one and promote Rob Warner from the farm after 25 games. I also lost my catching corp and replaced them with a DITR and a R-5 pick-up. If the 20 million dollar man...Lawrence works out and Warner has a good rookie season....maybe the Zoids give the Utes and Bandits a run for their money. Big IF's .PREDICTION: 84-78

OUT: Rolando ValenzuelaHoward AllenWillie Burgess , Miguel Tabaka

IN:  Mariano RiveraSanto Prieto

PREVIEW: My Zoids started out slow and it was apparent early that my team needed some hitting. I traded for Ollie Greenwood and Larry Walker before the break. Then traded for Jack Shave before the deadline. These moves were the reason my guys tied the Utes with 91 wins and won the tiebreaker for the division pennant. Last year my team had great defense (79 errors-4th, .987 FPct-4th) and pitching (4.02 ERA-7th, 1.35 WHIP-10th) . My hitting finished below average after a terrible start (.266 BA-17th ,716 runs-28th). The only thing good about my hitting was the 255 doubles, which was 6th in the league.We went into the playoffs as the #4 seed but was trounced by Wylie's City Limits in 4 . In the off-season I re-signed Edinson Trinidad and Blake Hughes and let Valenzuela , Allen and Burgess go to free agency. Then I waived Tabaka to make room on my 25 man roster. To replace Allen and Tabaka I signed free agents Rivera and Prieto. This is the same good pitching and defensive team as last year. It's also the same hitting team that for some reason could only score 716 runs. Several of my pickups last year came after my offense started out near the bottom. Hopefully a full season together will fix the scoring problem. It will be a battle with the Utes for the division and it's a toss-up who will be atop at the end of the year. I think we are capable of at least getting a wild-card spot.PREDICTION: 93-69(Wild Card)

Salt Lake City
Salt Lake City Utes (NL)
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  When I was writing last years preview on the Utes I could see this team had a ton of talent. With the re-build going on in San Francisco it was a easy call to pick them as division winners.They won 92 games with good defense (77 errors,.987 FPct-6th) and pitching (4.08 ERA, 1.33 WHIP-9th) and average hitting (.271 BA-12th). The Youthful Utes went into the playoffs and had some success getting by the Moose in the first round. But they ran into a young and hungry Black Bear team in the DCS, there they got mauled and buried in 3 games.The Utes are a year older and very good. They should win this division and last years playoff experience may take em all the way.PREDICTION:96-66

OUT: Phillip Rhodes , Tito Cannon

IN:  Troy Farrell

PREVIEW:  Hoopcoach's Utes won 91 games and had to settle for a wildcard berth. They were probably better than my Zoid's and the stats prove it. This team had the better hitting (.269 BA-13th ) and pitching (3.89 ERA-5th, 1.30 WHIP-4th) than my team. The defense was the only thing lagging, but still good (92 errors-12th, .985 FPct-9th). In the playoffs, Salt Lake lost in 4 to Cincinnati. I guess we in the NL west need to up our game. In the off-season Hoopcoach re-signed Jose Martinez , let Rhodes head to free agency and released Cannon. He picked up Farrell in the R-5 draft to fill the 25 man roster. The loss of Rhodes and the injured Cannon shouldn't hurt this team at all. Hoop will see if the R-5 pick-up Farrell can help out, probably from the bench. This is still the same team with future hall of famers that have improved from last year. I see many playoff appearances in their future. And with some playoff experience, Who Knows? Maybe a couple of Rings are in the future for the Youthful Utes. This team should win the division and make it past the first round of the playoffs. PREDICTION:98-64 (Div Winner)

Colorado Springs
Colorado Springs Bandits (NL)
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LAST YEARS PREVIEW:  The Bandits almost made it to the elusive 80 win close! They won 79 games with average pitching (4.35 ERA,1.33 WHIP-15th) and good defense (85 errors,.986 FPct-9th). The hitting (.260 BA-26th) was the culprit and was the main reason Ressda's guys fell short.The big story here is the trade that sent Stuart to New Britain and brought in Maduro and Chapman. The Bandits have a offensive problem and this trade helps fix that. I think Colorado Springs will give Salt Lake City all they've got and then some. Ressda has done a great job with this team.PREDICTION:88-74

OUT: Diego AcostaMatty GuerreroDon HyzduMickey HarvilleArt StewartTurk WallaceAlbert Bernadina

IN:  Tito BreaGiomar MolinaNolan O'LearyDanny ChapmanYork Glover , Juan MarmolAlexi Rios

PREVIEW:  The Bandits finished below my Prediction of 88 wins. Ressda's may want to institute some fielding drills, because they went from only 85 errors (9th) in season 23 to 112 errors (27th) last year. This probably caused the pitching staffs ERA to jump to 4.45 (14th) and the WHIP to 1.44 (23rd). Colorado Springs hitting did improve with .265 BA (19th) and 755 runs (21st), but it still has a ways to go. In the off-season Ressda let Acosta ,Guerrero, Hyzdu, Harville and Stewert to free agency. He released Wallace and traded away Bernadina. Then he Signed free agents Brea, Molina,O'leary and promoted Chapman and Glover. The earlier trades brought in Marmol and Rios. Ressda re-vamped his pitching staff with 3 new starters and 2 bullpen guys. The Bandits still have one of the weaker defensive teams in the NL and it will hamper the pitching stats. But the hitting is pretty good and will bring this team to about the .500 mark. Ressda's guys also are the second youngest team in Wrigleyville and  they will improve in time.PREDICTION:80-82

San Francisco
San Francisco Kickapoos (NL)
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LAST YEARS PREVIEW:  I won't spend any time on last years stats because Mark's team is in a re-build. But I will point out some tasty prospects he picked up. He grabbed Yamil Amaro in the IFA market and drafted Humberto Arroyo , Allan Hampton and Cristian Waters in first round of the draft. Not sure if they will still be there or traded away to other teams, but they are nice tasty prospects for the future.It's really weird looking at the Kickapoos in re-build mode. They were a force in this division for so long. And it was cool that mark signed Sosa to a contract so that he can go out as a Kickapoo. Look for Mark to be a player in the IFA market. Better bring your checkbook...he has allot of money to spend! PREDICTION: 60-102

OUT: Jackson ReedCyrus BottalicoJeffrey BlackleyNipsey BenardJae KojimaEric DurhamGus Grossman , Wandy CorpasEd QuantrillArthur BlackburnFelipe RamirezCharlie ForsterAlbert BaezTuck SimmonsD.J. White

IN: Perry FrancoRicardo JohnsonSteve TeahenSantiago RodriguezHarry OntiverosGeorge CordovaBernard WilsonArt DesmondVicente PrietoShawn Terry , Asdrubal BeltranChad PatrickFrancisco ChavezDan HermansonWallace Johnston

PREVIEW:  Egads!!! only 45 wins. They played like Poo. Not much to say about last year on the diamond .The real story here is the prospects they picked up. Mark grabbed Marcell Matos and Kosuke Wang in the IFA market. He selected Keith Jenkins and Robert Boyle in the draft.San Francisco is building a dynasty and will be tough to beat in 3-4 years.In the off-season Mark re-signed Billy Brock and let Reed, Bottalico, Blackley, Bernard, Kojima, Durham and Grossman go to free agency. He released Corpas, Quantrill,Blackburn,Ramirez, Forster, Baez, Simmons and White. Now that most of last years team is gone ,Mark claimed Franco off the wire. Then he signed free agents Johnson, Teahen, Rodriguez, Ontiveros, Cordova, Wilson, Desmond, Prieto and Terry. He picked up Beltran, Patrick, Chavez, Hermanson Johnston in the R-5 draft. This is just a changing of the guard to appease the Minimum win Rules. Mark will continue to grow his youngsters and pick up a few more. PREDICTION:65-97

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