Welcome to the Season 17 of the USMLB.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008


Indianapolis Wrecking Crew (jasonguru)
The owner of the Wrecking Crew thought that the team needed a change from the city of Richmond moving the team to Indianapolis which will hopefully bring better luck to this team. There where very little changes done with the team after the fire sale during the season last season. The team is the third youngest team in the National League this season and the fourth in major league experience this season so who knows what will happen this season for the team. With the National League East being so weak the Wrecking Crew has just as a good chance of winning the division as any other team. The team only lost Tim Lloyd (P) (0-3, 9.69ERA, 43.2IP), Hersh Garland (P) (1-1, 9.62ERA, 1SV) and Hersh Garland (P) (2-2, 6.38ERA, 3SV) to free agency. The team only signed Nicky Davis (C) (.195, 5, 22) from the Cincinnati Highlanders for 2yrs/1.5mil. The team traded Cookie Pena (C) (.303, 17, 54) to the Atlanta Brave Vawts for Adam Beimel (RF) (.259, 2, 8). The team also traded a minor leaguer to the Ottawa Crawdaddies for Adam Beimel who the team had lost in the Rule 5 Draft.
The Wrecking Crew had no problems last season scoring runs, as they scored as they scored the 6th most runs in the National League with 873 runs. With all the young hitters still in the offensive this season there shouldn’t be any problem for this offensive to improve there numbers from last season. Patsy Lincoln (3B) (.288, 32, 103) proved that he could produce the numbers to be one of the best third basemen in the league and the team will once again look to him this season to produce the numbers. Juan Piedra (1B) (.275, 17, 61) isn’t a typical first basemen as he as great speed and only a little pop in his bat but for this team is fits right in. The returning players Max Wood (CF) (.279, 28, 89), Norm Long (CF) (.265, 37, 92), Troy Byrne (2B) (.281, 12, 47) and Vic DaSilva (C) (.300, 19, 54) will have no problem producing the same numbers from last season. Can this offensive continue to improve from last season or will there youth make them to inconsistent to make any different this season?
Last season the pitching staff really let them down giving up the second most runs in the league with 1144 runs. The pitching staff may have struggled last season but the second half saw there numbers improve slightly helping the team not lose over 100 games last season. Stu Doster (13-11, 4.56ERA, 223IP) was the lone bright spot for the pitching staff as the team looked to him to pitch every game he could and providing quality innings that the bullpen really needed to see. Norman Latham (7-11, 4.64ERA, 128IP) only started 23 games last season but with his limited duty pitched well and giving the team hope that he could become a good starter for the team. Wilson Fisher (6-13, 8.94ERA, 145IP), Don Gilkey (4-3, 5.71ERA, 86.2IP) and Rip Knowles (0-1, 4.61ERA, 1SV) should fill out the remaining spots in the rotation. Jerome DeRosa (0-0, 9.15ERA, 15SV) may or may not be the closer that this team needs but his experience at saving games could be the only reason he might get the job this season but he probably will be replaced as closer really soon during the season. Last season the pitching staff for the Wrecking Crew was bad but the team still believes that the staff can improve and the young pitchers will step up this season.
Projected Lineup
Juan Piedra
Max Wood
Patsy Lincoln
Norm Long
Vic DaSilva
Woody Ruffin
Troy Byrne
Adam Beimel
Wilson Fisher
Don Gilkey
Stu Doster
Norman Latham
Rip Knowles
Jerome DeRosa

Projected Record – 68-94

St. Louis Cornerstone (kk73)
The Cornerstone last season saw there franchise have there best record and for the first time get out of the cellar in the National League East. With all the good things that happen last season for the Cornerstone the pitching staff brought the greatest joys battling with the Pioneers all season to have the best pitching staff, with the staff allowing the fewest runs in the league. With all the great success of the pitching staff the team still was 3 games under .500 proving that timely hitting is just has important has great pitching to have a winning season. The team lost Valerio Moreno (3B) (.287, 10, 44), Rudy Simpson (LF) (.186, 1, 1) and Tony Lanier (1B) (.289, 10, 69) to free agency. The team signed Earl Williams (RF) (.343, 50, 142) from the Colorado Sky Sox for 3yrs/28.5mil and Dennis Funaki (P) (5-3, 4.29ERA, 105IP) from the Florida Gators for 1yr/1.9mil. The team didn’t make any trades during the off-season. With timely hitting needed with the team they went hard after a great right-fielder and hopefully Williams can produce for this team.
The Cornerstone believe that the addition of Williams will be the missing piece for this team to make it to the playoffs this season and help bring stability to there offensive and take some much needed pressure off the pitching staff. Rookie of the Year David Cota (2B) (.295, 23, 85) is hoping that a sophomore slump isn’t in his future and that he can once again provide the great lead-off hitting that he did a year ago. Melvin Howard (SS) (.266, 20, 73) will benefit greatly from hitting in front or behind Williams this season and should improve his numbers from a year ago. Returning players Buddy Strickland (CF) (.248, 11, 57), Jason Frazier (LF) (.242, 16, 65), Albert Glavine (3B) (.282, 14, 59), Matty Sanchez (2B) (.248, 6 ,44) and Donaldo Felix (1B) (.270, 22, 63) should have no problem being as good as they were last season. How much will the effect of Williams have on this offensive this season?
There can’t be much said that hasn’t been said about the Cornerstone pitching staff from last season as when you only give up 694 runs that’s telling the league that if you going to win against the Cornerstone it’s going to be a tough battle at the plate. AllStar/NL Fireman of the Year Ed Jefferson (1-2, 2.03ERA, 49SV) has become the best closer in the game with back to back 49 save seasons even with the team not having a winning record. Mark Barkett (14-11, 2.93ERA, 4CG) was a tough luck pitcher last season only having three more wins then loses even though his ERA was under 3 as this season he is looking for a little more help from his offensive to get him more wins. Adam Beard (15-8, 4.20ERA, 182IP), AllStar Ronn Hoyt (10-7, 3.72ERA, 181.1IP), P.T. Ramirez (8-12, 5.51ERA, 176.1Ip and Funaki should finish the rest of the rotation. Can the pitching staff repeat what they did last season or will the league have had the time during the off-season to figure them out?
Projected Lineup
David Cota
Albert Glavine
Earl Williams
Donaldo Felix
Melvin Howard
Jason Frazier
Buddy Strickland
Matty Sanchez
P.T. Ramirez
Mark Barkett
Ronn Hoyt
Dennis Funaki
Adam Beard
Ed Jefferson

Projected Record – 84-78

San Juan ballerz (barton84)
The Ballerz use to be the Louisville Colonels last season, a team that won the National League East and put some scares into the playoffs as they made it to the National League Championship before losing to the Durham Bulls, despite the fact that the team only won 82 games. The team this season lost a lot of players, especially to the pitching staff this season but the team believes that even with the changes that the young players should be able to step up and get them to the playoffs once again. The team lost Sammy Mailman (LF) (.323, 9, 24), Joaquin Diaz (P) (9-14, 4.25ERA, 201IP), T.J. Walker (P) (12-8, 4.83ERA, 160.1IP), Charlie Hines (P) (2-1, 5.21ERA, 4SV), Jim Buckley (P) (14-11, 3.81ERA, 205.2IP), Edgardo Martin (P) (0-0, 9.00ERA, 1G), Shane Tatum (P) (0-0, 1.15ERA, 15.2IP), Stephen Alexander (SS) (.286, 0, 1) and Pepe Franco (1B) (.331, 9, 30). The team signed Andrew Hampton (SS) (.282, 8, 54) from the Ottawa Crawdaddies for 3yrs/19.5mil, Craig Rivers (P) (3-12, 5.03ERA, 52G) from the Kansas City Dirt Bags for 2yrs/3.2mil. The team resigned Mel Reed (P) (1-3, 2.84ERA, 1SV) and Sidney Musial (P) (16-10, 3.47ERA, 233.2IP). The team didn’t make any trades during the off-season.
The offensive last season for the Ballerz wasn’t the best but they could hold there own against any them and there hoping that the move to San Juan will bring the bats alive. AllStar Phil Takada (C) (.311, 30, 93) is one of the best hitting catchers in the league and the leader of the offensive for this team. Chad Jones (3B) (.284, 27, 99) not to be confused with the Chad Jones that plays right field for this team is a great third basemen and should once again provide the protection for Takada this season. Returning players Rollie McMillon (2B) (.309, 8, 69), Jason Harvey (CF) (.267, 4, 41), Jose Owen (LF) (.263, 16, 57), Cookie Vargas (RF) (.293, 16, 62) and Chad Jones (RF) (.324, 29, 87) will need to provide the runs that this team will need to score this season. The National League East isn’t about hitting like the American League but if this team can score enough runs this season they will once again be at the top of the National League East. The pitching staff was hit hard during the free agent period losing 6 players with four of them being a major part of the staff. The staff is got younger from last season but will that mean that the staff is any better or will they take a step backwards and hope that the offensive can pick up there slack. Sidney Musial (16-10, 3.47ERA, 233.2IP) was the number one priority for this team to get him back before he tested the free agent market and that’s what the team did offering him a good size chuck of cash to stay with the team. Tommy Jenkins (10-13, 4.77ERA, 200IP) had some struggles last season but his ten victories showed the team that he is ready to become a good number 2 starter for this team. Benji Sierra (1-0, 8.68ERA, 18.2IP), Homer Metcalfe (minor leaguer) and Frank Yoon (4-6, 7.83ERA, 1SV) should fill out the rest of the starting rotation this season. Magglio Salinas (3-6, 3.12ERA, 35SV) should once again be asked to close the door at the end of the game this season again and once again should do well in that role. The pitching staff took some big hits from last season but will the young players be able to step up and help this team into the playoffs once again this season.
Projected Lineup
Andrew Hampton
Rollie McMillon
Chad Jones
Phil Takada
Chad Jones
Jose Owen
Cookie Vargas
Jason Harvey
Sidney Musial
Tommy Jenkins
Frank Yoon
Homer Metcalfe
Benji Sierra
Magglio Salinas

Projected Record – 81-81

Toledo Tornados (mab444)
The Tornados only mustered 57 wins last season falling from a playoff caliber team the first couple season in the league to the basement of the National League East last season. Last years debacle wasn’t mab444 fault as he only took over the team mid-way through the season and tried his best to stop the flood waters from completely destroying his team last season. The team lost Rollie Russell (1B) (.237, 6, 18), Jolbert Chavez (P) (0-3, 7.23ERA, 18.2IP), Carlos Vazquez (P) (1-3, 1.47ERA, 14G), Robert Price (P) (3-8, 6.72ERA, 17SV), Rigo Costilla (P) (0-2, 6.43ERA, 7IP) and Junior Torres (P) (1-2, 4.02ERA, 53.2IP). The team signed Herman Harris (3B) (.282, 11, 36) from the Cincinnati Highlanders for 1yr/3.5mil, Boots Gaetti (P) (2-1, 2.88ERA, 27SV) from the Houston Hitmen for 2yrs/6.7mil, Hector Acosta (1B) (.341, 18, 116) from the Houston Hitmen for 2yrs/7.2mil, Rogers Dodd (P) (10-3, 4.21ERA, 2SV) from the Durham Bulls for 2yrs/6.0mil, Charlie Hill (P) (10-6, 2.95ERA, 7SV) from the Anaheim Beefpound for 1yr/6.0mil, Harold Morton (1B) (.285, 16, 84) from the Anaheim Beefpound for 2yrs/9.0mil with a 1.0mil signing bonus and Gene Guerrero (P) (3-2, 3.32ERA, 15SV) from the Scranton Beet Farmer's for 1yr/5.6mil. The team didn’t make any trades during the off-season. The team went very hard into the free agent market mostly getting bullpen help which was a big problem for the team last season. The team spent 44mil on the seven players they got from the free agent market this season.
The offensive last season for the Tornados was awful last season, the worse offensive in the National League but with the new owner taking over the team mid-way through the season a lot of young players saw some much needed time in the major league lineup last season. Rex Ross (3B) (.306, 16, 78) produced as a good lead-off hitter last season and hopefully with some new player batting behind him he can score even more runs this season. Dennis Brown (CF) (.281, 2, 34) is a good hitter but seemed to struggle with runners in scoring position and the team will need him to improve those numbers this season. Returning players Bob Ulrich (RF) (.277, 11, 46), Reggie Wise (2B) (.263, 15, 47), Terry Ward (1B) (.268, 5, 37) and Bill Good (CF) (.260, 6, 44) will need to improve just a bit this season if this team has any chance of making the playoffs this season. Will the signing of Hector Acosta and Harold Morton provide any kind of numbers to help this offensive produce any kind of number this season or will be paid a lot of money to provide ok numbers this season?
The pitching staff not have been the worse in the National League East but they still weren’t all that good almost giving up a 1000 runs last season. Once again the team had a lot of changes and the young players really needed to go through those growing pains to become a better staff in the future. Reagan Gardner (10-11, 4.77ERA, 183IP) will be looked upon to become the staff ace this season as he was the only pitcher for the team to have double digits in wins last season. Harry Blanco (5-4, 3.07ERA, 93.2IP) only pitched 14 games last season but he showed that he was ready for the major leagues and will be looked upon to become a good pitcher this season. Walt Cortes (minor leaguer), Roger Hines (minor leaguer), Benjamin Ross (8-6, 4.66ERA, 141IP) and Daniel Strickland (minor leaguer) will battle it out for the remaining spots. Boots Gaetti was signed to become the team closer and after 27 saves from last season I think it was a good decision from the team. Look for the bullpen to pitch a lot of innings this season as there going to be good but the starting rotation will need all the help they can get to produce any kind of number this season.
Projected Lineup
Dennis Brown
Rex Ross
Hector Acosta
Harold Morton
Bob Ulrich
Reggie Wise
Terry Ward
Bill Good
Harry Blanco
Reagan Gardner
Walt Cortes
Roger Hines
Benjamin Ross
Daniel Strickland
Boots Gaetti

Projected Record – 63-99