Welcome to the Season 17 of the USMLB.

Thursday, February 12, 2009


Durham Bulls (First Place)(85-90 victories this season)

Grant Barker LF (Barker will be looking for his third straight season with more the 200 hits this year)

Vin Lopez CF (The team is hoping that Lopez can get back the hitting form he showed in season 4 where he hit over .300 and not the form he had last season with a .258 average)

Glenn Matheson RF (Matheson won his second Gold Glove last season and he also still produced some big numbers for the team as well)

Adrian Duncan DH (Duncan was signed to a big contract the off-season looking to prove he was worth every penny of it)

Norm Long 3B (Long side a good size contract to provide solid work at third base for the team this season)

Jamie Jung 2B (Jung could see have a chance to play second base this season)

Henry Anderson SS (The scary thing about Anderson is that he is still only 25 and is getting better every season)

Alvin Silva 1B (Coming off of his MVP season in season 4, Silva still produced the power numbers last season but his average dropped .70 points below the previous season)

Humberto Maranon C (Could platoon with Theo Harvey in starting time this season)

Yamil Guzman (If you don’t look at Guzman’s career ERA you will find one of the top pitchers in the league)

Humberto Johnson (Johnson is still looking for his first season with more then ten victories)

Shane Lomasney (Lomasney always seems to get knocked around but he still finds a way to keep the team in the game)

Ignacio Mateo (Looking forward to being back into the rotation this season)

Hector Mesa (Mesa could win the fifth starting spot with a good spring training)

Donnie Washington (Would like to see what Washington could do as the full time closer this season)

Coaches Corner:
The main goal really this season is to just survive. Really don’t know what is going to happen as the season goes along. The minor leagues really need to be fixed, as it really doesn’t look like any help is coming to majors any time soon. The team would like everyone to know that this team will win at what ever cost we need to make to win. I think this team will be stuck right at .500 with 81 wins and 81 losses.

Rankings to start the season:
2nd ranked offensive
8th ranked pitching staff

Players Added:
Hector Mesa P (Acquired via Trade from the Houston Hitmen)
Adrian Duncan DH (.293, 32, 100)(4yrs, 22.8mil)
Theo Harvey C (.246, 1, 11)(1yr, 327k)
Norm Long 3B (.259, 22, 59)(3yrs, 16.5mil)
Brian Kim 1B (Acquired via Trade from the Louisville Grumbling Groundhogs)

Players Lost:
Oscar Smith 3B (Left via Free-Agency)
Tony Hernandez P (Left via Free-Agency)
Omar Diaz P (Left via Free-Agency)
Brad Betancourt RF (Left via Free-Agency)
Don Clark C (Released)
Tim Rooney 2B (Trade to the Louisville Grumbling Groundhogs)

Houston Hitmen (Second Place)(85-90 victories this season)

Art Roskos RF (What a nice breakout season for Roskos last season and expect him to be around the same type of numbers this season)

Clyde Vaughn CF (Vaughn will enjoy a full season centerfield and the team will enjoy watching him play as well)

Geraldo Rodriguez LF (Rodriguez is another young player that will be given every chance to prove he can play)

Shep Bolton DH (Bolton will spend most of the here playing DH and not catcher)

Ronn Castillo 3B (Castillo could be pushed out of the third base spot if he hits below .200 once again)

Sean Foster 2B (You should begin to see Foster putting up some really good numbers starting this season)

Rocky Meadows SS (Meadows played his first full season and showed everyone that age doesn’t matter when you have the talent to play)

Todd Kirk 1B (Kirk had is first full season last year and now fans are really getting excited about him playing everyday)

Tomas Roque C (Roque could be the best option for the catcher spot for this team on a daily basis)

Cliff Sheets (Sheets set the bar really high last season can he repeat that performance, for the team to compete he will need to)

Mac Nakamura (Nakamura is like a live grenade, everyone is just standing around waiting for him to exploded)

Lariel Camacho (Camacho is just a solid number three pitcher)

Edwin Saipe (Saipe is good at one thing and that is eating innings which helps the team through out the season)

Mariano Belliard (Could be given a shot at the fifth spot this season)

Magglio Salinas (Salinas did a great job in is first full season as the closer for the team last season)

Coaches Corner:
The Hitmen will continue to work towards becoming a perennial contender, although we are still a year away from being where we want to be. During the off-season we were looking to move multiple role players in package trades to lock up some long term, impact players as we move towards the future. Watch out for Geraldo Rodriguez this season, the new comer to Houston and will surprise some people. The Hitmen really rely on young talent at the Major League level at all costs. The Hitmen have stripped the farm in 25 trades in 2 plus seasons. Only six players on the Major League roster were on the team when we started the team in Houston. We will once again field the cheapest and youngest roster in the major league. I think anything less then 100 wins will be a disappointment.

Rankings to start the season:
20th ranked offensive
5th ranked pitching staff

Players Added:
Edwin Saipe P (Acquired via Trade from the Tacoma Pioneers)
Luis Palmeiro P (Rule-5 Draftee)
Donaldo Calderon 3B (Rule-5 Draftee)
Manny Barrett P (Rule-5 Draftee)

Players Lost:
Blake Newman SS (Left via Free-Agency)
Dummy Hartzell P (Released)
Dustan Grace C (Released)
Hector Mesa P (Traded to the Durham Bulls)

Jacksonville RAIDERS (Fourth Place)(63-68 victories this season)

Joshua Sedlacek LF (Sedlacek had is best season last year and is looking to build upon that)

Marvin Stark CF (Stark was added during the off-season to provide solid play at the centerfield position with some offensive mix in)

Mac Cust RF (Cust could make a big impact during his rookie season)

Adrian Hutch DH (The team would like to see more power out of Hutch this season)

Bosco Campbell 3B (Campbell is the only power threat left in the lineup and is looking for his sixth straight season of 40 or more homeruns and it amazes me he has never been to an All-Star game yet)

Frank Simmons 2B (Watch out for Simmons this season, could have a great rookie campaign)

Pat Rhodes SS (Rhodes can steal any base, he just has trouble getting onto the first one)

Carl Shave 1B (Shave will probably see his numbers improve again this season hitting in front of
Campbell again)

Terry Clemens C (The catcher spot is open for this team and with a strong spring training Clemens could win it out)

P.T. Bolton (Look for Bolton to have a breakout season this year)

Ben Canseco (Canseco could see a lot of time in the rotation this season)

Bubba Mattingly (Mattingly did not pitch as bad has is 3-14 record would indicate and with a little help could see his record improve)

Elston Long (Long is the franchise leader in victories with 52 and look for him to be around 10 more victories this season)

Bronson Lui (Would like to see if he can pitched once again in the rotation at the major league level)

George Robinson (Robinson has been added to the watch list for the season)

Coaches Corner:
Well the Raiders may not have a lot of goals but the big one is not to lose 100 games once again. The pitching needs to improve for this team to make any jump in the standings. George Robinson will probably be one of the best closer even though he won’t get a lot of save chances this season. We just need to find a way to win and once we start winning you will really see this team turn the corner. I think we can win 63 games this season.

Rankings to start the season:
19th ranked offensive
26th ranked pitching staff

Players Added:
Roy Shirley P (2yrs, 6.6mil)
Marvin Stark CF (.245, 5, 28)(1yr, 3.1mil plus 4.5mil in signing bonus)
Jay Larson P (Claimed off Waivers)

Players Lost:
Zeus Glover 2B (Left via Fee-Agency)
Vic McGee DH (Left via Fee-Agency)
Pepper Crawford P (Released)
Tom Donovan P (Released)
Tom Saberhagen RF (Released)
Damon Meyers P (Released)
Anthony Montague P (Released)

Kansas City Bobcats (Third Place)(85-90 victories this season)

Hiram Suzuki LF (Suzuki is only 21 years old but he seems like he’s ready to play in the major leagues after a small part last season)

Stubby Lewis CF (Will probably bring a gold glove to centerfield like he did last season in left field)

Eric Sisk RF (Sisk won his second MVP award last season and will probably surpass the 300 homerun mark this season)

Vicente Melendez DH (Melendez is a good DH and that is really the only thing he is good at)

Rickey Karl 2B (Little Ricky Karl is the speedster on this team)

Adam Buck 3B (Buck plays solid third base and helps out with the offensive when they really need him to)

Blake Brinkley SS (Brinkley will probably platoon with Miguel Reyes at shortstop this season)

Tony Alvarez 1B (Alvarez hit his fewest homeruns last season but it isn’t really anything to be worried about)

Guy Williams C (Williams will probably hit two milestones this season, 1000 hits and 300 homeruns)

Martin Satou (Satou is still only 22 years old so expect some growing pains as well this season)

Flip Sheldon (Sheldon is looking forward to this season as he believes he is entering his prime and worked really hard during the off-season to improve himself)

Paul Flanagan (Flanagan won 16 games last season but I think that will be very tough for him to repeat this season)

Al Jordan (Jordan never lost last season and the team is really looking forward to see what he can do this season at the age of 22)

Luis Barajas (Barajas is only 21 years old and with a good spring training could find himself in the rotation this year)

Matt Schmidt (The team is high on Pinky Brooks but the fans are high on Schmidt so it could be a good battle for the Closer spot for this team this year)

Coaches Corner:
The main goal this year is the win the division title this season and making a deep push into the playoffs and of course everyone’s ultimate goal is the win the World Series. We are depending on the youth of our team this season so the off-season was really slow here in Kansas City. With 3 guys 22 or younger and already having success last year we expect for the team to improve this season. Pinky Brooks is the player we hope will surprise people this season. With no proven closer on the team, the hope is for the rookie to prove he can be elite closer. The team’s philosophy right now is trying to out score the opponent as we wait for the young pitchers to develop. We expect for them to struggle at times but we know the offense can pick up the slack as we have a good blend of speed and power which will make a top 5 offense in our eyes this season. I think the team will be better then last season with everyone coming back so we could get around 97 wins this season.

Rankings to start the season:
16th ranked offensive
21st ranked pitching staff

Players Added:
Will Casanova P (3yrs, 8.4mil)

Players Lost:
Sean Holtz P (Left Free-Agency)
Ross Chase P (Left Free-Agency)
Victor Romano P (Left Free-Agency)
Boots Gaetti P (Left Free-Agency)
Nicholas Fox P (Left Free-Agency)