Welcome to the Season 17 of the USMLB.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009


Charleston Gullah's (Third Place)(69-74 victories this season)

Irv Jensen LF (Jensen is coming from the Rockies and is expected to produce some number for the Gullah’s this season)

Lyle Dunham CF (Could get a chance to play center field this season)
Richard Evans RF (Evans is still one of the best lead-off hitters in the game even though he has lost a step or two)

Andy Diaz 3B (Diaz is just a pure solid hitter but his best talent is the vacuum he has attached to left hand to sucks every ball hit his way)

Santos Alvarez 2B (Alvarez signed as a free-agent for a chance to play and that is what he will get)

Darby Thomas SS (Last season team MVP, Thomas is the only real power threat in this lineup)

Frank Jacobsen 1B (Jacobsen could be seeing the twilight of his career begin this season)

Edwin Randall C (A sold catcher that just finds ways to get on base)

Wilt McGee (McGee is the model of constancy as he’s got three straight seasons of 15 wins with his ERA right around 4)

Jason Burns (Burns had a rough year last season finding wins even though he had a 3.50ERA)

Michael Dickey (Dickey was added to this team to bring a little bit more stability to the middle of the rotation this season)

Seth Dillon (Dillon is still young so he might go through some growing pains this season)

Artie Holmes (Holmes is another pitcher added to the team for depth in the starting rotation)

Tom Moss (Moss got his first full season as the closer last year and the team will need him to be more reliable this season)

Coaches Corner:
Well we've put together what we think is a good team here, but you never know what the season will bring with injuries or just some bad luck. This team could get a winning record and content for a playoff spot this season. We needed to get younger, and better at pitching along with a few position players if where going to compete this season. Watch out for Jason Burns, all he needed was for the bullpen to hold onto some leads last season and he probably would have around 15 wins again. This team will be based on the baseball fundamentals, good pitching, and contact with speed guys on the bases. It might not be flashy as we may not hit the most dingers, but we'll always battle you all game long. Let’s hope for 84 or more victories this season.

Rankings to start the season:
8th ranked offensive
29th ranked pitching staff

Players Added:
Irv Jensen LF (Acquired via Trade with Colorado Rockies)
Artie Holmes P (Acquired via Trade with the Philadelphia HeadHunters)
Javier Benitez P (Acquired via Trade with the Philadelphia HeadHunters)
Michael Dickey P (Acquired via Trade with the Philadelphia HeadHunters)
Seth Dillon P (Acquired via Trade with the Philadelphia HeadHunters)
Santos Alvarez 2B (.272, 0, 41)(2yrs, 3.0mil)
Stubby Floyd P (Rule-5 Draftee)

Players Lost:
B.C. Tracy 2B (Traded to the Colorado Rockies)
Roberto Gonzalez 2B (Traded to the Philadelphia HeadHunters)
Rico Rosado 3B (Traded to the Philadelphia HeadHunters)

Louisville Grumbling Groundhogs (Fourth Place)(60-65 victories this season)

Leon Roosevelt RF (The Rule-5 draftee could see a lot of time on the field this season)

Dario Chong CF (Chong really struggled last season after a year where it looked like he was really going to take off)

Troy Redman LF (Redman as problems getting for a high average but he can hit the ball over the fence when he does make contact)

Fred McNeil 3B (Expect McNeil to once again hit 20 homeruns and 20 stolen bases this season)

Claude Marshall 2B (If Marshall follows his career path he will probably hit below his average numbers this season)

Victor Navarro SS (Navarro will be giving every chance to start at shortstop this season even if the competition is breathing his neck)

Brian Kim 1B (Kim is the team MVP for this team last season and the only power threat in the lineup)

Matthew Bonham C (Expect Bonham to shine this season)

Buzz Jones (Could this be the season that we finally see Buzz Jones become a number one starter that everyone expect him to become)

Greg Turner (Turner pitched 277 innings last season, we will have to wait to see what kind of effect that will have on this season)

William Woo (Now the fans in Louisville can start saying ‘Woooooo’ when William Woo takes the mound)

Sparky Brooks (Could be rookie that no one is talking about this season)

Mark Matsumoto (Matsumoto is good spot starter but I don’t know if he can hold up for the whole season)

Wally Smalley (In his second season as the closer Smalley will have a good season this year)

Coaches Corner:
Right now this organization needs to financial and start to build the farm system that has once produce some very good major league talent. Compared to the talent of the other organizations we are lacking a little behind this season. We really didn’t make any off-season moves as we will wait to see where are team is at during the season before we start trading some talent away. Buzz Jones as he might be the only player that could survive the whole season on the team roster and not be traded. Watch as this team will tend to be very flexible and creative. You could see a rash of trades and moves then nothing for the rest of the season but this team really does need to build up the minor leagues. This season is all about waiting and seeing what is happening this season. If we are winning we might try and acquire talent, if where out of playoff contention we might trade salaries. Only time will tell.

Rankings to start the season:
32nd ranked offensive
19th ranked pitching staff

Players Added:
Alex Espinosa SS (Rule-5 Draftee)
Leon Roosevelt LF (Rule-5 Draftee)

Players Lost:
Donte Cashman C (Left via Fee-Agency)
Earl O'Connor P (Left via Fee-Agency)
Damaso Nieves RF (Left via Fee-Agency)
Chico Ordonez P (Left via Fee-Agency)
Kip Stevenson P (Released)
Todd Martin LF (Released)
Darrell Young C (Left via Fee-Agency)
Rickey Mitchell SS (Left via Fee-Agency)

Monterrey Stars (First Place)(110-115 victories this season)

Eric Flynn LF (Flynn didn't hit 70 homeruns again but 47 homeruns is one of the tops in the league)

Rondell Lowe CF (Expect Lowe to improve his numbers once again and really become a feared power hitter this season)

Jackson Cooper RF (Expect another 30 homeruns season from Cooper this season)

Bobby Henry 3B (Henry smashed over 50 homeruns last season but I only expect him to be in the 40’s this season)

Brian Turner 2B (It’s not often you see a leadoff hitter with 100 RBI’s but in the lineup you are expect to bring in the runners when there standing in scoring position)

Clem Barkley SS (Barkley made it 7 hitters with more then 30 homeruns last season)

Mike Bonds 1B (The scary thing about Bonds is that is his only 23 year’s old and getting better)

Mike Sewell C (Sewell may not kill you with the homerun but he can’t relax with him at the plate because he can single you to death)

Carmine Taft (How much more life does Taft have in his arm, will all have to wait and see this season if he still got life in it)

Brandon Ellis (Ellis is already the greatest pitcher in Star history and expect him to push 20 victories this season)

Gil Henson (First season with the Stars was a big success for Henson and expect the same thing this year)

Seth Law (Law is the baby of the starting rotation but he’s cool as a cucumber learning from the veterans in the rotation)

Carter Wise (Wise isn’t expected to pitched nine perfect innings every game the team would just like him to have five good innings this season)

Jeremy Morris (Even if the team wins over a 100 games again Morris will see his saves chances be low as the team will have big leads heading into the ninth innings on most nights)

Coaches Corner:
We need to win while we can. The core of my team is in their prime as players like Carmine Taft , Gil Henson , Jeremy Morris and Mike Sewell are our only players that will need to be replaced after the next couple of seasons. The organization looks to have all the pieces needed to minimize any drop off in talent when they no longer are able to contribute. The Stars should still have a 4 to 5 year window to contend with just the players already in our system and that certainly means another WS title this season can be done. With that logic we did very little off-season work this season. In the 1st three seasons in the USMLB we tried hard to get as many wins as we could while stock piling prospects. Once we hit season 4, we aggressively began to flip prospects/big-leagues for top notch position players (our pitchers were hot in the playoffs and we stole a WS from a superior team in Anaheim). Season 5 we continued to turn prospects into impact big-leaguers but this time it was for starting pitching and bullpen help. Those moves did turn the Stars into a favorite to take the WS (after very tough series with both New Britain and Atlanta we were able to repeat). If we can land an elite starter, that deal will be made but for now it's all about keeping Monterrey together by giving long front-loaded deals to our players. That not only do chicks dig the long ball but it wins games. The Stars had some very telling statistical oddities last season, number one in home runs hit and number one in fewest home runs allowed. Also number 32 in stolen bases with 0 and number 32 in stolen base attempts with 0. It’s a simple life for the stars, get on base, don't give up outs and hit those 3 run home runs. It's tough to judge how many wins you'll pick-up in a season but we should take 100 games this season.

Rankings to start the season:
1st ranked offensive
1st ranked pitching staff

Players Added:
Freddie Adcock LF (.297, 20, 58)(1yr, 3.6mil)
Blake Newman SS (.238, 12, 36)(2yrs, 3.5mil)
Jeff O'Keefe LF (.290, 21, 103)(1yr, 2.6mil)
Billy Ray Lombardi 1B (.263, 37, 85)(2yrs, 1.95mil)

Players Lost:
Rick Farr P (Left Free-Agency)
Tommy Crede 3B (Left Free-Agency)
Danny Smith P (Left Free-Agency)
Geraldo Molina P (Left Free-Agency)
Tony Roberts LF (Left Free-Agency)
Neifi Moya RF (Left Free-Agency)
Walt Lohse CF (Released)
David Bolivar SS (Released)
Josh Kerr P (Released)
Tyrone Boyle P (Released)

Jackson BlaZers (Second Place)(100-105 victories this season)

Chico Posada LF (Look for Posada to have a good season as the first time starter for the team)
Norman Richard CF (Richard has trouble hitting for average but is solid in the field)

Pep Chang RF (Chang is a slap hitting machine as he just finds ways to get on base)

Donatello Carpenter 2B (Carpenter is a pitchers best friend winning his second gold glove at second base last season)

Sven Griffin 3B (Griffin may not hit for average but he did have his career in average last season with 24)

Ken Lincoln SS (Lincoln was added to the team this season to provide power in the lineup)

Tim Perry 1B (Perry was last seasons only homerun threat but will need to improve his average if he’s going to move up to the second tier of first basemen)

Red Sullivan C (Will probably platoon with Barry Niekro for most of the season)

Bey Dillon (Dillon has only one 26 games the last two seasons and at 36 another 12 to 13 victories is still reachable)

Wilt Frank (Frank was the workhorse of the staff last season with 218 innings but he really never seemed to get on track last season with his ERA climbing to 4.53)

Greg Flanagan (You could see a big year out of Flanagan this season and the team will need it to catch up to the Stars)

Dan Meacham (After winning 21 games in season and winning the Cy Young, Meacham just disappeared last season by going 11-11 with his ERA at 4.54)

Chico Manuel (Will compete for the fifth spot this season with Gomez leaving for free-agency)

Kane Hines (220 saves later Hines is still going strong at the age of 36)

Coaches Corner:
The goal for the Blazers as always has been to win the World Series nothing less then that. Didn’t really need to make a lot of changes this season as the lineup will almost be the same as last season. We could use a fifth starter but it’s nothing that will concern the team if we can’t find one. Watch for Bey Dillon to once again contend for the Cy Young this season as he has told me he is ready to pitch this season. This team is built around pitching with the hope that the offensive can produce enough for us to contend. It wouldn’t be surprising to see us with 90 to 95 wins this season, right behind the Stars in the standing once again.

Rankings to start the season:
5th ranked offensive
2nd ranked pitching staff

Players Added:
Ken Lincoln SS (Acquired via Trade with Tucson Chupacabras)

Players Lost:
Tomas Gomez P (Left Free-Agency)
Jerry Throneberry P (Left Free-Agency)
Brady Teut 1B (Left Free-Agency)
Tony Armas 1B (Left Free-Agency)
Erick Hernandez SS (Released)
Scot Hill P (Traded to the Tucson Chupacabras)
Virgil Julio C (Traded to the Salem Gangstas)


New Britain Fisher Cats (Second Place)(95-100 victories this season)

Dennis Johnson LF (Will finally get a chance to prove he’s ready for the big show)

Santiago Alfonzo CF (Hitting in front of West any season will improve your numbers every time)

Kevin Montgomery RF (Montgomery may not hit for a great average but don’t underestimate his ability to hit the ball over the fence)

Pedro Javier 3B (After getting through the heart of the order many pitchers forget that Javier can hurt as well with his bat)

Lonnie Grove 2B (Grove how now made the thundering three into the fabulous four after another wonderful season from him last season)

Don Davis SS (Davis is Rule-5 Draftee and falls into the perfect situation playing for the Fisher Cats this season)

Hoss Boone 1B (Provides the protection in the lineup for West and picks up any runners that West leaves on base)

Erik West C (West won his second MVP award last season and in four season in the majors West has averaged over 50 homeruns a seasons)

Raymond Pavlov (A new team and motivation can really bring back a career)

Horacio Segui (If Segui wants to become an elite pitcher he will have to go deeper into the games this season)

Esteban Polanco (Polanco led the team in innings and complete games last season and I see him getting a career in victories this season)

Carlos Pujols (Last season Pujols got his second straight season of 16 victories could approach that again this season)

Jerry Franco (12 wins from your fifth starter is all you need to know about how good the Fisher Cats season was last year)

Reid Ward (Ward may have the closer job now but can last years closer Shane Clayton reclaim his spot once again)

Coaches Corner:
The team’s main goal for the season is to make it to the World Series. The team made it all the way to Game 7 of the National League Championship Series, but wasn't able to pull out a win. We have the talent to make it deep into the playoffs, and with some key additions this offseason I believe we have what it takes to make it to the big series. During this offseason, the first order of business is to improve the bullpen. There were some players that were let go, mainly because of monetary issues, and we have our eyes on a couple of free agent pitchers that would complement the bullpen nicely. During spring training, where going to be looking at some of my more highly touted prospects to potentially fill the openings we have at shortstop, leftfield and right field. We strongly believe that newly acquired closer Reid Ward could turn some heads this season. He has struggled throughout his young career, but he has a great power fastball and a knee-buckling curveball, that if harnessed, could make him a force coming into the 9th inning. The philosophy of this team is to have fun while staying competitive. The team is at its best when they are relaxed and playing the game the way it's supposed to be played. It's not uncommon to see practical joking going on in the clubhouse. These guys have bonded so well that it translates right onto the field, where they seem to know what each other is going to do before a play even happens. This team won 96 games last season. With some key upgrades, we have full confidence as a team that we could 100 games this season.

Rankings to start the season:
10th ranked offensive
10th ranked pitching staff

Players Added:
Reid Ward P (0-1, 6.94ERA, 11SV) (4yrs, 18mil)
Darryl Schmidt P (2yrs, 3.8mil)
Don Davis SS (Rule-5 Draftee)
Quinton Adams C (Rule-5 Draftee)
Pedro Flores C (.195, 2, 14) (1yr, 327K)

Players Lost:
Nicholas Herndon CF (Left via Fee-Agency)
Dummy Palmer C (Released)
Phil Randall 3B (Released)
Willie Batista P (Released)
Mike Neugebauer P (Released)
Ricardo De La Vega P (Released)
Kennie Sexson SS (Released)

Philadelphia HeadHunters (Fourth Place)(60-65 victories this season)

R.A. Donovan RF (The 24 will see a lot of time the field for his rookie season)

Khoury Glass CF (Glass wants to prove he is still one of the best center fielders in the game after a horrible season last year)

Sammy Aguilar LF (Will get a chance to prove he’s a major league right fielder this season)

Vinny Menechino 3B (Third base will have a lot of competition this season but I see Menechino winning the spot)

Matt Corey 2B (Last seasons team MVP is one of the best players of getting on base)

Sean Cepicky SS (Cepicky is another young player giving a shot this season)

Patrick Barker 1B (Rudy Adams has more power but I think Barker is better overall for this team)

Endy Hemingway C (Team would like to see if he is ready to be a starting catcher this season)


Gerald Wallace (After spending most of his career as a spot starter could see a full season as the starter this year)

Dickie Wells (Wells won 11 games last season and is looking to improve that record this season)

Norm Canseco (Hoping to find a spot in the rotation this season)

D'Angelo Baez (Hoping to find a spot in the rotation this season)


Rich Ford (Ford will finally be giving to shot of being the closer this season)

Coaches Corner:
The simple step for this team is to rebuild the farm system almost from scratch. The team had a lot of starters with there contracts expiring this season. With the young movement of this team they where just too old to renew and with the farm system having no quality pitching to replace the guys could make for a long season for the team. We will focus on picking up a player or two from the Rule-5 draft, international signing and the draft. The fans in Philadelphia may not like this but it’s the best course of action for this franchise. I think a lot of people should look out for Rudy Adams this season could make some noise whether anyone will be listening is a different story. The philosophy of the team this season is improve, don’t make dumb trades that could hurt the franchise even more. This team could when around 70 games this season everything goes right.

Rankings to start the season:
23rd ranked offensive
28th ranked pitching staff

Players Added:
Rico Rosado 3B (Acquired via Trade with Charleston Gullah's)
Roberto Gonzalez 2B (Acquired via Trade with Charleston Gullah's)
Rudy Adams 1B (Claimed off Waivers)
Bruce Jenkins P (Claimed off Waivers)
Jeff Gilmore P (Claimed off Waivers)
Patrick Barker 1B (Claimed off Waivers)
John Stinnett P (Claimed off Waivers)
Gus Inge P (Claimed off Waivers)

Players Lost:
Carson Minor P (Left via Fee-Agency)
Walt Hayes P (Left via Fee-Agency)
Nomar Ramirez 1B (Left via Fee-Agency)
Roger Newfield P (Left via Fee-Agency)
Nomar Kirby SS (Left via Fee-Agency)
Jaret Adams P (Released)
Earl Mitchell P (Released)
Michael Koh 3B (Released)
Bobby Crow P (Released)
Vicente Guillon LF (Released)
Albie James 1B (Released)
Cristobal Vallarta P (Released)
Delino Brooks P (Released)
Michael Dickey P (Traded to the Charleston Gullah's)
Javier Benitez P (Traded to the Charleston Gullah’s)
Artie Holmes P (Traded to the Charleston Gullah’s)
Toby Henderson RF (Released)

Chicago Blackhawks (First Place)(95-100 victories this season)

Manny Vanguri LF (Vanguri last season had a limited role last season and if ready to prove he’s a major league player)

Brian Creek CF (One of the big two power hitters in the lineup and will look to set another career high in homeruns this season)

Mikey Frey RF (Frey played well when you got a chance last season and will look to prove he’s a major league player this season)

Nick Ball 3B (Three straight seasons of team MVP, Ball as become the face of the franchise)

Jaime Basile 2B (Basile is one of the best lead-off hitters in the game but with is average dropping to .250 last season he worked all off-season improving his bat speed)

Tommie Romero SS (Not only is Romero to Basile one of the best double plays combination in the league but they work in perfect harmony at the top of the lineup as well)

Tony Armas 1B (Signed a big contract during the off-season, will need to prove it was worth it)

Fergie O'Shea C (There was a lot of questions marks about the signing of O’Shea last season but he quickly silent any outrage with a solid season)

Brendan Cora (Cora may have five straight years of ten or more victories but after a 10-15 performance last season really has him fired up to prove he’s still one of the elite pitchers in the game)

Jim Little (Little is one of the best third string starters in the league and with another winning record under his belt could be hitting the peak of his career)

Eric Parker (Parker was 10-7 last season but with his 5.32ERA, he will be sitting at the back of the rotation once again this season)

Sammy Goya (Goya was the only starter without at least ten victories last season but he still provided almost two hundred innings of work)

Mike Scanlan (Scanlan is young but you should see a big improvement this season from him)

Norman Jordan (Jordan will probably have the best year of his career this season as he will be pushed into a lot more ninth inning leads to protect this season)

Rankings to start the season:
3rd ranked offensive
9th ranked pitching staff

Players Added:
Gene Guerrero P (0-2, 4.55ERA, 14SV) (2yrs, 7.2mil)
Tony Armas 1B (.344, 12, 76) (3yrs, 19.5mil)
Bill Snyder P (1-2, 7.43ERA, 1SV)(Spring Training Invitee)

Players Lost:
Frank Nakamura P (Left Free-Agency)
Tomas Johnson P (Released)
Stuart Davidson P (Claimed off Waivers by Columbus Pride)
Patrick Barker 1B (Claimed off Waivers by Philadelphia HeadHunters)

Milwaukee Bucks (Third Place)(85-90 victories this season)

Danny Harding LF (Harding was the team MVP last season and with a monster career year can he repeat that performance this season)

Tomas Olivares CF (The only job for Olivares to do is to get on base and that’s exactly what he does with a .367 career on-base percentage)

Ronn Franco RF (Franco may not hit for a high average but he has no problem hitting the ball over the fence and showing off his arm in right field)

Sal Moore 2B (What a rookie season from Moore last season, as I expect his numbers won’t be as good as last season but they will still great)

Wesley Stanley 3B (Stanley as played more games in Milwaukee then any other player on the team and has average 41 homeruns, 114 RBI’s and 104 runs a season for the last five seasons)

Vinny Hunter SS (Hunter just wants a chance to play and I think this could be his year to do that)

Julian Hartley 1B (Hartley is probably the best first basemen that you have never heard of)

Chris Bellhorn C (Bellhorn could see a lot of pressure from fellow catcher Rafael Moreno in starting time this season)

Jim Nathan (Nathan’s first season with the Bucks last season could be considered a success but the team will need more from him this season)

Sidney Musial (Has age finally caught up with Musial this season, well we all have to wait and see)

Pedro Azocar (I think he earned a spot this season with an outstanding effort last season)

Emmanuel Navarro (Navarro had 14 victories last season but can his second season with the team produce the same results)

Ernie Garcia (Garcia made 31 starts last season but with a record of only 7-6 could push him into a battle for the fifth starting spot this season)

Vernon Bolton (Bolton is like a great wine, he’s just getting better with age)

Coaches Corner:
My goal for the Milwaukee Bucks this season is to win the division and hopefully make it deeper into the playoffs. We came so close last season (tied with the rival New Britain Fisher Cats for the regular season record) and lost in the first round of playoffs. It was a bit of a disappointment, but now we've got that to feed off of the experience we had last season. The goals this offseason is to lock up some core players to long-term deals. We also want to solidify my starting rotation, as last year saw a lot of turnover due to injuries and trade acquisitions. I can't say if anyone on my roster is going to surprise anyone. Honestly, I think the surprise came last season from a number of great performances. Look at what Danny Harding did as an offensive force, MVP candidate, and team leader. Look at what Sal Moore did to win Rookie of the Year honors and state his case as one of the best all-around players in USMLB. Look at what Jim Nathan and Pedro Azocar did as rookies thrust into a pennant race. No, the surprise was all last years'. The other owners know what my squad is capable of, so there should be nothing surprising this time around. The team philosophy is one of balance. We try to get players who are multi-talented: guys who don't rely on one facet of the game for success. For hitters that means solid defense, speed, and offensive prowess. For pitchers it means quality starts and the ability to win games regardless of whether you're a strikeout pitcher or someone who relies on movement and deception. It's a lot tougher for an opponent to have that confidence to beat you when he gets different looks from all your guys. It makes game-planning that much more difficult for them, and that's what I want to do. We feel confident saying that this team is going to have another 90-win season. That could be a bit of a stretch given how good New Britain is and what the new Chicago franchise has done to improve itself. But in the end, I know what my players are capable of, I know they can win.

Rankings to start the season:
17th ranked offensive
7th ranked pitching staff

Players Added:
Nomar Ramirez 1B (.234, 38, 112) (2yrs, 4.6mil)

Players Lost:
Ebenezer Canseco P (Left via Free-Agency)
Mitchell Pickett RF (Left via Free-Agency)
Bart Guerrero P (Released)
Todd Borkowski LF (Left via Free-Agency)
Carson Booker SS (Released)
Dave James 2B (Released)
Reid Ward P (Released)