2021 — World Series results

The series

This was a reply of last year’s series, and both owners asked me if that was an ASFBL first…the answer is that I’d have to comb over some old paper records, but it almost surely is…and a rematch isn’t a bad follow-up to a 60-game season…After scoring only a single run to lose game 1, the Braves won game two 6-5 to earn a split coming back to Atlanta. The road cooking didn’t bother the Chisox at all, who unleashed their bats to score 9 runs in game three and take a 2-1 advantage, which is larger than it feels like in a 7-game series. Inspired by the result, they went on to score 15 runs to take command, and after all that offense the final game was a 2-1 defensive duel…Rondon pitched 7 and 1/3rd scoreless innings before giving way to Liam Hendriks, and Jose Abreu provided all the offense with a 2-run homer in the second…after knocking in Ozzie Albies and advancing Jorge Soler to third the Braves had runners on second and third with one out…and Henriks struck out Contreras and Adrianza to seal the series…Chisox took the series in five, but three games were 2 runs or closer for a more competitive series than appeared in the final count.

The guys

Danny Wildes was our returning champion and has been in the league since 2006 and after three campaigns in San Diego, Four in Philadelphia, and two in Pittsburgh, he’s been the Atlanta showrunner since 2015. In that time he’s finished in the top-10 WOR spots or the playoffs in 6 of 7 seasons and in the playoffs for 4 straight years with the last two inthe world series…he’s won playoff spots with all four teams he’s managed and got to the LCS in only his second season with a middling San Diego club that he improved by 4 games….he had back-to-back 99 win seasons in 2018 and 2019 and then, of course, back-to-back World Series appearances the next two years…I’d say he has this game figured out…he shook the roster up with 10 trades this year with seven different teams, and it was his last trade on August 3rd that got him Jorge Soler from the Phillies, and it was Soler who managed to get to 3rd base in the 9th inning of the last game…great to have you around for these last 15 years, Danny, and here’s hoping you’re in a different division next year 🙂

Leo’s lifetime win percentage is a staggering 57%….out time knowing each other dates back to 1992 when we were both living in apartments in Salt Lake City…strange that we’ve both gravitated to the west coast…in 1994 he took over a sub-.500 Toronto club and was just learning about detailed baseball stats…but 1995 he was the league WOR champion and won his division in 1996 with the Padres…in 2003 he had a winning record but didn’t make the playoffs, and that was the last time he didn’t finish in the top-10 WOR or the make the playoffs…that’s a 22-year streak of finishing in the top of something…this is his second league championship with his firt coming in 2008 with the Blue Jays…he also finished with the best record in the league that year…his 103 wins this year are actually his second-best after the 106 he managed with Arizona in 2001…mostly, though, he’s the heart and soul of the ASFBL and does all the things I’m bad at, running drafts, recruiting owners, and keeping everything on track…for those of you who don’t know, Leo is also deeply committed to the wolf population in Yellowstone and has truly dedicated himself to preserving that part of our natural world…you’re a great guy to be around, Leo, and I can’t wait till we can find a way to catch our next game together.

That’s a season wrap, the 29th consecutive ASFBL season, which is older than both my kids if you add their ages together. Thanks to all of you for joining in my brain games and making this league happen. Enjoy the actual playoffs, and we’ll see you in spring training!

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LCS 2021

Braves sweep

The Atlanta pitching was absolutely phenomenal and kept the Brewer bats from ever really getting it going…the Braves used 7 pitchers to throw 18 scoreless innings over the final two games to get the shutout…Chris Zewiske has a lifetime winning record in the ASFBL in a career that spans 20 seasons…after a single year with the Padres in 2001 he has been an NL Central mainstay with the Brewers for balance of the time…and by all accounts he’s getting better, having made the playoffs 4 of the past 5 years, and this is his second LCS appearance since 2018…he finished 15 games ahead of the actual Brewers in 2015, which put him in the top-5 WOR finishers league-wide, something he’s accomplished three times, including his second season all the way back in 2002…what I find amazing is that Chris entered law school in 2000 and joined ASFBL in 2001, so if my math is correct he was eyeballs-deep in the second year of law school when he joined, and no accolade I can heap on him here will exceed his designation as “Super Lawyer” that he received in 2020…this year he pulled off 4 different trades with 4 different teams, and the players included Phil Bickford (my wife’s former student) and Brandon Workman (the brother of my former student)….what are the odds of that?….it’s been a great couple of decades, Chris, and I hope some day you’ll be able to slide into the giant beer stein in the suit of Bernie Brewer!

Chisox in 4

Jim Casey had the absolutely best line of the post-season, pointing out that Ryan Tepera would not accuse the ASFBL Astros of sign stealing…since Jim had traded for Tepera back on July 31…”Trader Jim” pulled off 10 trades this year with 7 different teams involving 30 different players, or at least one complete major league roster, and he worked with long-timers Adam Symonds and Rick Wynne as well as newcomers in their first few seasons and even divisional rivals…Jim had an 8-year run with the Cubs from 1995-2002, took a sabbatical until 2007, and after some filler years with the Jays and Indians settled into a tour with the Giants 2009-2014 and has been with the Astros ever since…ever since he settled in with the Giants he’s made the playoffs 10 of 13 seasons and finished in the top-6 WOR spots four times…he made it to the World Series in 2010 and was the league champ in 2011, and had three consecutive 100-win seasons between 2009 and 2011…this is his third LCS appearance in the last six years…Jim joined in 1995 which looks like it was the last year of his MBA, which both means that he found time for baseball fandom in the midst of some serious coursework and that his time in the league spans to the last century…Jim’s been around fo4 26 years, and I”m already planning my writeup for your entry in the 2047 ASFBL World Series, Jim, which will be 26 years from now…

We’ll have some World Series results as soon as Leo and Danny get their lineups in…good luck to both of our World Series contenders!

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ASFBL — DCS results

Just the facts

Quick series recaps: The Braves overtook the upstart Cubs in 5 games…although were outscored 7-5 over the span the Bravos took 2 of the last 3 in a series that was closer than the final game count appeared…the Chisox took down the Rays 4-3, scoring 5, 6, 8 and 9 in the victories….the Rays actually had a 2-1 series lead before the White Sox bats took off…After falling behind 2 games to 1 the Brewers held the mighty Dodgers to 4 runs in 3 games to win a 4-2, come-from-behind series…in the only series to go all 7 games, the Astros outlasted the Jays…the decisive game was a 4-3 affair with the Jays scoring last but Blake Treinen pitching 2 scoreless innings to seal the series…Jays had 4 on base over the last 2 innings.

Alan Minsky adds: “we did have a four run lead in the bottom of the eighth of game six, with two outs and nobody on… in other words, we should’ve knocked out the Sox – and given how thoroughly they crushed the ‘Stros and Braves, me and my beloved ASFBL Rays are going to spend the off-season haunted by what could’ve, and should’ve, been.”

Hail to the playoff owners

In any year I type this about Rick Wynne I always feel guilty since it seems like if he didn’t win it all there’s probably something wrong with my code and not his choices…leads ASFBL all time in wins…a staggering 2,860…Leo is second, and if he had two seasons where he went 162-0 and Rick went 0-162 Leo still wouldn’t have caught up…best all-time winning percentage for any owner with more than 1 season…he has more ASFBL wins than Tony LaRussa has MLB wins…the only actual MLB owner ever with more wins was Connie Mack…Rick has a better winning percentage than Connie…the best all-time MLB win percentage is Joe MCarthy at .615 (and a paltry 2,125 career wins)…Rick sits at .625…this is his 7th straight playoff appearance…he can still say he has never had a negative WOR, and this year it took more than 106 wins to do that…not a lot of guys could take a historically good team and rise to the challenge of making them better, but Rick did…it seems like if playoffs weren’t played in 7-game chunks he’d win every year…and above all, he is a truly, truly wonderful man and the most scrupulous trade partner you will ever deal with…you make the league better by being you, Rick, and I really appreciate all you contribute.

Gordon Leckie has a lifetime win percentage about .540, and he started his ASFBL career in 1994 with a 61-101 mark….and won the league the very next year…this is his 3rd straight year in the playoffs and — get this — his 16th winning season, dating back to 2006…all of those were with Detroit and the Cubbies, so he didn’t always have much to work with…the +19 WOR this season was a personal best, and the 7th positive-WOR finish of the last 10…he’s got a fastidious attention to detail, and we’ve had conversations about the disabled list that involved what time on Monday someone got placed on the DL…he’s always quick to say something when he sees something and always quick to see when his first impression wasn’t right, which doesn’t happen nearly as often as when his first impression is spot on…it’s been a great 27 years, my friend, and I hope we have many more.

Alan Minsky is a baby in ASFBL terms, but he’s got a lifetime .562 win percentage and has made the playoffs in every non-strike shortened year…he’s eclipsed 90 wins in three years and bested the actual Rays in two of four tries…which is something, since even the Yankees couldn’t do that and they have a much larger budget…no matter how busy you think you are Alan has a little more on his plate than you do, what with a democracy to save and all…and my enduring image of Alan was sitting next to him at an Angels game as he was zooming in to a high-powered political meeting going on in Arizona…and did the thing where you video and audio mute so it looks like you’re paying attention but nobody can really tell what you’re doing…he wasn’t going to let a little thing like a political power shift interfere with a good baseball game…I hope I’m remembering this story right, but I also think that Alan once got into Fenway on an off day and took some phantom swings at home plate, standing on the same spot Babe Ruth had once swung an actual bat…Alan has a great baseball mind and is an accomplished author, thinker, and activist, and one of the guys I truly value this league for because it lets me spend more time with him.

Ok, if your email handle is “jmaclives4sports” you know where priorities lie for John MacDonald, or “Johnny Mac” in ASFBL parlance…his first season was 1999 with the Phillies, and he’s logged a total of 17 ASFBL season with the occasional break…I can only imagine what his fantasy seasons are like, but I’m glad he keeps returning, and we’ve had him in the ASFBL fold every year since 2017…he’s take the Jays to the playoffs both times he’s had them and was a back-to-back league champ in 2001…and again in 2006…eight of his last 10 seasons have had finishes in positive WOR territory, including two top-eight finishes in 2014 and 2017…this year’s win total of 98 is a personal best, higher than the 93 from 2006 when he won it all with the Rockies while finishing +17 WOR, and I think you’d have to say this has been his best season since then…so, congrats on your best season in a decade-and-a-half, enjoy the rest of the playoff games I know you’ll be watching, and let’s see you again next year!

How they match up to reality

I thought it might be fun to compare how the playoff teams did against the actual teams, so here’s the chart. The results are impressive…four ASFBL owners did better than the actual team although the season is now over…two ASFBL owners have ASFBL and MLB teams that are both still alive…one finished dead even (and maybe two, depending on the Dodger series outcome)…and two ASFBLers have already improved on the actual club and are still alive.

TeamReal finishASFBL finishNotes
Padresno playoffswildcardASFBL improvement!
Oaklandno playoffswildcardASFBL improvement!
Brewerslost in DCSStill in LCS!ASFBL improvement! (and still going)
Dodgerstied 2-2 in DCSDCSWe find out soon if actual club goes farther
BravesAdvanced to LCSAdvanced to LCSRight on track…
Cubsbadly missed playoffsDCSASFBL improvement!
RaysDCSDCSFinished dead even
ChisoxDCSLCSASFBL improvement! (and still going)
AstrosAdvanced to LCSAdvanced to LCSRight on track…
Jaysno playoffsDCSASFBL improvement!

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Newsletter for wildcard games, 2021


The Padre won the first game in a tight 2-1 battle, and that woke up the Milwaukee bats and they scored 18 runs in 3 games while never allowing more than 3…in the decisive game the Padres got the Brewer middle relief to tie the game at 3 before the Brewers scored a run and turned the game over to Josh Hader who pitched a scoreless inning for his second save of the series…Al Benedek has been in the league since the 2000 season and has a record notable for two gaps, both of which he’s come back from…the Padres are actually the 9th team he’s managed in that time…this is his second straight year in the playoffs and the fourth straight year he’s finished in the top-10 or WOR or in the playoffs…all of those were with the Padres…his +10 is his third-highest ever, behind the 16 games two years ago and +13 in 2010 with Washington…his 89 wins this year are his most since 2002….Al pulled off 4 trades this year, adding Grienke and Gurriel at the trade deadline…I can honestly say that although he’s been in the league for 21 years on and off I’ve never heard him send a negative message of pass a cross word…another great year from a really great guy, and we look forward to seeing you next year!


After dropping game one 12-4, Oakland bucked up and took a 3-2 win to even the series…the Ray bats just became overwhelming and they scored an identical 12 runs in the last two games to advance to the DCS…John Weerts is a lifetime 76 games over .500 and has been at it continuously since 2010, marking more than a decade of participation…he’s been skippering the A’s the entire time, and cleared the 90-win mark twice…he finished in the top-10 WOR every year between 2015-2017…he made me the best trade offer I had all year and I turned it down, so he’s smarter than I am…and one of my deepest regrets is that when he dropped by my office while on a business trip I missed him by 15 minutes…great having you in the league, John, and your loyalty to Oakland is recognized!

Up next

Brewers at LAD

Atlanta at Cubs

Tampa Bay at Chisox

Houston at Toronto

Owners…please get us your lineups by MONDAY NIGHT…schedule should be set and ready to go…

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Newsletter for games through 10-3-21 — Final week of the season!

Final Finish!

For reference I’ve put our rules below…basically the same as MLB except the series are longer…Braves win the NL East…Washington had an outside shot if they could have run the table while the Braves went winless, but with deference to Vin Scully the impossible did not happen…still a great year for Andy Somers and his +17 WOR is proof of that…Colorado played spoiler by taking 2 of 3 from the Nats, sealing the division for the Braves…the BIG NEWS for the league is that the impossilbe did happen in the NL central where Gordon Leckie had a 6-0 week, the Brewers stumbled, and the Cubs won the central! This would have been completely impossible had not the Pirates and the Cardinals swept the division leaders, and a real hats-off to those teams who didn’t have a lot of other things to play for, but made sure their lineups were competitive and made a difference in the division…the Dodgers finished first in the NL West…his 112 wins ties Rick Wynne for 4th all-time in the ASFBL, put him 1 short of his own personal best in 2019, and that is probably second overall in the “modern” ASFBL era of post-2001, when all the spots were filled every year and all expansion was done…and the best all-time (and probably never to be broken) is 124 wins by the Yankees in 1998…thus, the NL wildcard series goes to the Brewers and the Padres…both come in off of rough patches, but in the ASFBL that keeps your players adjusting the right direction in the playoffs…congrats to Chris Zewiske and Al Benedek for terrific seasons…there are 36 ASFBL seasons between those guys…shout out to Jeremy Moore and the Giants, who were going to have a hard time matching the real team, as the most unkind cut is always the last team out…Toronto and the Chisox each finished as division leaders in cruise control and took their divisions…Leo Leckie lead the AL in wins at 103 and was the only non-Dodger team to finish with triple-digit win totals…John Weerts made a game push in the AL west, finishing 5-1 and picking up 3 games on Houston…but needed 3 more to catch Jim Casey and the Astros, who had just enough to hold of Oakland…but if you don’t win the division, it’s always good to catch a wildcard spot, which John did…and joins Alan Minsky of the Rays in the wildcard round…Alan needed a strong-ish finish to seal the spot which he had with a 4-2 week…Anaheim, the Yankees, and Kansas City were all dark horses but none could crack .500…last-out award goes to Greg Achten of the Angels, and the +8 WOR feat was an accomplishment, especially considering that the starting outfield over the last month included two guys who weren’t even in the AAA outfield at the start of the year…and Gordie really distinguished himself in the WOR standings…as the actual Cubs went from possible contenders to rebuilders he kept the team competitive and finished tied with Hugh Brown of the Dbacks and Ben Brockreide of the Rangers at 19 wins…Washington had 7, followed by Mark Chen and the Orioles at +16 and Steve Clemmons at +13…all other double-digit leaders made the playoffs…also worthy of mention are the Royals (Mike Mendoza), Twins (Tim Walsh), and Rockies (Hugh Brown) who inherited middling teams and made them considerably better…

Playoff seeding

Brewers and Padres tie on record and the first tiebreaker is head-to-head, which goes to the Padres who won the season series 5-2…which might not matter a lot, considering they haven’t played since May 27. Here are the final WCS/DCS matchups:

Wildcard winner (MIL/SD) at LAD

Atlanta at Cubs

Wildcard winner (Oakland at Tampa Bay) at Chisox

Houston at Toronto

Lineup note: Please submit your playoff lineups by Friday Night and we’ll run the games Saturday morning. Give me until tomorrow mid-day to get the games set up.

Rules Review

Real-life playoff stats do not count.

  • ASFBL statistics will continue to accumulate through the playoffs.  There will be a 2-day break between the last game of the regular season and the start of the playoffs.
  • There will be 2 wildcard spots in each league.  The wildcard round will be 5 games and follow a 2-2-1 format with off days in between.  All other rounds are 7 games following a 2-2-1-1-1 format with off days in between.
  • Regular season statistics will NOT be cleared and will continue to accumulate, with the exception of the over-use factors, which will be frozen at their final regular season figures.  For example, a pitcher over-used at 145% on the last day of the regular season will have an over-use factor of 145% for all of the playoff games, but all other statistics will continue to accumulate.
  • A three man rotation may be used in the playoffs. There will be a fatigue adjustment for playing on three days’ rest.
  • For the World Series (and Interleague Play), the real life home and away designated hitter rule will apply. Owners whose teams are in the World Series will have two lineups: one with and one without a designated hitter.

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Newsletter for games through 9-26-21

The mystery of the Mariners

As I write this, the actual Mariners are a half game out of the last AL wildcard spot…and I’m confused, because to win you need to score more runs than your opponent. in all of MLB, they rank 23rd in runs scores (and have famously been no-hit like three times this year), and their pitching is better but its 17th in MLB, below the league average, and 8th in the AL…when only the top 5 teams make the playoffs, being in the bottom half of both runs scored and runs allowed is a bad place to be…on average, they score 4.3 runs a game and allow 4.6…but they’ve gotten hot and won 9 of their last 10…according to their Pythagorean win-loss, they should be 74-84 and they’re actually 88-70….the baseball-reference.com website calls that 14 games of “luck”…no matter what you call it, they are winning by small amounts and losing by large amounts…the next-closest team is the Yankees at +6 over what our friend Pythagoras would predict they’d have…they are 33-18 in one-run games which is, let me check, 15 games…they are either really lucky or really clutch, but either way it’s fun to watch…and frankly, nobody is that lucky…but what’s really not fair is that ASFBL newcomer Josh Mitchell inherited a statistically impossible team…no real way to keep up with the real bunch given this weird statistical anomaly…

WOR of the Worlds

Leo’s sharp eyes noticed there was an amazing race going on here that I had been missing…Texas is all of one game up on Cubbies, who’s actual club basically called the season in July…Arizona, Baltimore, and Washington are all within 3 games of the top spot…and since this race depends both on how you do and the actual club does, every surprise win the Orioles put up as spoilers in the AL East race is a blow to Mark Chen’s chances…every loss the Diamondbacks take to the actual Giants helps Ben Leckie…and I’m not saying that its genetic, but 3 of the top 7 WOR spots go to people named “Leckie”…

Rest of the Races

Houston went up by 6 games with one week left, despite a 5-2 record by the Angels, more or less claiming the AL West title and joining Toronto and the Chisox as divisional champs…Tampa Bay looks pretty good with the top wildcard spot, but the Yankees, Angels, and A’s are in a dead tie for the last wildcard spot…Kansas City is only 2 games back and very much in the running…the Angels took 2 of 3 from those Mariners this week…Houston swept Oakland, which basically gave them the division but the Athletics are a long way from out of it…the Yankees beat Boston this week, but not with the sweep they got in real life, and Texas became everyone’s favorite spoiler by taking 2 of 3 from the Yanks while moving themselves into first place in WOR…in the NL, the Dodgers have clinched the west and the best ASFBL record, and the only question is how high on the all-time win list Rick will be able to place his club…the Nationals put together a 5-2 week but with 6 games left the best they can do is tie the Braves, making their magic number 1…the Brewers only lead the division by 4, but it would take a collapse on their part and a perfect week by the Cubbies to tie that division, which again makes the wildcard race the thing…and what a race!…the Padres lead the pack by 2 games, but the Cubs and Giants are only a game back…the Nationals have an outside shot but would need Mariner-like luck…Tatis is making a strong push for ASFBL MVP with 56 homers and 129 RBI…there is some drama over whether he could get to 60…

Feats and Failures

Austin Hays (Texas) struck out 4 times (on 9/20/2021 against New York (NYY)) 
Max Stassi (Anaheim) struck out 4 times (on 9/20/2021 against Houston) 
Franmil Reyes (Cleveland) struck out 4 times (on 9/21/2021 against Kansas City) 
Michael Lorenzen (Cincinnati) struck out 4 times (on 9/21/2021 against Pittsburgh) 
Gerrit Cole (Philadelphia) struck out 14 batters (on 9/21/2021 against Baltimore) 
Bryan Holaday (Arizona) struck out 4 times (on 9/21/2021 against Atlanta) 
Taylor Trammell (Seattle) struck out 4 times (on 9/21/2021 against Oakland) 
Steven Duggar (San Francisco) struck out 4 times (on 9/21/2021 against San Diego) 
Jesse Chavez (Arizona) struck out 11 batters (on 9/22/2021 against Atlanta) 
Jesse Chavez (Arizona)  threw a no-hitter! (on 9/22/2021 against Atlanta) 
Taylor Trammell (Seattle) struck out 4 times (on 9/22/2021 against Oakland) 
Chad Pinder (Oakland) struck out 4 times (on 9/23/2021 against Seattle) 
Austin Hedges (Cleveland) struck out 4 times (on 9/23/2021 against Chicago (CWS)) 
Riley Greene (Detroit) struck out 4 times (on 9/24/2021 against Kansas City) 
Chris Bassitt (Oakland) struck out 12 batters (on 9/25/2021 against Houston) 
Jose Ramirez (Cleveland) struck out 4 times (on 9/25/2021 against Chicago (CWS)) 
Teoscar Hernandez (Toronto) struck out 4 times (on 9/25/2021 against Minnesota) 
Jazz Chisholm (Miami) struck out 4 times (on 9/26/2021 against Tampa Bay) 
Shane Baz (Tampa Bay) struck out 13 batters (on 9/26/2021 against Miami) 
Patrick Kivlehan (Minnesota) struck out 4 times (on 9/26/2021 against Toronto) 
Taylor Trammell (Seattle) struck out 4 times (on 9/26/2021 against Anaheim) 

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Newsletter for games through 9-19-21


Does anyone in our league know what made the Cardinals go 10-0? I’m chalking it up to random baseball mojo…the formula for victory in the 21st century is hang in there until September and then be the hottest team over the last 3 weeks of the season…and a reminder that any bubble team making a run in the last two ASFBL weeks will surely have a shot…The main run in the NL this week wasn’t a dark horse making a push but the field leader pulling away from the pack…Rick Wynne’s Dodgers went 6-0, are 8 for their last 10, and pushed over 100 wins…only five teams in ASFBL history have won 112 or more games, with 104 he’s got a shot to push his way into the mix…Two of those five are also Rick Wynne…Rob Perkins, who perenially steps up to take the last available team, had his Bucs go 4-2…and played spoiler by taking 2 of 3 from Miami, bumping Andy Somers’ Nationals into second place in the NL East…it will take a major run for Andy to make the post-season, but hey, the MLB Cardinals…Nationals themselves went 4-2…and as the actual Padres fade, Al Benedek’s club went 5-2 and holds the top NL wildcard spot…Cubs look like they have a solid track on the second wildcard, but the Nationals, Marlins, Giants, and Rockies are all still alive…Nobody did better than 4-2 this week in the AL, but Mark Yee’s Yankees were one of them, and that nudged them a game and a half closer to the Rays in the AL East…the actual Jays are heating up but Johnny Mac’s club was already warm and they have all but clinched the AL East…Leo also had the Chisox with 4 wins and he’s holding off those Jays for home-field advantage throughout the playoffs…John Weertz was the owner with the 4 win mark in the AL West, and with 2 weeks left he can catch the Astros at only 3 games back…the AL Wildcard is a dogfight; Tampa Bay holds the top spot but are 4-6 over the last 10 and only .500 over the last 20…Oakland is second at 81 wins and hot of late but only 2 games over .500 over the last 30…the Yankees (79 wins), Royals (76 wins), and Angels (77 wins) all have a shot if Oakland stumbles or Houston collapses…Twenty-four lineups turned in this week!…that’s right at our historical average, and a great turnout for the dog days of September…what’s striking is that 3 of the 6 teams that didn’t turn in lineups are contenders…Every single ASFBL team is doing better than the actual Orioles and Diamondbacks…and, frankly, the ASFBL teams seem to have more attention to the roster moves…

Feats and Failures

Julio Urias (Los Angeles) struck out 12 batters (on 9/13/2021 against Arizona) 
Alfonso Rivas (Chicago (CC)) struck out 4 times (on 9/14/2021 against Philadelphia) 
Max Scherzer (Washington) struck out 13 batters (on 9/14/2021 against Miami) 
Estevan Florial (New York (NYY)) hit 6 RBI (on 9/14/2021 against Baltimore) 
Brandon Lowe (Tampa Bay) struck out 4 times (on 9/14/2021 against Toronto) 
Austin Hedges (Cleveland) struck out 4 times (on 9/14/2021 against Minnesota) 
Tarik Skubal (Detroit) struck out 11 batters (on 9/15/2021 against Milwaukee) 
Salvador Perez (Kansas City) struck out 4 times (on 9/15/2021 against Oakland) 
Craig Stammen (San Diego) struck out 4 times (on 9/15/2021 against San Francisco) 
Fernando Tatis Jr. (San Diego) hit 6 RBI (on 9/18/2021 against St. Louis) 
Austin Hedges (Cleveland) struck out 4 times (on 9/19/2021 against New York (NYY)) 
Estevan Florial (New York (NYY)) hit 6 RBI (on 9/19/2021 against Cleveland) 
Robert Neustrom (Baltimore) hit 6 RBI (on 9/19/2021 against Boston) 
Frankie Montas (Oakland) struck out 14 batters (on 9/19/2021 against Anaheim) 

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Newsletter for games through 9-12


The games this week were played with the volume on mute to prevent Francisco Lindor from whistling into the Yankee dugout…as in real life, Tatis leads Ohtani by 1 home run, 48 to 47….as in real life, Ohtani has way more wins, innings pitched, and strikeouts…Zach Wheeler leads MLB with 195 innings, and in the ASFBL he’s 6th behind Gausman, Buehler, Alcantara, Strohman, and Woodruff…all those guys are in the MLB top-10…Giants, Brewers, and Marlins have the top 3 actual team ERAs for their pitching staffs…Toronto, Chisox, and the Nationals have the best team real batting averages…Astros top MLB….Cubs and Chisox are 2 and 3 in most ASFBL homers…Brewers lead…Marlin and Angel pitchers have issued the fewest ASFBL walks…MLB may not have a 20-game winner this year, but Walker Buehler of the ASFBL Dodgers has 18 wins and might have a shot…Sean Manaea of Oakland pitched 11 scoreless innings last week, the most pitched without allowing a run…Atlanta seized control of the NL East with a 5-1 record as the Marlins hit a rough patch…three of the Atlanta wins were head-to-head against Miami….Brewers needed to go 5-1 so the Cubs didn’t pick up ground with their 4-2 record…the Brewers can thank the Giants, who took 2 of 3 from the Cubbies to boost the Brewer fortunes…Rockies were the only team other than the Dodgers to post a winning record in the NL west…Toronto continues to pound their way into the AL East command with a 6-1 week…I don’t know if you saw this, but they scored 27 runs over a 4-inning span in MLB last week…they scored in double-digits 4 times this week in the ASFBL, and 7 or more runs in 6 of their 7 games…which makes it super-impressive that Gil and the Yankees shut them out in their lone loss…Royals had a massive 6-1 week, best in the AL central…it’s too late to make a run at the Chisox, but they are still a dark horse wildcard team…the Houston-Oakland-Anaheim race in the AL west stays competitive, and all 3 teams had winning records this week, with Oakland’s 5 wins as the best of the bunch…Reds are having a tough ASFBL year, but Joey Votto is just as impressive in the sim as in real-life and knocked 3 homers against the Cubs this week…thanks to those of you who have been sending me side notes about the Mets in the ESPN 30-for-30 series…definitely made me feel more sympathy for Doc Gooden and his down year in 1986…although I still would rather have been Doc Gooden going through the struggles than anyone trying to bat against him…

Feats and failures

Bobby Witt (Kansas City) struck out 4 times (on 9/6/2021 against Baltimore) 
Christian Yelich (Milwaukee) struck out 4 times (on 9/6/2021 against Philadelphia) 
Nelson Cruz (Minnesota)  had 5 hits (on 9/7/2021 against Cleveland) 
Kris Bryant (Chicago (CC)) hit 6 RBI (on 9/7/2021 against Cincinnati) 
Joey Gallo (St. Louis) struck out 4 times (on 9/7/2021 against Los Angeles) 
Ryan Mountcastle (Baltimore) struck out 4 times (on 9/8/2021 against Kansas City) 
Bo Bichette (Toronto)  had 5 hits (on 9/8/2021 against New York (NYY)) 
Joey Votto (Cincinnati) hit 3 homers (on 9/8/2021 against Chicago (CC)) 
Yasmani Grandal (Chicago (CWS)) hit 6 RBI (on 9/8/2021 against Oakland) 
Ranger Suarez (Houston) struck out 11 batters (on 9/10/2021 against Anaheim) 
Ryan McMahon (Colorado) struck out 5 times (on 9/11/2021 against Philadelphia) 
Rafael Devers (Chicago (CWS)) struck out 4 times (on 9/11/2021 against Boston) 
Jose Berrios (Minnesota) struck out 11 batters (on 9/11/2021 against Kansas City) 
J.D. Davis (New York (NYM)) struck out 4 times (on 9/12/2021 against New York (NYY)) 

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Newsletter for games through 9-5-21

More cycles!

Manny Machado (San Diego) hit for the cycle on 8/31/2021 against Arizona in a pure, 4-4 fashion…also had a walk…Arizona hung in there, though, and the Padres had to use their closer en route to a 6-4 victory


The fantasy Mets are happy to announce that if were up to us we would activate a fully healthy Jacob deGrom and could do so since neither the current GM nor the predecessor in that position has been guilty of sexual harassment or driving under the influence…the Dodgers swept the Giants in ASFBL, in what was the most-watched series of the week…the Dodgers also took 2 of 3 from the Braves, who nonetheless went 4-3 on the week and gained ground in the NL East…the Cubs came roaring back and went 5-1 to pull within 1.5 of the Brewers…and it turns out they got some help from those same Giants, who took 3 of 4 in a long series with Milwaukee…if the season were to end with the Brewers and Braves taking their divisions, the big battle would be between those Cubs and the Giants for the last wildcard spot…and the Padres continue to stay right in the mix with a current hold on the top wildcard spot and the second-best record in the league…the Jays and their +9.5 WOR continue to hold the top of the AL East, but the Rays are 22-8 over the last 30 — as hot as the real club — and picked up half a game last week…the Rays currently have the top wildcard spot…Leo and the Chisox are cruising to the AL central crown, which I think has already been mathematically sealed…and has been consistent winning about 67% of the games over the last 10, 20, and 30 contests…Oakland is second in the AL West — one spot better than the actual club — and the Angels fought to stay competitive with the best record in the division…Current win totals for the second AL wildcard spot: Oakland (72), Yankees (71), Angels (70)…and in the hotly-contested WOR championship, the Rangers moved a half-game in front of the Orioles, who are a half-game in front of the Diamondbacks….three terrible actual teams made much better by their ASFBL owners and creating a race exactly as the ASFBL rules intended…Fullerton footnote: Josh Mitchell and I sit on the Cal State Fullerton budget committee together, making largely ignored recommendations on a $600 million budget…and given our combined WOR total of -30.5 maybe they would do well to ignore our opinions on what to do with a bunch of numbers…

Feats and Failures…

Alec Bohm (St. Louis) struck out 4 times (on 8/30/2021 against Cincinnati) 
Hunter Renfroe (Boston) struck out 4 times (on 8/30/2021 against Tampa Bay) 
Lance McCullers Jr. (Houston) struck out 11 batters (on 9/1/2021 against Seattle) 
Tyler Mahle (Cincinnati) struck out 11 batters (on 9/1/2021 against St. Louis) 
Paul Goldschmidt (Philadelphia) struck out 4 times (on 9/1/2021 against Washington) 
Jeimer Candelario (Milwaukee) hit 6 RBI (on 9/2/2021 against San Francisco) 
Patrick Wisdom (Chicago (CC)) struck out 4 times (on 9/2/2021 against Pittsburgh) 
Charlie Blackmon (Colorado) struck out 4 times (on 9/2/2021 against Atlanta)

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Newsletter for games through 8-29-21


City of Anaheim update — the Shohei Ohtani neon pillows (given away at entrance on August 31) were going on eBay for $300…had a friend who had tickets and got the to gate 40 minutes before start time and they were already gone… Jorge Mateo of San Diego got one each of every hit on 8/26/2021 against Los Angeles….except for a single…one hit shy, but the Padres won 6-2…every NL division leader (Atlanta, Milwaukee, and the Dodgers) had a winning week, but the Marlins gained ground anyway going 5-1 to the Braves’ 3-2…and let me check my notes here, um, its August, so Rick Wynne must be leading the division and is posting the best record in the league…yep, checks out…outside the Marlins, the Phillies were 4-2 and are clawing their way back to .500…they’re the only NL east team with a winning record in inter-league games…Tampa Bay picked up a game on the Blue Jays and is in the driver’s seat for the AL wildcard…they are an ungodly 23-7 over their last 30 games, so let’s all eat what Alan is having for breakfast…Yankees are not quite as hot as the actual Yankees but are still 18-12 over their last 30…and are one game behind Oakland in the wildcard race…the Orioles were 3-3 but that’s plenty to keep them ahead of the actual club in the WOR standings…where Mark Chen trails Ben’s Rangers by half a game…the Rangers were also 3-3, so the key might be which actual club collapses the fastest over the last month…Leo isn’t letting Rick run away with the “best record” moniker, posted a 6-1 week, has a 21-game lead in the division, and the real drama is whether at 86 wins he can catch the Dodgers who have 89…..Royals and Indians both posted winning records…Kansas City did so by taking 2 of 3 from the Astros, making themselves a spoiler in a different division…Cleveland swept the Bosox…the Angels had the only winning record in the AL west, but the division is Houston’s to lose and Oakland currently holds the second wildcard spot…Texas is the hottest team over the last 30 (20 wins)…Toronto isn’t especially hot, but they have twice as many wins within the division as losses and are 15-5 in interleague play…Scherzer, Buehler, and Gausman each have 16 wins…Urias leads MLB with 15…Sonny Gray has 4 complete games, one more than any in MLB…and he only has 56 fantasy innings…Gausman also leads ASFBL with 191 innings…182 tops MLB (Wheeler)…season ends Oct 3, so we’ve got 5 lineups left…I love pennant races!!!!!!


Carlos Hernandez (Kansas City) struck out 11 batters (on 8/23/2021 against Houston) 
Jacob Stallings (Pittsburgh) struck out 4 times (on 8/25/2021 against Arizona) 
Willy Adames (Tampa Bay) kicked 3 errors (on 8/25/2021 against Philadelphia) 
C.J. Chatham (Philadelphia) kicked 3 errors (on 8/26/2021 against Arizona) 
Miguel Sano (Minnesota) struck out 4 times (on 8/26/2021 against Boston) 
Mike Yastrzemski (San Francisco) struck out 4 times (on 8/26/2021 against New York (NYM)) 
Gerrit Cole (Philadelphia) struck out 13 batters (on 8/27/2021 against Arizona) 
Paul DeJong (St. Louis) hit 6 RBI (on 8/27/2021 against Pittsburgh) 
Fernando Tatis Jr. (San Diego) struck out 4 times (on 8/27/2021 against Anaheim) 
Matt Chapman (Oakland) struck out 4 times (on 8/28/2021 against New York (NYY)) 
Bo Bichette (Toronto) struck out 4 times (on 8/28/2021 against Detroit) 
Brandon Lowe (Tampa Bay) struck out 4 times (on 8/28/2021 against Baltimore) 
Javier Baez (Chicago (CC)) struck out 4 times (on 8/28/2021 against Chicago (CWS)) 
Salvador Perez (Kansas City) struck out 4 times (on 8/28/2021 against Seattle) 
Asdrubal Cabrera (Arizona) struck out 4 times (on 8/29/2021 against Philadelphia) 
Adolis García (Texas) struck out 4 times (on 8/29/2021 against Houston) 

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