Alternate History Sports

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8/06/2021 8:26 pm  #61


Re: The Major American Baseball League

No sweat H-Town, take as long as you need to get caught up on real life and recharge.   Life is crazy enough as it is!  We'll be here when you get back! 

Definitely looking like the Midwest is gonna be in for a crazy end to the season!  With 7 teams that could realistically make a run at the pennant, it could get really messy, and that's fun!  Looking like Brooklyn's got the East down pat barring a crazy collapse.  


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8/30/2021 6:29 am  #62


Re: The Major American Baseball League

Hey H-Town, I've thoroughly enjoyed this far. Will it be back up and running soon? I understand that oftentimes life gets in the way though, so no rush!

 

8/30/2021 11:09 pm  #63


Re: The Major American Baseball League

Megildur wrote:

Hey H-Town, I've thoroughly enjoyed this far. Will it be back up and running soon? I understand that oftentimes life gets in the way though, so no rush!

Hey Meg! I've been really f--k busy the last few weeks while moving and the new school year starting and everything, but I hope to return soon with some exciting and deep yet engaging end of season content!


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9/05/2021 4:08 pm  #64


Re: The Major American Baseball League

H-Town1141 wrote:

Hey Meg! I've been really f--k busy the last few weeks while moving and the new school year starting and everything, but I hope to return soon with some exciting and deep yet engaging end of season content!

Absolutely understandable, my friend. Good luck to you through the moving process and starting up school again. I'm in the same boat and know how hard it is to find time to oneself, much less to create stuff here. Props to you for how good this league has looked so far!
 

 

11/21/2021 12:58 am  #65


Re: The Major American Baseball League

CHALK!

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Despite the turbulence of the West, Brooklyn stayed atop the division. Bryan Rosenberg once again lit up the basepaths and finished the season with 73 stolen bases, good for more than double second place (teammate Justin Kovacs with 30), not to mention a professional single-season record over a 96-game stretch. With a slash line of .366/.469/.615 with 21 home runs to go along with 70 RBI, Rosenberg was the Eastern Division triple crown winner. Teammate Noel Kelley also finished the year with 21 home runs, while right fielder Mike Kulp and first baseman Matt Box were second and fourth in batting average. Rosenberg had 10.0 WAR, a historically dominant year, with Kovacs coming in second with 5.5 WAR. This team wasn’t just all offense, however. Although he got hurt near the start of September and is ruled out until next season, Tim Vogt went 15-3 in MABL play with a 2.50 ERA, while the Jays’ second elite pitcher, Gary Hansen, led the MABL in strikeouts with 112 and pitching WAR with 5.7. Sorry to get all numbers-y, but this team went an insane 13-2 to close out the year, not to mention the top spot of the Hirsch Cup with a record of 28-5. Through Player of the Month performances from Mike Kulp and Rosenberg, the Jays look to be a machine going into the inaugural Roosevelt and Hirsch Cups. Media have swarmed this team, however, and manager Joe LaRocque has yet to show his composure during tense moments. At 34, he’d be the youngest manager to win a league title at any professional level, and immortalize himself as an innovator built around speed. If he fails, well, this might be the last chance for team president Adam Hirsch to see the Jays win a national championship, something he fought for for so long.

     Baltimore’s final month of effort was incredible, going 11-4. However, without a series to take off games from the Jays, Lisiewicz Award frontrunner Kellen Sears and company weren’t able to make up any ground. For a team expecting to find itself in the gutter during their first MABL season has suddenly found itself within a contention window led by two dominant starting arms in Sears and September Pitcher of the month Pete McGrath. The newest young face on the team, Jonathan Lester, finished the year second in the MABL with 14 saves. Hopefully, the 22-year-old can find himself in the starting rotation quite soon, as young life is the best way to keep this team going. A fellow youngster, shortstop Justin Chapman, wasn’t able to be as much help to the team, batting a paltry .241 with 36 RBI on the year. Nate Smith and 34-year-old Bobby Marinelli are the only offensive strengths, although Marinelli was the only player on the team to hit above .300 in MABL play. Owner Jacob Connor and the fanbase seem to be at peace heading into the Hirsch Cup playoffs after , knowing that this year should be a strong retool to capitalize on this short-term run of success. Beat reporters for the team have led with rumors of searching for a new catcher, and with extra home games expected after finishing the season first in their Hirsch Cup division, it shouldn’t be too big of a dent out of the team’s bottom line (lest Amertime hold out on improving the squad).

     Manhattan’s Newsome Stadium was built to get away from the “black part of town” in upper Manhattan, as Harlem’s fanbase was successfully blocking attendance for Giants’ games at the old Newsome Park. It’s on West 100th street and Columbus, placing it right up against Central Park in the upper west side of Manhattan. Although “opening up” towards the park and West 97th, the stadium’s unique neoclassical facade creates an imposing presence on the outside while a complete lower bowl creates an imposing presence inside. Its capacity of 41,500 is supposedly only temporary, as Newsome claims that potential stadium renovations will bring the seating to over 55,000 by the end of 1954. However, Newsome’s prized grand and ornate manual scoreboard isn’t going anywhere above the right field seats, painted with the specialty “Giants Blue” color seen on the team’s hats and jerseys. On September 2nd, after news reached across town to relay a Jays victory against Boston, securing the first Eastern Division in MABL history, The Giants were yet to play their match versus Centennial, here’s what the scoreboard showed.
https://i.imgur.com/2ZDD2GI.png

These Giants have been slain. Before Manhattan even got to think about a climactic showdown at 97th and Columbus with less than two weeks before the end of the season, the Jays had gone 6-0 and wiped them out of contention. The trading of Dyck out of Manhattan seemed to immediately destroy team chemistry, and the team once destined to take down the vaunted Jays had gone 10-20 since the all-star break during MABL play. Their Hirsch Cup aspirations were still alive after going 27-7 in their preliminary matches, although many in the clubhouse were skeptical of how serious this team was going to be in a postseason scenario. The team had plenty of playoff experience, competing into November for the Hirsch Cup in 1939, ‘40, ‘41, and when revived in ‘45, but their ‘46 campaign ended in heartbreak, losing in the Hirsch Cup tournament for the first time to Harlem. What’s worse is that in the second to last game of the HCT prelims, starter Sam Coffman tore his flexor tendon, halting him from participating in the entire 1947 campaign.

    Centennial’s season turned out to be an interesting place for the club to find itself. The squad was anchored by nothing, with no real standout performances when looking at a full body of work. Justin Parham was able to fill in for the injured B.J. Rochon near the end of the season and finished 5-1 in MABL play. At 22 years old, he still has a few more years until he reaches his prime. Only Javon McLoed finished the year with a .300 batting average, landing on it at the dot, but the 76s were simply able to keep winning ballgames. The question now becomes, heading into the Hirsch Cup and offseason, whether or not they want to rebuild or to push for a Roosevelt Cup. The pride of the organization, who had to re-emerge as a dominant power after the passover by the Association, may be on the line. Time might not be an issue, with McLoed, second baseman Nolan Meyer, first baseman Stan Byers, and former player of the month award winner Danny Braham are all between 22 and 27. Their draft choice of Donald Ciman in the first round of the draft is also something to look forward to, as a Byers/Ciman/Meyer double-play threat might be nasty to go up against. They’re the only MABL team in the Hirsch Cup standings to finish below an EPL team, as they sit 3rd in their division behind Paterson at 23-11. While not entirely egregious (Paterson finished third in EL2 standings and might be promoted with a playoff win), the expectations are that Centennial gets past whoever to end up playing come the end of October. Heads will roll if they get knocked out before facing a fellow MABL team.

 Pittsburgh’s year feels so strange to me because I keep getting blinded by their 14-7 record in April. Over the course of a full season, this team proved to be nothing more than Paul Sager (third in Eastern WAR with 4.8) and Matt Stefier (third in the East with 15 home runs) carrying this ragtag group of misfits along for a .500 ride. Some up, some down, but this team was never able to really climb and stay near the top of the division. When the strong starting pitching of Jason Stamm, 19-year-old Matt Young, and mid-season call-up Leo Nieves were on point, it never felt like the bats could get going. However, the opposite problem occurred when the offense put up 10 runs; the defense allowed 11. Supporters and U.S. Steel executives seem to be hand-in-hand at the moment, but the Hirsch Cup might tell some more truths about this team. Will the young stars of Young, Sager, Nieves, and Stefier be able to play in high-pressure situations? Where does this team want to find itself come amateur and cross-league signing season? Who is going to show themselves as the leader of an inexperienced clubhouse?

 I really don’t know how to feel about the following 3 teams on this list. My personal feelings need to be set aside here and I should try to write about these squads factually.

 Boston was unequivocally terrible all year, and without Mike Richardson’s strong September, would only be notable for their blunders. Chris Errico’s midseason injury derailed what could’ve been their only consistent performance above average, especially after the Brandon Madden trade. Madden went on to hit 11 home runs and bat .347 with the Blue Crabs, while the Bees have resigned themselves to the doldrums of the MABL for the next few years as they look to rebuild. Their draft picks Freddie Mazzagatti and Bo Rosendale look to be on the big league roster by the end of next year, hoping to spark an offense that ranked dead last in every offensive category outside of baserunning. However, buckle up Bees fans, as this squad might be in for a long-term rebuild. Mike Richardson and Josh Yount are simply good pitchers at best, and the rest of their staff might be too young to handle full MABL workloads. Things look as bad as they’ve ever been in Fenway, but that doesn’t mean that good things aren’t coming down the pipe. The Hirsch Cup might be a good chance for this squad to gain some momentum heading into the offseason, as the only MABL team in their division and with the first seed in the tournament, this looks to be a good year for a chance at the final 4.

    The Burroughers make me sad. “America’s Team” was supposed to make headlines as Eastern Division contenders, not as its punching bag. The ending of the year was when the wheels fell off, going 3-12 through September and truly bottoming out after their final game, a 5-3 loss to Brooklyn in an HCT prelim. Going into the ninth up 3-1, young closer Joe Veitch gave up 4 runs and that was it. After the game, shouting could be heard from the locker room, where players and manager Ryan Sinyard discussed the season. It was announced the following day that Sinyard had been let go of the team, and replaced by Matt Brunson, a 44-year-old career coach from Albany. Unlike Sinyard, Brunson is known to protect his players from scorn of media, having been under the white hot lights of the EPL his whole life. The media was notorious for coming after Ryan Miller. Despite leading the MABL in walks with 96 and an OBP of over .440, it’s his fault for making the club pay him $32,000/year despite not even batting .300. Nevermind a 36-year-old David Flood receiving $47,000/year and J.D. Sarver’s $38,000/year contract, it’s the team’s WAR leader for these issues. Not to mention the musical chairs of the lineup, with only 4 players (potential centerpiece center fielder John Delgado, Miller, Ken Lester, and Matt Newkirk) finishing the season having played more than 80 games. Newkirk’s season was quite strong actually, finishing third in the East in batting average with .329. Board chairman Lyle Wester has a lot to figure out before the end of the offseason, and hopefully Brunson will be the organizational keystone that unlocks this team’s potential. 

f--k Capital City for making me write about them. This team hurts me. The only fun thing about them is that they went 6-9 in September. Etzer Duron, their pity all-star selection of the year, was easily the team MVP with a .298 average and 10 home runs. This team is embarrassing. Manager Matt Hughes got fired, although I don’t know if that’ll do much. They’re facing Brandon Madden and the Baltimore Blue Crabs in the first round of the Hirsch Cup, here's hoping that they aren’t trash and lose that game too.
 

Last edited by H-Town1141 (11/21/2021 2:52 pm)


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11/21/2021 1:56 am  #66


Re: The Major American Baseball League

Love seeing Harbor doing well, hate to seeing CC doing poorly. Great writeup!


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