I went to bed last night with two things on my mind:
1) Will the fire raging on Chehalem Mountain, just a few miles from my home, force our family to evacuate?
2) Will the Dragons take over first place?
The answer to both of these questions was, “No.” Not a resounding no, but a no nonetheless. Thinking about how the rest of you might have hoped these questions were answered has been a bit entertaining. I know everyone is glad for “no” being the answer to the first question, but how would you have hoped the second one was answered? I know how Kaline would answer, and also Haviland. But what about the rest of you? I am torn. Haviland’s owner is my father – but is he more like Darth Vader to my Luke Skywalker, or George McFly to my Marty McFly? The answer to that question would certainly impact my answer to the second question.
What about you? How would you answer? No need to answer out loud for fear of hurting the head Dragon’s feelings. But it is worth considering.
Also worth considering? That the race is heating up! Consider how fun it might make the final 17 to 20 games of our season. Don’t you want there to be drama? Like a 4 team race down to the wire for the 2020 championship? There are three potential first time champions who have a legitimate shot at winning it all. That sounds like something all of us would say a resounding, “YES!” to…
EFL Standings for 2020
|Flint Hill Tornadoes||22||21||.519||2.4||237.1||231.3|
|Old Detroit Wolverines||16||27||.368||8.8||195.0||255.1|
Kaline: W0, L2 6-8 (61PA; 12IP)
|AVG: 0.148||OBP: 0.230||SLG: 0.167||OPS: 0.396|
|ERA: 3.75||WHIP: 0.833|
The Drive should very fortunate this morning. They lost both games they played yesterday, and still managed to hold onto the lead, though they now share the same record with Dragons whom they lead by .007 percentage points in wins. The Drive finally got some good pitching from John Means, who went 6 innings and gave up only 1 run, but he is only allocated at 50% this month (which makes sense because both his last start of August and first start of September were not good). The main culprit for the Drive downshift was the hitting. In fact, you could make a case that they got no hit in one their two games yesterday, as there are 9 hitters who did not get a single hit. Kyle Lewis and Mitch Moreland, a young guy and an old guy, each got two hits on the day, but Jason Kipnis and Kris Bryant (and old guy and a young guy) both whiffed three times yesterday.
Haviland: W1, L1 8-6 (73PA; 12.3IP)
|AVG: 0.215||OBP: 0.301||SLG: 0.277||OPS: 0.578|
|ERA: 1.46||WHIP: 1.057|
Dragon pitchers could smell oil on the turnpike, and pitched like they wanted to claim the top spot in the EFL on a day when the Drive were more like the Stall. Sixto Sanchez, who is making a case to be the #1 pick next season, went 6 innings and gave up 0 runs, and the 50% allocated Vince Velasquez gave up 2 runs in 5 innings. If only the Dragon hitters would have been as eager as their pitchers! 16 batters came to the plate over two games, and only 3 of them collected more than 1 hit, while 7 of them collected no hits. Ramon Laureano was ready to go, collecting 4 hits in 8 ABs, but all except one 2B were singles. Miguel Sano threw in a couple more hits, including a HR, but this is what you would call a missed opportunity. It’s like there was a pile of gold vacated by a neighboring Dragon for a short time but the Haviland Dragon was too preoccupied counting his own gold to notice, and therefore he remained in second place…for now.
Flint Hill: “L,” 6-4 (52PA; 7IP)
|AVG: 0.277||OBP: 0.346||SLG: 0.383||OPS: 0.729|
|ERA: 3.86||WHIP: 1.286|
Yesterday was a pretty good day in Flint Hill, despite the fake loss. The Tornado’s September pitching continued to be very good, this time led by Jose Berrios who, except for one HR in his last inning of work, had an excellent day. The bullpen performed masterfully to hold onto the lead, and the hitters did just enough to score more runs than our opponent. The Tornadoes are now 2.4 games out of first place after beginning the month 5.3 games behind the Drive. It has been a slow steady climb that doesn’t have much room for error, and has another 17 games to try and sneak past the Drive and Dragons who might be too preoccupied with each other to notice a small twister spinning their way.
Bellingham: L, 1-8 (43PA; 2.3IP)
|AVG: 0.220||OBP: 0.256||SLG: 0.293||OPS: 0.548|
|ERA: 3.91||WHIP: 1.304|
The Cascades had an uncharacteristic mediocre day yesterday. Their hitters, which have led them and the league this month took a break but it only cost them .1 games, for which management is thankful. Paul Goldschmidt went 3 for 7, all singles, and Nick Madrigal added in two more hits, both of them doubles.
Cottage: “L,” 4-3 (50PA; 4IP)
|AVG: 0.273||OBP: 0.360||SLG: 0.477||OPS: 0.837|
|ERA: 0.00||WHIP: 1.750|
The Cheese had a pretty good day, despite the fake loss. They could have used a little more pitching, but what they got was good (4IP and 0 runs from Taijuan Walker). Four different hitters chipped in multiple hits, led by Jeff McNeil who went 2 for 3 with a HR. They were able to climb .3 games closer to the Drive, and stay .5 games away from the Pears.
Peshastin: “W,” 5-8 (40PA; 11IP)
|AVG: 0.194||OBP: 0.375||SLG: 0.419||OPS: 0.794|
|ERA: 7.36||WHIP: 1.818|
Well, on the bright side the Pears somehow got a win. On the not-so-bright side? Well, you can see the numbers. They did have more BBs than hits (8 to 6) and half as many HBPs as hits (3 to 6), which helped their OBP. Ryan Mountcastle continues to have a good season, going 2 for 5 with a HR. But the pitching was abysmal, to say it nicely. Robert Gsellman gave up 6 runs in 3.7IP, and Zach Eflin gave up 3 runs in 5IP.
Canberra: W, 7-5 (66PA; 8IP)
|AVG: 0.281||OBP: 0.379||SLG: 0.526||OPS: 0.905|
|ERA: 3.38||WHIP: 0.625|
A good win for the Roos yesterday – led by a solid outing from Tyler Mahle (7IP and 3ER), and 11 hitters (out of 15) getting at least one hit. It’s difficult picking which hitter had the best day, because three of them hit HRs (but those were their only hits) and another 4 hitters for 2 hits, but all of them singles (accept for one 2B by Miguel Andujar). So it was a good all around day for the Roos, which is how a team should be – every member contributing! The Roos managed to gain .6 games on the leader, but they have done quite of a bit of going up and down the standings, and will have to decide soon, I think, which way they prefer and commit to going that direction for their final 18 games.
DC: W, 3-2 (42PA; 17IP)
|AVG: 0.231||OBP: 0.244||SLG: 0.333||OPS: 0.577|
|ERA: 4.24||WHIP: 1.118|
The Balk sent almost their entire pitching staff to the mound yesterday, logging almost 2 games worth of games from the bump. And they were ok innings, too – enough to lead them to a win on the day. I say it was the pitchers who led them to victory because the hitters just didn’t hit yesterday. Jorge Alfaro had a good game at the plate (and behind the plate, too, I assume), going 2 for 4 with a HR and a SB. I just love it when catcher steal bases! It was the 9th of his career and the 2nd this season. Go, Jorge!
Pittsburgh: L, 5-6 (32PA; 14.3IP)
|AVG: 0.269||OBP: 0.406||SLG: 0.308||OPS: 0.714|
|ERA: 5.66||WHIP: 1.748|
Unlike the Roos, the Alleghenys had two, maybe three players show up, and it wasn’t quite enough to squeak out a win. Pittsburgh collected 7 hits on the day, and 4 of those 7 were by one man – Christian Vazquez who hit 4 singles in 4 trips to the plate. 3 other hitters got one hit each, but an offense that is run by one man, and is all singles does not generally result in very many runs. And from the pitching staff, Frankie Montas finally pitched a game worth watching, going 5 IP and giving up 2ER and striking out 4. But Logan Webb gave up one run an inning and one BB/HBP an inning, and pitched 5 innings, which hurts. The good news (?) is that they snuck a little closer to last place/first pick in the 2021 EFL draft.
Old Detroit: W, 9-7 (52PA; 20.6IP)
|AVG: 0.370||OBP: 0.442||SLG: 0.739||OPS: 1.181|
|ERA: 4.37||WHIP: 1.165|
The Wolverines had a great, and I mean great, day at the plate. Two players took control of the outcome of the game – Rafael Devers and Gavin Lux – combining to go 7 for 13 with a 2B and 4 HRs. (However, one might be able to surmise that Lux wasn’t allocated fully this month due to the transactions that happened this morning). Even without those two studs, three other players collected 2 hits apiece – Josh Bell, Evan White, and Jurickson Profar – to lead the Ws to a W. And the pitching was certainly voluminous! However, it also appears some of the best outings were suppressed a bit due to allocations. The Ws did gain .5 games on the Drive, and created .3 games of space between them and the Rosebuds.
Portland: L, 3-7 (38PA; 5.7IP)
|AVG: 0.219||OBP: 0.316||SLG: 0.313||OPS: 0.628|
|ERA: 6.32||WHIP: 1.228|
The ‘buds did what a last place team does – a lot of not very good things. Michael Wacha gave up 4 runs in 4IP, which was too bad of an outing for a .628 OPS to overcome. I think the Rosebuds are just fine with this result, though I imagine they still have to convince themselves its ok to not win…for now.
Combined MLB + EFL Standings for 2020
|Tampa Bay Rays||28||15||.651||—|
|Toronto Blue Jays||24||18||.571||3.5|
|Flint Hill Tornadoes||22||21||.519||5.7|
|New York Yankees||21||21||.500||6.5|
|Old Detroit Wolverines||16||27||.368||12.2|
|Boston Red Sox||15||29||.341||13.5|
|New York Mets||19||24||.442||5.5|
|Chicago White Sox||26||16||.619||—|
|Kansas City Royals||15||28||.349||11.5|
|St. Louis Cardinals||18||17||.514||3|
|Los Angeles Angels||17||26||.395||9.5|
|Los Angeles Dodgers||31||12||.721||—|
|San Diego Padres||27||17||.614||4.5|
|San Francisco Giants||22||21||.512||9|