League Updates Uncategorized

What’s in a name?

 

Which is the toughest MLB division?  

If you choose to copy the mainstream media’s evil discrimination against the EFL and look only at non-EFL teams, here are the standings among the 6 divisions:

Go AL West!  But be warned: when the Mariners’ bubble bursts, so will yours. 

If we include the EFL teams, here is how things stand:

Go Wolverines and Tornados, the two AL East EFL teams, who vault the division into first place! 

What if we divide the EFL into two five-team divisions, and compare them to the MLB without the EFL teams? (Sorry, Haviland, this leaves you out.  It’s because you’re so good! It would totally skew the results. Besides, we need someone trustworthy to keep an eye on the EFL while the other 10 teams are off participating in this… tournament.)                                                                                           

That’s right:  our bottom five teams have better records than the best MLB division. 
 
 
EFL Standings for 2021
 
EFL
TEAM WINS LOSSES PCT. GB RS RA
Old Detroit Wolverines 64 29 .693 529.7 352.0
Flint Hill Tornadoes 62 31 .666 2.5 486.7 339.1
D.C. Balk 58 31 .649 4.7 494.6 364.1
Kaline Drive 58 35 .625 6.3 484.1 371.5
Peshastin Pears 57 34 .627 6.4 442.1 345.4
Haviland Dragons 55 38 .595 9.1 473.8 403.3
Canberra Kangaroos 52 37 .583 10.6 449.6 386.9
Cottage Cheese 50 44 .536 14.5 532.6 509.1
Pittsburgh Alleghenys 48 43 .529 15.3 457.4 430.2
Bellingham Cascades 47 44 .516 16.5 386.7 373.4
Portland Rosebuds 40 51 .435 23.8 461.3 532.5
 
 
Old Detroit: “L”, 3 – 2. (28 PA, .208, .286, .208; 8 ip, 2 er, 2.25 ERA).  The Wolverines are in a panic.  The offense has gone inert, and their pitching is erratic and suddenly mostly bad.  Yesterday, of the Oldies’ nine hitters, seven went hitless.     JP Crawford went 3 for 4 with a walk, and Ke’Bryan Hays went 2 for 4. Other than a Rafael Devers walk, the rest of the team went 0 for 16. 
 
At least this time the W’s got some good pitching. Walker Buehler finished 7 strong innings, with only 2 runs allowed,, and Craig Kimbrel finished with a scoreless inning.  This allowed the W’s to outscore their opponents.  I don’t mind getting saddled with another “loss” — the Woeverines deserve it.  Maybe it’ll wake them up.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                
Flint Hill: W, 14 – 4. (37 PA, . 429, .432, .857;  7.3 ip, 43 er, 3.70 ERA).  “The Tornados are coming! The Tornados are coming!” You can hear the cries in the streets of Old Detroit.  We can hear them tearing up the countryside 2.5 miles away.  Mookie Betts went 4 for 4 with three doubles and a home run  (3.500 OPS!) before leaving the game with a minor injury.   Tim Anderson and Paul Goldschmidt went 3 for 4 with a homer each.  
 
On the pitching side, the T’s got a good start from Nathan Eovaldi (5 ip, 1 er) and two relievers who combined for2 scoreless innings.  The only real mar on the day was Hiriokazu Sawamura’s 0.3 inning, 2 earned run sextuple chulk.  The T’s gained a full half-game on the Wolverines, sitting back there 2.5 games behind, grinning, currently making betts on whether they’ll catch the Wolverines before or after July 23. 
                                                                                                        
 
DC: W, 5 – 5. (32 PA, .276, .344, .379;  no pitching.)  The Balk missed a beat yesterday.  While the Tornado’s, having smelled the fear coursing through Wolverine veins, went racing with renewed energy toward the top, the Balk balked.  They acted like, I dunno, librarians in the face of opportunity.  They idled to a tie and actually lost 0.1 games’ ground in the standings!  Eight of nine Balkan hitters got exactly one hit on the day.  Myles Straw was hitless, and no one got a second hit (although there were 3 doubles and 3 walks).  The pitching was even more inert.  
 
Wake up, DC!  The Tornados are getting away from you!  Calm in the face of crisis is overrated!
 
 
Kaline: W, 5 – (-7).  (70 PA !, .323, .357, .462;  13.3 ip, 0 er, 0.00 ERA).  The Drive raced 0.9 games closer to first place with an outstanding day.  Their usually massive horde of hitting was even massiver yesterday — and it was good, too! The Drive also had 8 players with one hit on the day, but their hits included two doubles and a triple. But the Drive added two players with two hits, including Michael Conforto, whose two hits were doubles. 
 
But that’s not all! The Drive also had three players with three hits!   Willy Adames and Jonathan Schoop  each had three singles, while Willson Contreras had only 2 — because his third hit was the Drive’s only home run.  
 
But that’s still not all — as good as the hitting was, the pitching was better.  Kwang Hyun Kim pitched 6 scoreless innings, but Max Fried topped him with 7 scoreless innings — the best start of any EFL pitcher yesterday, according to Baseball Reference. 
 
Names mean something.  The Drive really did drive, while the Balk really did Balk, as the Tornados tore and the Woeverines whimpered “woe is me.” 
 
 
 
Peshastin: W, 4 – 2.  (28 PA, .190, .321, .381;  10.3 ip, 4 er, 3.46 ERA).  Blake Snell has been disappointing this year, and was so again yesterday with his 4 ip, 4 er outing.  Zach Thompson also pitched 4 innings, but finagled his 2 runs allowed to come after errors so neither harmed his ERA.  
 
There isn’t much to write about the offense. Mitch Haniger’s homer was the only thing they did that threatened the other team, although the fact that all 7 Pestie hitters reached base safely at least once is pretty Pesty, alright.  Pesty enough to gain 0.1 games on the Wolverines, although not enough to keep the Drive from dumping the Pears into 5th place. 
 
 
Haviland:  L, 1 – 7.  (47 PA, .227, .239, .364;  1 ip, 0 er, 0.00 ERA).  Do names really matter? Well, the Dragons are draggin’.  Joc Pederson hit a homer for his new MLB team, joining Jose Iglesias and Jake Cronenworth as Dragons with two hits on the day, but the end result for the team was about replacement level offense.  And the pitching barely showed up.  
 
Haviland, the team with the third most EFL championships, is stuck in the middle of the league.  It’s a hard thing. Not the hardest, but enough, it seems, to have demoralized the Dragons.
 
 
 
Canberra:  L, 3 – 9. (30 PA, .207, .233, .448;  5.3 ip, 5 3er, 8.49 ERA).  The Kangaroos are bounding like one would expect.  They bounded forward at the end of June, getting into the fringes of the pennant race, and now they are bounding in the other direction.  The offense wasn’t bad,  with JD Davis going 3 for 4 with two homers.  But the pitching was hard to bear.  Emmanuel Clase was much better than his last outing, getting a perfect scoreless inning this time  But his colleague James Karinchak surrendered an earned run in his single inning, and starter Jake Odorizzi was odorizzic, serving up 4 earned runs in 3.3 ip.  The results was a collapse of 0.7 games in the standings, back beyond the 10 game mark                                                            
 
 
Cottage: L, 7 – 1. (40 PA, .242, .375, .424; 6.7 ip, 1 er, 1.34 ERA).  The Cheese had the picture perfect day we all would like.  The hitting wasn’t overwhelming, but it was solid, marked by homers from Brandon Nimmo and that man Abraham Toro. Nimmo added 3 walks, helping the Cotties amass 7 free passes altogether.  And Alex Cobb had a good day, providing all the pitching. 
 
I suppose it’s kind of a cheesy outcome, this picture perfect pleasant day, at least to cynical eyes like mine.  But cheesy is better than miserable, by FAR, so it was plenty good to gaine 0.5 games on the Wolverines, and a whopping 1.5 games on the Alleghenys, moving Cottage a notch up the standings to 8th place. 
 
 
 
Pittsburgh:  L, 0 – 4.  (39 PA, .158, .179, .368;  15.3 ip, 6 earned runs, 3.53 ERA).  There was a day — no, there was more than a decade — when the name “Alleghenys” struck terror into the hearts of EFL owners, back when the A’s had two-thirds of the league’s championships (they still are way ahead of anyone else).  It’s been a while now, and newer members may not fully understand what it was like to live under Allegheny dominance. But now there’s a newer, craggier mountain range in the league (the one looming just behind the Alleghenys in the standings) and we’ve gone several straight years under the Johnson dynasty, so the Alleghenys don’t seem as fearsome anymore.  
 
Like yesterday.  Max Muncy was awesome — 4 for 5 with two homers — but the rest of the team went 2 for 33 with two doubles and 1 walk. That’s a .067, .088, .133 batting line, bad enough to swallow up those two homers as if they’d never happened.  
 
The pitching was Allegheny fans’ consolation yesterday.  Wil  Crowe struggled (4 er in 5.3 ip) but everyone else was stellar, covering the other 10 innings with only 2 earned runs allowed.  
 
Nevertheless, the hitting doomed the A’s to slide into 9th place, another half game out of first place, and now within striking range of the upstart Cascades. 
 
 
 
Bellingham:  L, 1 -5. (27 PA, .154, .185, .346;  6 ip, 3 er, 4.50 ERA).  Things would look even worse for the Alleghenys if the Cascades hadn’t had a nearly identical day.  That batting line looks very similar, although Jonathan India’s home run did not dissolve completely away.  Anthony DeSclafani did all the pitching — it wasn’t great, but it was workmanlike and could have been good enough for a win on a different day. 
 
I admire the Bellingham Cascades name, but I wonder if some of the craggy heights connotation of naming a team for a mountain range is undone by this particular mountain range’s name. “Cascades” refers to something traveling downward, usually at a rapid pace (albeit beautifully).  If there was a way to shift the verb to a transitive voice, making “Cascades” mean what Bellingham makes other teams do (in a pretty way, of course), that might change the Bellies’ fortunes!
 
 
Portland: W, 4 – 3.  (43 PA, .244, .279, .439;  7 ip, 2 er, 2.57 ERA).  The latest Heat Dome hasn’t reached as of this morning, but heat hasn’t been our only issue.  It’s also been very dry, which isn’t good for Rosebuds.  How are they holding up?
 
Not too too badly. The Rosebuds kept pace with the Wolverines with a clearly better day at the plate, and pitching that was only a shade short of the W’s hurlers.  Three players had two hits:  Jorge Polanco, Tyrone Taylor, and (doggone it) Luis Urias.  But those three were not the same: Taylor had only 3 ABs (and a walk).  Polanco and Urias consumed 6 ABs (Urias did include a doube whereas Polanco did not).  So Taylor was clearly the thorniest of the Rosebud hitters. 
 
Well, maybe Gary Sanchez, whose sole hit in 2 AB was a homer, and who also got himself hit by a pitch. Taylor: .667, 750, .667.    Sanchez: .500, .667, .2.000.   Ok, maybe the thorniest Rosebud was Sanchez.  But I am not going to rewrite this entire entry. So Sanchez will have to live with this just being tacked onto the end of things.
 
 
Combined MLB + EFL Standings for 2021
AL East
TEAM WINS LOSSES PCT. GB
Old Detroit Wolverines 64 29 .693
Flint Hill Tornadoes 62 31 .666 2.5
Boston Red Sox 56 37 .602 8.4
Tampa Bay Rays 54 38 .587 9.9
Toronto Blue Jays 46 42 .523 15.9
New York Yankees 47 44 .516 16.4
Baltimore Orioles 29 62 .319 34.4
NL East
TEAM WINS LOSSES PCT. GB
D.C. Balk 58 31 .649
Canberra Kangaroos 52 37 .583 5.9
New York Mets 47 42 .528 10.7
Philadelphia Phillies 45 45 .500 13.2
Atlanta Braves 45 46 .495 13.7
Washington Nationals 42 48 .467 16.2
Miami Marlins 40 51 .440 18.7
 
AL Central
TEAM WINS LOSSES PCT. GB
Chicago White Sox 55 36 .604
Pittsburgh Alleghenys 48 43 .529 6.9
Bellingham Cascades 47 44 .516 8.1
Cleveland Indians 45 43 .511 8.5
Detroit Tigers 42 51 .452 14
Minnesota Twins 39 52 .429 16
Kansas City Royals 37 54 .407 18
NL Central
TEAM WINS LOSSES PCT. GB
Milwaukee Brewers 55 39 .585
Cottage Cheese 50 44 .536 4.6
Cincinnati Reds 48 44 .522 6
Chicago Cubs 46 46 .500 8
St. Louis Cardinals 45 47 .489 9
Pittsburgh Pirates 36 56 .391 18
 
AL West
TEAM WINS LOSSES PCT. GB
Kaline Drive 58 35 .625
Houston Astros 56 37 .602 2.1
Haviland Dragons 55 38 .595 2.8
Oakland A’s 53 41 .564 5.6
Seattle Mariners 49 44 .527 9.1
Los Angeles Angels 46 45 .505 11.1
Texas Rangers 35 56 .385 22.1
NL West
TEAM WINS LOSSES PCT. GB
San Francisco Giants 58 33 .637
Peshastin Pears 57 34 .627 1
Los Angeles Dodgers 58 35 .624 1
San Diego Padres 54 40 .574 5.5
Portland Rosebuds 40 51 .435 18.4
Colorado Rockies 40 53 .430 19
Arizona Diamondbacks 26 68 .277 33.5
 
 

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