<%@ Language=JavaScript %>  Tiger's Tale

 

 

 

Official Publication of

The Tigers

Special Edition of

From the Bullpen

Guest Editor:  Big Guy

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2016 Season     

   Edition No. 13        

May 31, 2016

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Standings thru Sunday, May 29, 2016

 

Rank

Team

Points

Pts Back

1

West Des Moines Cubs   

   4193.3   

-   

2

Wahoos

4138.0

55.3

3

Bums

3883.8

309.5

4

Kansas City Blues

3863.5

329.8

5

Tigers

3808.8

384.5

6

SKIPJACKS

3722.1

471.2

7

Monarchs

3695.7

497.6

8

Omaha Senators

3689.4

503.9

9

Bronx Bombers

3595.5

597.8

10

Bears

3431.7

761.6

11

LINCOLN CHIEFS

3391.0

802.3

12

Redbirds

3271.2

922.1

13

Tribe

3110.3

1083.0

 

Point Totals for Week 8

 

Rank

Team

Points

Position Change

1.

Blues

670.6

+3

2.

Senators

566.3

+1

3.

Tigers

536.0

No change

4.

Skipjacks

510.9

No change

5.

Cubs

506.7

No change

6.

Wahoos

447.2

No change

7.

Bronx Bombers

415.3

-1

8.

Bears

413.9

No change

9.

Monarchs

398.1

-3

10.

Bums

397.9

No change

11.

Tribe

394.5

No change

12.

Chiefs

383.7

No change

13.

Redbirds

331.5

No change

 

Dead Man Walking moves up three positions on the strength of a monster 670.6 week, and the Senators jump the Bombers for 8th place.

 

While outscoring four other teams for the week, Screech moonwalks three spots.  The bottom four may be letting the concrete set around their feet.

Top Hitters thru May 29, 2016 

 

Rank

 

Player

Team

Points

1.

 

  Altuve

Redbirds

   251.8   

2.

 

  Ortiz

Cubs

241.5

3.

 

  Cano

Bums

238.6

4.

 

  Machado

Bears

237.6

5.

 

  Zobrist

Blues

234.7

6.

 

  Trout

Chiefs

234.3

7.

 

  Bogaerts

Tribe

231.7

8.

 

  Arenado

Skipjacks

220.8

9.

 

  Fowler

Wahoos

217.2

10.

 

  Donaldson

Bombers

215.2

11.

 

  D. Murphy

Monarchs    

214.6

12.

 

  Harper

Wahoos

214.6

13.

 

  Story

Skipjacks

212.9

14.

 

  Kinsler

Tigers

212.8

15.

 

  Bradley

Redbirds

212.5

16.

 

  Goldschmidt     

Cubs

210.4

17.

 

  Bryant

Tribe

210.3

18.

 

  Polanco

Bears

209.3

19.

 

  Betts

Bums

208.9

20.

 

  Osuna

Bums

208.8

 

Breakdown of Top 20 hitters by team:

Bums 3; Cubs 2; Wahoos 2; Bears 2; Monarchs 2; Redbirds 2; Skipjacks 2; Tribe 1; Bombers 1; Blues 1; Chiefs 1; Tigers 1; Senators 0.   

 

2016 is the year of the second basemen, with 3 of the top 5 hitters, and a couple more in the top 20.

 

Although the Bums lead the way with 3 players on this list, his team has Nos. 19 and 20, so this could easily change in a week.  This may be the most even distribution of top hitters that we have had in the Yahoo era.

 

TOP 20 Pitchers thru Monday, May 29, 2016

 

Rank

Player

Team

Points

1.

 Kershaw

Blues

388

2.

 Sale

Tigers

319

3.

 Strasburg

Senators

308

4.

 Cueto

Senators

302

5.

 Arrieta

Senators

292

6.

 Bumgarner

Bums

275

7.

 Syndergaard     

Tribe

261

8.

 R. Hill

Senators     

257

9.

 Samardzija

Bombers

254

10.

 J. Fernandez

Tribe

246

11.

 Lackey

Blues

239

12.

 Scherzer

Monarchs

235

13.

 Tillman

Redbirds

235

14.

 Nola

Skipjacks

231

15.

 Quintana

Wahoos

230

16.

 Nelson

Cubs

221

17.

 Salazar

Bears

220

18.

 Lester

Wahoos

219

19.

 Price

Wahoos

218

20.

 Matz

Bears

213

 

Breakdown of Top 20 pitchers by team:

Senators 4; Wahoos 2; Bums 2; Blues 2; Bears 2; Tribe 2; Monarchs 1; Tigers 1; Cubs 1; Redbirds 1; Bombers 1; Skipjacks 1; Chiefs 0.

 

With 4 of the top 8 starting pitchers (and the top reliever) at this point, the Senators seemingly have the top pitching staff in the league, and Skipper has parlayed that into a nifty eighth place spot in the standings. 

 

MEMO to Tribe:  There are no rollover innings for next year.

 

Clayton Kershaw is on pace to obliterate all the records for points in a season, and he has dominated the game for the last four years without any allegations of PEDs or other unsavory allegations about his character or lifestyle.  Why do I have the feeling that his arm is going to die (like Koufax) or some scandalous news about him is going to surface? 

 

TOP 3 PLAYERS BY POSITION

 

C

1.

Lucroy

Senators

165.3

 

2.

Posey

Skipjacks

154.8

 

3.

S. Perez

Tigers

136.7

 

 

 

 

 

1B

1.

Ortiz

Cubs

241.5

 

2.

Goldschmidt

Cubs

210.4

 

3.

Trumbo

Monarchs

200.6

 

 

 

 

 

2B

1.

Altuve

Redbirds

251.8

 

2.

Cano

Bums

238.6

 

3.

Zobrist

Blues

234.7

 

 

 

 

 

3B

1.

Arenado

Bears

237.6

 

2.

Donaldson

Bombers

215.2

 

3.

Bryant

Tribe

210.3

 

 

 

 

 

SS

1.

Machado

Bears

237.6

 

2.

Bogaerts

Tribe

231.7

 

3.

Story

Skipjacks

212.9

 

 

 

 

 

LF

1.

Cespedes

Senators

200.4

 

2.

Braun

Cubs

184.9

 

3.

Marte

Skipjacks

166.6

 

 

 

 

 

CF

1.

Trout

Chiefs

234.3

 

2.

Fowler

Cubs

217.2

 

3.

Bradley

Redbirds

212.5

 

 

 

 

 

RF

1.

Harper

Wahoos

214.6

 

2.

Polanco

Bears

209.3

 

3.

Betts

Bums

208.9

 

 

 

 

 

RP

1.

J. Gomez

Senators

172.5

 

2.

Britton

Bombers

169.0

 

3.

Jansen

Blues

162.0

 

 

 

 

 

SP

1.

Kershaw

Blues

388.0

 

2.

Sale

Tigers

319.0

 

3.

Strasburg

Senators

308.0

 

HSL DRAMA, CONTROVERSIES AND SCANDALS

 

            In our 31 plus seasons, there have been several noteworthy incidents of drama, controversy and even scandal in our league’s history.  These have been preserved for posterity in the archives of the past editions of From The Bullpen, which you can peruse on the league’s website.  As Commissioner, I have had the vantage point of observing/hearing/enduring the times when things haven’t gone to somebody’s liking.   Here is my Top 10 List of these incidents, in chronological order and, where applicable, with the corresponding issue of From The Bullpen:

 

1.    1985:  After the Cubs led the pack in points wire-to-wire, the Red Sox pass the Cubs for the initial league title on post-season points awarded for MVPs to Red Sox players Don Mattingly and Willie McGee. 

2.    1987:   All players are thrown back into the draft pool (no freezers) and the Tigers snag reigning MVP and Cy Young winner Roger Clemens in the 13th round and Robin Yount at SS.  The Tigers go on to win their first crown.  (FTB 4/15/87).

3.    1989:   With a tight 5 team race during September, the Tigers pass the Red Sox by 8 points on post-season award points for MVP Robin Yount (Ted still argues that Ruben Sierra should have won the MVP).  See the predictions for the top 5 spots with only a few weeks to go (FTB 9/13/89).

4.    1991:  Closest finish in history.  Reds pass the Tigers on the last day of the season by 6 points and hang on for Tricko’s first HSL crown, when Terry Pendleton somehow gets more votes than Barry Bonds for MVP.  From the Bullpen had a “Dewey Beats Truman” headline in prematurely declaring the Tigers as champions (FTB 10/09/91). 

5.    1994:  Strike-shortened season gives the Cubs their first league crown and an unwanted asterisk.  (No explanations necessary). 

6.    1997:   Pettitte Gate.  The Senators draft both Randy Johnson and Andy Pettitte, significantly depleting the LHP starting pitching pool, and many rounds go by before Skipper realizes and/or admits it.  The Senators go on to win the league.  There is alarmingly little media coverage of the scandal, and Possum’s calls for a bipartisan investigation by Janet Reno are unheeded. (FTB 4/22/97).

7.    2001:  Category point limits, specifically home runs, are blamed for Possum’s panic trade of Bonds, Giambi and Vazquez for Randy Johnson, and the Senators sneak past the Wahoos in the last week for the title.  (FTB 8/30/01).

8.    2002:  The Skipjacks, taking an “all or nothing” approach learned at the craps tables, load up on any and all available starting pitchers and somehow pull off a miracle finish, overtaking the Reds at the wire.  (FTB 10/03/02).

9.    2006:   In the first year of the Yahoo system, the Pirates (Bears) figure out how to game the system and maximize pitching points by stacking his staff with middle relievers and few starters, leading to an overhaul of the rules.  (FTB  02/23/07).

10. 2009:  The Cuban Missile Crisis.  Cool heads prevail and the threat of global destruction passes without further incident.  (FTB  10/16/09).      

 

TIGERS BECOME RELEVANT FOR 8 DAYS

 

            From Wednesday, May 16, 2016 through Wednesday, May 24, 2016, the Tigers surprised their owner, themselves and the world by amassing a total of 808.4 points over an eight day period.  You may have noticed the meteoric rise of the team from 11th place to 4th place.  The Tigers averaged over 100 points a night despite an all-time record of 4 losses in one night during the streak (the only time this has happened in the Yahoo era).   What seemed like an unsurpassable deficit of 678.8 points after just five weeks was reduced by almost 300 points in a few weeks.  I can guaran-ass-tee you that this is the hottest my team has ever been.

 

            Alas and alack, the hot streak has apparently petered out, as I see the boys went 9 for 39 with a single RBI on Monday.  But it was fun while it lasted. 

 

CHARLES DICKENS’ SPOT-ON VIEW OF THE BRITISH

 

            I have read several of Charles Dickens’ novels.  One of his recurring themes is the untrustworthy nature of British servants, which he often describes from the naïve view point of the protagonist who has suffered some chicanery or graft.  This is one of my favorite passages, when David Copperfield, a lad of about 10 or 11, is on a journey to a boarding school, and the coach in which he is traveling stops along the way for dinner.  This is the young boy’s description of his exchange with the British waiter who brings him his food and drink:    

 

pp. 73-77:

 

He brought me some chops, and vegetables, and took the covers off in such a bouncing manner that I was afraid I must have given him some offence.  But he greatly relieved my mind by putting a chair for me at the table, and saying, very affably, “Now, six-foot! Come on!”

I thanked him, and took my seat at the board; but found it extremely difficult to handle my knife and fork with anything like dexterity, or to avoid splashing myself with the gravy, while he was standing opposite, staring so hard, and making me blush in the most dreadful manner every time I caught his eye.  After watching me into the second chop, he said:

“There’s half a pint of ale for you.  Will you have it now?”

I thanked him and said, “Yes.”  Upon which he poured it out of a jug into a large tumbler, and held it up against the light, and made it look beautiful.

“My eye!” he said.  “It seems a good deal, don’t it?”

“It does seem a good deal,” I answered with a smile.  For it was quite delightful to me to find him so pleasant.  He was a twinkling-eyed, pimple-faced man, with his hair standing upright all over his head; and as he stood with one arm a-kimbo, holding up the glass to the light with the other hand, he looked quite friendly.

“There was a gentleman here, yesterday,” he said – “a stout gentleman, by the name of Topsawyer – perhaps you know him!”

“No,” I said, “I don’t think ---“

“In breeches and gaiters, broad-brimmed hat, grey coat, speckled choker,” said the waiter.

“No,” I said bashfully, “I haven’t the pleasure – “

“He came in here,” said the waiter, looking at the light through the tumbler, “ordered a glass of this ale – would order it – I told him not – drank it, and fell dead.  It was too old for him.  It oughtn’t to be drawn; that’s the fact.”

I was very much shocked to hear of this melancholy accident, and said I thought I had better have some water.

“Why you see,” said the waiter, still looking at the light through the tumbler, with one of his eyes shut up, “our people don’t like things being ordered and left.  It offends ‘em.  But Ill drink it, if you like.  I’m used to it, and use is everything.  I don’t think it’ll hurt me, if I throw my head back, and take it off quick.  Shall I?”

I replied that he would much oblige me by drinking it, if he thought he could do it safely, but by no means otherwise.  When he did throw his head back, and take it off quick, I had a horrible fear, I confess, of seeing him meet the fate of the lamented Mr. Topsaywer, and fall lifeless on the carpet.  But it didn’t hurt him.  On the contrary, I thought he seemed the fresher for it.

“What have we got here?” he said, putting a fork into my dish.  “Not chops?”

“Chops,” I said.

“Lord bless my soul!” he exclaimed, “I didn’t know they were chops.  Why, a chop’s the very thing to take off the bad effects of that beer!  Ain’t it lucky?”

So he took a chop by the bone in one hand, and a potato in the other, and ate away with a very good appetite, to my extreme satisfaction.  He afterwards took another chop, and another potato; and after that another chop and another potato.  When he had done, he brought me a pudding, and having set it before me, seemed to ruminate, and to become absent in his mind for some moments.

 

. . .

 

That is all for this year.  Good luck to all, and maybe you will enjoy a hot streak like I did that will keep your hopes for this season alive.