Sunday, January 4, 2015

Season 33 Wrap Up - Memphis claims the crown!

Memphis Confederates (AL)
View Hardball Dynasty Profile
Memphis takes the crown in Season 33!

Memphis is the Season 33 Champion in Cobb, but it wasn't an easy path.  The top seed in the AL had to battle through a 5 game series in the division round against Baltimore and a 7 game series in the ALCS against Tacoma to make the World Series.  From there, they kicked it into high gear taking the crown in 5 games against a tough San Francisco team.  Memphis made their run through the playoffs thanks to great pitching, posting a 2.97 team ERA against some of the world's top teams, while putting up consistently solid offensive numbers to back it up.  This is the first Cobb title for snides, his squad had made the World Series in Season 26, but came up short against Omaha.  Congrats to snides on taking home his first Cobb title! In addition, awards were handed out, so let's see who took home the major individual honors!

American League - Don Nation, Baltimore - .333 AVG 50 HR 159 RBI
Nation put forth another tremendous season for Baltimore, putting up impressive power numbers to go with a great batting average.  Nation claims his 3rd MVP trophy, also winning the honor in seasons 28 and 30.  He also made his 5th All-Star team and won his 6th Silver Slugger this season.  Seems like a Hall of Fame resume already, and at age 31 next season, he still has some very productive years ahead.  

National League - Tony Koh, Omaha - .339 AVG 65 HR 133 RBI
Given Koh's amazing offensive numbers, it's not much of a surprise that he walked away with the MVP award, his second consecutive win.  Koh has stepped it up the past two seasons with back-to-back 60 HR seasons.  He also made his 7th All-Star team and won his 5th Silver Slugger this season. Seems like another sure fire Hall of Famer, and he will also be just 31 at the start of next season, meaning more productive seasons to come.

American League - Eddie Blasingame, Memphis - 17-7 1.99 ERA 161 K
Blasingame stepped it up for World Champion Memphis this season leading them to the top seed in the AL and the World Series title.  With a microscopic ERA and WHIP, he seemed like an easy choice for AL Cy Young.  He also made his 2nd All-Star team this season.  He'll be 27 next season and looking to help Memphis repeat as champions, in addition to repeating his Cy Young performance.

National League - Gill Cochrane, Atlanta - 25-7 1.87 ERA 280 K
What an incredible season for Cochrane!  He broke the single season strikeout record and put up the 2nd most wins in Cobb history, to go with a most impressive ERA and WHIP.  Winning his 4th Cy Young Award, this was likely his most impressive season yet.  He also made his 7th All-Star team this season.  Cochrane came just short of leading Atlanta to their 4th straight World Series title, but certainly earned his 4th Cy Young Award.

That concludes this season's wrap up!  See you back for next season after a hopefully quick rollover!

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Season 32 Wrap Up - It's a Three-Peat for Atlanta!

Atlanta Smackdown (NL)
View Hardball Dynasty Profile
Atlanta takes it all once again in Season 32!

Atlanta has done it again, completing the three-peat by winning an intense battle in the World Series against Tacoma.  After years of futility in Wichita, a move to Atlanta has paid off big time for lightman, as they have now won three straight titles.  Oh yeah, I think the stellar roster has something to do with it too!  After sweeping Rochester in the Divisional Series and San Francisco in the NLCS, Atlanta faced a tough challenge in a revamped up-and-coming Tacoma squad.  It took 7 games, but they were able to claim the crown.  A 2.55 team ERA in the playoffs was a key to the win in the ATL, along with respectable offensive numbers to boot.  Congrats to lightman on an impressive accomplishment!

Now let's see who took home the major individual awards this season.

American League  - Cody Bryant, Santa Fe - .334 AVG 36 HR 115 RBI
Cody Bryant took home his first MVP award, posting outstanding numbers for Santa Fe in Season 32.  In addition to the numbers listed above, his outstanding 1.102 OPS should be mentioned as well, one of the best in the modern Cobb era.  He also made the All-Star team and won a Silver Slugger award this season.  Even though he plays in hitter-friendly Santa Fe, it's hard to argue against Bryant taking home the hardware with such an impressive season.

National League - Tony Koh, Omaha -.327 AVG 61 HR 129 RBI
After many seasons of racking up All-Star appearances and Silver Slugger awards, Koh finally takes home his first MVP trophy in Season 32.  His numbers for Season 32 were out of this world.  Coincidentally, he also put up an 1.102 OPS in a park where it's much more difficult to hit.  He also won the Home Run derby, made the All-Star team, and took home another Silver Slugger.  It's difficult to come up with enough superlatives to describe Koh's season, the MVP was certainly well deserved.

American League - Alex Calderone, Santa Fe - 20-4 3.22 ERA 117 K
Well, winning a Cy Young award in Santa Fe is certainly impressive and that's exactly what Alex Calderone did.  Avoiding the dangers of pitching in Santa Fe, Calderone was a reliable starter who accumulated 20 wins and kept his ERA at 3.22 in leading Santa Fe to the best record in the AL.  Calderone also made the All-Star team this season.  He had never won any awards or made the All-Star team prior to this season.  Pretty impressive feat by the 33 year-old hurler indeed.

National League - Midre Diaz, Rochester - 20-2 1.17 ERA 166 K
No, that's not a typo, Midre Diaz finished with a new Cobb record low 1.17 ERA.  Diaz capped off his record breaking season with his 2nd Cy Young Award, he also won in Season 26.  Diaz was nearly unhittable this season and its hard to imagine the Cy Young award going to anyone else.  Diaz also made the All-Star team.  All of the accolades are well deserved in what was a season for the ages. 

That concludes our Season 32 Wrap Up, see you back for Season 33!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Season 31 Wrap Up - Atlanta goes back-to-back!

Atlanta Smackdown (NL)
View Hardball Dynasty Profile
Atlanta goes back-to-back with Season 31 title win!

After a wild, back and forth World Series in Season 31, Atlanta managed to come out on top, making them the back-to-back World Champions.  It was not an easy road, however, as they had a tough 5-game series in the Divisional Series Round against Charleston.  After a sweep of San Francisco in the NLCS, they headed to the World Series against fellow top seed, Santa Fe.  After Atlanta took game 1 by a 13-4 margin, Santa Fe stuck back in Game 2 with an 18-7 shellacking of their own.  Atlanta took 2 out of 3 on their home field to go up 3-2 and took a 5-run lead into the 9th inning of game 6, only to see it evaporate with a 6-run rally from Santa Fe to take the series to a Game 7.  In Game 7, the lead changed hands several time throughout the game, with Santa Fe leading 9-7 after 7 innings, only to surrender 2 in the 8th and 1 in the 9th without any answer from their own squad, giving Atlanta the 4-3 series win.  What an incredible series it was, congratulations to both teams on great seasons, it's shame either team had to lose.

Here's a quick run down of this season's award winners:

Most Valuable Player
American League - Randy Adams, San Juan -.313 AVG 60 HR 179 RBI
Adams took home the AL MVP by a fairly wide margin by putting up amazing power numbers and driving in an insane amount of runs.   This is his 1st MVP win, and he also took home his first Silver Slugger award this season as well.  It's a surprise he hasn't won more awards with his elite bat, although being a DH may have hurt him there.  Nonetheless, the award is well deserved for putting up one of the best offensive seasons in recent Cobb World history. 

National League - Hank Sherman, Columbus -.340 AVG 37 HR 88 RBI 28 SB
The former #1 overall pick of the Season 26 draft has lived up to the expectations involved with being the top choice, by delivering with an MVP award in his first full season in the majors.  He has elite hitting skills, which should keep him in the running for many more awards for seasons to come, especially since he is only 23 years old. 

Cy Young Award
American League - Pat Nakajima, Tacoma -19-9 3.05 ERA 183 K
The 22 year-old Japanese hurler took the AL Cy Young by taking the mound for 42 starts this season, and putting up quality numbers.  This is also Nakajima's first full season in the Majors after an early call-up last season, and his 1st Cy Young win.  Nakajima was signed for a whopping $40.1 million bonus in Season 27, and has shown that he was worth the large investment. 

National League -  Gill Cochrane, Atlanta - 23-8 2.71 ERA 266 K
Cochrane took home the Cy Young award by a sizable margin in the NL, and looking at his numbers it's not hard to see why.  Putting up 23 wins for the World Champions will usually get you some votes.  Cochrane signed a 5 year, $110 million contract with Atlanta this past offseason and it was obviously well worth it.  Winning the Cy Young is an every 4 seasons ordeal for Cochrane, as he took home a pair of AL Cy Youngs in Seasons 23 and 27, making this his 3rd win.  I'm sure Atlanta is hoping for another win before Season 35 though!

Congrats to all the owners with award winners, and again to Atlanta and Santa Fe for putting on a great show in the World Series.  Thanks to everyone for making Season 31 great, see you back for Season 32 after a hopefully very quick rollover!  Don't forget to renew if you haven't already!

Friday, March 28, 2014

Season 30 Wrap Up - Atlanta is the Champion!

Atlanta Smackdown (NL)
View Hardball Dynasty Profile
Atlanta wins it all in Season 30! 

28 seasons, 4 NL pennants, but no World Series titles.   That was the history of Lightman's Cobb journey headed into Season 30, the season in which it all paid off with the franchise's first World Series title.  Lightman finally found a formula that worked, defeating the Durham Bulls in a tough seven game series to win the crown.   Atlanta came into the playoffs as the #5 seed in the NL, unable to pass Rochester for the NL East title.  After taking down sub .500 Charleston in the opening round, they had the daunting task of facing 7-time champion and #1 seed Omaha.  Edging out Omaha 3-2 seemed to seal their destiny, but it wouldn't be easy, winning a tough NLCS against Burlington in 6, and then Durham in the World Series in 7.  Congrats to Lightman on the title, it's good to see an owner who has put in so many seasons into the world without winning one, finally take it home!

Here were season 30's award winners:
Most Valuable Player
American League -  Don Nation, Baltimore - .327 AVG 49 HR 133 RBI
Another amazing season at the plate earns Nation his 2nd MVP award in 3 seasons.  Arguably the premiere hitter in Cobb right now, he made his 2nd All-Star team and won his 3rd Silver Slugger award this season as well.  At just 28 going into Season 31, he could have a couple of more trophies by the end of his run. 

National League -  Harry Tracy, Atlanta - .321 AVG 62 HR 148 RBI
In addition to a World Series ring, Tracy took home the NL MVP award as well, his first.  Looking at his stat line, it's not hard to figure out why.  The young slugger also made the All-Star team in Season 30, and looks to have many more tremendous seasons ahead of him. 

Cy Young Award
American League -  Juan Romano, Durham - 19-8 3.71 ERA 162 K
The 36 year-old hurler showed in Season 30 that he's still got something left, taking home the AL Cy Young Award while helping Durham make it to the World Series.  Pretty unusual to see a player take home their first Cy Young at age 36, but his incredibly solid numbers in a hitter's heaven ballpark got the job done.  He also made his 4th All-Star team in Season 30.  

National League -  Harvey Diaz, Omaha - 19-8 2.53 ERA 166 K
Diaz took home his 3rd Cy Young award in Season 30 for the top regular season team, Omaha.  Yet another impressive season for Diaz saw him make his 4th All-Star team.  At age 32 going into Season 31, he certainly has a chance to enter the elite group of 4-time Cy Young winners, but the question is will it be with Omaha or another team?  

That does it for Season 30, looking forward to another great season for #31 after a hopefully quick rollover!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Season 29 Wrapup - Montreal takes the title!

Montreal Lanterne Rouge (AL)
View Hardball Dynasty Profile
Montreal is your Season 29 Cobb Champion!

Season 29 saw two first time World Series participants go head to head for the Cobb World Series title, which would give us our first new champion since season 22.  In the end, it was Montreal who erased an early 2-0 deficit by winning the next 4 to take a tight World Series victory.  Montreal battled through the playoffs playing 22 games out of a maximum of 24 as the #3 seed in the AL.  Every series was close, but in the end they came through, thanks in large part to an offense that crushed 59 homers during the post season, and a pitching staff that held its own throughout.  Fresno has a nice run as the #2 seed in the NL, winning a tight divisional series and then cruising through the NLCS.  They gave Montreal a good battle, but in the end couldn't stop the powerful Montreal bats.

In other news, the Season 29 award winners were crowned and they are:

Most Valuable Player
American League -  Orlando Gabriel, Durham - .353 AVG 24 HR 102 RBI 22 SB
At age 30, Gabriel had his best season yet and was rewarded with the Most Valuable Player award and his first Silver Slugger award.  Gabriel sported a stellar .443 OBP to go along with his .353 AVG and slugged an impressive .578.  He topped his career best OPS by 168 points.  If only he had been playing in Durham sooner, who knows what his career numbers would look like.

National League - Keith Wilkins, Omaha -.337 AVG 36 HR 104 RBI 25 SB
Although Wilkins could not lead Omaha to a repeat championship, he gets the NL MVP as a consolation prize.  He flat out crushed the ball this season in a pitcher's park, no less.  Now if this guy was in Durham, the numbers would be down right scary.   He still managed ridiculous numbers like .430 OBP and .658 SLG to take home his first MVP trophy.   At age 27, it would be a surprise if Wilkins didn't rack up a few more MVPs before his career is done.

Cy Young Award
American League - Jamie Hayashi, Memphis - 2.18 ERA 17-4 146 K
Hayashi showed this season that he is an ageless wonder, taking home the Cy Young Award at age 37 with a stellar season for Memphis.  This is his first AL Cy Young Award, however, it should be mentioned that he took home 4 Cy Young Awards in the NL, now putting him amongst Cobb's all time greats with 5 Cy Young Awards.  Hayashi is surely Hall of Fame bounds, although it looks like he still has a couple of good seasons left in the tank, and who knows, maybe a 6th Cy Young?

National League - Gil Elster, Charleston - 2.36 ERA 18-5 147 K
Elster took home the NL Cy Young Award, his first, in an extremely close race.  It's hard to argue that he wasn't deserving though, with his microscopic ERA and WHIP and a great win-loss record.  Elster is a crafty lefty who is only 26 years old, and looks to be a sure fire stud pitcher for the next several seasons.  Certainly, he should contend for the Cy Young regularly for the foreseeable future.

That's a wrap on Season 29!  Don't forget to renew your teams for next season to make it a quick rollover!   Thanks to all the owners for another great season. 

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Season 28 Wrapup - Omaha Wins Another Title!

Omaha Wins the Season 28 Crown!

It's been quite a while since the last article in the Cobb Times Herald, I guess we were just waiting for a big moment, and the Omaha Sluggers winning their 7th World Series crown seems to fit the bill.  The Sluggers rolled through the playoffs sweeping their first two series and losing only 1 in the World Series to compile an 11-1 playoff record.   Their pitching was fantastic throughout the playoffs, and Jade Stetter was perfect closing games going 8 for 8 in save opportunities with a 0.00 ERA.  Their offense was pretty solid as well, with several players contributing good postseasons.  As mentioned, this is the 7th Cobb title for the Omaha Sluggers.  After winning 5 titles from Seasons 7-13, the well dried up for a bit, as they needed to go through a rebuilding phase.  It's finally paid off, as they have won 2 out of the last 3 titles.  If anyone knows the formula for putting together a championship club, it's yanks21, who not only has 7 World Series championships here, but a staggering 25 total, one of the best in Hardball Dynasty history!

In addition to the World Series trophy, some other hardware was handed out, here's a recap of the winners:

Most Valuable Player
American League - Don Nation, Baltimore - .339 AVG 51 HR 147 RBI
After an impressive rookie campaign that won him Rookie of the Year honors, Nation exploded on to the scene in his 2nd season to take the MVP award.  The former #9 overall draft pick pounded the ball this season, winning the AL Triple Crown, as led the league in batting average, home runs, RBI, and also Hits, Slugging and OPS. He definitely looks to be primed to contend for MVP for seasons to come.  He also won a Silver Slugger award this season.

National League -  Stephen Hubbard, Charleston -.331 AVG 53 HR 143 RBI
Hubbard won a close race for the NL MVP, however with his numbers you can't really dispute him winning.  This is Hubbard's 2nd MVP win, he also won in Season 24.  Although his last three seasons were good, he stepped it back up to an MVP caliber lever this season leading the NL in Home Runs and RBI, and finishing 4th in batting average.  He also won a Silver Slugger award this season.  At only 27, a third MVP title isn't out of the question.

Cy Young Award
American League - Doug Dreifort, Kansas City - 23-5 3.02 ERA 157 K
At age 34, Driefort, who was a rock all season in the World Series runner-up Kansas City rotation, took home his first Cy Young Award.   His 23 wins led the league, and he also made the All-Star team.  The winner by a wide margin, Dreifort had a truly impressive season in capturing the AL's top pitching honors.

National League - Oswaldo Veras, Omaha - 23-3 1.72 ERA 191 K
Veras was a runaway winner of the NL Cy Young Award, posting a microscopic ERA, the third lowest all-time in Cobb, and an extremely low WHIP, while tossing 7 complete games and 3 shutouts for the World Series Champions.  He won the first three Pitcher of the Week awards, and easily made the All Star team.  At age 26, this could be the first of many Cy Young Awards for Veras, who was simply dominant this season.

Well, that wraps up Season 28, and the first blog post in ages!  We hope to have more content next season.  Don't forget to renew your team for a quick rollover into Season 29.  See you next season!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Interview with jvford

After exhaustive study and meticulous research, the Cobb Herald has recently learned that the Pawtucket G-Maniacs have recently gone through a change of ownership. How this coup d'etat managed to occur so stealthily may be a mystery forever. But, now that the deed has been exposed, it is the duty of this publication to reveal the heart and soul of this owner through a hard hitting interview to see just what make jvford tick.

Any advice for tdfactory – the newest member of the AL North?

-Don't worry about winning the division. It's perfectly acceptable to settle for a WC run when you're in a division with me.

If you are JVFord, when do you make varsity?

-Well, if I haven't made it by now, I don't really think I have much of a shot.

If quizzes are quizzical, what are tests?


What is your favorite breakfast food and why should we care?

-Oatmeal. And nobody should care because it's what everyone eats for breakfast, right?

Which pitcher do you dread facing the most?

-Any of the Tampa starters.

Any Addictions, Disease or Other Destructive Behaviors?

-You mean besides HBD? I guess my enjoyment of options trading could qualify as an addiction.

Did Jesus get as tired of Tim Tebow as the rest of us or did he just suck Vs. New England?

-Actually, I think God's a football fan and got tired of Jesus screwing around with the game.

Hypothetical question. ' Say, there's something in a person's past that if it got out, would cause harm to certain football coaches at a large State University. Would it be wrong to place a wager against that team.....then file charges, or the other way around?'

-Based on the few times I tried it, any gambling on college football is wrong.

Can you comment on the rumor that you were “involved” in pieo’s disappearance this season?

-"Unless you have specific information backed up by irrefutable evidence, please refrain from discussing any possible involvement of my client in pieogate....or we may be forced to take legal action." -Johnnie Cochran, Jr. Attorney for jvford

Which Cobb owner have you trade-raped the most since joining this league?

-I think all of my deals were for high priced vets, so none of the deals look as good for me a few seasons later. But I did really like the deal for Dorian Woolf. Now if only I can acquire a stud 200 inning RP for a pupu platter. ;-)

You’re filling in you’re lineup card, who do you bat cleanup – Angelina Jolie? Or Scarlett Johanssen? And what position does she field?

-AJ.....and she pitches. Seems like she's a competitive bitch who's not afraid to throw inside. But I'd rather bang SJ.

Funaki spent virtually his entire career with the G-maniacs, hitting over 500 HR’s and achieving a career OPS of .888. What was the real cause of the breakup?

-He was looking for a LT deal and my stat guys told me his production was going to fall off drastically after this season. Sounds a little cold-hearted, but sometimes you have to make the tough decisions. I wish him luck.