Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Season 45 Wrap Up - Chicago Takes it All!

Chicago
Chicago Pitbulls (NL)
alogman1
View Hardball Dynasty Profile
Chicago is Your Season 45 Champion!

It's been 25 seasons in the making, and it finally happened, the World Series trophy comes back to Wrigley Field, as Chicago defeated Florida in 4 games to clinch the crown.  Both Florida and Chicago swept their opening series, followed by grueling 7 game showdowns in the LCS.  Chicago managed to put together some solid pitching appearances (3.19 postseason ERA) and slug a few out of the park (22 HR in 14 playoff games) to put them over the top against Florida.  Chicago's latest rebuild finally paid off, as they had made the playoffs the previous 11 seasons without a title, losing in the World Series once over at that span.  It's been a nice run for Florida as well, coming off their 3rd straight division title, having won the World Series just two seasons ago.  Congrats to both teams on great seasons.

Now, let's look at the major award winners in Season 45!

MOST VALUABLE PLAYER
American League - Parker Counsell, Salt Lake City - .303 AVG 42 HR 108 RBI 38 SB
Chalk up another MVP win for the Salt Lake first baseman, his second straight and 3rd in 4 seasons at just age 25!  His Average, Home Run, RBI and Stolen Base totals all dropped from last season, yet he still won, what are the voters thinking?!?  Well, it's still an MVP worthy stat line, even if he missed out on a 40/40 season.  No question about his talent, the only question is how many more MVP awards will he win?

National League - Yadier Torres, Chicago - .295 AVG 46 HR 99 RBI 30 SB
We also have a back-to-back winner in the NL MVP, as the Chicago left fielder takes home his 2nd straight MVP trophy.  The 26 year-old failed to put up his 3rd straight 50 HR season, but did crack 30 steals for the first time.  He made his 4th All-Star team and won his 3rd Silver Slugger award this season as well.  Quite the career resumè, although he still trails Counsell by one MVP award is a year older!

CY YOUNG AWARD
American League - Harry Galvis, Cleveland - 27-6 2.52 ERA 233 K
The 26 year-old hard throwing lefty loves odd numbered seasons, as the Season 41 & 43 Cy Young Award winner also takes home the crown in Season 45!  Not that he's been terrible in the even seasons, he now has 5 straight 20+ win 220+ K strikeout seasons under his belt, with his highest ERA over that time being 3.21.  He also made his 6th straight All-Star appearance this season.  His ratings are phenomenal and no doubt will go down as an all-time great, and is definitely our favorite for the Season 47 award!

National League - Juan Trevino, Cheyenne - 19.6 2.27 ERA 186 K
A 26 year-old lefty like his AL counterpart, Trevino was awarded for his best season yet with the Cy Young trophy for the NL, his first win.  The Season 38 #1 overall draft pick has had some solid seasons, but in Season 45 he posted a career high in Wins, and a career best ERA by over a run.  He also made his first All-Star appearance in Season 45.  No doubt he should remain among the NL's top pitchers for some time, he was definitely worth taking #1 overall.

That's a wrap for Season 45, see you back for next season!

Friday, December 29, 2017

Season 44 Wrap Up - Jackson Comes Out on Top!

Jackson
Jackson Rebel Yell (NL)
Frozenherd
View Hardball Dynasty Profile
Jackson is Your Season 44 Champion!

Another season is in the books in Cobb World and after another hotly contested postseason, it's Jackson who claims the crown, making it five different champions in the last five seasons here in Cobb.  Jackson beat Cheyenne and last season's NL Champ, Omaha on their way to the NLCS, winning each series in four games.  They jumped out to a 3-0 lead against Portland in the NLCS, only to drop the next two before sealing the deal in Game 6.   In the World Series facing Cobb's best regular season team, Cleveland, they amazing jumped out to another 3-0 series lead, and this time they were able to complete the sweep, giving Jackson their first Championship in Cobb, and Frozeherd's first Championship in Hardball Dynasty.  A hearty congrats indeed!  It was pitching that led the way for Jackson, as they put up an astounding 2.15 ERA this postseason, while the offense held it's out, belting out 23 Home Runs in 18 games.

Now, here's who won the major individual awards this season!

MOST VALUABLE PLAYER
American League - Parker Counsell, Salt Lake City - .333 AVG 49 HR 117 44 SB
Counsell won his 2nd MVP award in Season 44, mirroring the phenomenal numbers he put up in his last MVP run in Season 42.  The 24 year-old 1st baseman has a rare combination of power, speed and baserunning that makes him one of the top offensive threats in Cobb.  In addition to his stat line above, it should be noted he was only caught stealing once this season.   In addition to the MVP trophy, he also won his 3rd Silver Slugger, made his 3rd All-Star team and won the Home Run Derby. It will be exciting to see Counsell strive to be one of the all-time greats in Cobb.  He's certainly off to a very good start.

National League - Yadier Torres, Chicago - .322 AVG 52 HR 111 RBI 21 SB
Torres was a landslide winner of the NL MVP, making him the 3rd consecutive different member of Chicago to take home the MVP award in the last three seasons.  The 25 year-old left fielder put together his 2nd straight 52 home run season while anchoring the top of a solid Chicago lineup.  He made his 3rd All-Star team and won his 2nd Silver Slugger in Season 44 as well.  He certainly has the talent to win another, but seems he has a lot of competition from him own teammates, much less the rest of the NL!

CY YOUNG AWARD
American League - Francisley Falu, Vancouver - 19-4 2.65 ERA 170 K
It was a tight race for the AL Cy Young this season, but it was the 22 year-old hard throwing righty out of Vancouver that capture the crown, his first in his young career.  The Dominican product put up some solid numbers since coming up as 20 year-old in Season 42.  It finally came together for him this season, posting a career high total in Wins, ERA and WHIP, while making the All-Star team as well.  All signs point to him being one of the top arms in Cobb for seasons to come.

National League - Al Osoria, Portland - 17-5 1.28 ERA 201 K
Cobb's all-time ERA leader has done it once again, posting the 3rd best ERA in Cobb history (his Season 40 mark ranks 2nd) en route to his 3rd Cy Young award.  It's hard to deny him the honor with such an unbelievable stat line, including such a microscopic ERA!  He also made his 5th All-Star appearance in Season 44 as well.  The 30 year-old appears to be in no danger of slowing down any time soon.  It will be amazing to see where his career stat line and trophy total end up.

That does it for Season 44, see you back soon for Season 45!

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Season 43 Wrap Up - Florida Claims the Crown!

Florida
Florida Almendares (AL)
wihargo
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Florida Takes the Title in Season 43!

The Season 43 World Series is in the books, and it's the AL #2 seed, Florida, who claims the crown for the first time in 27 seasons!  Florida took on a tough Vancouver team in the ALDS, squeaking out a win in 5 games.  They went on to defeat top seeded Cleveland in 6 in the ALCS and ended up out-battling the NL's top seed, Omaha, in 5 games to claim the Season 43 title.  Florida posted a 2.94 team ERA en route to their first World Series trophy since Season 16, with both the starters and bullpen performing fairly well.  The offense didn't set the world on fire, as the team average was .237 for the playoffs, but came through with some timely power bursts, slugging 23 home runs in 16 games.  Congrats to wihargo on Cobb championship #2, and to Omaha as well on a great season, who looks to be back in the title picture now.  Will be interesting to see what happens next season with so many solid teams!  In the meantime, here's a recap of the Season 43 major award winners!

MOST VALUABLE PLAYER
American League - Jerry Johnson, Cleveland - .327 AVG 22 HR 72 RBI 53 SB
The 31 year-old on-base machine and baserunning guru edged out his teammate by one vote to take home his 2nd MVP trophy, also having won in Season 40.  He also made his 6th All-Star team and won his 6th Silver Slugger award in Season 43.  Although he didn't have out-of-this-world power numbers, he did everything else at such a high level, it allowed voters to look past it and award his tremendous efforts.

National League - Mark Jang, Chicago - .301 AVG 48 HR 121 RBI 20 SB
The Season 42 NL Rookie of the Year followed that feat up by taking home the NL MVP in his sophomore campaign.  The 22 year-old is off to an amazing start to his career, also having earned his 1st Silver Slugger award in Season 43.  Jang can just about do it all, run the bases, is an excellent fielder, has elite power, it will be interesting to see where he can go from here.

CY YOUNG AWARD
American League - Harry Galvis, Cleveland - 24-8 2.58 ERA 224 K
The fact that Galvis has earned his 2nd Cy Young Award at age 24, probably doesn't even properly summarize his talent.  The 3-time All-Star continued his dominance for the AL's top regular season team, Cleveland, posting an outstanding line once again.  He previous won the Cy Young in Season 41, and could have last season too, so we could have been talking about an epic 3-in-a-row run here. Something tells us this won't be the last Cy Young for this most impressive lefty.

National League - C.C. Gryboski, Omaha - 22-5 3.02 ERA 204 K
The NL Cy Young also goes to that league's best regular season team, as the 35 year-old hard-throwing righty from Omaha took home his 2nd Cy Young Award, previously having won in Season 36.  Although he has had some great seasons since, this is his first time posting more than 15 wins since his initial Cy Young campaign, which was enough to propel him slightly ahead of his competition.  He also made his 5th All-Star team in Season 43.

That does it for Season 43 - see you back soon for Season 44 after a hopefully quick rollover!

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

Season 42 Wrap Up - San Jose Seizes the Day!

San Jose
San Jose Scorpions (NL)
tomcecil
View Hardball Dynasty Profile
San Jose takes the Season 42 Crown!

San Jose completed a dominate run through the playoffs by sweeping AL powerhouse Richmond to take home the franchise's first World Series title.  San Jose went 11-1 in the playoffs, suffering only a single loss in the NLCS to Trenton on their way to the crown.  Solid all-around offense and tremendous pitching was the key to their postseason success.    The pitching staff posted a 2.41 ERA in the playoffs, led by all-time Cobb ERA leader Al Osoria, who gave up only a single run in 4 starts.  Hats off to tomcecil on leading his team to one of the most dominant playoff runs in recent Cobb history.

Now, let's take a look at this season's major award winners!

MOST VALUABLE PLAYER
American League - Parker Counsell, Salt Lake City - .278 AVG 51 HR 151 RBI 40 SB
The 22 year-old phenom out of SLC took home the AL MVP trophy by a single vote.  Counsell has a rare combination of power, speed and baserunning prowess that you don't see too often, that enabled him to put together a 50/40 season on his way to an AL MVP win.  He also won a Gold Glove and Silver Slugger award and also made the All-Star team.  Counsell is a rare talent, and should be in the conversation for MVP for many seasons to come.

National League - Julio Ogando, Chicago - .335 AVG 44 HR 129 RBI
The NL MVP race ended up being a blowout, with the 26 year-old Chicago Slugger, Ogando, winning in a landslide.  Ogando had his best season yet, earning career highs in multiple categories to help lead Chicago to the NL's best record.  Similar to his AL counterpart, Ogando also won a Gold Glove and Silver Slugger, and made the All-Star team.  This is Ogando's first MVP win.

CY YOUNG AWARD
American League - Arismendy Trinidad, Seattle - 20-4 2.57 ERA 142 K
Similar to the MVP voting, the AL Cy Young Award was decided by a single vote and it was Seattle's Trinidad that came out on top.  After coming over from Chicago two seasons again, Trinidad had made a home for himself in Seattle with back-to-back outstanding seasons.  The righty from the Dominican doesn't throw a lot of heat, but knows how to get batters out with outstanding control and pitch command.  This is Trinidad's first Cy Young win.

National League - Ismael Campos, Chicago - 22-5 3.22 ERA 206 K
The 22 year-old hard throwing righty out of Chicago edged out all-time ERA leader Osoria to bring him the Cy Young Award, his first win.  After a solid rookie campaign, Campos came back for his 2nd season even better, anchoring Chicago's solid pitching staff that helped the team reach 103 wins. Campos has pretty outstanding ratings across the board, so he should be in contention to get a 2nd trophy, although the NL is filled with solid hurlers for sure.  Campos also made the All-Star team this season.

That's a wrap for Season 42, thanks to all for playing, see you back soon for Season 43!

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Season 41 Wrap Up - San Francisco Wins it All!

San Francisco
San Francisco Earthquakes (NL)
Sipe
View Hardball Dynasty Profile
Your Season 41 Champions - San Francisco

It was an unlikely run as the NL 6-seed, but San Francisco turned it up in the postseason to capture their 2nd title in three seasons, defeating a stout Seattle team in the World Series 4 games to 1.  It was Arismendy Espinoza leading the San Francisco offense throughout the postseason, crushing 12 homers in 16 games.  The long ball was prevalent for San Francisco as a whole, as they slugged 39 long balls in 20 playoff games.  The pitching was solid for San Francisco as well throughout the postseason, putting up a 3.51 team ERA.  The bullpen was excellent at shutting the door, converting on 9 of 10 save opportunities and they got some nice starting pitching appearances as well.  It was a great run and a case of a team getting hot at the right time.  It just goes to sure you, once you get to the playoffs, anything can happen.  Congrats to Sipe on his 2nd Cobb championship!

Now, let's take a look at this season's major award winners!

MOST VALUABLE PLAYER
American League -  Charles Walton, Detroit - .318 AVG 33 HR 122 RBI
The smooth swinging Center Fielder from Detroit captured his first MVP trophy in Season 41 at age 31.  He's had several impressive seasons in the past, as evidenced by the fact he is a 6-time All-Star and 5-time Silver Slugger (both accomplishments which he also achieved in Season 41), but this was the season he finally got the big MVP win.

National League - Hunter West, Kansas City - .335 AVG 23 HR 98 RBI 54 SB
The Kansas City 1st Baseman put together an amazing season, getting on base at a .470 clip, swiping 54 bases and crossing the plate to score 121 times to earn his 1st MVP award.  Overcoming a weakness vs. LHP, the Season 39 Rookie of the Year did it all in Season 41, earning his 1st All-Star appearance and 1st Silver Slugger award as well.  It will be interesting to see where the 27 year-old West goes from here, it wouldn't be a surprise to see the stellar performances continue.

CY YOUNG AWARD
American League - Harry Galvis, Cleveland - 23-7 2.38 ERA 245 K
Also a Season 39 Rookie of the Year, the 22 year-old Galvis truly broke out in Season 41, mowing down hitters at an impressive pace.  Galvis may sport the most impressive ratings out of any pitcher in Cobb and he lived up to the billing, also making his 2nd All-Star appearance.  There's little doubt that this youngster will be in the Cy Young Award conversation for many seasons to come and it wouldn't be shocking to see him break a few records along the way.

National League -
Bernard Spencer, San Jose - 19-6 2.10 ERA 193 K
Fausto Posada, Chicago - 22-5 2.83 ERA 193 K
Voters couldn't decide between these two impressive veteran righties, so there ended up being Co-Cy Young winners in the NL this season.  This is the 1st Cy Young win for both hurlers.  Each were All-Stars in Season 41, Spencer for the 4th time, Posada for the 6th.  Neither guy is a flame thrower but both are extremely effective in getting out in other ways, as their stat lines show.  It wouldn't be a surprise to see either back in contention next season for a solo win, given their impressive track records.

That's it for the Season 41 Wrap Up, looking forward to a great Season 42!

Saturday, December 17, 2016

Season 40 Wrap Up - Cleveland Rocks!

Cleveland brings home the title in Season 40!

It was just another Cleveland-Chicago World Series matchup, but simulation did not mirror reality as it was the AL Champion Cleveland Naps taking the World Series this time around.  Cleveland, who had the 2nd best record in Cobb this season, did not lose a game in route to the World Series, beating Chicago in the Divisional Round, and the team with the best record, Detroit, in the ALCS in clean sweeps.  Cleveland went down 2-1 in the World Series, before taking 3 straight to win in 6 games.  The Cleveland offense was clicking all postseason, mashing 23 Home Runs in 13 games with a team OPS of .808.  Despite a few rocky Starting Pitching performances, they finished with a 3.71 team ERA this postseason, thanks to a solid bullpen.  This is Cleveland's and douglasdao's 2nd Cobb title, as they also won it all in Season 36.  Congrats!

Now, for this year's major award winners!

MOST VALUABLE PLAYER
American League - Jerry Johnson, Cleveland - .350 AVG 38 HR 106 RBI 19 SB
It was a phenomenal year for the 28 year-old Cleveland slugger, who put forth his best numbers of his career to help Cleveland win the World Series title.  For his efforts, he gets the AL MVP trophy, although it was a tight race.  It's hard to argue against Johnson winning though, given his most impressive stat line.  He also won his 3rd Silver Slugger award this season and it wouldn't be a surprise to see him back as a strong MVP candidate in future seasons.

National League - Jim Burnett, Chicago - .304 AVG 56 HR 143 RBI 11 SB
It's just another spectacular season for Burnett, who now has 8 straight seasons of 40+ HR and 100+ RBI, and the fact that he produces those numbers while playing a solid CF makes him extremely valuable.  The 30 year-old made his 6th All-Star team and won his 7th Silver Slugger award in Season 40 as well.  This is his 2nd MVP win, also taking the trophy in Season 35.  Burnett is on his way to becoming one of Cobb's all-time great Center Fielders.

CY YOUNG AWARD
American League - Scott Schafer, Detroit - 26-8 3.18 ERA 220 K
It was a runaway win for the 30 year-old Detroit right-hander in the AL Cy Young race, and looking at his numbers it's not hard to see why.  You don't see pitchers winning 26 games that often.  Schafer also made the All-Star team this past season, his third appearance.  Schafer is a true workhorse who eats up innings with excellent splits and control.  Despite mediocre pitch command, he continues to post impressive numbers.

National League - Al Osoria, San Jose - 17-6 1.24 ERA 212 K
The San Jose righty goes back-to-back in Cy Young award wins with another spectacular season, posting the 2nd best ERA in 40 seasons of Cobb history.  He also made his 3rd All-Star appearance this seasons.  There aren't enough superlatives to describe Osoria's performance this past season.  It's hard to pick out any flaws in his makeup.  At just 26 years old, Osoria should continue to be one of the best pitchers in Cobb for seasons to come.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Season 39 Wrap Up - San Francisco is your champion!

After a back-and-forth battle in the World Series, it was San Francisco who came away with the crown after a 7-game World Series classic.  San Francisco, the NL's top team with 110 wins, didn't have an easy path to the title, going the full 7 games in both the NLCS and the World Series.  Despite some pitching staff implosions throughout the playoffs, it was Louie Concepcion and Willie James who were able to reel it in for an otherwise shaky San Francisco pitching staff to lead them to the title.  With their top two starters stepping up, to go with a steady and consistent offense, it was enough to put San Francisco over the top this season.  Richmond had another great playoff run, trying to win their 2nd title in 3 years, but the HBD gods determined it was not meant to be.  Still it was a tremendous season for them, and they are truly establishing their squad as one of Cobb's best teams.

Now, let's take a look at the major individual awards for Season 39!

MOST VALUABLE PLAYER
American League - Glenallen Good, Seattle - .332 AVG 49 HR 133 RBI
It was all good for good in Season 39, taking home the AL MVP trophy with a phenomenal season at the plate.  The 25 year-old's numbers are even more impressive taking into account that he plays in Seattle's pitcher friendly park.  Good also made his 2nd straight All-Star game and took home his 2nd straight Silver Slugger award in Season 39.  He's establishing himself as one of Cobb's top sluggers at an early age in his career.

National League - Vic Guillen, San Francisco - .318 AVG 53 HR 146 RBI
Speaking of Cobb's top sluggers, the 30 year-old Guillen did it again with another outstanding season posting a ridiculous line to earn his second straight NL MVP trophy and third in four years.  The leading slugger for the Season 39 World Champions, Guillen also made his 5th straight All-Star appearance and won his 4th straight Silver Slugger award this season.  Guillen is establishing himself as one of the all-time great hitters in Cobb history, and still has more productive years ahead.

CY YOUNG AWARD
American League - Gordon Ward, Detroit - 25-5 3.17 ERA 183 K
The workhorse lefty who anchored the staff for the American League's best regular season team is this season's AL Cy Young winner, earning his first trophy at age 33.  His 25 wins are tied for third for the most in a single season in Cobb history.  He made his 4th All-Star appearance in Season 39 as well.  This is his 5th straight season of outstanding numbers, so it's nice to see it finally pay off with a Cy Young trophy for the Detroit hurler.

National League - Al Osoria, San Jose - 19-6 2.05 ERA 240 K
The 25 year-old flame-throwing righty from San Jose is Season 39's Cy Young Award winner.  On top of an outstanding strikeout rate, Osoria eclipsed the minimum innings threshold and is now Cobb's all-time career leader in ERA.  Osoria made his 2nd straight All-Star team this season and even won a Silver Slugger!   It will be interesting to see how he builds on one of the best starts to a career for a starting pitching in Cobb history going forward.

That's it for the Season 39 Wrap Up.  See you back soon for Season 40!