Thursday, November 13, 2008

Decade of Dominance - Syracuse Beagles

Ajax Montalbon - Cobb Times Herald

Decade of Dominance - Small Payroll, Big Money
The Syracuse Beagles started in Cobb World as the Trenton Zombies, and had one of the best rotations in league history, setting the stage for a franchise that has had consistently good pitching from season 1 until today. Having only suffered one losing season in franchise history, the Beagles are and have been a solidly managed team whose sharp management is paying dividends in a major way in recent seasons with wins and playoff appearances. Built around a core of young aces and position players, with a sprinkling of solid veterans, the Beagles are a baseball force to be reckoned with, and are currently one of the better teams in Cobb World.

#15 - Syracuse Beagles
Franchise Power Ranking: 39.5
Best Year: 98-64, s2 - Worst Year: 79-83, s6
Postseason Achievements: 2 Division Championships, 2 Wildcard Berths
Best Player: Kenny Blair - The dynamic infielder has been a 30/30 man his entire career with the Beagles, and has never posted an OPS below .900 with the team.
Best Pitcher: Ruben Montero - There have been some good pitchers for the Beagles, but Montero has been consistently excellent for many seasons, including a 20 win season 8.
Best International Prospect:
Ruben Montero
Best Draft Pick: Charles Reese
Franchise Theme Song: We Rock by Dio - In case you didn't know it, the Beagles rock.
Franchise Highlights: Franchise won division titles in seasons 2 and 7. Franchise earned Wildcard berths in seasons 8 and 9. Franchise won a team high 98 games in season 2. Original starting rotation in season 1 consisted of Olmedo Contreras, Flip Heathcott, Bubba Wise, and Timothy Serra, a collection of future Cy Youngs and All Stars. Franchise traded for a collection of young all stars in Paul Jung, Ron Reilly, and Jamie Beimel in seasons 9 & 10. Franchise has drafted very well, and made some solid international signings, including Montero for only 5.5 million dollars. Franchise signed the first 10 million dollar international prospect in league history in Yorvit Hernandez.
Franchise Lowlights: Franchise suffered the only losing season in it's history with a 79-83 season 6. By season 3, the entire all star starting rotation was gone through trades and free agency.
Franchise Outlook: The outlook for the Beagles is two thumbs way up. With their collection of very good young players in both the lineup and rotation, the sky is the limit for Syracuse. It's a matter of guessing how far they will go in the playoffs, which is a good place to be. With a core that includes Jung, Reilly, Beimel, Phil Hinch, Charles Reese, and others, things are going to be looking good for the Beagles for many seasons to come.

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