Thursday, December 11, 2008

Decade of Dominance - Helena Hellraisers

Tito McQueen - Cobb Times Herald

Decade of Dominance - Highway to Helena
Back in season 1, the Sacramento Squids placed second in the AL West, starting off a successful run of winning seasons that has yet to end. Now in the capable hands of cosmicblob, the Hellraisers have challenged for the ALCS twice, and are always in the playoff mix at the end of the season. Many talented players have made their way through Helena over the years, but the town belongs to Orber Olivo, and everyone in the clubhouse knows it.

#12 - Helena Hellraisers
Franchise Power Ranking: 56
Best Year: 101-61, s3 - Worst Year: 82-80, s5 & s8
Postseason Achievements: 1 Division Title, 4 Wild Card Berths, 2 DCS Titles.
Best Player: Orber Olivo - It is a disgrace that Olivo was only an All Star 4 times, as he his career boasts 504 HR's. 1,361 RBI's, and 1,599 hits, making him one of the premier sluggers in Cobb history.
Best Pitcher: Richard Aoki - Aoki may have never made an All Star team, but he has racked up 111 wins in his career with Helena, and has been consistently solid.
Best International Prospect:
Javier Romero
Best Draft Pick: Alex Presley
Franchise Theme Song: Number of the Beast by Iron Maiden - The Times Herald is willing to bet that Orber Olivo's jersey number is 666, as he is an absolute beast on the field. Also, who better to raise hell for the Hellraisers than the Beast himself?
Franchise Highlights: Franchise won the division with a team record 101 wins in season 3, where they then advanced to the ALCS. Franchise also made the ALCS in season 9. Franchise has made the playoffs 5 of 9 seasons in Cobb World, and never finished with a losing record. Franchise has drafted stars such as Alex Presley, Trenidad Pelaez, Barney Johnson, and Rich Rose. Franchise has been a solid performer in the trade market. Orber Olivo teamed up with Lil' John in a publicity campaign to raise his MVP credibility around the league.
Franchise Lowlights: Franchise has finished behind Anaheim in the division and in the playoffs nearly every season. Olivo has only 4 All Star appearances, and has been shut out of MVP voting nearly every season, including his 73 HR, 176 RBI season 6. Franchise has never signed an international worth much of anything.
Franchise Outlook: The AL West is on a highway to Helena, as the Sharks age and the Hellraisers get younger, especially in their pitching. The Hellraisers have a vast well of talent in their minor league pitching, and they are just about ready to break free of their minor league chains and wreak havoc on the AL next season. If Helena can find a replacement for the production of Orber Olivo as he rides off into the sunset, there is no reason why the Hellraisers can't continue their streak of winning seasons, and possibly take the division title away from Anaheim.

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