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Old 09-15-2018, 01:59 PM   #301
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Denver Brewers July 1967 Team Report:

The Brewers go 15-14 in an up and down month but at least end the month by winning 4 of 6. They did have a nice month against old rivals, Los Angeles Spinners, as the Brewers took 4 of 5 from the reigning (but on the wane) MGL champs.
The Brewers continue to be at the top of the league in Stolen Bases and bullpen ERA. They are currently 3rd in defensive efficiency and 4th in team ERA. They are middle of the pack in categories like runs allowed and team batting average. Unfortunately, they are 7th in runs scored, 8th in offensive bases on balls, and 9th in offensive HR's.

Who's Hoppy?
Top 5 in WAR at this point:
1- Chad Brown, 4.3 WAR. The young shortstop Brown (.323/.351/.414) continues to have a wonderful season and is now 6th in the MGL in batting average, 3rd in hits, tied for 1st in triples (8), as well as second among MGL shortstops in range and zone rating. He has had a little error proneness lately and has now committed 19 on the season, but this is still a marked improvement over his first two seasons. Brown has also hit 19 doubles, has struck out only 19 times while walking 18 times. He does have 8 stolen bases but has unfortunately been caught stealing 12 times.

2- Antonio Puente, 3.6 WAR. Puente got hot late in the month of July and now has 15 doubles, 2 triples, and 16 HR's and has driven in 60 runs. Puente (.263/.341/.471) also plays excellent defensive leftfield (4th in Range and ZR and 2nd in defensive efficiency) and has stolen 7 bases while being caught trying 3 times.

3- Tanner Yurek, 3.6 WAR. Like Puente, Yurek (.265/.339/.458) has been hot lately and especially with the longball. Yurek now has 13 HR's to go with 19 doubles and 1 triple. He has driven in 45 runs. He also has 4 stolen bases and hasn't been caught trying to steal yet this season.

4- Daniel Torres, 2.6 WAR. Lefty Torres has taken over (just barely) from Steve Alonso as the best starter on the staff this season. Torres (9-4, 2.45) has held opponents to a .183 batting average (best in the league), has a WHIP of 1.05, has recorded 104 strikeouts while walking 54 batters and has a fine FIP of 2.84.

5- Ruben Souffront, 2.6 WAR. Ruben (.319/.336/.421) has fallen into a bit of a cold spell at the plate the past few weeks, but is still having a fine season. He has 14 doubles, 7 triples (tied for 4th in league), 3 HR's, 40 RBI and he leads all of the WPK in stolen bases at 32 (he has been caught 12 times.)

Who's Hungover?
Bottom 5 in WAR:
1- Hector Uribe, -0.7 WAR. The fine fielding thirdbaseman Uribe has struggled mightily at the plate most of the season. Uribe (.159/.214/.186) has 3 doubles but no other extra base hits and has struck out 28 times while walking just 9 times.

2- Armando Cruz, -0.5. The young flame-throwing reliever Cruz (0-4, 8 svs, 4.26) continues to have an inconsistent season but is still thought of highly by the organizational brain-trust. He continues to strike out batters at a good rate 10.2/9 IP but needs to cut down on his walks (5.4/9) and HR's (1.4/9) a bit and he will become a valuable member of the pen again.

3- Tony Silmon, -0.4. Backup catcher Silmon (.156/.188/.246) has been a bit hot at the plate lately and continues to be a solid defender (though somewhat weak armed). He does now have 2 doubles and 3 HR's on the year, though he has walked only 5 times while striking out 21 times.

4- Jose Bravo, -0.2. Utility-man Bravo (.164/.225/.246) is a fine defender and a strong runner (though this season his 3 stolen bases are eclipsed by his 4 times caught trying) but continues to show no potential at the plate. The time may soon come when the organization has a tough decision to make about whether his defense and versatility really compensate for his poor plate skills.

5- Bobby Erbakan, -0.2. Young top prospect Erbakan (.178/.213/.333) looks quite over-matched at the big league level thus far, at the plate at least. He does provide excellent defense at firstbase and has played centerfield well enough in his few opportunities there and he has shown some of his extra-base power potential (2 doubles, 1 triple, 1 HR- among his 8 hits). The team will be monitoring his progress closely to see if a return to AAA for more seasoning is called for.

What's Brewing Around the League: The two-time reigning WPK champs, Jacksonville, continue to lead the SJL with a record of 64-39. In second is Philadelphia at 59-43, 4 1/2 games behind. Washington holds 3rd place at 64-46, 5 gb. The MGL continues to witness the rise of the Portland Wild Things who are now 67-39 and 6 games ahead of their nearest challengers, the Oklahoma City Diamond Kings who have a 60-44 record. Phoenix is in 3rd at 59-44, 6 1/2 games off the pace.
Young Jacksonville star Travis Johnson is once again leading the world in batting average at .383. Former Brewer Mark Compton leads all of the WPK in RBI with 77 and is tied with Baltimore slugger Bob Hernandez in HR's with 27.
Among pitchers, Charlotte's Jaime Schardein once again shines bright, leading in wins at 16 and strikeouts with 168, and sporting a solid 2.31 ERA, all in spite of playing for a very sub-par team. Phoenix' workhorse reliever Pat Brooks leads the WPK in ERA at 1.81 and has an 11-3 record with 11 saves.

The Streak Souffront Saga: As mentioned above, Ruben has been in a bit of slump lately but is still having a fine season. He has dropped to 8th in the MGL in batting average but continues to play fine defense in rightfield and run the bases with strength and determination. Ruben is doing fine. The future looks bright.

Brewers' Power Ranking: #14 (#1 JAC, #2 POR, #3 OKC, #4 WAS, #5 PHO)
Brewers' Record: 53-54, .495, 6th place in MGL, 14 1/2 gb POR.
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Old 09-15-2018, 02:38 PM   #302
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Crazy, back-and-forth, high scoring game with L.A. in which Sam Rogers hits the walk-off 11th inning HR to win it (after the Brewers had tied it with 2 runs scored in the bottom of the 9th. Late inning heroics have been strong with this team lately.
Though it would be nice if we won a few a bit more easily.
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Old 09-15-2018, 03:42 PM   #303
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Big blow today for the first place Portland Wild Things as they lose the ace of their staff, Edward Wang, to a season ending elbow injury. It will be interesting to see how this affects their ability to hold on to the top spot in the MGL.
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Old 09-16-2018, 01:01 PM   #304
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I'm starting to believe that the most frustrating part of a rebuilding phase isn't when your team is at the bottom and playing a lot of unproven youngsters, hoping a few of them will catch fire, and losing by a convincing margin fairly consistently. The most frustrating part, I am now starting to realize, is when your team actually starts to look like they are coming together as planned, but just can't quite get over the hump. When some of the young players you were counting on really do start to develop into solid players and even stars (in this case, see Chad Brown and Ruben Souffront, for examples) and when the aspects of your team you have been trying to shore up do start to show demonstrable improvements (in this case, the bullpen, team defense, and stolen base efficiency). And yet, it seems like things generally don't break right for your team. You are in almost every game, and many of them look like wins until, well, they aren't.
This is what the Brewers have been experiencing lately. Case in point- the just completed four-game series against the Baltimore Lords on the road. The Brewers led 3-1 going into the bottom of the 7th in game 1, only to lose 6-4. Game 2 saw the Brewers jump out to an early lead again, scoring 2 runs in the 1st inning. And then no more. Baltimore wins 3-2. Game 3 was the most heartbreaking. Again the Brewers plated 2 in the first. Again, Baltimore came back but this time they only managed to tie the game up and we went into extra frames. And inning after inning passed without either bullpen breaking. Until the Brewers managed to put a run on the board in the top of the 15th largely thanks to a Baltimore error. But, of course, the Lords matched that in the bottom of the frame and walked it off in the bottom of the 16th to take the game 4-3. So guess what the Brewers did in the first inning of Game 4? Yup, that's right. They scored a pair of runs. And guess what they did after that? Yup, they stopped scoring and lost 4-2.
Aaaaarrrrgh!
Sometimes it is just so painful to watch your team when they are possibly on the verge of being good but just can't cross over into winning territory. And knowing that, with an aging and increasingly more problematic starting pitching staff, they might never. (Or not anytime soon, anyway.)
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Old 09-16-2018, 01:28 PM   #305
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And yet another great case-in-point: Game 1 in a home series against the last-place Detroit Falcons (who have admittedly had our number this year) and the Brewers once again relinquish a 2-0 lead and then see former Brewer Justin Schumann, hardly a great hitter, collect a two-out clutch double in the top of the 9th against one of the Brewers finest relievers (David Brown) and the Brewers go out meekly in the bottom of the 9th for their 5th straight loss.
So. Very. Frustrating!
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Old 09-16-2018, 04:23 PM   #306
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Well, I will say this for Tanner Yurek- and it might help explain why is such a fan favorite- he certainly does have a knack for the walk-off HR.
If I remember correctly, this is at least his third of the season. And much needed as the Brewers are going through a really rough patch that has management worried that a winning record is a pipe dream.
(Rumors are that several veteran players, including recently acquired firstbaseman Aaron Fuller, who has been a major disappointment since joining the club, are being actively shopped around. Also, indications are that veteran starting pitcher Jeff Burdick, whose 1968 contract hinges on him throwing 180 innings, is being skipped over in the rotation with regularity to insure that he does not reach that mark. Another veteran starter, Jason Lawson, has a player option for next season and the thought is that the club won't be at all unhappy if he exercises it, even though it is unclear who will round out the rotation in '68 if both he and Burdick are gone.
On the other hand, the club seems to have decided to let the kids play, especially centerfielder Pat Rondeau. Although Rondeau (.265/.295/.356) has seen his offensive numbers plunge since mid-season, he continues to be a superb defender and base-stealer (21 steals, only 3 CS) and has shown signs of getting hot with the bat again of late, even while playing against lefthanders, against whom he is theoretically weaker. Bobby Erbakan was recently returned to AAA for a bit more seasoning and Tom O'Donnell brought back up to the active roster. But once September rolls around Erbakan will likely get plenty of chances to play firstbase and in the outfield a bit. At this point there are no expectations of the Brewers getting into contention this year so the thought is that they might as well let the youngsters get some experience as they will be counted in to help turn the ship around in the next few seasons.)
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Old 09-16-2018, 05:31 PM   #307
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With plenty of bad news right now for the Brewers, at least in terms of the outcome that matters most- winning games- what about good news?
And, you might ask, what about Ruben "Streak" Souffront?
Well, I'm happy to report that Ruben is one of the rays of light indeed in these dark times for the Brewers.
Even in the midst of this current downturn which has the Brewers now 7 games under .500, Ruben just keeps rolling along.
He is 4th in batting average in the MGL at .324, easily 1st in stolen bases at 37 (with 13 times caught stealing), he has 17 doubles, 7 triples, and 6 HR's and has been showing some signs of increasing power of late, and he continues to play above average defense in rightfield (though he is a bit error prone) and has 9 outfield assists.
Any talk from earlier in the season questioning whether Ruben is capable of being a major league starter is now a distant memory. He is our rightfielder and is solidly entrenched in the middle of our batting order. He is one of the rocks upon which the Brewers intend to build the foundation for a winning future. (Along with Chad Brown, Antonio Puente, Tanner Yurek, and likely Pat Rondeau. And hopefully Bobby Erbakan.)
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