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Old 12-18-2017, 04:17 PM   #61
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29 June 2046

GM’s notebook - Series 26 and 27

Lansing 2-4 Magpies
Lansing 6-0 Magpies
Lansing 5-1 Magpies
Magpies 5-0 Baton Rouge
Magpies 7-2 Baton Rouge
Magpies 3-5 Baton Rouge

- The Eastern League won the all-star game 6-1. Jim Dillman went 1-3 with a walk. Enrique Limón was 0-3 batting lead-off.
- Fernando Martínez was 2-4 with a triple and a double in the come-from-behind opening win over Lansing. He’s now starting at catcher every day, unless he’s tired and needs a day off.
- The offense has no answer to Lansing’s veteran starter Tony Casas is game 2, mustering only 4 hits all day.
- P.J. Hendrickson moved to 9-2, 2.96 after throwing 7.2 innings for just 2 hits in the series opener versus the Deltas. Guillermo Díaz came out of the game in the 3rd inning with a finger injury, but luckily it wasn’t serious and he was back in the lineup the following day.
- Matt Anderson has signed a contract extension for the next 3 years, buying out his final two arbitration years and first year of free agency. $2.5m per year is an increase on this year’s arbitration award of $900,000, but slightly below what he was expected to be awarded by the panel for next season. He is currently going through a bit of a slump at the plate, so now was the right time to make this move.
- I have been trying to find a trade to upgrade my starting rotation, with Hendrickson and Tommaso Chigi pieces I’d be willing to send the other way (I’m hoping that my defense is inflating their stats and leading other clubs to over-value them). But so far not been able to find something that works.
- In the 7-2 cruise over Baton Rouge, Chigi threw a complete game, giving up just 1 earned run on 3 hits. Bob Miller was 4-4 at the plate, and Díaz stole 2 bases to take his total to an SCL-leading 27 on the season.
- My minor league coaches say that top draft pick Wesley Weaver is ready to step up to the big leagues already. I think a spell in the bullpen would make sense while he develops his control a little more. I’m not going to move him just yet, but Willie LeBlanc (6.75 FIP, 1.50 K/BB) is on the hot seat.
- In the final game, Del Hill took a no-hitter into the 7th inning, only to give up 2 doubles, 3 singles and 5 runs.

These series: 3-3
Record: 53-28
Position: 2nd place, 3 GB from St. Paul
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Old 12-18-2017, 04:18 PM   #62
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5 July 2046

GM’s notebook - Series 28 and 29

Santa Fe 1-5 Magpies
Santa Fe 5-2 Magpies
Santa Fe 7-1 Magpies
Magpies 4-5 Phoenix
Magpies 2-0 Phoenix
Magpies 10-2 Phoenix

- Willie LeBlanc is demoted. In the opener he threw 1.1 IP for 2 H, 1 BB and the Outlaws’ only run. Wesley Weaver will take LeBlanc’s bullpen spot and may make his debut later this week. If this trial goes well he’ll be in contention for a rotation spot next April.
- I shopped LeBlanc, but there were no takers. I also tried a range of options for packaging him up with another player or two, to upgrade the rotation, but couldn’t find anything I liked.
- A 3-run rally in the 9th, led by Jeremiah Harvey’s pinch-hit, bases-loaded double, fell just short, as we lost the first game Phoenix 5-4.
- Del Hill stopped the losing run with 7 scoreless innings in the 2-0 win. Enrique Limón hit 3-3 with a walk.
- Fernando Martínez and Orlando Gonzáles each smacked 2 homers in the runaway win in the rubber game against the Raccoons. Gonzáles went 3-4 with 6 RBI, and Martínez was 3-5 with 3 RBI.
- The St. Paul Rockets just keep rolling and we won’t reel them in with these weeks of .500 ball. We still have the second best record in the entire league, and now have a 12-game cushion in the WL wildcard race.

These series: 3-3
Record: 56-31
Position: 2nd place, 4 GB from St. Paul
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Old 12-18-2017, 04:21 PM   #63
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7 July 2046

Simeon Scree
@screeeeeeee

I’m hearing rumours that the Magpies may look to flip @BigJimDillman at the deadline. They come from the internet so they must be true. Surely he’d veto a move though? #worried
5:53PM - 7 Jul 2046

Hank Blunt
@isayitlikeitis

@screeeeeeee I like Dillman
5:55PM - 7 Jul 2046

Bernard Smashbang
@feelthebern

@screeeeeeee Don’t do it Billy! #prettyplease #cherryontop
6:00PM - 7 Jul 2046

Eric Pragmatic
@praggy13

Only a prudent move for a GM to think about what value he might get in return rather than just accept losing him for nothing in the winter #tradevalue
6:12PM - 7 Jul 2046

Bart Wardrobe
@MagpiesMad

In Billy I trust! #keepthefaith #Magpies
6:26PM - 7 Jul 2046
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Old 12-19-2017, 06:09 PM   #64
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12 July 2046

GM’s notebook - Series 30 and 31

Olympia 4-7 Magpies
Olympia 0-7 Magpies
Olympia 5-6 Magpies
Magpies 8-6 Madison
Magpies 4-3 Madison
Magpies 8-3 Madison

- Júlio Martínez clinched save #20 on the season to start the week. He’s now 3-1, 2.63.
- Matt Anderson’s form with the bat has fallen off a cliff and he now has a .559 OPS mark on the season. He’s in a prolonged slump. He’s still continuing to play, hitting last in the lineup, because his defense is so ridiculous, but I’m losing patience.
- P.J. Hendrickson pitched a 4-hit shutout in the 7-0 romp, and moved to 10-3, 2.90. Anderson went 2-4 with a double.
- We travel to the Brown Bears with them in the second wildcard spot but 6 games behind us.
- Enrique Limón hit 4-5, including a clutch 2-out 2-RBI double in the 9th to seal the comeback 8-6 win.
- I completed trades with Indianapolis and Nashville, which saw Rafael Ávila, Fernando Clemente and Kelvin Pennington leave the club, and starter Philip Givens and lefty reliever Jorge Cruz moving to Des Moines (see next post). Givens and Cruz were immediately placed onto our active roster. António Fernández was called up to replace Ávila, and will start at RF against lefties.
- Fernando Martínez has a bruised thigh and will miss 5 days. Valentín Ortíz will play catcher in his place. Infielder Joe Sanders was temporarily demoted back to the minor league roster, and Bob Wilson called up, so that we’re not carrying only one fit catcher while Martínez is resting.
- Wesley Weaver finally made his SCL debut in the 4-3 victory, impressing with a clutch 4-out save. Cruz’s Magpies debut was less successful, as he allowed 2 runs while retiring only 1 hitter.
- Givens did a very nice job to complete the 6-0 week, throwing 7.1 IP for just 2 earned runs on his first Magpies outing. Ortíz hit 3-5 with a HR.
- That’s now 8 wins in a row. Alas, St. Paul are themselves unbeaten in five games, so we’ve barely made up any ground. But we host the Rockets in a 3-game set starting tomorrow, and this is our big chance to cut their lead.

These series: 6-0
Record: 62-31
Position: 2nd place, 3 GB from St. Paul
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Old 12-19-2017, 06:12 PM   #65
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11 July 2046

====================
SCLmagpiesnation.com
====================

DePodesta reshapes Magpies roster again with double multi-trade

By Maggie Pye | 11 July | 21,229 comments

Magpies GM Billy DePodesta clearly refuses to let his team’s unexpected postseason push get in the way of his longer-term plans to reshape the club roster and build a contender for the future. On a frenetic day of activity, DePodesta continued his trading theme of seeking to make the club younger and better.

This morning came the announcement that DePodesta had traded recently-arrived outfielder Rafael Ávila and experienced minor league lefty Keith Bennett to Indianapolis, with young flame-throwing lefty reliever Jorge Cruz, 24, moving to Des Moines, along with two minor league pitchers, 22-year-old Mike Johnston and 23-year-old Li-ren Chow. Cruz was only a 2nd round draft pick back in 2043, but was fast-tracked to the majors by the Wildcats. He throws a dangerous fastball/splitter combo, with excellent movement and control. Minor league outfielder António Fernández was called up to take Ávila’s space on the active roster as outfield backup.

Fans and pundits were uncertain exactly what DePodesta’s plans were for Cruz, given the bullpen’s lefty roles seemed locked down by Kelvin Pennington and Robinson Ortíz. Then, later in the afternoon, came the answer: the in-form Pennington was surplus to requirements. Taking advantage of Pennington’s superb form, DePodesta sent him to Nashville, along with veteran starter Fernando Clemente. In return, 27-year-old righty Philip Givens has taken Clemente’s #3 spot in the Magpies rotation, with young minor league reliever Jim Boswell also moving to Iowa. What he lacks in stuff, Givens compensates with excellent movement and control.

Cruz has just over 3 years of SCL experience, and will remain under club control for the next 3 seasons. He will be the lefty setup man. Givens has two years of arbitration eligibility left. Club insiders say that DePodesta has already begun talks with the players’ agents over contract extensions.
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Old 12-19-2017, 06:15 PM   #66
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18 July 2046

GM’s notebook - Series 32 and 33

St. Paul 6-5 Magpies
St. Paul 3-1 Magpies
St. Paul 2-3 Magpies
Denver 3-6 Magpies
Denver 3-1 Magpies
Denver 2-7 Magpies

- I had second thoughts about my outfield depth after Ávila’s departure, and have signed free agent centre fielder Eric Woods until the end of the season on a minimum salary contract. The veteran is a former two-time Glove Wizard winner.
- Valentín Ortíz’s hot streak continued with 2 HR and 5 RBI in the series opener against the Rockets. We fell 5-0 down in the top of the 6th, then fought back, only to lose it in the 12th inning. SCL legend (7 straight Outstanding Hitter awards) Sam Jordan went 5-6 for St. Paul.
- Augusta’s António Martínez threw a perfect game in a 7-0 win against Columbus.
- Tommaso Chigi (7-3, 3.28) threw 7 innings for 2 runs, and Enrique Limón went 3-4 with a homer, to ensure we avoided the sweep and kept in touch with the division leaders.
- Against Denver, Mal Brown was perfect through 5 innings, and ended up with a line of 7 IP, 2 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 10 K.
- Philip Givens came out of the 3-1 defeat to the Snow Sox after only 3 innings. Fortunately, the diagnosis is that he should be ready for his next start. We’ve been extremely lucky with injuries so far this season (touch wood).
- Jorge Cruz has had a sticky start. After 5 appearances he has an ERA of 9.00.
- Jim Dillman busted out of a mini-slump in the rubber game, going 2-4 with a double. Carlos Zúñiga was 3-4. Wesley Weaver picked up his first SCL win.
- MR Don Rich (2-1, 2.42) has agreed a 3-year extension at $3.6m annually. It buys out his two remaining arbitration years and first year of free agency.

These series: 3-3
Record: 65-34
Position: 2nd place, 4 GB from St. Paul
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Old 12-20-2017, 02:08 PM   #67
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25 July 2046

GM’s notebook - Series 34 and 35

Magpies 2-1 Salem
Magpies 2-3 Salem
Magpies 1-5 Salem
Bismarck 1-2 Magpies
Bismarck 1-7 Magpies
Bismarck 4-2 Magpies

- Del Hill (10-9, 2.64) threw 8 IP for 1 run in the 2-1 series opener versus Salem.
- We completed a trade of minor leaguers with Phoenix. We sent them 3 veterans: outfielders Keiran Payne and Eric Woods, and reliever Willie LeBlanc. In return we got starter prospect Paul Kline, veteran outfielder Rubén Merced, and relief pitcher John Powell. Kline was the SCL’s 10th overall prospect at the start of the year, but major league scouts have gone cold on him since then and his ratings are down. To me, it looks like he still has the potential to be a reasonable #4 or #5 starter one day.
- Hearing online rumours about the possibility of a trade, Jim Dillman’s agent called to say that his client wished to hit free agency at the end of the season, and would exercise his 10/5 veto over any trade.
- Philip Givens got over his injury quickly, going 8 IP for 1 ER in the 2-1 win over Bismarck. Júlio Martínez earned his 25th save of the season.
- Hill has asked for a new contract. He wants 5 years, $7.5m per year. He could get that sort of contract on the open marker, but he’s now 33 and it won’t be from me, even with his ‘iron man’ reputation. He doesn’t have a huge amount of trade value, so he’ll stay with us this year, and leave with our thanks for giving us a great season.
- St. Paul have just been so relentlessly consistent, I can’t see us catching them. But we have a 13-game buffer in the wildcard chase.

These series: 3-3
Record: 68-37
Position: 2nd place, 6 GB from St. Paul
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Old 12-20-2017, 02:16 PM   #68
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26 July 2046

From: Aristotle Catheter M.D., Club Doctor
To: Billy DePodesta

Des Moines Magpies Medical Department
INJURY REPORT: BOB MILLER


The injury sustained by Bob Miller in last night’s defeat to the Bismarck Coyotes has been confirmed by the Medical Department as a strained oblique. The recovery time before the player is expected to be fit to play is estimated at 3 weeks, a fairly typical prognosis for an injury of this type.

You will be aware that Miller has suffered a number of minor injuries of similar severity over the last five years, but this is his first of this particular type. Our medical staff remain of the opinion that the player is not especially prone to injury. The player should recover fully on this occasion too, and I do not expect this injury to have any long-term impacts on his performance or availability for selection.

Dr. Aristotle Catheter
Club Doctor
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Old 12-20-2017, 02:20 PM   #69
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31 July 2046

GM’s notebook - Series 36 and 37

Magpies 2-4 Carson City
Magpies 2-3 Carson City
Magpies 5-1 Carson City
Sacramento 0-1 Magpies
Sacramento 2-0 Magpies
Sacramento 1-9 Magpies

- Bob Miller has been put on the DL, and recent acquisition Rubén Merced has received an unexpectedly swift call-up. Merced is excellent defensively and will play centre against lefty pitchers. Miller (.758) has been an important part of our lineup, and I expect us to miss him.
- Merced’s debut was 0-4 with 3 K.
- The offense showed signs of life in the final game in Carson City. Fernando Martínez was 2-5 with a HR and DBL, and Merced hit his first home run for us. Philip Givens was superb: 8.1 IP for 1 earned run.
- P.J. Hendrickson (12-3, 2.80) delivered a magnificent line of 8.2 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 2 BB to win the pitching duel in the first game at home to Sacramento.
- Del Hill was just as good the following night, throwing 7.2 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 2 BB, 10 K. But neither offense could get anything going, and Manny Gallegos gave up the only runs of the game in the 13th inning.
- Carlos Zúñiga (3-3, HR, DBL, BB) led the way as the offense finally broke out in the last game of the week. Mal Brown threw 8 innings of 1-run ball and is now 10-7, 2.72.
- Jim Dillman has been as good as his agent’s word, and is vetoing a trade. The trade deadline is today, and so there will be no further trading from me this season.
- We have played .500 ball the last three weeks, and the Rockets have taken the opportunity to open up a decisive lead in the North Division. Realistically we need them to suffer a major collapse to give us a chance.

These series: 3-3
Record: 71-40
Position: 2nd place, 8 GB from St. Paul
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Old 12-21-2017, 05:43 PM   #70
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7 August 2046

GM’s notebook - Series 38 and 39

Magpies 2-9 Austin
Magpies 6-7 Austin
Magpies 5-2 Austin
Magpies 4-3 Lansing
Magpies 5-7 Lansing
Magpies 7-2 Lansing

- Jacques Tanguay won rookie of the month for July, hitting .292 with 2 HR and 11 RBI. Bah.
- Matt Anderson was ejected in the heavy 9-2 loss to the Tycoons, and has been suspended for 2 games (see next post).
- We led 6-3 in game two heading into the bottom of the 8th, but Philip Givens, Jorge Cruz and Júlio Martínez combined to it cough up.
- We looked like wasting a terrific performance from Tommaso Chigi (8.1 IP, 6 H, 1ER) in the rubber game against the Lansing Sharks, until the offense burst out for 7 runs in the 8th and 9th innings.
- Jorge Cruz has signed a three-year contract extension, which buys out his arbitration years. At $6m per year, it doesn’t mean a saving against the arbitration estimate. But hopefully it’ll settle him down and his performances will pick up: he’s been well below par since we got him (7.32 ERA vs 2.99 career).
- We look like an absolute lock on a Western League wildcard spot. I can’t see us catching St. Paul, and we have a 15-game cushion in the wildcard race.

These series: 3-3
Record: 74-43
Position: 2nd place, 7 GB from St. Paul
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Old 12-21-2017, 05:48 PM   #71
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3 August 2046

OFFICE OF THE STATE CAPITALS LEAGUE COMMISSIONER
NOTICE OF SUSPENSION: MATT ANDERSON

This notice provides official confirmation from the Office of the State Capitals League Commissioner of the two-game suspension that has been issued to Des Moines Magpies player Matt Anderson. The suspension will apply with immediate effect, for the Magpies’ remaining two games in the current series versus the Austin Tycoons on 3 August and 4 August 2046. Mr Anderson has no right of appeal against this decision.

The Commissioner expects all SCL players, coaches and club officials to display due respect to the on-field umpiring team at all times. Mr Anderson’s conduct - an expletive-laden tirade at the home plate umpire following a third strike call - clearly fell short of these standards, and the Commissioner fully supports the decision of the match officiating team to eject Mr Anderson from the game. The Commissioner took into account Mr Anderson’s previous excellent conduct during his SCL career when deciding that a two-game suspension was an appropriate punishment in this instance.

The Commissioner trusts that such behaviour will not be repeated.

Yours sincerely,

Rufus S. Bureaucracy
State Capitals League Deputy Commissioner
3 August 2046
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Old 12-21-2017, 05:54 PM   #72
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onlytheboxscore.com/Magpies
The Magpies’ pitching has picked up impressively... only for the offense to struggle
Posted by Roger Landscape, @rogerandout

Earlier this season, the Magpies’ pitching was giving GM Billy DePodesta sleepless nights and headaches. So, he traded aggressively to get the staff younger and better. Júlio Martínez arrived from Richmond to take over as closer. Philip Givens replaced the erratic and frustrating Fernando Clemente. First Kelvin Pennington and then Jorge Cruz were traded for to give the bullpen better lefty options (although admittedly Cruz has been patchy so far). First-round draft pick Wesley Weaver was fast-tracked to the big leagues to replace struggling veteran Willie LeBlanc. Problem solved. The Magpies now lead the entire SCL in runs allowed (385, equating to 3.29 per game), opponents’ batting average (.217) and team ERA (2.97).

Problem solved? Well, not quite. While the pitching staff leads the league, the offense has entered a collective slump. Only three of the current 25-man roster (Jim Dillman, Enrique Limón and Fernando Martínez) have OPS marks north of .700, and Dillman and Limón’s production has dropped in recent weeks. Right fielder Bob Miller, still on the disabled list, is also over .700 and has been missed much more than the Magpies front office will have expected. But as for the rest of the lineup: meh.

Some of the players (notably Matt Anderson, Dave Dodd and Carlos Zúñiga) derive a lot of their value from the runs they prevent on defense rather than the runs they produce on offense. DePodesta seems happy to trade a bit of offense for that elite defense. I’m certain that, despite his recent drought at the plate, DePodesta sees Guillermo Díaz as part of his core group going forward. Díaz is producing below his career averages and remains an excellent left fielder; DePodesta wants the club to get the benefit from his bounce-back when it comes. There are just signs that Díaz may have turned the corner already.

The rest of the lineup may well be on the trading block come the offseason. The Jeremiah Harvey reclamation project seems to have failed. Orlando Gonzáles will turn 33 in December and could be seen as expendable at second base. Over the winter it would not surprise me to see DePodesta try to shift Gonzáles and Harvey out and bring younger talent in.

Despite a month of playing at .500, the Magpies seem inexorably headed towards the wildcard game. But unless the offense can turn things round in the final quarter of the season, they’ll find it hard to get any further into the playoffs.
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Old 12-21-2017, 05:58 PM   #73
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13 August 2046

GM’s notebook - Series 40 and 41

Baton Rouge 4-6 Magpies
Baton Rouge 3-5 Magpies
Baton Rouge 4-0 Magpies
Magpies 1-5 Santa Fe
Magpies 1-3 Santa Fe
Magpies 7-4 Santa Fe

- We survived committing 4 errors and giving away 3 unearned runs in the first game against Baton Rouge. Philip Givens (8 IP, 4 R, 1 ER) deserved his win.
- Júlio Martínez grabbed save number 30 in the 5-3 win the next afternoon. Carlos Zúñiga and Orlando Gonzáles may have been irked by some of the recent blogosphere posts about their batting performances: both went 2-4 with a HR and a double.
- The Deltas’ number two starter Steve Coleman threw a 5-hit shutout in the final game of the series.
- Here we go, yet another week of .500 ball.
- Bob Miller will return from the DL tomorrow, and frankly not a moment too soon. He’ll be fit for the upcoming series where we host Phoenix. António Fernández and Rubén Merced have been falling over themselves to try and be the one sent down to make way for Miller on the roster, but Fernández (.182 wOBA) is the one who’ll go.
- Despite this mediocre run we’ve now established a 17 game cushion over the chasing pack in the wildcard race. We have a 7-game lead over the Brown Bears for home-field advantage.

These series: 3-3
Record: 77-46
Position: 2nd place, 8 GB from St. Paul
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Old 12-22-2017, 06:55 PM   #74
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20 August 2046

GM’s notebook - Series 42 and 43

Phoenix 5-4 Magpies
Phoenix 4-7 Magpies
Phoenix 7-2 Magpies
Magpies 3-1 Olympia
Magpies 7-6 Olympia
Magpies 2-8 Olympia

- Roberto Marín smashed his 500th career home run in a game against Annapolis, putting him 10th on the SCL all-time list and 4th among active players. He has a .768 OPS since I traded him to Indianapolis, but I don’t regret it. Enrique Limón is .776 since moving the other way and is 14 years younger.
- Guillermo Díaz snagged his 39th stolen base of the year, but he’s slipped behind Santa Fe speedster Dan Schultz (45 SB). Several weeks of not getting on base a whole lot has cost Díaz some steal opportunities.
- Another landmark for another traded veteran, as our former catcher Jim Reid, also at Annapolis, smacked HR number 300.
- Just as I was beginning to question Tommaso Chigi’s place in the rotation (4.91 FIP), he put in a magnificent display against the Wolfhounds: 8 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 3 K.
- He flies under the radar, but a quick nod to reliever Don Rich, who is having a nice season. In 64 appearances he has a 3.04 ERA, 0.96 WHIP and 3.88 FIP. Robinson Ortíz has settled down nicely after an up-and-down start to his rookie season (3.12 ERA, 3.04 FIP).
- The week ended on a sour note, as long-man reliever Alfonso Carranza left the field during the final game of the series in considerable pain. I’ll get the medical report through tomorrow but we’re all fearing the worst. The players’ minds clearly weren’t properly on the game after the incident and we lost heavily.
- That’s our 6th straight 3-3 week. Next week we have two vital inter-divisional matchups against chasers Madison and leader St. Paul.

These series: 3-3
Record: 80-49
Position: 2nd place, 9 GB from St. Paul
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Old 12-22-2017, 06:56 PM   #75
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21 August 2046

From: Aristotle Catheter M.D., Club Doctor
To: Billy DePodesta

Des Moines Magpies Medical Department
INJURY REPORT: ALFONSO CARRANZA


I regret to have to report that, upon further examination, the injury suffered by Alfonso Carranza in last night’s game in Olympia is every bit as bad as we first feared. The player has suffered a torn ulnar collateral ligament which means, as you will be fully aware, that he will require ulnar collateral ligament reconstruction surgery, or Tommy John surgery. This is a procedure whereby his ulnar collateral ligament in his medial elbow will be replaced by a tendon taken from elsewhere in his body.

The player will fly back to Des Moines later today and undergo the surgery in two days’ time. I am optimistic that if the operation is successful, then, in time, the player will make a full recovery, and that he will not need a second procedure in order to return to his previous performance level. However, the rehabilitation process will be long. I estimate that Alfonso will remain on the disabled list for 12 months, and may not be ready to rejoin the team throughout the whole of next season. My department will work with the coaching staff to design a bespoke rehabilitation programme for the player. I am hopeful that will start with the player being able to resume gentle throwing in about four months’ time.

Alfonso seems in good spirits, and is determined to return to the team in due course. At this stage I do not have any concerns about his mental well-being, but obviously we place this on an equal priority to his physical welfare and are ready to provide whatever support he will require.

Dr. Aristotle Catheter
Club Doctor
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Old 12-22-2017, 07:00 PM   #76
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21 August 2046

Clarke Ubend
@mrubend

Ah man, tough break for @AlfonsoCarranzaSCL - out for a year. #getwellsoonbigman
11:31AM - 21 Aug 2046

Severino Guadalajara-Smith
@sabermetricjedi

@mrubend Carranza has been quietly effective this season as well. 1.50 ERA from 24.0 IP, 1.21 WHIP, 7.12 K/9. Walk rate of 4.12 BB/9 a little high for my liking. But good bullpen option, he’ll be missed. Big chance for Martínes now but his #sabermetricstats not great so far. #getwellsoonbigman
11:46AM - 21 Aug 2046

Mel Melancholy
@pooroldmel

@mrubend I hear Carranza may not make it back at all next season by which time he’ll be a free agent. So sad if that’s his last action in a #Magpies uniform. #getwellsoonbigman
11:50AM - 21 Aug 2046

Genghis Troll
@nothingbettertodo

Football (soccer) is better than rounders anyway, waste of time imho
12:02PM - 21 Aug 2046
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Old 12-23-2017, 04:48 PM   #77
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26 August 2046

GM’s notebook - Series 44 and 45

Madison 4-1 Magpies
Madison 5-4 Magpies
Madison 5-4 Magpies
Magpies 6-5 St. Paul
Magpies 5-6 St. Paul
Magpies 2-3 St. Paul

- After the horrible injury diagnosis, Carranza was placed on the DL. Ángel Martínes has been called up to take over Carranza’s long relief role. This is a big opportunity for him to show he has the ability to stay in the big leagues.
- Júlio Martínez blew only his 3rd save of the season in the 5-4 loss, which went to 11 innings. Guillermo Díaz’s 3-5 day with his 43rd stolen base was rather wasted.
- So disappointing to get swept by Madison, especially with two of the games being agonisingly close.
- Martínez clocked up save #35 in the narrow 6-5 win versus St. Paul. That got us to 81 wins, so we will not have a losing season.
- Incredibly frustrating to suffer four 1-run defeats in such a crucial week. But the Denver Snow Sox, the closest chasers in the wildcard race, are on a 4-game losing run. Our magic number for the wildcard game is down to 13.

These series: 1-5
Record: 81-54
Position: 2nd place, 13 GB from St. Paul
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Old 12-23-2017, 04:57 PM   #78
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2 September 2046

GM’s notebook - Series 46 and 47

Magpies 5-2 Denver
Magpies 0-6 Denver
Magpies 3-8 Denver
Salem 2-11 Magpies
Salem 5-8 Magpies
Salem 8-0 Magpies

- Mal Brown is hot. He moved to 11-8, 2.97 after 7 excellent innings against Denver.
- Jeremiah Harvey is another whose form has picked up. He’s a prime trade candidate for the summer, but if he repeats his 2-4, DBL form of the Denver opening game I’ll willingly think again.
- The 8-3 loss to the Snow Sox was just a car crash. Tommaso Chigi was popped for 5 homers from just 4.1 IP. After 6 innings we were 8-0 down and hadn’t mustered a single hit.
- Only 24 hours later we were magnificent. P.J. Hendrickson was very good (6 IP, 2 ER), and the offense made 16 hits, with Enrique Limón going 4-5.
- Matt Anderson has picked up a latissimus dorsi strain and will need to sit out for a week. We’ll go with having Joe Sanders as the sole infield backup for now, rather than placing Anderson on the DL, mainly because we don’t have any middle infielders on the minor league roster who are ready to step up.
- Gerardo Rivera won the Eastern League pitcher of the month for August. Our former prospect went 5-0 with a 2.35 ERA. Since I traded him to Richmond, he’s 9-6, 2.45. Maybe I was too hasty to dump him.
- 1 September: expanded rosters. I called up first baseman Brandon Farley to give me an extra left-handed pinch-hitting option. Minor league speed demon Zachary Tinter was called up purely as a pinch-running threat.
- Another 3-3 week, would you believe. We’ve been treading water playing at .500 for nearly two months now.
- There is a 99.9% chance that the Western League wildcard game will be us against division rivals Madison. With 21 games to play, we’re 14 games behind St. Paul and have a 14 game cushion in the wildcard chase.

These series: 3-3
Record: 84-57
Position: 2nd place, 14 GB from St. Paul
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Old 12-23-2017, 05:00 PM   #79
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8 September 2046

GM’s notebook - Series 48 and 49

Magpies 5-3 Bismarck
Magpies 2-3 Bismarck
Magpies 2-1 Bismarck
Carson City 4-8 Magpies
Carson City 1-2 Magpies
Carson City 1-2 Magpies

- Aggressive baserunning in the opening game against the Coyotes meant we scored 5 runs despite managing only 3 hits. Philip Givens was masterful on the mound, throwing a shutout: 9 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 7 K.
- Júlio Martínez had a torrid 10-pitch outing the next day. He didn’t retire a batter, and blew the save by allowing 2 hits and 2 runs, both of which were unearned thanks to his own fielding error. He wasted a great day from Tommaso Chigi (7 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 3 BB, 6 K).
- Fernando Clemente threw a 4-hit shutout for Nashville against Albany. Naturally, he’s been brilliant for the Kings since I shunted him there: 7-4, 2.30.
- P.J. Hendrickson moved to 16-5, 3.09 with 6 scoreless innings to clinch the Bismarck series. He’s had an excellent season.
- St. Paul made it to 100 wins with a routine victory over Baton Rouge.
- Carson City couldn’t cope with our base stealing. In the first game of the series Joe Sanders, Dave Dodd and Jim Dillman each stole two bags.
- Givens secured the sweep over the Rattlesnakes with another superb display: 8 IP, 4 H, 1 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 7 K. Martínez earned his 40th save.
- At long last a winning week! Our magic number for getting a wildcard spot is down to 1. Madison’s is 2.
- St. Paul just got absolutely hammered 7-2, 6-1, 16-2 at home by the Salem Ironclads, who are on the cusp of winning the West Coast Division. That’s narrowed their lead, but their magic number is only 5.

These series: 5-1
Record: 89-58
Position: 2nd place, 11 GB from St. Paul
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Old 12-23-2017, 05:02 PM   #80
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9 September 2046

FANGRAPHICS
Chat: With the Magpies on the brink of an unexpected wildcard berth, Osiris Sabretooth answers your questions

10:11

KFC: Osiris, you predicted the Magpies would be 78-84 this season. What’s happened?

10:11

Osiris: Apart from me eating my words, you mean? Well, the defense has been exceptional, and the pitching staff has been a lot better than I expected. DePodesta’s mid-season trades for Martínez, Cruz and Givens have strengthened the pitching unit loads, mind. And Del Hill (3.69 FIP, 24 QS out of 30) has produced a career season from nowhere.

10:12

Brown Bear: They’ll be facing my boys in the wildcard game. Prediction?

10:12

Osiris: The Magpies lead 7-5 in head-to-head games. But if Al Harper stays fit and takes the mound for the Bears in the game, they’ve got to be the favourites.

10:12

EternalOptimist: Any chance the Magpies catch the Rockets and win the division?

10:13

Osiris: None whatsoever.

10:13

Simon Says: How will the Magpies replace Jim Dillman next year after he becomes a free agent? He’s been the lynchpin of their lineup.

10:14

Osiris: I think DePodesta is open to bringing Dillman back if he lowers his wage demands. But if Dillman departs for good he’ll be a huge miss. They have no good hitting prospects coming through. Next year they could really struggle to score runs.

10:14

Osiris: Well, time flies when you’re having fun. That’s all for this time everyone. Seeya.
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