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Old 09-03-2018, 04:39 PM   #681
Paulie123
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25 April 2053

GM’s notebook - Series 7 and 8

Salem 2-3 Magpies
Salem 1-2 Magpies
Salem 3-2 Magpies
Magpies 1-7 Madison
Magpies 2-0 Madison
Magpies 9-1 Madison

- We are struggling to convert our scoring chances on offense at present. Our team batting average of .255 is 3rd best in the Western League, but our 66 runs scored is only 11th. The Salem opening game was a prime example: we left 9 men on base.
- Our former infielder Reynaldo González was WL player of the week, after hitting 12-28 with 3 HR for Olympia. He went there as part of the Earl Becker trade.
- Ken James secured his 6th save of the season in the second Salem match.
- Things went wrong in a hurry for Ricardo Vargas in the first Brown Bears game. Kepler took him out after only 0.1 innings, by which time Vargas had already allowed 6 runs and the game was effectively over.
- Tom Hart pitched 7 superb scoreless innings the following day. He needed to be brilliant to get the win, because the offense was again pretty lacklustre.
- I have shaken up the lineup in an effort to get more production. Ángel Ochoa (.300 avg) has been moved up to the 2-hole against RHP and will bat leadoff against LHP. He says he’s comfortable in that position.
- Maybe that had an effect, as we finally had some offense to end the week. It came mostly from our star man Earl Becker, who hit two 3-run homers, taking his season tally to 6. Luis Vélez (2-2, 1.21) threw 8 fantastic scoreless innings.

This week: 4-2
Record: 13-11, =2nd place, 2 GB from Bismarck
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Old 09-03-2018, 04:43 PM   #682
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26 April 2053

Dietmar Uberfan
@magpiesobsessive

Oh yes! Luis Vélez is living up to the hype! 1.21 ERA from 5 starts - red hot! Lads, talking of hot, happy to report I’ve finally got myself a new girlfriend, a bit ditzy but man she has some smoking DD hooters! #hubbahubba #gonnagetsomelater
6:41PM - 26 Apr 2053

Severino Guadalajara-Smith
@sabermetricjedi

@magpiesobsessive if you peek under the covers of Vélez’s numbers and check out those that actually mean something it gets even better: 2.29 FIP, 6.2 K/BB ratio, 1.2 BB/9, 0.83 WHIP. #wow
6:44PM - 26 Apr 2053

Augustinian Shuttleworth-Butterworth
@rightmouthful

@sabermetricjedi all he needs now is some offense to back him up!
6:46PM - 26 Apr 2053

Dietmar Uberfan
@magpiesobsessive

Just been dumped. By text. Not sure why. Something about ‘pathetic juvenile boasting’ and ‘crude objectification of women’ #drat #singleagain #neverdidgetany
6:58PM - 26 Apr 2053

Corraline Pankhurst
@corriepankhurst

Good on her! Serves you right @magpiesobsessive, you tool #thisiswhyyouresingle
7:02PM - 26 Apr 2053
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Old 09-03-2018, 04:45 PM   #683
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2 May 2053

GM’s notebook - Series 9 and 10

Sacramento 1-5 Magpies
Sacramento 1-2 Magpies
Sacramento 4-5 Magpies
Magpies 4-11 Carson City
Magpies 1-2 Carson City
Magpies 4-9 Carson City

- Earl Becker’s 3-run home run got the Stingrays opener off to a flying start, and then Israel Padilla dominated the rest of the way: 8 IP, 6 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 10 K. Ernesto Solís hit 2 doubles.
- Having already lost their best starting pitcher for the year, Carlos Lara, Lansing have now lost arguably their best reliever, former Magpie setup man Jorge Cruz. Cruz suffered radial nerve compression and won’t pitch again until 2054.
- Reynaldo González won WL player of the week again. Perhaps I should have tried to give Olympia a different infielder in the Becker trade?
- Robert Terry is showing the SCL that last season was no fluke. After 5 starts now this year he’s 3-0 with a 1.91 ERA.
- A 397ft, walk-off solo home run from Ángel Ochoa in the 10th inning completed the sweep of the Stingrays. We had been 4-0 down after Ricardo Vargas ran into trouble in the 3rd inning.
- Carson City scored in 6 different innings of our series opener. Tom Hart, Ramón González, Walt Davidson and Jesús Zamora all pitched uncharacteristically poorly.
- Luis Vélez was fantastic again in the 2-1 defeat to the Rattlesnakes (6.2 IP, 1 ER, taking his ERA to a WL-leading 1.23) but we seem to have slipped into the habit of not giving him decent run support.
- Just as I thought we were kicking on, the sweep by Carson City was rather a setback. The Rattlesnakes now are an SCL-best 22-8, so maybe we just ran into them at the wrong time.

This week: 3-3
Record: 16-14, =3rd place, 2 GB from Bismarck, Madison
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Old 09-04-2018, 06:30 PM   #684
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8 May 2053

GM’s notebook - Series 11 and 12

Magpies 9-1 Austin
Magpies 13-4 Austin
Magpies 1-2 Austin
St. Paul 0-2 Magpies
St. Paul 3-4 Magpies
St. Paul 5-3 Magpies

- Day one in Austin saw a plethora of great individual performances. Robert Terry threw 6.2 scoreless innings (4-0, 1.59 ERA). Bob Ayers hit a HR and a triple. Earl Becker was 3-5 with a HR, DBL and stolen base. DH Blair Cunningham hit 4-5. Joe Merrill went 3-4 with a HR.
- The offense was red hot the next day, too. Rob Crawford hit 4-5, HR, DBL, 5 RBI. Becker had 5 RBIs as well, including a grand slam on a huge hit which cleared the Texas Ballpark’s right field stand.
- Bad news for Augusta, as veteran SP Mike Haney, who was surprisingly leading the entire league with a 0.72 ERA from 6 starts, needs surgery to remove bone chips from his elbow and is done for the season. It is not a great year for injuries to star players in the SCL.
- Backup outfielder Nick Baker has offered little on offense (.200 OBP, no XBH) and has been poor on defense, so has been demoted. Free agent signing Paul Jackson has been called up: he’ll offer elite defense and surely won’t hit any worse either.
- An incredible performance from Luis Vélez in the home opener against St. Paul: 8 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 6 k. Ken James notched his 8th SV. Crawford is also in fantastic form right now: he went 3-4 with a triple and a double, and is now hitting .341.
- Terry finally took his first loss of the year in the final game of the week.
- Early North Division pace-setters Bismarck have now lost 6 on the spin and fallen back to .500. Carson City are the in-form SCL team and have won 12 straight.

This week: 4-2
Record: 20-16, 2nd place, 2 GB from Madison
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Old 09-04-2018, 06:33 PM   #685
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9 May 2053

onlytheboxscore.com/Magpies
Magpies’ rotation living up to its fearsome reputation
Posted by Silas Mariner, @smariner12345

The Magpies had one of the league’s best rotations in 2052, one which led the team to the franchise’s second championship after an impressive second half of the season. When GM Billy DePodesta added young phenom Luis Vélez to the mix in the November trade with Boston, they somehow got even better.

There are no weak links in the group, and opposing lineups are getting no easy games. In Vélez and Tom Hart, the Magpies have two bona fide aces. Israel Padilla is an exceptional third starter. Robert Terry surprised everyone last year by producing an outstanding season where he was one of the league’s best and most consistent pitchers. And in the fifth spot, Ricardo Vargas is a former top prospect who is still young but developing fast.

All five have been absolutely superb so far this season. Vargas’s 3.35 FIP is an excellent performance by any standard, but is the worst mark of the five. They have, incredibly, only been hit for 8 HR in total between them in 228 innings, and have walked only 75 batters. It is hard to overstate just how brilliant Vélez has been since moving to Des Moines. Over 7 starts, Terry, not normally renowned for having electric stuff, has struck out more than a batter per inning. The impressive statistics go on and on.

And if you thought the rotation was good, just check out the numbers being put up out of the bullpen by Jesús Benítez...
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Old 09-04-2018, 06:35 PM   #686
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15 May 2053

GM’s notebook - Series 13 and 14

Magpies 3-0 Baton Rouge
Magpies 2-3 Baton Rouge
Magpies 6-2 Baton Rouge
Santa Fe 3-7 Magpies
Santa Fe 5-9 Magpies
Santa Fe 2-5 Magpies

- Ricardo Vargas enjoyed a brilliant pitching battle against 2049 WL Outstanding Pitcher award winner David Frye. Both starters left the game after 8 innings with it still scoreless. We eventually won in the 10th via a pair of RBI singles, including one off our former closer Gabe Copeland.
- Ángel Ochoa’s form at 2B is worrying me. He’s now age 30 and in the final year of his contract, but only hitting for a .668 OPS.
- The injury situation in Lansing has gotten even worse. Now their best infielder, Luis Miguel Yánez, has been hurt and could well not play again this season. It’s hard to feel sorry for the SCL’s richest team, but they have been incredibly unlucky to lose so many key players to bad injuries.
- Player of the day in the rubber game of the Deltas series was Rob Crawford, who continued his hot run with his 7th HR and 8th double of the season.
- Madison have lost their last 3 games, and we are now tied with them for the North Division lead.
- Dave Plummer hit 3-4 with a HR in the Santa Fe home opener, and is batting .303. Tadamichi Hamada should be back from the DL for the final game of the series, and Plummer is making a good case to stay on the roster.
- Joe Merrill doesn’t want to be the one to make way for Hamada either, after hitting 2-2, HR, BB, 4 RBI in the 9-5 victory.
- In the end I decided to keep both Plummer and Merrill on the roster. Both are better bench bat options than infielder Paul Jackson, who was sent down to make way for Hamada’s return. Eric Warner will be the sole infield backup, although Merrill can play 2B and 3B if needed too.
- I had been concerned about the inconsistent displays out of the bullpen of Ronald Williams, so gave him a spot start in the final Outlaws game. He proceeded to totally out-pitch their ace Donnie Lee, throwing 8 innings of 2-run ball. Ken James finished off the win with his 10th save.

This week: 5-1
Record: 25-17, 1st place, 3 game lead over Madison
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Old 09-05-2018, 05:04 PM   #687
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FANGRAPHICS
Chat: Osiris Sabretooth is fast learning that a weekend where he has the baby all on his own is way more tiring than going to work. So it is with some relief that today he gets to chat about baseball rather than changing smelly diapers.

11:00

Osiris: A slightly later start than usual today. Let’s talk baseball!

11:01

Crop Rotation: Baseball is a fickle mistress. In the playoffs, Earl Becker was unpitchable. This season, he’s just been a bit meh. What’s up with him?

11:02

Osiris: I don’t think anything’s up. His .703 OPS is disappointing of course, but every player goes through peaks and troughs in production. Possibly it’s been a case that compared to the champagne of the playoffs, the regular season has felt rather like flat beer. He’s just too good to stay mediocre. I predict a monster second half.

11:04

Central Perk: Magpies second baseman Ángel Ochoa is having a below-par year and is out of contract after this season. Do you think he’s a July trade candidate?

11:05

Osiris: I think that’s looking very likely, yes.

11:05

Mitochondrial DNA Maestro: Another Magpie who’s disappointing me this year is Ángel Márquez. Plenty of power but he’s just not making contact and getting on base enough. Will he ever get back to the heights of his all-star form in 2051?

11:06

Osiris: I still have faith. With his power, he is not actually that far away from being elite again. If he can get his .242 batting average by 20-30 points he will be an all-star candidate once again. He’s only 28 and certainly has more than enough talent to do it.

11:08

Slash Line: This chat has been quite negative about the Magpies offense so far, even though they’re in first place in the North Division. So here’s a positive to try and balance things out a bit: Rob Crawford is having a brilliant year!

11:09

Osiris: He has made a step-change improvement in his contact rate since last year , and we’re seeing the outcome of that. He’ll make the WL all-star roster.

11:10

Osiris: Okey-dokey folks, that’s my lot for today. Until next time, au revoir!
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Old 09-05-2018, 05:06 PM   #688
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21 May 2053

GM’s notebook - Series 15 and 16

Magpies 3-4 Phoenix
Magpies 4-2 Phoenix
Magpies 4-1 Phoenix
Olympia 2-3 Magpies
Olympia 4-0 Magpies
Olympia 2-3 Magpies

- The offense couldn’t get anything going against Raccoons young starter Pedro Martínez. Earl Becker’s 10th HR of the year, a 3-run shot with 2 outs in the 9th, avoided the shutout.
- Joe Merrill hit 3-3 with a double and a walk in the win in game two of the series.
- It almost goes without saying that Luis Vélez was dominant again in the rubber game: 8 IP, 6 H, 1 ER, 0 BB, 4 K. Gonzalo Torralda went 3-4 with a homer to hopefully come out of the slump he’s been in for the last week or two.
- Fingers crossed, but lefty reliever David Gaines looks to have finally settled down in the big leagues. He threw 0.2 IP in the Olympia opener, the latest of several straight scoreless appearances which have got his ERA down to 4.05.
- In game two against the Wolfhounds, their starter Toyoharu Shimizu came out of the game after just one pitch, after getting struck on the ankle by a comebacker from lead-off hitter Pedro Soto. But our offense was really poor against their bullpen.
- Madison have re-signed ace Al Harper to a 3-year deal with $18.9m annually. He’s been a brilliant pitcher but is now 35 and has established a fragile injury reputation. His numbers this season are well down on his stellar standards of recent years, and I think the Brown Bears may rue this decision.
- In the rubber game against Olympia, Ken James gave up a 2-out RBI double in the 9th inning for his first blown save of the season, taking the win away from spot-starter Ronald Williams (8 IP, 1 ER). But Rob Crawford’s walk-off solo homer in the bottom of the 10th got the victory.
- Not a great week on offense, but the rotation and bullpen have been very consistent and we’ve kept on winning.

This week: 4-2
Record: 29-19, 1st place, 2 game lead over Madison
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Old 11-09-2018, 06:43 PM   #689
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28 May 2053

GM’s notebook - Series 17 and 18

Magpies 7-11 Lansing
Magpies 11-5 Lansing
Magpies 5-6 Lansing
Magpies 9-1 Bismarck
Magpies 5-6 Bismarck
Magpies 6-4 Bismarck

- Ken James took the loss on the first day of this week-long road trip by giving up a walk-off grand slam in the bottom of the 10th frame.
- Lansing suffered their latest bad injury in the game, losing setup reliever Clifford Long for 3 months with a hamstring strain.
- Our 6-run 5th inning made the difference in game two. Ángel Márquez hit 2-2 with a HR and 2 BB.
- Rob Crawford hit 3-4, HR DBL in the 6-5 defeat to the Sharks. Luis Vélez struggled with his control and gave his first poor performance in a Magpies uniform: 6 IP, 5 H, 5 R, 4 ER, 6 BB.
- New 2B Félix Hernández (see next post) made his debut in the opening game in Bismarck and went 1-3. Márquez hit 2 HRs, and Earl Becker also homered (#14 of the season for him).
- James blew the save the next day. Errors on consecutive plays from Márquez and catcher Ernesto Solis allowed the first two Coyote runners to reach base in the bottom of the 9th, and James couldn’t prevent them getting round to win the game.

This week: 3-3
Record: 32-22, 1st place, 3 game lead over Madison
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Old 11-09-2018, 06:45 PM   #690
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====================
SCLmagpiesnation.com
====================

Magpies acquire Hernández from Mustangs in exchange for Ochoa, Vásquez and Britt

By Maggie Pye | 25 May | 3,901 comments

Cup Final Series opponents Des Moines and Annapolis announces a major trade of infielders today. The Magpies have sent experienced second baseman Ángel Ochoa, minor league reliever Octávio Vásquez and outfielder Ian Britt to the Mustangs. In return, they have received infielder Félix Hernández and 21-year-old outfield prospect Jayson Owen.

Hernández, 24, primarily played shortstop for Annapolis but will become the Magpies’ new starting second baseman as a direct replacement for Ochoa. Hernández came to prominence with his fine performances last season’s Cup Final Series, but if he goes there again it will be for the other side this time. A good contact hitter with a career .286 batting average to date, he represents a defensive upgrade on Ochoa but arguably an offensive downgrade. He will be eligible for salary arbitration for the first time at the end of this season.

Ochoa has endured a slow year with the bat, but the Mustangs will hope his experience and leadership will bolster their push to make the postseason again this year. That the Magpies were seeking to trade him had been rumoured for some time. The Mustangs front office is reportedly delighted with the trade, with both Vásquez, immediately installed as their closer, and Britt, also going straight onto their big league roster and adding to their depth of options. Magpies fans are less convinced, feeling that Hernández is a sound addition to their team, but that GM Billy DePodesta has paid a high price to get him.
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Old 11-09-2018, 06:46 PM   #691
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====================
SCLmagpiesnation.com
====================

Hernández agrees 3-year contract extension with Magpies

By Maggie Pye | 29 May | 1,773 comments

Second baseman Félix Hernández has agreed a new 3-year contract with the Magpies, his agent announced today. Only acquired from Annapolis four days ago, Hernández’s team and the Magpies front office have moved quickly to secure his medium-term future. The deal, which covers the 2054, 2055 and 2056 seasons, is worth $5.7m per annum. The agreement means that Hernández and the club will not go to salary arbitration in the fall. The player will become a free agent at the expiry of the contract at the end of 2056.
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Old 11-10-2018, 06:54 PM   #692
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GM’s notebook - Series 19 and 20

Denver 3-4 Magpies
Denver 2-5 Magpies
Denver 1-2 Magpies
Magpies 5-2 Salem
Magpies 1-2 Salem
Magpies 9-6 Salem

- Red hot Ángel Márquez earned player of the day in the first Snow Sox game, hitting 3-5 with a HR and a DBL.
- Ricardo Vargas pitched nicely in the second game of the series: 6.2 IP, 4 H, 2 ER, 3 BB, 7 K. If he can just get his 3.9 BB/9 rate down a little, he will be an extremely good starter.
- We completed the sweep of Denver with another terrific outing from Luis Vélez: 8 IP, 4 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 6 K. The performance secured him the Western League pitcher of the month award for May: he went 4-1 with a 1.67 ERA. What an acquisition he’s been.
- RF Pedro Soto hit 2 home runs on day one of the Salem road trip. I love how consistent a player he is: the last four seasons his OPS+ has been 131, 124, 134, 128, and so far this year it’s 140.
- Félix Hernández has gotten off to a slow 4-25 start since his trade, but hit a triple and a double in the Ironclads series rubber game victory.
- I’m hopeful that David Gaines has finally worked out how to be a major league relief pitcher. He’s now thrown 20.2 innings this year, and has got his ERA down to a healthy 3.48. His walk rate (4.35 per 9 IP) is way down on last year’s 7.23.
- After tomorrow’s rest day, we host second placed Madison for a three-game set. It gives us a chance to put ourselves firmly in charge of the North Division.

This week: 5-1
Record: 37-23, 1st place, 4 game lead over Madison
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Old 11-10-2018, 06:57 PM   #693
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GM’s notebook - Series 21 and 22

Madison 3-4 Magpies
Madison 3-2 Magpies
Madison 2-4 Magpies
Magpies 3-4 Sacramento
Magpies 1-2 Sacramento
Magpies 7-4 Sacramento

- All 41,447 fans crammed inside the Iowa Ballpark were on their feet when Blair Cunningham brutally dispatched a walk-off home run in the 11th inning of the Brown Bears opener. It was measured at 449 ft.
- Incidentally, Brown Bears’ superstar Julián Emery is having a dreadful season. Well, by his standards. He’s only hitting .309 with a .873 OPS.
- It was Madison’s turn to win in extra innings the next day. Jesús Benítez gave up the winning home run to pinch-hitter Steve Hogan in the 10th.
- Santa Fe’s ace Donnie Lee earned his 200th career win after beating Austin. His record is 200-133 with a 2.28 ERA.
- The big man Earl Becker stepped up when it mattered, hitting two solo home runs to give us the margin of victory in the Madison rubber game. They went 446 and 453 ft.
- Ricardo Vargas was very good in the second Stingrays game, throwing 7 innings of 1-run ball. But the offense has been sluggish all week, and for the second straight day we lost to a walk-off hit in the 11th frame.
- Albany’s young elite starter José Gallardo suffered the second severe injury of his embryonic career. He has suffered a torn labrum in his shoulder and will be out for a year. He was previously out for 14 months in 2051-2052 with a torn rotator cuff. Hopefully he can come back from this, as he’s a real asset to the SCL.
- A solo HR from Ángel Márquez in the top of the 9th of the final Sacramento game took us into our fifth extra innings game of the week. This time it was we who won in the 11th.
- Madison traded two young fringe prospects to Bismarck to acquire former Magpies hero Enrique Limón, who has been on the trade block. I’m not happy to see him back in our division.

This week: 3-3
Record: 40-26, 1st place, 3 game lead over Madison
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Old 11-10-2018, 07:00 PM   #694
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11 June 2053

(Cutting from SCL Baseball Monthly magazine, May 2053 issue)

SCL BASEBALL MONTHLY

Meet The Player: 10 Facts You Never Knew About... EARL BECKER, DES MOINES MAGPIES

1. Earl Becker is not hung like a horse. Horses are hung like Earl Becker.
2. In an average living room, there are 700 objects Earl Becker could use to hit a home run. Including the room itself.
3. Earl Becker doesn’t wash his uniform. He just stares at it until the dirt gets scared and runs away.
4. There is no such thing as a thrown strike when Earl Becker bats. Just home runs that Earl Becker thought were too easy to hit.
5. When Earl Becker falls in water, Earl Becker doesn’t get wet. Water gets Earl Becker.
6. Earl Becker has disproved Newton’s Third Law. There is no equal and opposite reaction to a Earl Becker home run swing.
7. Earl Becker invented the entire spectrum of visible light. Except pink. Tom Cruise invented pink.
8. When Earl Becker hits a baseball, it disintegrates into its constituent atoms.
9. Earl Becker never styles his hair. It lays perfectly in place on Earl Becker’s head out of sheer terror.
10. As President Roosevelt said: “We have nothing to fear but fear itself. And sitting in the right field bleachers when Earl Becker has a 3-0 count.”
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Old 11-11-2018, 05:59 PM   #695
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16 June 2053

GM’s notebook - Series 23 and 24

Carson City 1-8 Magpies
Carson City 9-8 Magpies
Carson City 3-7 Magpies
Austin 3-8 Magpies
Austin 2-8 Magpies
Austin 5-12 Magpies

- The 8-1 crushing of the Rattlesnakes included Félix Hernández’s grand slam in the 3rd inning, his first HR of the season. Rob Crawford and (of course) Earl Becker also went deep.
- Trailing 9-4 entering the bottom of the 9th in game two of the series, Gonzalo Torralda’s grand slam with no outs suddenly gave us hope, but the rally ended there.
- There was no grand slam in the rubber game against Carson City, but Hernández was the star man again, hitting 2-3 with a triple, double and walk. Israel Padilla pitched 7 superb scoreless frames.
- Robert Terry was terrific in the Austin opener, throwing 7 innings for 1 run on 6 hits. Crawford and Tadamichi Hamada both hit 3-4 with a double.
- Most of the runs we’ve allowed so far this week have come off the bullpen. The starting pitchers have been dominant.
- Hamada (4-4, DBL, BB, SB) and Hernández (2-4, TPL, DBL) continued their excellent form in the 8-2 victory over the Tycoons. Ricardo Vargas threw a complete game, allowing 2 runs on 6 hits, and fanning 8.
- Ronald Williams made a disappointing spot start in the final game of the week. Kepler pulled him in the 3rd inning with us 5-1 behind. But then our bullpen and offense simply annihilated the Tycoons. They mustered only 2 more hits, while we scored runs in each of the next 5 frames. Crawford, Torralda and Ángel Márquez each had 3 hits, and we hit 8 doubles in total.

This week: 5-1
Record: 45-27, 1st place, 5 game lead over Madison
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Old 11-11-2018, 06:02 PM   #696
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15 June 2053

FANGRAPHICS
Recap: We give the run-down on some of the picks from today’s first year players draft.

1st round, 30th overall: Magpies select 1B John Snyder
The Magpies already have good older prospects at the position in Jimmy Jenkins and Darrel Rogers, but the 17-year-old right-hander was the consensus top batting prospect remaining on the board. An old-fashioned slugger with a good eye, he is good at working the count and hitting the ball against the shift and through the infield gaps. FanGraphics projection: 2.5*.

2nd round, 85th overall: Magpies select MR David Anderson
Relief pitching is not exactly a position of need for the ballclub, but the Magpies went with the ‘best player available’ principle here. Anderson stands out for his ability to hit his spots, and throws his fastball and his screwball with equal accuracy. If he has a weakness it’s his poor injury reputation, but that seems to be a risk the front office is willing to take. FanGraphics projection: 4.5*.

3rd round, 115th overall: Magpies select SP Luis Orozco
A good right-hander who was not expected to fall so far down the draft. Throws three good pitches: a 93mph fastball, a curveball and a dangerous splitter. The 22-year-old Orozco displays good control over all his arsenal, but stamina is a concern. He will be a starting pitching on the Magpies’ minor league roster, but any subsequent major league career looks likeliest to be in the bullpen. FanGraphics projection: 4*.

4th round, 145th overall: Magpies select RF Senzo Kubo
Kubo is a 17-year-old left-handed corner outfielder who was dominant against mediocre high school pitching back home in Japan, but looks at best a fringe prospect to reach the major league team in the SCL. A decent hitter who needs to develop his plate discipline and improve his defense. But he is very young and time is on his side. FanGraphics projection: 1*.

5th round, 175th overall: Magpies select C Beniamino Stropparo
With the very final pick of the 2053 draft, the Magpies chose 17-year-old Stropparo. A good defensive catcher, his hitting does not seem likely to develop to big league level. He is extremely durable, however, and is another prospect with plenty of years ahead of him in which to improve. FanGraphics projection: 1*.
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Old 11-11-2018, 06:04 PM   #697
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20 June 2053

GM’s notebook - Series 25

Magpies 2-1 St. Paul
Magpies 3-2 St. Paul
Magpies 2-7 St. Paul

- Tom Hart’s previous couple of starts were a bit iffy, but he was back to his best on day one in St. Paul, holding the Rockets to 1 run over 8 innings.
- Tadamichi Hamada’s superb form continued with an MVP display in the second game, hitting 4-5 with a HR and 2 doubles.
- Luis Vélez, Rob Crawford and Tadamichi Hamada were all chosen for the WL all-star roster. It’s a first all-star selection for all three of them - congratulations to the lads.
- Former Magpies Gabe Copeland and Reynaldo González were also picked for the WL team. Michael O’Quinn made the Eastern League squad.
- We won the series, but our lack of offense in St. Paul is a little concerning.
- We’re in a nice position at the all-star break, but arch-rivals Madison aren’t going away anytime soon.
- Our rotation has 3 of the top 8 FIP marks in the entire league: Robert Terry (2.66), Vélez (2.94) and Hart (3.20). Israel Padilla jointly leads the league with 10 wins.

This week: 2-1
Record: 47-28, 1st place, 4 game lead over Madison
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Old Yesterday, 06:57 PM   #698
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29 June 2053

GM’s notebook - Series 26 and 27

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

- The Western League won the all-star game 5-4, after surviving a late 9th inning rally from the Eastern League. Luis Vélez was the WL’s starter, and threw 2 scoreless innings. Rob Crawford (0-2) and Tadamichi Hamada (1-3) started in the corner outfield spots.
- Ángel Márquez hit 3-3 with a walk in the opening game against the Deltas. He’s not quite become the superstar 3B I was hoping, but he has turned into a high quality major leaguer.
- The 4-0 defeat was a dire day for the offense, who managed just 1 measly hit.
- Our former starter Cory Adams (who left in the Vélez trade) is 8-2 with a 3.05 ERA for Boston, after throwing a 3-hit shutout against the Kings.
- Márquez was superb again in game one of the Santa Fe visit, hitting 3-5 including 2 HRs. Vélez is now 7-3, 1.74 after throwing 6.2 IP, 5 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 9 K. Earl Becker got involved in a scuffle with Outlaws reliever César Lerma after being hit by a pitch, and has been suspended for the final two games of the series.
- Ricardo Vargas was wild in the second game of the series, walking 10 in 6 innings.
- We took the Outlaws series thanks to a great outing from Tom Hart in the rubber game: 7.2 IP, 8 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 8 K. Ken James lodged his 19th save.

This week: 3-3
Record: 50-31, 1st place, 4 game lead over Madison
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Old Yesterday, 06:59 PM   #699
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28 June 2053

OFFICE OF THE STATE CAPITALS LEAGUE COMMISSIONER

NOTICE OF SUSPENSION: EARL BECKER


This letter provides official notification from the Office of the State Capitals League Commissioner of the two-game suspension that has been issued to Des Moines Magpies outfielder Earl Becker. The suspension applies with immediate effect. Mr Becker has no right of appeal against this decision. This means that Mr Becker is unable to play in this afternoon’s second game and tomorrow’s final game of the team’s series against the Santa Fe Outlaws.

The Commissioner has been clear to the Magpies organisation in the past that he simply does not accept that being hit by a pitch is a valid excuse for violent conduct on the field of play. He has reviewed television footage of last night’s game. He feels that the inappropriate language and aggressive conduct displayed by Mr Becker after being hit on the foot by a pitch was an extremely disappointing spectacle to see on an SCL field.

The Commissioner has noted the public apology made by Mr Becker immediately afterwards during his interview with BNN, and recognises that this is the first time Mr Becker has behaved in this manner during an SCL game. In light of all the evidence scrutinised by the Commissioner, he feels that a two-game suspension for the remainder of the Magpies’ series against the Outlaws is a meaningful and proportionate punishment.

Yours sincerely,

Rufus S. Bureaucracy
State Capitals League Deputy Commissioner
28 June 2053
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Old Yesterday, 07:02 PM   #700
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30 June 2053

Leroy Playerdraft
@prospectwatch

So, #Magpies front office, when are we going to see young Scotty Reese in the major league team? Tearing up minor league lineups! #GoScotty
2:41PM - 30 Jun 2053

Severino Guadalajara-Smith
@sabermetricjedi

@prospectwatch Reese is totally ready for the big club, but the problem for the #Magpies FO is whose spot does he take? The only pitcher who has been anything other than excellent is Jesús Zamora (6.47 FIP) and he was fantastic last season (3.51 FIP)! #niceproblems
2:45PM - 30 Jun 2053

Madison Humdinger
@hummmmmmm

@prospectwatch @sabermetricjedi remember Reese is still only 21 so still plenty of time for him - but like you I’d love to see him in our rotation! #GoScotty
2:47PM - 30 Jun 2053

Mannix Glowstone
@rayoflight

@prospectwatch @sabermetricjedi @hummmmmmm let’s also not forget Cristo Gómez, Allen Clary and Rubén Soto who are also knocking on the door. So many great young pitchers!
2:49PM - 30 Jun 2053

Bart Wardrobe
@MagpiesMad

In Billy I trust! #keepthefaith #Magpies
2:52PM - 30 Jun 2053
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