Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Power Ranks (Mid-Season) 1-5

5. Washington- Last Rank (3) Current Record (71-51)

Despite Lets_trys protests Washington squeaks into the top 5, although they do slide 2 spots from the prior ranking. Washington has been in a dog fight all season with upstart Columbus and finally reeled them in. The majority of the hitting core that took home the title in S18 is still in tact while the pitching staff has been "updated". The peripheral players aren't quite as strong as the Championship team but they are still a scary proposition to face in the playoffs

4. Little Rock- Last Rank (6) Current Record (76-46)

While I'm sure Timf will think this ranking is too low, I have the Renegades once again pegged as the top NL team. All the teams in front of Timf are AL squads and Little Rock has had several opportunities to prove they are better than the best AL teams and has come up short (0-4). Once again the ML roster is impressive, however the minor league cupboard as been getting barer and barer. The Buffalo Bills are going to strike very soon if they want to lose the Bridesmaid stigma

3. Louisville- Last Rank (5) Current Record (73-50)

I know it's odd to have a team move up 2 spots in the rankings despite losing two Cy Young Award winners for the season (Kinkade & Ducey), however a mid-season trade with Pawtucket filled the Ducey role (Bo Gragg). Perhaps more importantly the last remaining SP of Louisville's big 3 has decided to put the team on his back. Flip McCall a 4-time Cy Young finalist has decided to get a trophy of his own going (15-0 2.64 ERA). Louisville is poised to take the 2-seed (granted Atl & Wash are pushing hard), and Kinkade would be back in time for the 2nd round

2. Kansas City- Last Rank (2) Current Record (77-45)

Like I said at the start of the Powerranks my original rankings were pretty accurate. No team moved up more than 2 spots and 8 of the 10 teams did not change. Continuing with that theme the top 2 does not change. KC has got to be the most unlucky team in Hunter, despite having the 2nd best record in the entire world they are currently slotted at the 5th seed in AL. Ptwoner has pushed SF harder than any other team ever has and for the first time in a long time Bjb may not be able to rest his starters down the stretch. It's tough to find a new narrative for a team that performed as expected. Speaking as a fellow AL owner, I want to avoid KC as long as possible.

1. San Fransisco- Last Rank (1) Current Record (79-43)

The more things change the more things stay the same. We've had an influx of new owners & a lot of new faces pushing there way into the playoffs but the number 1 spot stays unchanged. Early in the year it looked like KC or perhaps even pre-injury Louisville was going to take a run at the top spot but the King would not advocate his throne. The defending champ lost his best SP to FA (David Reyes) and the team still has improved it's winning percentage 12 points. The only silver lining on the entire season for fellow AL owners is the Reyes departure should sting a little more come playoff time when All teams put there 4th and 5th starters away (Or perhaps I'm just rationalizing)

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Power Ranks (Mid-Season) 6-10

My early season power ranks are perhaps my finest work yet (do you hear that? that's the sound of me patting my own back). Overall despite 100+ games being played the ranking changes are small and nuanced. 8 of the 10 teams from the original rankings crack the top 10 again and among the 8 returning teams moves weren't too drastic.

10. Seattle- Last Rank (NR) Current Record: 69-51

Seattle is one of the two new comers in the list and barely nipped out Columbus for the 10 spot. The reason that I gave Seattle the nod was the two franchises are currently headed in opposite directions. Seattle has gotten hot since the All-Star break (19-9) and very hot in the last 10 (8-2). Seattle has a strong recent tradition of winning having not missed the playoffs since S16. Lead by Q. Gibson & Z. Santelgelo the Sasquatches can pile on runs. Columbus' recent cold spell and the loss of mid-season trade acquisition L. Harper pushed the Blue Claws to the waiting room with Atlanta & LA

9. Minnesota- Last Rank (8) Current Record 64-56

Last year Stazrunner was the tough luck champ, just missing the playoffs despite winning almost 90 games and finishing 3rd in a very difficult division. This year he's got the lucky breaks crown as the AL North has gone from one of the strongest divisons to one of the weakest. Dcinto tore down Cincy but unlike the Kings Men he's done a fantastic job putting Humpty back to together again (61-59) and last year's dark horse and Powerrank whipping Boy Pawtucket has crashed back down to Earth. All of the above said Minny slips a spot from the last rankings but has the best team in the division and should put the division crown on ice with games left to play allowing him to set-up his and rotation for the playoffs

8. Baltimore- Last Rank (NR) Current Record 70-50

I have to admit I have a soft spot for the Baydogs, I love the fact that Duff stuck with a team that took a long time to find it's way. I greatly respect the perseverance. I almost put them 10 in my original ranks but got gun shy at the last second. It's obvious that they have proved me wrong. It took 19 seasons for their first playoff appearance but the Baydogs seem locked for the 4th straight year despite losing their starting SS for the season and James Sinclair #2 on the Saves list being released. I think this was the saddest day in Baltimore since Rich Peters retired, Duff claims that his office was dusty and it wasn't a single tear rolling down his cheek when I called for commet :)

7. Philadephia- Last Rank (9) Current Record 72-58

The Phillies move up 2 spots and likely would have been in the next installment (1-5) if not for a recent slide and Seattle surge. Philly has stumbled to a (1-9) record in the last 10 which has allowed Seattle to cut a 10 deficit down to 3 games. Despite the recent streak I believe that Philly is better than recent record indicates and with R. Santiago (15-4, 2.51 ERA) at the top of their rotation they will be a tough out in any playoff series. As a former P. Earley owner I've been watching his transition to the NL closely and am not surprised at all with his success with the bat but am astonished that he's been able to play CF all season with only three negative plays. Part of me thinks that if Philly falls in the post-season, a 2 base error off the glove of Earley might play a key factor

6. Las Vegas- Last Rank (7) Current Record 71-49

So Iain inherits this team from Bigtex brother Redraider and guides the team to a 90W season taking over about 100 games in. Then in the off-season he decides he really doesn't like his 90W team all that much and makes SIX significant deals to bring in E. Alacorn from divison rival LA, picks up V. Evans & L. Felix to further improve his lineup. Once he's done with the middle of his order he moves to the bullpen can completely remakes it with the addition of G. Carson, S. Cruz & L. Campos. I'm not mathematician but last year LV had a win % of .555 and this year they have a win % of .591,........ let me punch this into my calculator......... carry the zero........... Yep that's better. So it's clear that Iain's moves have paid dividends and have him moving up 1 spot in the rankings

Monday, March 26, 2012

Meet Jceffali 2.0

22 marks Jceffali's 2nd year in the league

1. Why did you join Hunter?
1. I joined Hunter because it had been a while since I rebuilt a team. I've been playing HD a long time and had two teams that were both more-or-less on autopilot, so time for a challenge. I also wanted to support the idea of solid owners shoring up an old league that had fallen on tough times. I liked the creativity with the Rule 5 last year (COMMISH EDIT: Once again thanks to all the world vets that agreed to participate), and even found myself a nice CF.

2. What is your favorite aspect of Hunter?

2. I've enjoyed the other guys in the league and the excellent blog.

How do you feel about your team with one completed season under your belt?

3. The Browns, still have a long road to competitiveness. Last year my goal was to put a respectable major league team on the field while building the minors. It was a challenge because I thought it was a very shallow draft and IFA pool. But still, progress was made and the system is starting to look better. I also transitioned the team from a huge overload of 1B/DH/LF types at ML and AAA into a more balanced organization. Patience!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Lets_Try 2.0

1. Why did you join Hunter?

1. Was playing WIS Simleagues at the time and jumped on the first available HD Dynasty world, which was Hunter. I plan on doing the same when they introduce Hockey Dynasty, if ever they do. (COMMISH EDIT: I should have also asked why you rejoined Hunter, as Lets has a gap in his Hunter service record)

2. What is your favorite aspect of Hunter?
2. The competiveness of the league, it's very difficult to win in Hunter.

MTO Follow-up?

Having left Hunter & returned, what is is like when you play your old team (now Pawtucket)? Also knowing Cox will have a P on his hat when he goes into the HOF, any mixed emotions?

I have no particular feelings when I play Pawtucket because when I came back, most of his players weren't those I had when I left. No mixed emotion on Braden Cox either. He was the first player I cared about, and was in my organization from the get-go. I'm also the last owner who employed him (with Phily this time). But when I came back, my motivation was to build a solid team with what I had at the time. And now, I have a big 4 (Webster, Gonzales, Tomko & Paronto) !

Monday, March 19, 2012

Meet Iain 2.0

Iain enters his first full season in Hunter after joining the league as a replacement owner in S21

1. Why did you join Hunter?

1. Because I'm a sucker for someone "fighting the good fight" and promised to help out, only to have life get in the way at the moment of truth. Given the chance to help again, I couldn't say no. (COMMISH EDIT: Iain agreed to join Hunter last year when we had 15 opens spots with the caveat that his child needed to be born before we rolled. The kid kept him out of the league originally but we figured out a way to bring him in)

2. Favoirte Aspect of Hunter

2. So far, it's the incredibly active trade market. Gave me a chance to improve what I thought were some weak spots in what was otherwise a strong team, and gave me a very quick sense of ownership. Being my new earliest simming world is pretty great, too! (COMMISH EDIT: The early sim is one of the vastly underated aspects of Hunter)

Follow-up questions ?

I know you recently became a new dad, has that helped or hindered your HBD skills? Do you feel late night feedings make you more competitive during FA signing?

F/u: (COMMISH EDIT: I had figured out by now that this stood for followup and not #$% you)
I really can't pretend that lack of sleep is "helping" anything in my life. (COMMISH EDIT: As a fellow now parent, I concur)

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Meet bjb

Bjb is a charter member of Hunter

1. Why did you join Hunter?

I joined all the way back in Season 1 -- it was an open league. But, it has always been one of my favorite leagues.

2. What is your favorite aspect of Hunter?

With the exception of one departed owner (COMMISH EDIT: If I had to guess I think your refering to..............Radek?), the league has always been very civil and respectful. My 4 WS titles only further endear the league to me. (COMMISH EDIT: I need two more titles to catch up)

MTO Follow-up?

A startling revelations last year was that Djbradford was Bjb's dad. With that in mind was Dj's move to the NL discussed over Christmas as a diabolical way for the family to conquer both halves of the Hunter Universe?

Actually, I think that the young core of the Night Demons scared DJ to the NL. He wanted to avoid us until the World Series if at all possible. (COMMISH EDIT: You are stuck with the Sluggers in the AL, regardless of how scary your team looks)

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Minimum Win Requirement (MWR)

First of all I would like to thank every who took the time to provide input on the MWR,I have reviewed all of the feedback I received. Opinions vary greatly on this specific topic, which makes always makes things "fun" for the commissioner. Even for those in favor of the MWR the win totals vary greatly.

Let me be clear I don't think we've ever had a hard tanking issue with Hunter, with the exception of Radek's last season. I believe we have the strongest group of owners that we've ever had in Hunter currently and I take it as a positive sign that so many owners had an opinion on the matter as that means we are engaged in the league. I additionally appreciate that a debate did not blow up in the world chat which could have caused some unnecessary bad will.

With all of the above said starting next season (S23) I will be implementing a very low standard for a MWR. I view a very low MWR as bridge between those owners who want a more stringent one and those who do not want one at all. The MWR can always be reviewed in future seasons. For those who disagree with me on either end of the spectrum please feel free to trade chat me. Hopefully, I've built up enough cache during the last two seasons as commish that the league trusts my judgment.

Minimum Win Requirement:
A team that losses 105 games or more on back to back seasons will come up for Commissioner review

Failing to meet the above does not warrant automatic expulsion, I will review the situation on a case by case basis.

As a league if you see any issue with a specific team (playing players out of position, playing fatigued pitchers, playing Low A caliber guys at the ML) let me know and they will be handled quickly as the situations arise.

I am aware the above is a low bar, a team needs only to win 58 games every 2nd season to jump over it. However, I am not concerned, as I mentioned before I don't believe tanking to be an issue in Hunter.

Look forward to your feedback