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Old 09-14-2019, 05:05 PM   #319
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2076 Season (9/10 – 9/13)

Los Angeles Lakers (84-56, .600, 1st NL West) @ Pittsburgh Steelers (68-71, .489, 3rd NL East)
With an offense anchored by LF Tony Voorhis (.258/26/86) and 1B Tom Franzone (.273/31/81), the Pittsburgh Steelers have a little bit of pop but not much else. Any success they’ve had this season – and I should say that at 22 games back in the NL East, there hasn’t been much of it – rests solely on the shoulders of their #4 ranked pitching staff that is led by the 3-headed monster of Robby Garrett (3.6 pWAR), Cole Guzman (3.9 pWAR), and Tim Kelly (3.1 pWAR). They have the look of a club that is 1-2 solid offensive guys and a Closer away from serious contention, even if they have taken a slight step back from being the .500 club that got bounced out of the 1st round of last years playoffs. At risk for the Pittsburgh brain trust, this season is their 6-year .500 or better streak – they’ve no illusions about winning the whole thing. For them, it seems that treading water in 2076 while they anxiously await what may go down as the finest free agency class this league has ever seen is their preferred route to the promised land. Or not, it’s really hard to say honestly – because even though their owner, the esteemed Mr. Patton Hill, is known as charitable with a hands-off approach, who’s to say that these clowns don’t spend that cash on clubhouse upgrades instead of talent, and who knows if any of the upcoming bumper crop of talent is willing to play in a city like Pittsburgh.

142 of 162: Dejuan Burns (15-7, 3.50) @ Gregory Morgan (9-10, 4.46)
Loss, 5-2
. And our woes continue as we lose our 4th in a row after Morgan gives us the business over 8 innings of work and 2B Cody Keenan makes mincemeat of Dejuan on a 2-run double in the bottom of the 4th. Honestly, we didn’t get much from anyone in this one – there really are no highlights worth typing out, only a deep & dark foreboding that has engulfed our team like the mysterious mist that engulfed Bridgton, Maine as cover for some large praying mantis-like creature bent on ripping our club from limb to limb.

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Elsewhere… SS Hamza McDonnell of the New York Jets went 3 for 3 with a HR, 2 RBI, 3 runs, and a walk in their 13-4 win over the Golden State Warriors. This marks the first time Hamza has plated in the last 4 games – and it’s not like runs are at a premium for this year's version of the Jets – they rank 1st in the AL – it’s just that Hamza has had a rough go of late, so it’s nice to see him put a little something together here.

143 of 162: Michael Brisk (14-7, 3.57) @ Robby Garrett (9-15, 3.74)
Win, 9-4
. Brisky, coupled with a resurgent Austin Matthews (3 RBIs in this one), is our supreme streak snapper in this one – he gave us 8.1, allowed 4, and K’d 6 before reluctantly handing it off to the inconsistent Barbaccia who retired the last two batters on 4 total pitches – both on flyouts. Otto went 0 for 5 with 3 K’s – yikes – Ethan got a couple of hits, and our middle infielders, Marshburn (2B) and Larry Williams (SS) drove in two each. We’ll take this small step in the right direction and work to extend this newfound verve forward through the rest of this set.

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144 of 162: Nat Millard (14-6, 2.93) @ Jimmy Garcia (9-12, 3.33)
Win, 7-0
. Here we go… now we are cooking with Crisco… Nat, still not going deep, gives us 6 shutout innings, and Zody, fresh up from the City of Compton, finished at 3 for 4 with an RBI and 2 runs to help us secure our second win in a row. Ethan hit a two-run triple, Austin drove two in, Rajkumar plates, and Oh Hong went 1 for 2 with a run and an RBI – that RBI came on a nice, team-first SAC FLY. Your boy Hong is a gamer, folks. Out there looking for dubs!

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Elsewhere… the Philadelphia is the first team to clinch a playoff spot, despite losing tonight, and is now guaranteed a spot in the tricentennial season playoffs… The 1st round of the International League Playoffs got underway tonight with the Newport Beach Gypsies (facing the San Jose Sharks) and the Gwinnett Stripers (facing the Seattle Supersonics) both securing game one victories to kick things off…

145 of 162: Lee Myers (13-6, 3.96) @ Dom Jefferson (1-3, 3.67)
Win, 8-3
. Three straight now, and on something of a roll, we’d get a nice 3 for 5 day out of LF Joshua Newman where he also contributes a double, a homer, 2 RBI, and 3 runs… with Lee Myers turning 7 solid innings of work where allows only 2 runs. The team hit 3 out – Newman, Dom, and Marshburn put two double plays on the board, and Barbaccia picks up his 24th save despite inheriting 3 runners that were left behind by the struggling Rudolf. I shouldn’t be hard on the poor sap though – he’ll be DtD for 4-weeks according to my doctors, as he has something of a mild elbow strain.

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This made me feel pretty good, I must say – it’s always nice to win a four-game series on the road. And, to head to one of my favorite towns after winning three straight games? Well, that’s pretty awesome too. Headed up to Montreal next for a quick three games before heading back to the west coast for three in San Diego. Just piling on those frequent flier miles. Also, our lead on Phoenix in the NL West has grown to 5 1/2 games... it really is too bad about Gerhold.
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