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Old 02-14-2015, 02:31 PM   #1
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SBC - Grand Championship Preview

The following preview was written by the SBC team representative.

Our league is called SBC (Sydney Baseball Championship) and is a fictional league based in Sydney, Australia in the 1950s. The premise for the league is that World War II took its toll on young men from countries around the globe. In Australia, and especially Sydney it had a profound effect on the sporting landscape.

Both the returning men and those already at home wished for sport without contact. In Sydney, the game they played was Rugby League and before the war eight teams had competed for the Championship.

During the War all eight foundation Rugby League clubs (Balmain Tigers, Canterbury Bulldogs, Eastern Suburbs Roosters, Newtown BlueBags, North Sydney Bears, Parramatta Eels, South Sydney Rabbitohs and St. George Dragons) had been playing baseball with American troops stationed in the country and the combination of cricket skills and sheer competitiveness amongst the Australians had ensured that some men showed real talent for the game.

These eight Rugby League clubs would go on to form the Sydney Baseball Championship (SBC) in 1950, with only the Parramatta club dropping their pre-war nickname, changing to the Giants from the Eels.

We are now at 10 teams having expanded after just 3 years in the league and have been going for just under 1 real life year which has seen us play 7 in game seasons. The commish does not GM a team.

League Website: Sydney Baseball Championship | OOTP Simulation Baseball League

You can check out the SBC team by visiting: Home Page

The SBC squad was a sabermetrically constructed team, relying heavily on 2014 VORP. The goal was to put together a team that could excel in a neutral park, in hopes that it would not be disadvantaged in pitchers' parks or hitters' parks. Initially, the idea was to spend heavily on starting pitching and build a lineup that heavily utilized platoons on the theory that a platoon would produce as much as a multi-million dollar stud, but cost less and provide fatigue depth and a strong pinch-hitting bench. That proved not to be the case, as only 1B and perhaps C will be strict platoons.

Projected Starting Lineup

1 R Miguel Ruíz CF
2 L Dustin Kirkham 3B
3 R Pedro Deleón DH
4 R Jaime Valdés RF
5 L Dallas Brown 2B
6 L Alonso Quiñonez LF
7 R Victoriano Fernández SS
8 L Brent Kinlaw 1B (Justin Wells v LHP)
9 L Enrique Gonzáles C (Raúl Aguilar v LHP)

Projected Rotation & Bullpen

R Iván Manuel
R Aleksander Fidjeland
R Abel Little
L José Rodríguez
L Fred Powell

Middle Relief:
R Barnes Akerval
R Jimmy Foster
R Jonathan Bowers

Donnie Perkins

Set Up
R Ayub Magsi
L Steven Smith

R António García

5 Keys to Winning: If these 5 things happen, this team will contend for the title or to reverse it – if these things don’t happen the way you expect – you won’t be in the mix.

1. Iván Manuel pitches to his ratings. Manuel is more like 2013's 11+ WAR pitcher than 2014's 6.8 WAR pitcher. Granted, either is fine, but a(nother) season for the ages out of the pitcher with the best current ratings would be a big plus.

2. Victoriano Fernández lives up to his pedigree. He had a breakout season with both the glove (+10.1 ZR) and the bat (25 bombs, 91 RBI in a pitchers' park). If he can build on that in a moderate batters' park, the lineup won't have a weak link and the ground ball staff should have strong defense up the middle. If not the SBC's pitchers would love AL Gold Glove winner Mike Hicks's glove, but he'd be the equivalent of a pitcher batting in the lineup.

3. The GCL doesn't prove to be a Whiteyball League. The SBC entry isn't built for speed - or to stop it on the basepaths. The player pool was bereft of good defensive catchers who didn't carry a noodle to the dish when batting. The GCL brain trust thought seriously about partying like it was 1985 to take advantage of all the noodle-armed catchers. But cooler heads prevailed.

4. Fred Powell is adequate. The worst pitcher on the roster, 23yo Powell is in rarified air, sharing a rotation with 4 guys who either have won or are good bets to win a Cy Young Award. If Powell can build on a solid rookie season and learn from the veterans, the SBC's rotation could be a thing of beauty.

5. The $3 Million Infield needs to produce. With league minimum salaries at every position, the SBC's infield is mostly young and raw. Can it meet the challenge?
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