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Old 08-25-2019, 05:52 PM   #81
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Old 08-27-2019, 07:44 AM   #82
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May 1, 1927

THE UPS AND DOWNS OF A SEASON

After two very good weeks to start the year the Kings received a dose of reality, New York Stars-style, as the 3-time defending champs swept us in three games this week. To add injury to insult - literally - we lost another pitcher for the season as Topsy Moran is out for 5 months with shoulder problems.

Funny, but I was thinking something was up with Moran after his rough start to the season. It is disappointing the injury came just a start after I felt he was getting back on track with a complete game 4-2 victory over the Stars the previous week. Moran joins Del Plummer on the sidelines leaving me without my #2 and #3 starters for the year. Plummer, you may recall, was hurt last summer shortly after being acquired from Montreal. He is not expected to return until at least mid-September.

So that opens the door for Clarence Flanders to make his FABL debut. The 24 year old former University of Michigan star had 4 strong starts for AAA Houston before getting the call. Flanders was a winter acquisition from the Portland Green Sox - an independent club that plays in the Great Western AAA loop. He was 17-9 with a 3.51 era for the Green Sox a year ago. It was a tough call but I made the decision to promote Flanders over Bill Dengler, who was also off to a great start in Houston. Age was the deciding factor as I felt it best to give the 22 year old Dengler, my second round pick in the December 1925 draft out of Maryland, a little more time in the minors. The kid was down - his mood changed to unhappy after the decision - but he needs to be patient as his time will certainly come and, if the injuries continue, it will be soon.

I will start Flanders in the bullpen and move Harvey Rodgers from the pen back into the starting rotation. Rodgers was a swingman last year, starting 16 of his 32 appearances and compiling an 11-7 record with a 4.01 era.

The rotation now consists of vets Mose Smith (5-0, 2.60) and Cal Williams (3-0, 3.32) and a pair of young leftys in Art Carlson (3-1, 5.06) and Leon Campbell (1-2, 2.45) as well as Rodgers.

The news last week wasn't all bad as we did play .500 ball despite the losses to New York, sweeping 3 games from Montreal to level the slate. However, we are no longer first as our 13-6 record is a half-game behind the Stars.
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Old 08-27-2019, 02:43 PM   #83
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UPS AND DOWNS OF A SEASON - PART 2

And back to an up. After a disappointing week last sim the Kings went 5-2 this week and are back in first place, 2 games up on the New York Stars and a surprising Cleveland Foresters club.

Doug Lightbody had a huge week, highlighted by a walk-off grand slam to give us a 7-6 victory over Toronto on the Saturday. Lightbody seems to be showing no ill effects from his injury of a year ago and is leading both leagues with a .441 batting average through May 9th. Lightbody is also tied for the CA lead in homers (3) and rbi's (20). Joining him with 20 rbi's is young centerfielder Ab Thomas, who is hitting .315 and forced Lou Cox to the bench just as Lightbody did the same to Clarence Hall a year ago.

Catcher Mickey Dowell also had a good week and is starting to get hot after a slow beginning to his season. Mose Smith and Cal Williams continue to pitch well, even though Williams got roughed up in his most recent start, but the pitcher I am most impressed with is 25 year old Leon Campbell. Campbell, you might recall got incredible run support a year ago, and went 14-2. This season it has balanced out as he is only getting 2.25 runs per game from our offense - which explains his 2-2 record despite pitching like a staff ace.
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Old 08-30-2019, 04:05 PM   #84
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MAY 30, 1927

My Kings have played some pretty good baseball over the month of May. We are 30-16 and riding a 6 game winning streak. That record has allowed us to distance oursevles from our cross-town rival New York Stars, who sit at 21-22 and have dropped 8 of their last ten - including 3 of 4 to our beloved Kings last week. Unfortunately, we are not in first place in the Continental Association. That distinction belongs to the surprising Cleveland Foresters, winners of 17 of their last 23 games and at 30-15 overall, lead Brooklyn by a half game.

The Foresters are what the Kings were a year ago. A team coming off a last place finish that has been revitalized with some key young stars. For Cleveland those players are Jake Moore, Don Ward and Felix Bradfield. Moore is a 24 year old third baseman putting up outstanding numbers (.372,1,12) in 26 games since being called up from AAA. Ward, also 24, is a rookie shortstop who made the club out of spring training and is hitting .323 with 35 rbi's in his first 45 games. The 25 year old Bradfield is in his first full season as the Foresters centerfielder and is batting .293. The other big thing that Cleveland has had so far is something Brooklyn is really lacking - a dependable bullpen.



Toronto is also a team to fear as the Wolves have won 11 straight and 17 of their last 19 games. Toronto has been scoring some runs but their real strength so far has been their starting pitching, which has best era in the CA. 26 year old Birdie Smith is 8-1 with a 2.70 era and is the chief rival right now to Brooklyn's Mose Smith (9-2, 2.59) and Cleveland's Bob Lawrence (9-3, 3.29) for pitcher of the year honours. The Wolves have been using what I will call an unconventional staff - choosing to go with just 1 reliever, Pete Dalton, and 5 starters. The 6 man staff - with most other teams choosing to go with 8 and some with more - has paid off so far for Toronto but it remains to be seen if the starters, who see relief action at times as well, will get burned out as the season progresses.

I am not ruling out the Stars either, as they came from way back at this time a year ago to win their third straight pennant and World Championship Series. New York has struggled - winning just 3 of their last 12 - but they have had a tough schedule of late with Cleveland, Toronto and Brooklyn all showing up on it. Until they get eliminated they are the champs and have to be feared.

As for my Kings things are going good. Our offense is where we expect it to be, leading the CA in most departments and just 3 runs behind Cleveland for the lead in that category. Young outfielder Doug Lightbody (.436,5,32) is destroying the ball right now and 22 year old Ab Thomas (.347,2,33) is right there with him. Add in 1B Lou Garman (.321,2,20), SS Lloyd Carter (.337,0,22), C Mickey Dowell (.335,3,27) and LF Bud Rogers (.331,2,22) and 6 of our 8 everyday players are batting at least .300. 2B Rip Agee (.299,3,16) is close, after regaining the starting job and sending rookie Willie Jackson (.234,1,11) to the bench while 3B continues to be a revolving door for us with Glenn Mowles (.279,0,10) currently occupying the spot.

Our pitching had a good week as Harvey Rodgers (3-1, 2.75) and newcomer Clarence Flanders (2-0, 4.71) both looked good. Flanders, struggled in the pen after being recalled from Houston, but is 2-0 with a shutout in his two starts since Topsy Moran landed on the DL.

The only bad news we had recently is the loss of top prospect Jim Renfroe for 3 weeks with a groin injury. The 24 year old outfielder was hitting .372 with 5 homers at AAA Houston. He really belongs in the big leagues right now but we just don't have room for him at the moment.

MINOR LEAGUES - SHOULD I RETHINK MY APPROACH?

While none of them are challenging for a league title, three of my four minor league teams have been playing decent baseball. I am not too worried about wins at the minors, preferring to ensure the guys I consider big league prospects get plenty of playing time at the positions I want them out rather then worrying about results. However, my AA affiliate Knoxville is 16-34 and a distant last in the Dixie League. I assume that is the big reason why morale is terrible with the Knights. I am not sure if morale has any impact on minor league player development, but I am not going to take any chances so I made contract offers to a couple of free agents with great leadership and if I successfully sign them they will spend some time in Knoxville to see if they can help restore order.

Like I said I have no idea if it is important, but this is another unique thing about playing in a stats-only league. It is a variable I can see, so if I can take steps to control I figure I should. I also may need to re-evaluate my approach to stocking my minor league teams a bit. Perhaps, I should hang on to some older guys a little longer and let them put up good numbers to help the minor league teams enjoy more success. Presently, I have really emphasized youth and jettisoned the vets who I felt would not help the Kings at the big league level to make room for me to play as many young players with perceived major league potential as possible.

However, perhaps that is the wrong approach. Maybe these vets could help the team by helping our minor league clubs win more and thus help morale. It's an interesting trade-off. Do I keep vets to give us a better record in the minors which perhaps helps the guys I identify as key prospects develop - or am I better doing as I do now which is to fill my organization with young talent that has either put up good numbers at a lower level or has a positive scouting report, figuring the more 'lottery ticket' young guys I hold the better shot I have of pulling a winning ticket out of that group. Something I will need to monitor going forward.
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Old 09-10-2019, 01:57 PM   #85
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June 27, 1927

JUNE 27, 1927

Not a lot has changed since the last update. My Kings still are second in the Continental Association, but we are now 2 games back of the surprising Cleveland Foresters - who continue to set the pace. The New York Stars are 5.5 games out of first place and likely geared up for their usual summer charge which makes next week very important for both them and us.

We have a weird schedule the next couple of weeks, starting with off days today and tomorrow before we begin a stretch of 5 games against our cross-town rivals. The Stars host the first four before we welcome them to Kings County Park for Sunday's contest. The following week we have 6 games against the last place Montreal Royals but our focus right now is having a big series against the 3 time defending league champions from New York.

I have pretty much stood pat and not made a lot of moves although we have not had a great month, going 13-10 so far but are still 43-29 on the season. Our problems are the same as last year, with pitching and our bullpen in particular letting us down. The offense is as strong as ever but the absence of injured starters Del Plummer and Topsy Moran has hurt our pitching.

I recently called up Bill Dengler, our second round pick out of Maryland a year ago. Dengler was 8-2 at Houston before the promotion and has pitched well in 3 relief appearances for the Kings over the last week or so. Dengler will get his first career major league start in the series with New York as I have decided to send Clarence Flanders (2-2, 4.94) to Houston and promote Buck Blood. The 30 year old Blood was great as my closer in the early going last year but fell apart down the stretch and I had lost confidence in him. I can't say I have regained it as he was not great in Houston, but no one else is doing much for me either although waiver pick-up Al Colby from St Louis does have 6 saves and 2.42 era so he will remain my closer.

I have no complaints about my offense at all, other then the fact I have too many good outfielders that all should be playing. Doug Lighbody (.420,8,56) is dominating the league while Bud Rogers (.347,5,43), Ab Thomas (.346,2,48) and Clarence Hall (.392,3,16) are also contributing. With very few at bats left for him, Lou Cox has struggled when he gets a chance to hit (just 7-for-30 after hitting .328 with a league leading 45 stolen bases a year ago). It's even worse for Lynn Randall and Jim Renfroe who are both stuck playing in Houston when they should be patroling a big league outfield. The 22 year old Randall spent a couple of weeks in Brooklyn but when he wasn't getting any at bats I shipped him back to Houston where he is batting .463 with 6 homers and 25 rbi's in 19 games. Renfroe, 24 years old, is batting .380 with 7 homers and 39 rbi's in 55 games for Houston. I have started trying Randall at 1B in Houston although the path there is also blocked because of Lou Garman (.312,2,26) as I can't move one of them to 3B (which is my only real position of need) because I have Phil Long, another 22 year old, that my scout absolutely loves playing the hot corner in Houston. Long began the year at AA and is batting .239 with 3 homers in 12 games since his promotion to the AAA Bulls.
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Old 09-11-2019, 10:43 PM   #86
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JULY 4, 1927 - ANATOMY OF A TRADE

Not the week we wanted in our 5 games with the New York Stars as we went 2-3 and dropped further behind the front-running Cleveland Foresters, who took 5 of 6 from Chicago and Philadelphia. We are now 4.5 games back of Cleveland while the 3rd place Stars are 8 off the pace.

We are a month from the trade deadline but I get to work quickly and make a deal with Pittsburgh of the Federal Association. The full trade saw us sending AAA outfielder Jim Renfroe and Class B catching prospect Jim Pool to the Miners in exchange for AAA 3B John Wilder, relief pitcher Leon Thompson and the Miners 4th round pick in the upcoming draft.

Doesn't sound like much but when he arrives Wilder will immediately be promoted to Brooklyn and given a shot at the everyday 3B job while I am hoping Thompson can bring some stability to our bullpen, which is awful again this year.

It is one of those trades that I think works really well for both teams - at least with the 2 key principles involved. It saw the two clubs swap their top non-pitching prospect in a deal that was needs-based for both. I have often mentioned how the Kings have such a glut of good young outfielders so I was trying to see if I could move one of them for a comparable 2B or 3B prospect or a pitcher that could help us now. I looked through all of the teams in the league with close to major league ready 2B-3B prospects and identified a couple of them, including Pittsburgh. The Miners GM is online a lot so I thought I would start with him.

I try to be as fair as possible in all of my trades and look at the deal from both team's perspectives. I think that approach is best for an online league and if you treat other owners with respect and don't try to lowball them hopefully they will treat you the same way.

As for the Miners, from my observations of their club it was a perfect fit for them as well as us. Pittsburgh is struggling and in a rebuilding mode so I know better than to ask for a young talent without offering a good prospect in return and in looking at their roster I figured the 25 year old third sacker Wilder was one that they could afford to move just as I could with my OF Renfroe. Like Renfroe, Wilder's path to the majors was blocked because one of the Miners best players is 28 year old John Barber, who is hitting .346 and is just 3 years older than Wilder. Where Pittsburgh is short is in quality bats in the outfield so Renfroe was a good fit.

Wilder and Renfroe compare very favourably. Wilder is a 25 year old third baseman, who was a late first round pick in 1923. He struggled in a brief stint with Pittsburgh a year ago (.216 in 14 games) but is having a great season for AAA St. Paul (.346,16,69 in 77 games). His fielding is average to perhaps slightly above average. I like his power numbers and liked them even more knowing St. Paul's park is not real friendly to righthanded power hitters. My scout loves his power potential and feels he can be a solid major league third baseman.

Renfroe is playing in the same AAA league as Wilder (the Century League) for my Houston Bulls. A natural centerfielder, he can play all 3 OF positions and was the second overall pick in 1924. Renfroe has yet to make the majors because I am so deep in the OF but the 24 year old is destroying the ball in AAA, leading the league in hitting with a .381 average with 7 homers and 20 stolen bases. He is a slightly above average centerfielder with, according to my scout, dazzling speed and above average contact potential. Houston's ballpark is pretty much neutral overall so his offense is not aided, nor is it hurt, by our stadium.

I believe both myself and the Miners GM would not make this deal if we didn't already have young established stars blocking the path of our guys but because we each had a need for the other prospect it worked out perfectly.

Now it was just adding the remaining pieces. I identified a pitcher I wanted from Pittsburgh. They are 13 games back and in 7th in the Federal Association so I felt they could part with a veteran arm. We haggled over a couple of guys as the Miners also wanted rookie pro catcher Jim Pool. Pool was a player they bypassed in the most recent draft and I grabbed him. I wanted reliever Leon Thompson, a 27 year old with decent control, a groundball guy who doesn't give up a lot of homeruns that I thought I could slot into my bullpen to try and stop the bleeding there...and Thompson is a Brooklyn native which is always a plus to add a hometown player. (I am sure it makes no difference in the game but I always try to add a local guy if everything else is equal).

However, we both agreed Pool was a pretty valuable prospect to give up for Thompson. There was another pitcher I really wanted as well, a veteran guy off their major league roster but to get him I would have had to part with my best pitching prospect that is still in the minor leagues so we eventually had to drop the other pitcher and just make it a two-for-two deal with Pittsburgh adding the 4th round pick to help make it work for me to include Pool.

I didn't want to give up Pool as he is hitting .312 with 15 homers for Class B Tampa. Good numbers for the 6th round pick out of Columbia but he is a 22 year old playing in the lowest level of the minors so I felt I could move him in hopes Thompson can do something for me in the big league pen. My scout Rube Carter really likes Pool, thinking he can be an above average defensive catcher and a reliable hitter. However, I feel like catcher is a position of depth in the organization including 26 year old Mickey Dowell, who is hitting over .300 in Brooklyn and should be the starter for at least a half dozen more years. I also have a 24 year old named Dave Armstrong doing really well in Houston, a 22 year old by the name of Dick Fleetwood hitting over .320 in AA, and a pair of 21 year old in Tom Aiello and Joe Cameron at Class A Omaha. Both Cameron and Aiello are struggling at the dish right now but each has potential according to Scout Carter.

In a league with ratings visible a 4th round pick would be pretty much worthless but not here. In a stats only league they are like lottery tickets but have much better odds of paying off then most lotteries. I figure I have a decent chance of replacing Pool (who was a 6th round pick last winter) with that pick.

Anyway, I went on about it a lot longer than intended but I think this is a good synopsis of a productive online league trade discussion that benefits both organizations.
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Old 09-16-2019, 02:48 PM   #87
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JULY 25, 1927

Last sim before the trade deadline but I really don't think I will be doing any deals. The Kings are still well within shouting distance of Cleveland - we sit just 3.5 games back tied with surging Philadelphia for second place - but it feels like we are fading quickly. Cleveland has lost 8 of 11 including 2 of 3 to my Kings, but we have not been able to capitalize going just 9-13 in a month that was predominately spent at home.

I feel I am really stuck in no man's land. Still close in the standings so don't want to give up any regulars for prospects but also not confident enough in our team to be willing to give up some of the future for a shot to win now. Funny, as you would think 3.5 games out in late July chasing a Cinderella team that perhaps is sliding under the pressure like my Kings did a year ago would leave me pretty confident in our chances. But I am not. We just don't seem to have the magic I thought we did a year ago when it seemed we came up with the key hit whenever we needed it (at least until September). This time I don't have the confidence in my team to be willing to go all in and give up some of our future

While not as bad as a year ago, injuries have once again hurt us. Del Plummer, who would have been my number 2 starter has missed the entire season and Topsy Moran - the 3rd or 4th starter (about equal to Cal Williams) has been sidelined since April. Both are out until at least mid-September. We also lost our promising rookie starter Bill Dengler, but at least he is only out a couple of weeks with a dead arm. Dengler, a 2nd round pick a year ago, is 0-2 in his 3 starts but has a sparkling 1.08 era and has received no run support, losing 2-0 in each of his decisions.

Obviously the missing arms hurt but I am not sure why we are playing so poorly of late. Yes, Mose Smith (13-9) and Leon Campbell (9-9) have hit a wall in July as both saw their era's balloon a bit but Harvey Rodgers (9-4) and Cal Williams (13-6) have certainly picked up the slack. Our bullpen has struggled at times but overall are doing about what is expected considering if we had Plummer and Moran healthy at least two of the relievers would be in Houston. I can try and add another guy but really our pen just seems like a black hole, once you go there you pitch just well enough at times to give me hope, but every guy is prone to having a bad inning when we can least afford one.

Our offense is not quite as potent as last season but we are still among the best in the league in every category and Doug Lightbody (.403,10,59) has been healthy this year. With an outfield of the 23 year old Lightbody, 22 year old Ab Thomas (.346,3,64) and 28 year old Bud Rogers (.353,7,50) we are set there for quite some time. Lou Garman (.288,2,32) is down a bit in production from last season but the first baseman has switched to the lead-off spot with Thomas replaceing Lou Cox in centerfield. Rookie Willie Jackson (.271,4,18) is coming into his own at second base since his recall from Houston and 30 year old SS Lloyd Carter (.269,0,33) is providing stellar defense. 26 year old catcher Mickey Dowell (.306,6,55) is off a little from his huge season of a year ago but still proving more than enough offense from the catcher slot and newcomer John Wilder(.297,1,5) gives us a power bat at third base. The 25 year old was just acquired from Pittsburgh and had been hitting .356 with 18 homers in 84 games at AAA St Paul.


The only possible move I am considering is a change at the top. Manager Powell Slocum is a baseball legend and the players certainly respect him, and for the most part they like him. Maybe we need someone who will push them a little bit harder. I hate to even consider relieving Slocum of his duties but I am running out of other options. The only other move I am considering is firing pitching coach Eugene Williams. Williams has been with us for 3 seasons, coming on when Slocum took over the manager position. He is well respected as a pitching coach and has been in the role with various teams for over 25 years after a short FABL career. He works well with young players and for the most part we have a fairly young staff so I am hessitant to move him out although it would be pretty easy to promote Dave Campbell from Houston, who has done a great job with my AAA staff.

I will stand pat for one more sim but it is a big one with 4 games at Philadelphia and the beginning of a 4 game set in Cleveland. This really is a crucial couple of weeks for us as 11 of our next 12 games are on the road against our 3 closest rivals.

Code:
Cleveland	57 40 .588  -
Philadelphia	52 42 .533  3.5
BROOKLYN	53 43 .532  3.5
Toronto		49 45 .521  6.5
New York	50 47 .515  7.0
Baltimore 	47 48 .495  9.0
Chicago		42 53 .442 14.0
Montreal	33 65 .337 24.5
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Old 09-16-2019, 07:44 PM   #88
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Well so much for standing pat. Just after posting the paragraph above I made a trade with the Montreal Saints. Not a major deal but I feel I added a decent veteran to arm to hopefully help my pitching staff a bit. The nice thing is the deal was not too costly as the pitcher I added is 33 years old and it cost me a fourth round pick.

I don't like dealing picks but felt the move made sense as I have two third rounders thanks to a previous deal so I could part with the 4. It makes good sense from Montreal's point of view as well as they are going through a rebuild with youth and Mike Vonderheide, the guy I acquired, at his age won't be there when the rebuild is complete.

The pitcher is Mike Vonderheide, a 33 year old righthander from Austin,Texas who is 118-121 in his FABL career including 7-9 for the Saints this year. The 12 year veteran was Montreal's number 2 starter this season but my scout Rube Carter feels he can be an average reliever for us. He has won 3 of his last 4 decisions and went the distance while giving up just 1 earned run in each of those wins including one over Brooklyn, so he might get a shot at the bottom of the rotation for us.
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Old 09-19-2019, 03:12 PM   #89
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AUGUST 15, 1927 - BROOKLYN FIRES SLOCUM

After dropping 5 straight games and 10 of 13 in August the other shoe finally dropped in Brooklyn as the Kings fired Manager Powell Slocum today. Bench coach Ben Johnston will take over the reigns on an interim basis but unnamed sources suggest a replacement will be named later this week.

Pitching coach Eugene Williams was also dismissed and will be replaced by Davey Campbell, who had been doing similar duties for AAA Houston. The 59 year old Campbell has a wealth of FABL experience as he spent 19 years as the Foresters pitching coach before joining Houston in 1926. Campbell also played four seasons in the FABL in the 1890s.

On June 1st Kings were 31-19. Since then they have gone 31-32 including 10-18 over the past month.

"We really had no choice," said GM Tiger Fan. "I respect the job Powell has done here, and the Hall of Fame career he had as a player, but for whatever reason guys stopped responding to him and we needed a change of pace while we are still in the race. Something had to give to try and turn things around, and unfortunately we needed to relieve Powell."

Slocum took over the Kings managerial post for the 1925 season and they finished last in the Continental Association with a 70-84 record. He was a player-manager that first seasons but retired to be strictly a manager the following year, leading the Kings to a 94-60 record and a second place finish. At the time of his dismissal the Kings were 60-56 this season.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


With that press release we usher in a new era in Brooklyn. I really didn't want to let Slocum go as he has a good relationship with most of our players and did a great job a year ago but after 5 straight losses including being swept and outscored 11-2 in 3 games against last place Montreal I felt I had to make a change if we are going to try and contend for the pennant. I also canned the pitching coach because our bullpen has been terrible for most of the past two years. The pitching coach in Houston, Davey Campbell, has done a solid job and worked exceptionally well with Bill Dengler this year so I promoted him. I have made a contract offer to a new manager and hopefully he will be signed for the next sim. His personality is quite different from the laid back Slocum.

Yes, pitching injuries have hurt us again this year but the team has really gone down hill the last two months. Let's see if a new voice in the clubhouse can shake things up and get us rolling. Despite our terrible play of late we are still in the thick of the race and a good finish to August, with games against Cleveland, Philadelphia and Toronto, could get us into position to win this thing. If we do, it will be remember as a great move. If not, maybe I will need to be the next one to go.

Code:
Cleveland	63 51 .553  -
Philadelphia	62 51 .549  0.5
Toronto		61 52 .540  1.5
New York	59 55 .518  4.0
BROOKLYN	60 56 .517  4.0
Baltimore 	57 55 .509  5.0
Chicago		49 64 .434 13.5
Montreal	45 72 .385 19.5
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Old 09-23-2019, 01:16 PM   #90
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AUGUST 29, 1927

It has been two weeks since I fired skipper Powell Slocum. I replaced him with 60 year old Wally Grant, who had previously spent four seasons managing the Boston Minutemen. Grant has been involved in the game all of his adult life, first as a catcher who played 1877 career FABL games primarily with Baltmore and Cleveland. Since his retirement as an active player he has spent the past 21 years as either a bench coach or manager. He won an Eastern Association title as manager of the Jersey City Uniforms in 1914 and spent 3 seasons as the bench coach of the Washington Eagles before getting the Minutemen manager job in 1923. Boston fired him at the end of last season after compiling a 261-285 record during his tenure with the club.

He is a disciplinarian and my hope is he brings some accountability to our clubhouse after Slocum had been much more laid back. We have a pretty young team so the fact that Grant's controlling personality sometimes rubs veterans the wrong way is not a concern at the moment. He is starting with a pretty good relationship with most of our players with one notable exception: young pitcher Bill Dengler. My hope is bringing pitching coach Davey Campbell up from Houston, where he worked well with Dengler, will help offset that. Also I kept my bench coach Ben Johnston in part because of his easy-going manner, to help be a buffer between Grant and some players.

The move might blow up in my face as Slocum was liked by most players, but we were playing terrible and I didn't see any other options. The early going under Grant has been okay as we have gone 6-4 with him in chage, including taking 3 of 4 from Cleveland this past weekend.

Code:
Philadelphia	69 55 .556   -
Toronto		67 56 .545  1.5
Cleveland	68 57 .544  1.5
BROOKLYN	66 61 .520  4.5
New York	64 62 .508  6.0
Baltimore 	61 63 .492  8.0
Chicago		55 69 .444 14.0
Montreal	50 77 .394 20.5
We have a month left in the season and a lot of big games coming up including 3 vs Toronto to start this week. In all, 14 of our remaining 25 games are against the 3 teams ahead of us in the standings.
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Old 09-25-2019, 03:14 PM   #91
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MONDAY SEPTEMBER 12, 1927
Two weeks to go in the regular season and you can't ask for a much tighter race then what we have going on in the Continental Association. My Brooklyn Kings have gone 14-9 since Wally Grant took over as manager from Powell Slocum. We have 12 games left in our season and are just 1 game out of first place, but that is presently only good enough for fourth place.

Code:
Philadelphia	73 63 .537   -
Cleveland	73 64 .533  0.5
Toronto		73 64 .533  0.5
BROOKLYN	74 66 .529  1.0
New York	70 66 .515  3.0
Baltimore 	67 70 .489  6.5
Chicago		64 74 .464 10.0
e-Montreal	55 82 .401 18.5
Only Montreal is officially eliminated from the race but Chicago, although they have played quite well of late, and Baltimore are pretty much done. The New York Stars quest for a fourth straight World Championship Series win appears in jeopardy but you can't count the Stars out as they have the easiest remaining schedule with 8 of their final 16 games against Chicago, Baltimore or Montreal.


The weird 1920s schedule allignment (we are using real MLB schedules) will again force my Kings to sit and wait as we play our final game of the season at home against Montreal on September 25th while each of the 3 teams ahead of us in the standings have at least 3 games remaining after that date.

We need a huge week this week starting with a win today over Toronto. We lost two of the first 3 to the Wolves so a win here is essential. We then travel to Chicago for 3 games before finishing the week with the opener of a 4 game set in Philadelphia. I am figuring we need to go 4-1 this week to have a shot at the pennant.

The good news is both Topsy Moran and Del Plummer will be back later this week. Not sure how effective they will be after such a long injury layoff (since April for Moran and over a year for Plummer) but I spoke with Manager Grant and he feels our best chance is with each of them on the mound as soon as possible. He wants Moran in the bullpen but plans on giving Plummer a start at the end of the week if he is ready.

Doug Lightbody (.384,13,86) will likely fall short in his bid to hit .400 but we have bigger worries with him right now. Lightbody, who missed half of last season when he hurt his arm on a throw from the outfield, tweaked his back on a similar play Sunday and is day-to-day for the next few days. We had been playing it real cautious with the 23 year old phenom, giving him regular days off and not playing him with even the slightest injury but Lightbody says he is good to go so I have given Grant free reign to use Lightbody as he sees fit this week. Clarence Hall(.381,6,32) is a more then adequate replacement but I don't know that we can keep Lightbody on the bench in such a crucial time.

It's a huge sim. If we can get through it with 4 wins we will be in a good position, but next week we have 3 games in Philadelphia and 3 at Cleveland before ending our season with a single game at home to Montreal.
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Old 09-26-2019, 02:02 PM   #92
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MONDAY SEPTEMBER 19, 1927
KINGS STILL ALIVE, BUT BARELY

I said we needed to go 4-1 last week to keep our title hopes alive. Well, as has been the case all year our bullpen let us down again and we had to settle for 3 wins. We are 77-68 and a game and a half back of Philadelphia.

Code:
Philadelphia	77 65 .542   -
Toronto		77 66 .538  0.5
Cleveland	76 67 .531  1.5
BROOKLYN	77 68 .531  1.5
New York	73 68 .515  3.5
Baltimore 	70 74 .486  8.0
e-Chicago	65 79 .451 13.0
e-Montreal	58 86 .403 20.0
We started the sim like we were on a mission, blasting Toronto 24-7 Monday before going to Chicago and hammering the Cougars 8-1 Tuesday. On Wednesday we rallied with 6 runs in the top of the 8th to tie the Cougars at 7 only to see reliever Al Colby give up a run in the bottom of the 8th to make us an 8-7 loser.

We rebounded the next day to tame the Cougars 14-2 behind a 5-hit, 5-rbi performance from young outfielder Ab Thomas (.344,4,92) and as we arrived in Philadelphia for our final game of the week we were just a half game behind the front-running Sailors. We fell behind 4-0 but rallied with 3 runs in the 8th and another one in the top of the ninth to tie the game only to see Topsy Moran, making his return from injury, give up the game winning run with 2 out in the bottom of the ninth.

That 5-4 loss is the opener of a 4 game set with the Sailors. We have 3 remaining in Philadelphia Monday to Wednesday this week and then go to Cleveland for 3 before ending our season with 1 game at home on Sunday against Montreal. Philadelphia, Cleveland and Toronto will all still have 3 or 4 games remaining after we are done our schedule so I am thinking we can do nothing less than sweep both the Sailors and Foresters to have a shot at the pennant. Even with a sweep of those 6 games might not be enough as Philadelphia has 7 other games remaining including 3 each with basement dwellers Montreal and Chicago.

I am not giving up hope but realistically we are going to fall short again as another late July-early August swoon does us in.
Here is our month by month record:
Code:
APRIL	12  6 .667
MAY	18 13 .581
JUNE    14 11 .560
JULY    13 16 .448
AUG	11 16 .407
SEPT     9  6 .600
The bullpen has been the problem as we are just 16-19 in 1 run games and 0-6 in contests that needed extra-innings. Looking at the stats we should have won the pennant. We have scored the most runs while allowing the fewest in the Continental Association. Bullpen era, where we are 5th, is the only pitching or defense category we don't rank in the top half of the league and we are number one in virtually every offensive category.

Our team is young with only shortstop Lloyd Carter, at 31 years of age, older then 28 among our everyday players. The pitching staff has some old guys in Mose Smith, Cal Williams, Del Plummer and Al Colby but also some good young arms in Leon Campbell, Bill Dengler, Topsy Moran and Harvey Rodgers so I am real hessitant to make dramatic changes but it is clear our bullpen needs help. The numbers for our relievers aren't overly bad, we just seem to give up runs at the most inopprotune times and it costs us.

Maybe if we had Plummer and Moran the entire season things might be different but it is really looking like the Kings are going to fall just short once again. If that happens the big question for me in the off-season is how do I react?

Injuries have hurt us both years, especially to pitchers but our trainer has a great reputation. The only category he is below average in is prevent arm injuries (no kidding) but he is legendary and outstanding is most recovery aspects. This is one area I might look to make a change. The question is do I sacrifice all of the other benefits my trainer gives us for a guy who can keep my pitchers healthy. I think I have more position player depth than pitching depth so I am going to seriously investigate this in the off-season. And it is not just pitchers with arm troubles, when we lost Lightbody last year it was due to a throwing injury from the outfield.

I don't think I can move any of our young core for bullpen help and I have significantly depleted our prospect depth the last couple of seasons with trades for pitching help aleady so I am not sure if there is much left that I would be willing to move. I don't think I should panic as I believe this group still is positioned to compete for the next half decade with very little changes needed. But, we are quickly learning the difference between compete and win is significant.

Last edited by Tiger Fan; 09-26-2019 at 02:10 PM.
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Old 09-26-2019, 06:41 PM   #93
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Keep up the good work Tiger, always a pleasurable read with your dynasties.
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Old 09-27-2019, 06:57 PM   #94
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MONDAY SEPTEMBER 26, 1927

Well, I messed up a bit. Not in a bad way, I just didn't notice we had 2 more games to play in October. I looked at the schedule for September and saw we played on Sunday the 25th but then had the next 5 days off so I didn't even think to look at October. But for some reason in those real 1920s schedules (which we are using in this league) my Kings (the real life Dodgers) had 5 days off before ending their season with a Saturday-Sunday pair of home contests- against Montreal on Saturday and Baltimore on Sunday. So the result is we have two more games remaining, although I don't know if they will help at all.

I said we really needed to go 6-1 last week (could adjust to 5-2 based on knowing about the other two games now) but we only went 4-3 for the week and lost two more 1-run games including a crushing 5-4 extra inning defeat Saturday that prevented us from sweeping the Foresters.

As result the standings are as follows:



So we need a lot of help but we still have a slight chance (2.5% according to the game engine) at the pennant. It is essential that we win both of our remaining games but we also need Cleveland to do exceptionally well against both Philadelphia and Toronto. I am not expecting it to happen (us win the pennant, not Cleveland do well) and to be honest we probably don't deserve it anyway. Too many opportunities squandered and too many games in which we were ahead or tied late given away.



There was some good news again. John Wilder, the 25 year old third baseman we picked up from Pittsburgh just before the deadline, was named CA player of the week after going 14-for-33 with 2 homers and 8 rbi's last week. On the season, Wilder has 6 homers and is hitting .336 for us in 53 games. Veteran pitcher Del Plummer looked good in his first appearance after 13 months on the DL with a torn UCL. The 31 year old allowed 1 run and just 1 hit over 6 innings in a 4-2 win over the Sailors on Wednesday and Topsy Moran, who also missed substantial time with arm troubles, pitched 2 scoreless innings in the same game. How different would the season have been had we had both of them healthy all year.

Speaking of health I decide to pull the trigger and replace our trainer. The old guy we had was great in almost everything except arm injuries, which as I mentioned earlier we have had more than our share. So he is out, and 53 year old Tom Seale is in. Seale is not quite as good overall in comparison with our former trainer but he is rated Legendary at preventing arm injuries and Great at healing them. Let's hope it makes a difference next year.
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Old 09-30-2019, 01:03 PM   #95
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Kings win the pennant!

KINGS WIN! KINGS WIN!

As improbable as it seemed heading into the final week of the season everything fell into place for my Brooklyn Kings and we won one of the tightest pennant races in league history. Brooklyn finished a game up on both Philadelphia and Toronto and 2 games ahead of the surprising Cleveland Foresters. Everything just fell into place for the Kings as Cleveland split it's 6 games over the week, taking 2 from Philadelphia and 1 from Toronto. That split didn't help any of them and we entered play on Saturday morning with the standings looking like this:

Code:
Toronto		82 70
BROOKLYN	81 71 
Philadelphia	81 71
Cleveland 	80 72
On Saturday Cleveland beat Philadelphia 9-2 while the Chicago Cougars knocked off Toronto 7-1. Meanwhile, my Kings- after a 5 day layoff - were thrilled to be still in the race entering the day and showed their enthusiasm in a 6-0 drubbing of Montreal. Cal Williams went 7 innings of 6 hit ball to improve his record to 21-10 on the season while Doug Lightbody had 2 hits and drove in a pair of runs. We were suddenly in a first place tie with Toronto with just a win tomorrow standing in our way of at worst a playoff game. The Cleveland win eliminated the Sailors as both teams were 2 back with 1 to play.

Sunday
We needed to get the job done at home and we came out like gangbusters. Brooklyn scored 3 runs in the first inning, led 9-1 after the 4th and coasted to a 10-4 victory over the Baltimore Cannons. Mose Smith (19-14) went the distance for the win while catcher Mickey Dowell (.306,8,87) had 3 hits and scored four runs. Bud Rogers (.335,8,84) added 2 hits and 2 rbi's and 3B John Wilder (.336,6,36) also contributed a pair of hits.

Now, we just waited for word from Toronto. The game was being broadcast by CFCA Radio in Toronto but the signal was not strong enough to reach Brooklyn so we had to wait for word by telegraph. First we got news the Cougars had taken an early lead but by the 7th inning the game was tied at 4. We began to prepare for the possibility of a long train ride to Toronto for the tiebreaker when word came the Cougars had scored a run in the top of the 8th to go up 5-4. The wait seemed agonizingly long but a short time later it was a final. The Cougars had beaten the Wolves and our Kings were off to the World Championship Series just two seasons after finishing with the worst record in the Continental Association. The club did celebrated but it was a subdued event as we know we have 4 more wins needed to complete the task at hand. The goal is to do something no Brooklyn squad has ever done. Win the World Championship Series.

Our opponent is unknown as of yet because the Detroit Dynamos won 5 of their last 6 including their final two games to force a tie with the Philadelphia Keystones, who dropped their final 2 games of the season. They will have a 1 game playoff tomorrow in Detroit. Either way it will be a new foe for the Kings as we have only made the World Championship Series twice since it began in 1893. We lost both times: to the Boston Minutemen in 1912 and the Washington Eagles in 1923.
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Old 09-30-2019, 03:31 PM   #96
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Congrats on a good hard fought win. Great job taking the crown. 4 teams with 2 games and 5th just a couple of more back. Your late manager change looks like it paid off and I will question myself for standing pat the last 6 weeks. Of course Lawerence going down might (or might not) have made the difference. Now go make the CL proud and sweep whatever team comes out of the FA.
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Old 09-30-2019, 07:59 PM   #97
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DD Martin View Post
Congrats on a good hard fought win. Great job taking the crown. 4 teams with 2 games and 5th just a couple of more back. Your late manager change looks like it paid off and I will question myself for standing pat the last 6 weeks. Of course Lawerence going down might (or might not) have made the difference. Now go make the CL proud and sweep whatever team comes out of the FA.
Thanks. I will do my best. Congrats to your Cleveland Foresters on a great run. I mentioned it before but they remind me of the Kings of a year ago. Both of us rebounded from last place finishes to make a strong pennant run, even leading for a while before ultimately struggling a bit down the stretch and finishing just off the pace.

Like Brooklyn, Cleveland has some great young offensive talent in Joe Perret, John Mallory, Don Ward and Felix Bradfield with others like Josh Fry and Moxie Pidgeon in the system. You also have an established young veteran star in shortstop Joe Standish plus a few good young arms like Jim Wilson and Mickey Beavers along with veteran hurlers Bob Lawrence and Wayne Robinson.

Another similarity is the injury bug really hit the Kings pitching staff a year ago and that really hurt in our chase of the Stars, just like you losing Lawrence and others this year.

By the way, for anyone else reading this here is the link to the league file if you want to poke around it a bit.

http://legendsport.com/fbl/reports/

I believe the league is full now as we have a great group of owners, most of whom have been here since the beginning but if you are interested in a stats only league with great participation, I would suggest contacting the commissioner and getting on the waiting list. I hear the plan is to add other sports to the Figment universe in the near future as well. Plus, there are a number of dynasty reports going strong about this league and universe including The Ballad of the Brothers Barrell which is penned by the commissioner and talks about the first family of the Figment Universe.
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Old 10-01-2019, 08:04 AM   #98
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tiger Fan View Post
http://legendsport.com/fbl/reports/

I believe the league is full now
In fact the Washington GM just stepped down yesterday. So if anyone is interested, reach out to the commish.
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Old 10-01-2019, 09:42 AM   #99
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In fact the Washington GM just stepped down yesterday. So if anyone is interested, reach out to the commish.
And as an added bonus to whoever takes Washington, they get the best catcher in the FABL with T.R. Goins.
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Old 10-01-2019, 11:16 AM   #100
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1927 World Championship Series Matchup Set

Our opponent in the 1927 World Championship Series will be the Philadelphia Keystones. The Keystones blanked Detroit 7-0 in Monday's playoff game to decide the Federal Association pennant winner. Pitching isn't their strong suit but Philadelphia's Bill Ross (16-8, 3.44) spun a masteful 4-hit shutout while the potent Philadelphia offense gave him plenty of support.

Like Brooklyn, the Keystones have never won the World Championship Series. Actually, they have never really won anything since the FABL was established in 1893. They have a long history, going back to the original Century League in 1876 when they were known as the Centennials. They won 4 Century League titles but have spent most of the past 4 decades at our near the basement of the Federal Association. That began to change 3 seasons ago with the emergence of a young superstar from Memphis by the name of Rankin Kellogg. Kellogg hit 35 homeruns as a 22 year old rookie 3 seasons ago and has never looked back. This season he appeared in all 155 games (his third straight year of never missing a game) and, thanks in part to a season-ending injury suffered by St Louis great Max Morris, Kellogg became just the 4th hitter in baseball history to win the triple crown, joining the aforementioned Morris, who turned the trick 3 times, and a pair of players from the 19th century by the name of Bob DeVilbiss and Fred Roby.

Kellogg hit .364 with 32 homers and 134 rbi's and those without a rooting interest in the Series will be entirely focused on the first-ever matchup between Kellogg and Brooklyn's Doug Lightbody. The two young stars are quickly becoming the new faces of the sport as former legends like the retired Powell Slocum and an aging but still very relevant Max Morris look to pass the torch.

Kellogg is a 24 year old first baseman who the Keystones selected first overall out of high school in the 1922 draft. He would spend two seasons in A ball before joining Philadelphia full-time in the 1925 season. In 3 years he has never missed a game, batting .340 with 96 homers and a .615 slugging percentage during that time. He finished second in Whitney Award voting as a rookie and seems a shoe-in for the award this season.

Lightbody was selected 6th overall out of Ole Miss in 1925, had a great spring as a rookie pro and went straight to Brooklyn, bypassing the minors altogether. He was challenging for the Continental Association batting title as a rookie, hitting .356 in 79 games before his season came to an end in July with an arm injury that required surgery. He returned completely healthy this spring and flirted with a .400 average for much of the season before finishing with a .384 mark, 15 homers and a .586 slugging percentage. Lightbody won the CA batting title and is the favourite to capture his first Whitney Award.

There should be no shortage of hits in the series as it will feature the top offense in each league. The Kings hope their starting pitching will be enough to tilt the balance in their favour in what is likely to be a long series.
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