The Northern States League

Newsletter #437- October 30th, 2014

 

INDIANA’S HELLICKSON TOSSES NO HITETR AGAINST DUNELAND.  BOTH WILD CARDS ARE WITHIN 2 GAMES.  GLENVILLE AND NEW HUDSON KNOTTED UP IN THE RICE.  SCHMIDT OUT HITTING THE COOPER .254-.231.  BOB CHALFANT VISITS, I GOT A FREE BREAKFAST!

 

Dear Members,

 

Though not quite as tight as last month, 5 of our 6 divisions see leads of 5 games or less.  The wild cards both have 2 game leads or less.  I would assume that would lead to some nice finishes!

 

Series #13 (corrected result):

Gle 1 at Kal 2 (was posted as Gle 2 at Kal 1)

 

Series #15 results:

Mun 4 at Lon 0, Lon 1 at Mun 3                                GB 2 at GM 2, GM 3 at GB 1

Dun 1 at Pa 3, Pa 2 at Dun 2                                      Cre 2 at Kal 2, Kal 1 at Cre 3

SL 2 at Can 2, Can 0 at SL 4                                      Mar 1 at VT 3, VT 2 at Mar 2

Alb 2 at Cro 2, Cro 2 at Alb 2                                                Cle 3 at NE 1, NE 3 at Cle 1

NH 0 at Key 4, Key 2 at NH 2                                   IN 4 at MC 0, MC 0 at IN 4

Gle 1 at Yk 3, Yk 2 at Gle 2                                       EY 3 at NY 1, NY 1 at EY 3

 

Series #16 results:

Pa 2 at Lon 2, Lon 1 at Pa 3                                       Key 1 at Kal 3, Kal 1 at Key 3

Mar 1 at Can 3, Can 1 at Mar 3                                  NE 1 at SL 3, SL 2 at NE 2

VT 1 at GB 3, GB 0 at VT 4                                      Cle 1 at GM 3, GM 4 at Cle 0

Cro 0 at Mun 4, Mun 1 at Cro 3                                 Alb 2 at MC 2, MC 2 at Alb 2

Cre 1 at NH 3, NH 3 at Cre 1                                     IN 3 at Dun 1, Dun 1 at IN 3

Gle 3 at EY 1, EY 2 at Gle 2                                      Yk 3 at NY 1, NY 0 at Yk 4

 

Would you take a record of 38-26?  Youbetcha.  That’s what the Brett has done so far this year to the Rice, their “sister” division.  This further shows us how far ahead of the rest of the league the Brett is, with the worst team, still being .516 and the best having the third best league record.  Yet from 2-4, they keep jumping up and down.  This month, the 66ers kept everyone at arm’s length for yet another month by taking 6 from North York before a 3-5 mark with Glenville.  They didn’t lose much of their lead, but saw another team in their rear view as York took 5 of 8 from the same Glenville club and blitzed North York 7-1.  The team to watch may be the Comaches, though, as JB’s squad is finally starting to score runs and occupies 5th in the division, 5 games back, yet making up a game on Mick this month.  The C’s slapped New Hudson around (6-2) before a 4-4 downer with Kalamazoo.  Scoop had a rugged October by taking 5 from the ‘zoo, and losing 6 of 8 to New Hudson.  So it’s 7 games top to bottom- our closest division- and York trails Magic City now by just 2 games in the Cooper wild card, Key out by 3 and Cre by 5.

 

The aniti-Brett division has to be the Murphy.  It is almost unbelievable that the division would go a weak 20-44 this month against the Yount, but that’s what they did.  The ‘dales still lead, but can’t be happy with a 7-9 record for the month with Muncie taking 5 and a split with Albany.  But the division lead grew to r as Magic City somehow lost all 8 to Indiana, before rebounding in a 4-4 split with the Wildcats.  Duneland actually played the 2nd best in the division this month as they took 3 from Pa before dropping 6 to Indiana.   Longstown stayed ahead of Duneland, be it barely, with a 4-12 month, being trounced by Muncie (1-7) before a 3-5 with Pa.  So Crosstown put 3 games on the lead, but honestly Magic City can’t feel too bad- taking it on the chin this month, yet only dropping back by 3 more, and maintaining their wild card lead- thin as it may be. 

 

So then- if the Murphy was 20-44, and we’re in inter-league play, someone was 44-20, right?  Yep- the Yount was that division with all teams playing .500 or better.  But check it out- Indiana was an incredible 14-2 and although they knocked just 2 games off the Muncie lead, they closed 6 games closer to Albany in 2nd place.  The Imps did so with a no hitter (read on), a sweep of Magic City, and a 6-2 with Duneland.  Rarely have we seen a team as hot as the Imperials are, and they’re peaking at the right time of the year.  So the challenge is Muncie’s- which they took head on this month.  The Black Wolf  throttled Longstown 7-1 in series #15 and then took 5 from Crosstown- both series played face to face.  You have to be pretty happy leading the division and posting a 12-4 mark for the month, but look out for the Imps.  Yet we forget about the defending champions.  With all the other divisional excitement, the ‘cats finished 8-8 and lost ground to both their rivals at the top of the division.  Now, Indiana is closer to them then they are to Muncie.  Splits with Crosstown and Magic City got the two Murphy top dawgs off the schedule, but they sit between two hot clubs as we head in to November.  The Pounders had a very nice month (10-6) by taking 5 from both Duneland and Longstown.  Jack has to be happy with that, but nonetheless they fell two more games back of Muncie in a  division that is as hot as they come.

 

The Rice stayed the same.  Both Glenville and New Hudson went .500 for the month but did so in different ways- sort of.  Glenville dropped 5 to York, but then took out division leading East York 5-3 to stay in the flat tie with New Hudson, while the Nutjobs were smashed by Keystone 2-6, before being the smashee against Creekside (6-2).  The division has been like this from the beginning, and this was another month where it appears that Kalamazoo and North York won’t be a factor- at least until intra divisional play starts again.  The ‘zoo dropped a game to the leaders with a 7-9 month, dropping 5 to Creekside and splitting with Keystone, and rest today a dozen games off the pace.  Still in the hunt- sure- but when the top dogs play .500, you expect to make up ground if you’re going to have a chance.  North York stumbled to a 3-13 month, losing 7 of 8 to York and 6 of 8 to East York.  Too many Yorks.  So once again (after the series 313 correction) we find Glenville & New Hudson tied for the top, with the same division record, the same conference record, and obviously the same out of conference record. 

 

They tell me that Vermont got their first frost two weeks ago.  Guess the first 12 inch storm isn’t that far away, is it?  The story of the division this month is that Green Mountain team- trudging along in 3rd place- which they still are- for most of the season, the Canucks decided to put a run together and a sparkling 12-4 mark cut 2 games off the Vermont lead and made Green Mountain a player again.  Burnie’s boys took 5 from Gulf Breeze then pounded Cleveland 7-1 to close the gap to just 5 ½ games, with still 2 teams ahead of them.  More play like that and Burnie won’t be laying down for a draft pick after all.  Ah yes, the lottery.  Regardless, the Canucks are closer to the division lead than they are in the wild card race, but have closed in both.  The Elite dropped 3 games to the ‘chucks as they split with Cleveland before dropping 5 of 8 to Sparrow Lake.  The Elite have had a couple of so-so months in a row now, and risk Vermont pulling away.  Which the latter did this month by tacking 3 games on to that lead as they took 5 from Marietta and Gulf Breeze.  You get the feeling that Vermont is just lurking there- ready to put a 15-1 month together and pull away.  But, although they could do that, they’re being pursued by 2 clubs instead of just one- that could be a factor.  The Polar Bears are happy to have the head man out of the hospital (more later) and played a respectable 6-10 this month.  After a 2-6 loss to Sparrow Lake, the club played well in a 4-4 Marietta split.  They lost 4 more games to Vermont, and 6 to 3rd place Green Mountain.

 

Which leaves us to the Winfield.  Gulf Breeze still has the best lead in the league, yet is has hit the skids after spring left us.  Yet another month of sloppy play (6-10) was paced by 3-5s with both Vermont and Green Mountain.  Not only that, but Sparrow Lake is finally playing like Sparrow Lake should be and they shaved a whopping 5 games off the division lead, now down to 9 games.  Have you ever heard of “el foldo.  Well- the ‘varks appear headed that way.  Meantime, Mark’s charges took 6 from Canaan and 5 from New England in what was their best month of the year.  We rarely see guys rebound from double digit deficits, but this could be on the horizon.  Marietta leads last place Cleveland by 9 games and actually added 2 to that lead this month thanks to a Canaan split and a very competitive 3-5 with Vermont.  Cleveland stumbled to a 5-11 this month after a nice split with New England, taking it on the chin from Burnie 1-7.  So it’s clear that no team from this division will challenge for the wild card, and the division is far from decided.

 

Topping the headlines this month is Jeremy Hellickson of Indiana throwing a no hitter in series #16 at home with Duneland.  The Imp hurler walked 5 in the game as Indiana won 14-0.  Let’s see, Indiana had 19 hits and Duneland none.  Don’t you guys use the same dice?  Guess not.  Duneland committed 5 errors in the game to help out as well.  Congratulations are in order to Hellickson and the Imperials.  Your no hitter list on the web page has been updated.

 

I wanted to take just a second to compare the conference stats.  The Schmidt is batting (collectively) .254- not too bad.  The Coooper- .231- Ouch.  The worst hitting Schmidt team (Canaan- .234) would be tied for 4th if they were in the Cooper.  Little wonder that the Schmidt has scored 6336 runs to the Cooper 5914 and has 12814 hits to the Cooper 11521.  But the Cooper has walked 340 more times and has 33 less errors.  Cooper managers would say they obviously have the better pitching, but ERA wise it’s only a small margin, 3.75-3.89.  Unearned runs allowed are about even.  Interesting as the age old question of who has the better conference continues.

 

John Bushey, aka Head Polar Bear has returned home from the hospital.  I talked to him a couple of weeks ago and he was in pretty good spirits- I think just thankful to be home.  He’s not strong enough yet to get on the computer, and I’m sending him Canaan stuff and newsletters as they occur.  I think he enjoys seeing that.  Canaan will still be run from here and the Canaan/Gulf Breeze series will be played by Burnie to eliminate any advantage I might have.  We all wish the Head Polar Bear well and look forward to when he can regain the team control.

 

Bob Chalfant visited last week- he comes down to the NC coast every year and I was able to get a free breakfast out of him and spend the night out there.  We helped add a little to Mr. Yuengling’s beer bottle collection and talked about a lot of things.  It was good seeing Bob and Susan and they seem to like the area pretty well.  Of course, Mr.Yuengling did as well.

 

As the World Series ends (last night) the thrill of the new cards and such coming out gets us all worked up.  Wil sent me a roster break down which will help me a lot as I do the NSL breakdown sheet- which should be out in a couple of days.  The game company starts taking preorders for the cards (I think) December 1st and the disk (not sure) soon.  See the company web site for details.  As always, it is expected that you buy the season disk from APBA, and not just use someone else’s- it’s only right for the game company.

 

Okay- so World Series question here.  Or two.  1) Do you send Gordon?  I don’t think so.  Yeah, the Giants were kicking things around and Bumgarner was untouchable, but I still don’t think you could have sent him.  Would have been a simple relay to nail him- and the Giants had played “lights out” on D most of the way.  But think about this- what If they had sent him and Posey blocked the plate?  Can you spell- Series decided by a review?  Hate to think about that… 2) Is Bumgarner the MVP?  Yes- though I’d never vote for a pitcher as MVP in the regular season, he was so in this short 7 game set.  Your opinions?

 

Over the next few days you’ll get some rule change proposals in your e-mail from here.  Most of these have been seen before, but the mail still favors revisiting them.  These are not solely generated by me, and there are some decent albeit “outside the box” type ideas.  In the thrill of the meetings and drafts, we rarely consider rule changes that have not been thought out before, so I’ll put them out there and give you plenty of time to think them through.  Hopefully after submitting them to you, Bob will have them all in a select area on the web page.  I think there are 5- maybe a little more, and they’ll just require some consideration on your part.  If they warrant, I’d expect the rules committee to discuss them with themselves and league members and consider them at the meetings if they should be.

 

This month is that “goofy” month where you play 3 series- 2 out of conference, then one back in conference.  For the in conference series, all of your players are active if you choose.  Be sure to mention that in your instructions if you do not play in some sort of face to face medium.  It’s a great time to have added PR and PH, and let some of those low limits rookies get a chance.  Keep in mind that the holidays are fast approaching and time will become short for most of us.  Good idea to get a move on and get some games played!

 

So keep an eye out for the rule change proposals which will come out one at a time during next week most likely, and the roster breakdown sheet which Wil did most of but I’ll fine tune.  These will also get to the web page at some point.

 

Have a good month and try and get those games played early!

 

                                                                                    Best Wishes,

 

                                                                                    Rich