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Posts posted by Viper

  1. I've run the league through August 1, so I'm actually ahead of real time for a little while. Here are the latest standings:




    Here are the top player performances for June and July:



    • Jun 2: Sam Rice (1924 Sens) 5-for-6 in 16-2 blowout of 2002 Angels

    • Jun 3: Another Buster Posey (2012 Giants) 22-game hit streak ended, this time by 1931 Cardinals

    • Jun 4: Dutch Reuther (1919 Reds) 2-hits 1914 Braves in 1-0 win

    • Jun 5: Smoky Joe Wood (1912 Red Sox) 3-hits 1910 A’s

    • Jun 8: George Browne (1905 Giants) 21-game hit streak ended by 1931 Cards

    • Jun 9: Bernie Williams, Jorge Posada lead charge in 1998 Yanks’ 21-7 blowout of 2002 Angels

    • Jun 10: 1991 Twins survive Max Bishop 5-for-5 performance, beat 1929 A’s

    • Jun 11: Jim Bottomley (1931 Cards) torches 1955 Dodgers with 4 HRs in 11-1 win

    • Jun 12: Dutch Reuther (1927 Yanks) scatters 6 hits in 4-0 win over 1910 A’s

    • Jun 17: Mike Donlin (1905 Giants) 5-for-5 in 8-4 win over 1914 Braves

    • Jun 20: Mule Haas (1929 A’s) 5-for-5 in 14-0 beatdown of 1920 Indians

    • Jun 24: Paul O’Neill (1998 Yanks) takes 2015 Royals yard three times

    • Jun 26: Cy Morgan (1910 A’s) strikes out 15 2015 Royals in 9-1 win

    • Jun 28: Charles Bender (1910 A’s) 2-hits 2015 Royals in 8-0 win

    • Jun 30: Willie Horton (1968 Tigers) 5-for-5 with 3 RBIs in 12-1 win over 1992 Jays



    • Jul 1: No-hitter! Paul Derringer (1931 Cards) silences 1955 Dodgers’ bats in 3-0 win

    • Jul 5: Ron Darling (1986 Mets) strikes out 15 1975 Reds for 1-0 win

    • Jul 9: Two 20-game hit streaks ended: Rube Oldring (1910 A’s) by 1984 Tigers, and Maury Wills (1963 Dodgers) by 1986 Mets

    • Jul 12: Carney Lansford (1989 A’s) hits 5 singles in 10-6 win over 1917 White Sox

    • Jul 14: Max Scherzer (2019 Nats) strikes out 15 in 7-2 win over 1997 Marlins

    • Jul 15: Jack Pfiester (1907 Cubs) strikes out 15 in 2-hit win over 1975 Reds

    • Jul 19: Tim Salmon (2002 Angels) 21-game hit streak ended by 1920 Indians

    • Jul 21: No-hitter! Lefty Grove (1929 A’s) dominates 2015 Royals with 19 Ks, 1 walk

    • Jul 22: Stan Musial (1946 Cards) hits for cycle in 13-10 win over 2001 D’backs

    • Jul 25: Nemo Leibold (1924 Sens) 5-for-6 with 7 RBIs - but Sens still lose to 1917 White Sox, 19-14

    • Jul 27: Carney Lansford (1989 A’s) 21-game hit streak ended by 1998 Yanks

  2. I have run the ATCL through today's date. Here are the standings and stat leaders, as of the end of play tonight:




    Here are the top player performances through the end of May:



    • Mar 30: Randy Johnson (2001 D’backs), Juan Guzman (1992 Blue Jays) hurl 3-hit shutouts in Opening Day wins
    • Mar 31: Luis Gonzales (2001 D’backs) hits 5-for-5 vs. 1919 Reds
    • Apr 1: Buck O’Brien (1912 Red Sox) dominates 2015 Royals in 5-hit shutout
    • Apr 6: No-hitter! Bill Hallahan (1931 Cards) keeps 2019 Nats off bases with 16 Ks
    • Apr 7: Luis Gonzales (2001 D’backs) hits for cycle including 2-run HR off Dwight Gooden in win over 1986 Mets
    • Apr 8: Buck Weaver (1917 White Sox) 5-for-6 with grand slam in epic 21-1 thrashing of 1968 Tigers
    • Apr 14: In Giants vs. Giants matchup, George Browne (1905 NY) 6-for-6 vs. 2012 SF
    • Apr 15: Danny Murphy (1910 A’s) 5-for-6 w/ cycle vs. 1998 Yanks
    • Apr 20: Lefty Grove (1929 A’s) 1-hits 1998 Yanks
    • Apr 21: Melky Cabrera (2012 Giants) 5-for-5 in win over 1931 Cards
    • Apr 25: Joe Gordon (1939 Yanks) 5-for-5 in 11-1 beatdown of 1912 Red Sox
    • Apr 26: Jarrod Washburn (2002 Angels) posts 2-hit shutout of 1970 Orioles
    • Apr 28: Fred Clarke (1909 Pirates) 23-game hit streak ended by 1919 Reds
    • Apr 30: Buster Posey (2012 Giants) 22-game hit streak ended by 1975 Reds



    • May 1: Hod Eller (1919 Reds) 1-hit 1-0 win over 1931 Cards
    • May 2: Sammy Hale (1929 A’s) 6-for-7 with game-winning RBI in 12th vs. 1912 Red Sox
    • May 6: 2012 Giants walk off 1955 Dodgers in 12th despite big performances by Carl Furillo (5-for-5), Jim Gilliam (4-for-6, cycle)
    • May 8: Harry Davis (1910 A’s) 24-game hit streak ended by 1984 Tigers
    • May 11: Jayson Werth (2008 Phils) hits for cycle vs. 1919 Reds
    • May 12: Every 1939 Yanks batter drives in at least two runs in unprecedented 40-6 thrashing of 1924 Senators
    • May 13: 3-HR game for Chili Davis (1991 Twins) in 11-6 win over 2015 Royals
    • May 15: Randy Johnson (2001 D’backs) 3-hits 1907 Cubs, continuing dominant start to ATCL season
    • May 21: Another Johnson 3-hit shutout win, this time over 1946 Cards
    • May 22: Walter Johnson (1924 Sens) strikes out 16 1991 Twins in win at Metrodome
    • May 29: Joe DiMaggio (1939 Yanks) 26-game hit streak ended by 1948 Indians


  3. As some of you may recall, a few years ago I put together a simulated league of past World Series champions, to try and settle the argument of which was the best MLB team of the World Series era. And I was as surprised as everyone else when the all-time champions of Major League Baseball turned out to be... the 1997 Florida Marlins.


    Well, with the real sports world mostly shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and a few more teams having laid claim to inclusion in such an event in the years since that first ATCL, I've decided now is the perfect time to revisit, and try to improve upon, the concept. So, today, I hereby announce the Second Edition of the MLB All-Time Champions' Leagues.


    I am using Out Of The Park 21 to create and run the ATCL. Here are the basics:

    • 36 teams overall (18 each representing the American and National Leagues, in three six-team divisions each)
    • Designated hitter in American League only
    • Regular season: 162 games per team, schedules weighted toward divisional play, with no interleague play
    • Postseason: Eight teams (all division winners + one wild-card team per league) qualify; all rounds best-of-seven series


    I have also revamped the eligibility rules. To be considered for the ATCL, a team must have met one of the following criteria (listed in priority order for purposes of determining qualifying priority):

    1. Won a World Series as (a) the only World Series championship team, or (b) the team with the best record among two or more World Series championship teams, in its franchise's history. (For ATCL purposes, relocated franchises count separately; e.g. the Brooklyn Dodgers and Los Angeles Dodgers count as two separate franchises. Franchises operating in the same market under more than one name, e.g. the New York Highlanders/Yankees, count as a single franchise.)
    2. Won a World Series following a regular season with a win percentage of 0.617 (the equivalent of winning 100 games in a 162-game season) or higher. (Applies only to franchises that already have another ATCL-eligible team under criterion 1 above. Such teams representing the same franchise must be at least eight seasons apart. For franchises with clusters of two or more teams qualifying under this criterion within an eight-year span, only the team with the best regular-season record within that span shall be eligible for invitation.)
    3. Finished a regular season with a win percentage of 0.617 or higher without winning that season's World Series, in a franchise that has never had a World Series champion.


    Special cases:

    • 1919 Cincinnati Reds: Given that (1) the Reds organization and players themselves were not implicated in the "Black Sox" scandal beyond being its unwitting beneficiaries, and (2) the 1919 team is otherwise ATCL-eligible under criterion 1 above, the 1919 Reds are deemed eligible for the ATCL.
    • 1940s St. Louis Cardinals: The Cardinals won three World Series between 1942 and 1946, with the 1942 team having the best regular-season win percentage of the three. However, the 1942 and 1944 championships were won while MLB rosters consisted largely of replacement players (due to many regular players having been drafted for military service during World War II). The 1946 championship was won after the regular players returned to MLB; although their regular-season record was slightly worse than the 1942 and 1944 teams (but still ATCL-eligible), given the aforementioned circumstances the 1946 Cardinals have been chosen to represent this cluster of ATCL-eligible Cardinals teams instead.
    • 2017 Houston Astros, 2018 Boston Red Sox: In 2019, both of these teams were implicated in an electronic sign-stealing scandal; as a result, their respective World Series championship seasons have been thrown into disrepute. Although the 2017 Astros otherwise meet criterion 1 and the 2018 Red Sox criterion 2, both teams are deemed ineligible for the ATCL.


    In the World Series era (i.e. since the 1903 season), nineteen AL teams and twenty-five NL teams have met the above criteria. The top seventeen from each league were placed directly into the ATCL. For the AL, the two remaining teams were matched up in a best-of-seven play-in series, with the 1948 Cleveland Indians defeating the 2001 Seattle Mariners, 4 games to 2. (The 2001 Mariners were the only non-World-Series-winning AL team to qualify under criterion 3.)

    For the NL, the eight remaining teams were placed into a play-in tournament of three best-of-seven rounds. (*criterion 3 qualifier)

    • Quarterfinal: 1998 Houston Astros* def. 2016 Chicago Cubs, 4 games to 3
    • Quarterfinal: 1967 St. Louis Cardinals def. 1925 Pittsburgh Pirates, 4 games to 3
    • Quarterfinal: 1946 St. Louis Cardinals def. 1969 New York Mets, 4 games to 3
    • Quarterfinal: 1954 New York Giants def. 1994 Montreal Expos*, 4 games to 1
    • Semifinal: 1998 Astros* def. 1967 Cardinals, 4 games to 1
    • Semifinal: 1946 Cardinals def. 1954 Giants, 4 games to 3
    • Final: 1946 Cardinals def. 1998 Astros*, 4 games to 2


    So, without further ado, here are the 36 ATCL teams and their divisional alignment (and OOTP's auto-generated preseason predictions):




    I plan on running the ATCL 2nd Edition at a more leisurely pace than the first. Since the league technically runs in calendar year 2020, first I will sim it in chunks of multiple days or weeks until I get caught up with the actual date. Then I'll sim each day at a time, so that the virtual pennant races play out over the entire summer followed by the playoffs in October, just like a normal MLB season in a normal year. I'll also be selecting Games of the Day, Week, and Month for each league, and sharing their replay files, so that anyone with OOTP can watch them. (I'm also considering doing video recordings of each Game of the Week, and eventually all playoff games, and posting them to YouTube.)


    They're all World Series champions, but which team is the greatest of all time? One of the three teams each representing the Yankees, A's or Braves? One of two each from the Tigers, Indians, Giants, Cards, Dodgers or Reds? Last year's champs, the Washington Nationals? Or could the '97 Marlins even make another improbable run? We're about to find out...

  4. MNUFC's home opener on Sunday vs. Red Bulls is still on, fans and all, for the moment. Given today's flurry of announcements in other sports I'll not be surprised if this changes between now and Sunday. (This is also the start of a four-game homestand, and I'm not at all confident those games will go on as scheduled either.)

  5. 7 minutes ago, GDAWG said:


    I read online that it could also impact the upcoming NFL and college football seasons as well.  The key word there is "could."


    Some college spring games are already being canceled. As for the NFL, their Draft event in Las Vegas might be the first thing to go - there are reports the league might just move the event back to New York without live spectators.

  6. If the hiatus goes too long, arena availability could become a problem - it's a good bet most arenas are more heavily booked with concerts and other events during the NBA/NHL offseason months. If the NBA is considering resuming the season without spectators, they'd better make that call soon.

  7. Two big wins on the road within the conference to start the season for the Loons...


    ...and yet the main thing I'm left wondering is how long a leash Matias Almeyda has left with the Quakes, after missing the playoffs last year and now opening 2020 with seven goals conceded in two games, both at home. His man-marking scheme just isn't getting it done for them; tonight they couldn't even seem to defend corners, where man-marking is particularly essential.

  8. Singular team nicknames have become passé in recent years, but a couple of teams have recently tried to start a new trend in team names: Verbs that don't double as nouns.


    In both cases, the verb in question is Ignite. First there was the now-departed Lansing Ignite of USL League One. Now, Nashville's newly announced Interstate Box Lacrosse Association team has adopted the Ignite name (paired with, of all things, a rooster head for a logo).


    Are there any other current examples of this in North American pro, semipro or college sports? USL and the IBLA don't have any others, and my quick-and-dirty perusal of CCSLC's logo pages doesn't show any in the NLL, MiLB or indie ball, other lower-division or women's soccer leagues, or any of the current or recently defunct football leagues (outdoor or indoor) in North America. (Again, I'm only referring to nicknames that are strictly verbs; names like "Sting" or "Dash" that are also used as nouns don't count.)

  9. On 1/2/2020 at 4:35 PM, AstroBull21 said:

    So being totally honest, what cities/venues could realistically host an outdoor game that haven't yet.


    - Comerica Park in Detroit

    - The Shoe in Columbus

    - Nissan Stadium in Nashville

    - Carter-Finley Stadium in Raleigh (leaked photos show a rink outline in cones a few weeks ago)


    What non-NHL cities could host?  


    - Bristol Motor Speedway?

    - Progressive Field in Cleveland?

    - Indianapolis Motor Speedway?

    - Beaver Stadium (Penn State)?

    - West Point?

    - Rutgers?

    - Yale Bowl?

    - Harvard Stadium


    NHL markets:

    • Buffalo, Chicago, Detroit: As the only three US NHL markets close to Great Lakes, that raises the idea (admittedly a logistical challenge) of staging outdoor games on said lakes.
    • Columbus: As mentioned elsewhere, the new Crew stadium would be too small for the Winter Classic but I could see it hosting a Stadium Series game somewhere down the line. (Ditto any number of dedicated MLS stadiums in NHL markets.)
    • Dallas: You just know the league would love to stage a Stars Stadium Series game at JerryWorld one of these years. (May or may not actually be outdoors, depending on whether they see fit to leave the roof open.)
    • New York: Belmont Park. If iconic auto racetracks can be considered viable venues, so can iconic horse racing tracks, at least in the northern half of the US where horse racing is typically out of season during the Winter Classic/Stadium Series window. Horse tracks might even work better, provided the tracks themselves are wide enough to accommodate a rink, as the rink could then be built right up against the grandstand. (That would be a problem on many auto racing tracks, which are often banked and not wide enough to hold a rink.)
    • San Jose: Stanford Stadium, Oracle Park, or even a new A's ballpark in Oakland (presuming it gets built).

    Non-NHL markets:

    • Green Bay: Lambeau Field. It's hosted at least one outdoor college game before, but would have the same WC availability issues as other NFL stadiums, so again Stadium Series would be the likeliest route. (Interestingly, several years ago there was some speculation on the Wild "hosting" a WC at Lambeau against the Blues; that is now the most likely matchup for the actual WC at Target Field next season.)
    • Elsewhere in Wisconsin, UW-Madison's Camp Randall Stadium and Milwaukee's Miller Park (though in both cases it'd probably have to involve the Blackhawks yet again). Given UW's storied hockey history and the numerous players they've sent to the NHL over the years, Camp Randall in particular would certainly have appeal for the league.
    • Louisville: Churchill Downs. (See Belmont Park above. Would likely be Preds vs. one of Blackhawks, Blues, Blue Jackets or Red Wings.)
    • Portland, OR: Providence Park, for the Stadium Series at least. (See Columbus above. Seattle's a shoo-in for a Portland game.)
    • Salt Lake City: Rice-Eccles Stadium could host the WC, and/or the Rio Tinto in nearby Sandy could host the Stadium Series. (Either one would probably involve two of the Avs, Coyotes and Golden Knights.)
  10. I'm going to the Gold Cup Group D doubleheader at Allianz Field on Tuesday. USMNT's the headliner obviously, but the warm-up act between Panama and T & T is likely to be the more competitive fixture.


    In light of the USWNT's 13-0 obliteration of Thailand in their WWC opener, I wonder how many goals the USMNT will need to beat Guyana by in order to hold off total panic mode (at least until the T & T rematch in Cleveland).

  11. On 5/5/2019 at 2:24 PM, Mockba said:

    This goal earned Seattle a point against Minnesota yesterday, and it was such a sweet strike that I couldn't even be mad about it.




    Through a very small opening, too. That this was the only goal the Loons conceded on their homestand is also a very good sign. (That they've shipped Francisco Calvo to Chicago Fire and benched Michael Boxall is another; they had been responsible for gifting a lot of goals to the opposition this season.)

  12. 14 minutes ago, 4_tattoos said:

    Did part of the middle tifo (behind the loon tifo) tear, or was it supposed to be separated in two parts? Was confused seeing that unravel on TV.


    You'd probably have to ask Mockba about that to be sure, but my guess is that it was either damaged before the event or not fully stitched together in time.

    Also, about a second after I took that photo, the loon tifo tore away at the top and fell onto the Wonderwall.

  13. Here's the epic six-part tifo unfurled before kickoff of the Allianz Field opener, featuring all previous incarnations of pro soccer in Minnesota.

    The slogan: "A storied past/Flies home at last".




    The stadium design definitely worked as advertised when it came to amplifying the crowd noise. My seats are about the same distance from the supporters' section as they were last season at TCF Bank Stadium, but they sounded twice as loud. Also, earlier today I watched a replay on the ESPN app and the supporters' chants and songs came through much more loud and clear than in telecasts at most other MLS stadiums of comparable size. It sounded more like a game in Atlanta or Seattle than, say, Kansas City.


    The game itself was insane: Four goals in an eight-minute span, followed by an own-goal by each side (NYCFC's was an epic howler by the keeper, something the Loons have their own history with), Loon defender Michael Boxall's bloody nose forcing him to change into a "blank" jersey, players from both sides laid out by a clash of heads, and a scuffle in stoppage time. The result (a 3-3 draw) wasn't what I'd hoped for, but it certainly got the Allianz Field era off to a rousing start.

  14. So... MLS scheduled MNUFC to open with five games on the road, mainly because of Minnesota's knack for getting blasted by snowstorms in March, including during the Loons' MLS debut game two seasons ago.

    If forecasts are accurate, their reward will be having to clear up to three feet of snow from the Allianz Field pitch in the 24-48 hours prior to its grand opening, while St. Paul is digging out from the same, thanks to the mid-April mega-storm heading for the nation's midsection later this week.

    They can't catch a :censored: break when it comes to their big opening events.

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