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Old 06-28-2018, 05:46 PM   #521
Paulie123
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13 July 2051

Tony Smashie
@DJTony

Hey hey hey, groovy dudes! #funky #jazz Great season so far for the #Magpies, but who thinks they’ll keep soon-to-be-groovy-free-agent Robinson Ortíz for the year and who thinks they’ll trade him? Give me your shoutouts! #rockon
8:12AM - 13 Jul 2051

Genghis Troll
@nothingbettertodo

Oh joy, annoying Mr Mid-Life Crisis @DJTony is back. Go away loser! #YouLiveWithYourMom
8:15AM - 13 Jul 2051

Severino Guadalajara-Smith
@sabermetricjedi

@DJTony word on the street is that the #Magpies front office may offer Ortíz a one-year extension but then look to trade him for prospects over the winter. If he doesn’t want the extension he’ll be gone in July. No way @BillyDePodestaSCL will let him leave for nothing in return #DeadlineTrade
8:17AM - 13 Jul 2051

Suzie Marketing
@advertisingalgorithm

Hey everyone, get yourselves down to the Iowa Ballpark later this week for the upcoming series against Bismarck. Special offers for this series only: triple vodka and cokes are 80% off and wonderbras get in free! #bargain #comeondown
8:19AM - 13 Jul 2051

Mary Whitehouse-Prude
@justso

@advertisingalgorithm SCL baseball games are family events and your promotion is totally inappropriate. Who’s idea was it? Your algorithm is broken! #disgusted #poortaste
8:22AM - 13 Jul 2051
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Part 2 - The Secret Diary of Paulie Beane, Aged 43 3/4
The State Capitals League - The Magpies
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Old 06-29-2018, 06:21 PM   #522
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18 July 2051

GM’s notebook - Series 32 and 33

Magpies 1-5 Lansing
Magpies 0-2 Lansing
Magpies 4-3 Lansing
Bismarck 10-8 Magpies
Bismarck 3-1 Magpies
Bismarck 1-4 Magpies

- Wesley Weaver just can’t consistently find his form. 5 runs allowed in 5+ innings in the first game of the Lansing series gave him the L.
- Some of the right-handed bats in our lineup are really struggling. Eric Warner (.238 wOBA) has been one of the strugglers and has been optioned back to the minor league roster. Curt Cox, our winter free agent signing, comes onto the active roster for the first time.
- The 10-8 defeat to Bismarck was another bad day for the bullpen. Jesús Benítez, Marv Lewis and Ramón González allowed a combined 8 runs on 9 hits from 1.2 IP.
- Israel Padilla took an unlucky loss in the second game against Bismarck. 9 hits and 3 BB yielded only a solitary run, as we left 11 men on base.
- We rescued a win against the Coyotes with a solid performance to round off the week. Ernesto Solís hit 3-4 for the second consecutive day, and Gonzalo Torralda hit 2-3 with a HR and a DBL.

This week: 2-4
Record: 58-41, 1st place, 3 game lead over Madison, Lansing
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Old 06-29-2018, 06:22 PM   #523
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16 July 2051

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Ortíz agrees one-year contract extension with Magpies

By Maggie Pye | 16 Jul | 2,122 comments

Magpies starting pitcher Robinson Ortíz has signed a one-year contract extension to remain at the club for the 2052 season, it was announced last night. The deal is worth a reported $9.5m, the same as Ortíz’s current salary level. Rumours had been circulating that GM Billy DePodesta would seek to trade Ortíz ahead of the upcoming deadline, but he has clearly decided to keep the left-hander for the team’s playoff push this season. Rumours are now rife that, despite the extension, the Magpies may seek to move Ortíz in the offseason, with young players including Robert Terry and Robinson Ramírez among those in contention to take over his rotation spot next year.
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Old 06-29-2018, 06:23 PM   #524
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25 July 2051

GM’s notebook - Series 34 and 35

Magpies 6-7 Austin
Magpies 8-4 Austin
Magpies 3-5 Austin
Santa Fe 2-6 Magpies
Santa Fe 2-3 Magpies
Santa Fe 3-1 Magpies

- We scored in each of the first 5 innings to establish a comfortable-looking 6-0 lead in the opener versus the Tycoons. But then Tom Hart allowed 3 runs in the 7th, and the latest bullpen calamity, this time involving the usually-dependable Ken James and Walt Davidson, conceded 4 more in the 9th for a soul-crushing loss. Words were said in the locker rooms after the game. Let’s see what effect that has.
- Ángel Márquez hit his 25th homer and 20th double in the losing effort.
- New CF Joe Merrill (see next post) made his debut as a substitute for injured Terry Lawrence; he hit 2-4 with a HR.
- Lawrence has back soreness. Aristotle Catheter says he’ll be fit again within a week, but given his (Lawrence’s) dreadful displays this year (.186 / .237 / .267) he’s been put on the DL. Dave Plummer has joined the active roster for the first time this season.
- Rob Crawford was the star of the 6-2 win in the opener at home to Santa Fe, hitting 3-4, HR, DBL.
- Merrill has agreed an extension covering his three remaining years of arbitration at a continuation of his current $1.1m salary. That could turn out to be an absolute bargain basement value if his ceiling is anywhere near what my batting coaches believe.
- After some solid recent relief performances, David Gaines has got his ERA down below 4.00. He is definitely trending in the right direction.
- Jeffrey White hit 3-3 with a HR and a BB in the final game of the week.

This week: 3-3
Record: 61-44, 1st place, 2 game lead over Lansing
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Old 06-29-2018, 06:25 PM   #525
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20 July 2051

(Reproduced courtesy of SCL At-Bat, the number one app for all the latest SCL news and scores)

Magpies-Coyotes trade Watkins and Merrill
Merrill to start in CF for Magpies as Hagenaars optioned

By Tim Curtain, 10:04AM, 20 Jul 51

Apparently reaching the end of his patience with the anaemic offensive production of centre fielder Gianni Hagenaars, Magpies general manager Billy DePodesta has announced a trade with divisional rivals Bismarck. The exchange sees versatile 24-year-old Joe Merrill and 28-year-old minor league reliever Steve Hoffman join Des Moines, and experienced starting pitcher Pat Watkins move to the Coyotes to strengthen their struggling rotation.

Hagenaars had continued to deliver elite defense, but his dire performance with the bat drew increasing concern from the Magpies front office. So far this season he is batting only .168 with a .244 on-base percentage and .543 OPS. Blocked by the Coyotes’ deep outfield options, Merrill has played the entire season so far on their minor league roster. Over 115 games for the big league club last year, his bat was little better than Hagenaars with a .588 OPS, but the Magpies front office believe Merrill has a high ceiling which he can reach with regular game time. Speedy round the bases, Merrill’s best positions are at the corner outfield spots, but he will play CF for the Magpies. Merrill earns $1.1m and has three more seasons of club control remaining.

Hagenaars has been demoted to the Magpies minor league roster but remains at the club. Watkins has been installed as the #3 starter in the Coyotes rotation.
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Old 06-30-2018, 04:09 PM   #526
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31 July 2051

GM’s notebook - Series 36 and 37

Magpies 3-6 Carson City
Magpies 1-5 Carson City
Magpies 1-4 Carson City
Phoenix 0-4 Magpies
Phoenix 6-10 Magpies
Phoenix 9-2 Magpies

- The week began with a bullpen day. The result was therefore predictable. Robert Terry started the game, allowed 3 runs and was then ejected in the 4th inning for fighting. Walt Davidson conceded a further 3 runs later on.
- Our offense was just horrible in the Carson City series. If that dismal sweep doesn’t become a watershed moment in our season, we will drop out of the playoff race.
- We are 7-15 over the last 3-and-a-bit weeks, and our lead in the North Division has now gone.
- Blair Cunningham is back from the DL. I hope he’s brought his batting form with him, because we need it.
- The lads came out fired up for the first game against Phoenix. Cory Adams threw a fantastic 4-hit shutout, and is now 10-3, 2.39 for the season.
- Joe Merrill suffered concussion in the game and has been placed on the DL as a precautionary measure. Gianni Hagenaars has been recalled.
- A 7-run 8th inning, featuring 3-run homers from both Reynaldo González and António Fernández, got us out of trouble in game two at home to the Raccoons. González finished with 2 HR and a DBL on the day.
- We did no business at the trade deadline. We are good enough to win this division without bringing in players that will just add to next year’s budget pressures. The guys just need to get it together.
- After tomorrow’s rest day, we travel to Madison for a crucial 3-game set. They’re third in the division but just 2 games back.

This week: 2-4
Record: 63-48, 1st place, 1 game lead over Lansing
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Old 06-30-2018, 04:11 PM   #527
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27 July 2051

OFFICE OF THE STATE CAPITALS LEAGUE COMMISSIONER
NOTICE OF SUSPENSION: ROBERT TERRY


This letter provides official notification from the Office of the State Capitals League Commissioner of the three-game suspension that has been issued to Des Moines Magpies pitcher Robert Terry. Mr Terry has no right of appeal against this decision. The suspension applies with immediate effect.

The Commissioner is pleased that it is well over a year since he was last required to correspond with the club regarding a disciplinary matter, and regards it as a sign that the Magpies organisation has heeded his previous insistence on better behaviour on the field of play. But equally he is extremely disappointed to have to write to the club on this occasion.

The State Capitals League has a long-stated zero tolerance policy toward overly aggressive and physically abusive behaviour by its players. Suspensions will be handed out to the offending party or parties on each and every occasion, and the incident in last night’s fixture against the Carson City Rattlesnakes is no exception. The dismal language and intimidatory behaviour displayed by Mr Terry and Rattlesnakes hitter Ernesto Marés, that led to players from both teams taking to the field and holding up play for a number of minutes, was totally unacceptable.

The Commissioner finds it particularly concerning that Mr Terry has resorted to such behaviour so early in his State Capitals League career. He hopes that the club will assist Mr Terry in learning from this incident, and that it will not be repeated in future. Should that happen, the sanction will be significantly more severe. On this occasion, however, as per the terms of the current collective bargaining agreement (specifically, schedule 27B, subsection 1(c)(revised), sub-clause 177.VIII.1a, requirement 23C) the Commissioner is satisfied that the three-game suspension is justified and proportionate.

Yours sincerely,

Rufus S. Bureaucracy
State Capitals League Deputy Commissioner
27 July 2051
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Old 06-30-2018, 04:12 PM   #528
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1 August 2051

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Zamora and Merrado moved into Magpies bullpen, Gaines and Terry optioned

By Maggie Pye | 1 Aug | 1,559 comments

Just one day after the trade deadline, Magpies GM Billy DePodesta has made two roster moves as he searches for the formula that will deliver consistently excellent performances from his bullpen. Lefty reliever David Gaines and right-hander Robert Terry has been optioned to the minor league roster. Lefty Jesús Zamora, 21, joins the big league club for the first time, and Bernardo Merrado is recalled.

After a strong rookie season in 2050, Gaines has struggled badly this year. Although he has struck out 48 batters in 36 innings, he has also given up 30 hits and walked 30 batters. His 5.46 FIP is nearly double the 3.08 mark he put up last season. Terry was only promoted to the roster last month, and returns to the minor leagues with a 4.19 ERA from 19 innings. He made 3 starts, with mixed results. DePodesta said: “Both guys are super-talented, and they will benefit from taking time to work on their game away from the spotlight of the big leagues and a playoff race. I expect both of them to challenge strongly for places on the roster next season, if not before.”
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Old 07-01-2018, 05:51 PM   #529
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7 August 2051

GM’s notebook - Series 38 and 39

Magpies 6-5 Madison
Magpies 4-1 Madison
Magpies 10-3 Madison
Denver 0-3 Magpies
Denver 2-7 Magpies
Denver 1-7 Magpies

- We looked to have lost the opener to the Brown Bears, but 3 runs in the top of the 9th handed Madison’s 6-time all-star closer Wynn Fleming only his second blown save of the year. All 3 runs were scored with 2 out.
- Israel Padilla (8 IP, 4 H, 1 ER, 0 BB) dominated the Brown Bears’ lineup in the 4-1 victory the next day. Ernesto Solís hit 3-4 with a double and 2 RBI.
- Curt Cox has done little with the bat (.485 OPS) in his time here, and his supposedly elite defense has been underwhelming too. I would like Eric Warner to get more PAs in the minor league team, so Nick Baker rejoins the roster to replace Cox. Baker was probably unlucky not to make the team this year, and now gets the chance to prove me wrong.
- We completed the important sweep of Madison in style. Home runs from Ángel Márquez, Gonzalo Torralda, Dave Plummer and Pedro Soto backed up an excellent complete game performance from Cory Adams. Adams (11-3, 2.37) has definitely cemented himself into my long-term rotation plans.
- Terry Lawrence has come off the DL, but Plummer has done okay in the meantime so Lawrence has been sent to the minor league roster for now.
- Excellent pitching from Tom Hart (12-5, 1.90) and Ken James (25 saves) shut out Denver in our series opener. Hart will be definitely be in the conversation for Outstanding Pitcher if he keeps this up.
- In game two, Robinson Ortíz threw 8 magical innings for just 2 hits. Johannes Kepler sent him back out for the 9th, and Ortíz gave up 2 tired and luckily inconsequential runs.
- Columbus’s William Wright has pitched 3 shutouts in his last 4 starts.
Jeffrey White smacked double #30 and home run #27 against Denver to cap a brilliant week.
- Annapolis’s Young first baseman Dave Tolbert went 6-6 against Hartford.

This week: 6-0
Record: 69-48, 1st place, 3 game lead over Lansing
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Part 2 - The Secret Diary of Paulie Beane, Aged 43 3/4
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Old 07-01-2018, 05:53 PM   #530
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7 August 2051

Dietmar Uberfan
@magpiesobsessive

A great week for the #Magpies, but what’s with all these roster moves? Unusual for the club to do that. I get the impression Billy and Johannes don’t know who their best 25 are, especially in the dodgy old bullpen #stillhaventmovedon #pleasecomeback
11:04PM - 7 Aug 2051

Mannix Glowstone
@rayoflight

@magpiesobsessive we have too many good young players to choose from! Our diamond shoes are too tight! My broadband is too fast! #niceproblem
11:05PM - 7 Aug 2051

Randy Schilling-Martínez
@eatmysox

I’m really surprised we didn’t get a left-handed relief pitcher at the deadline #whybillywhy. I think those young lads in the bullpen need a guiding hand, a steadying influence #experiencecounts
11:09PM - 7 Aug 2051

Hank Blunt
@isayitlikeitis

Good week #Magpies
11:11PM - 7 Aug 2051
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Part 2 - The Secret Diary of Paulie Beane, Aged 43 3/4
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Old 07-01-2018, 05:54 PM   #531
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GM’s notebook - Series 40 and 41

Magpies 4-1 Olympia
Magpies 6-7 Olympia
Magpies 6-5 Olympia
Sacramento 4-3 Magpies
Sacramento 1-3 Magpies
Sacramento 1-2 Magpies

- Wesley Weaver finally put it together in the road opener in Olympia, putting up a line of 8 IP, 3 H, 1 ER, 0 BB. Gianni Hagenaars surprised everyone, including himself I imagine, with 2-4 including a HR and a double.
- The winning run came to an end the next day when (guess who?) Jesús Benítez gave up 2 runs in the 8th inning.
- Our sluggers Jeffrey White and Ángel Márquez both hit their 28th homers of the year in the 6-5 win that gave us the Olympia series.
- Jesús Zamora made his debut in the 4-3 defeat to the Stingrays, walking 3 batters but pitching 2 scoreless innings. However, he suffered shoulder inflammation and will be unable to play for a week. I don’t want to be a man down in the bullpen for that period, so he goes on the DL and David Gaines gets a sooner-than-expected chance of redemption.
- The 3-1 victory in the second game of the Sacramento series featured a superb outing from Israel Padilla: 7 IP, 3 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 7 K. Ken James earned his 32nd save.
- Joe Merrill has returned from the DL. Hagenaars will go back to the minor league roster, because Dave Plummer has done well (.870) in his brief time on the roster and I want to see him some more. Merrill slots in for Hagenaars at CF.

This week: 4-2
Record: 73-50, 1st place, 3 game lead over Lansing
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Old 07-01-2018, 05:56 PM   #532
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GM’s notebook - Series 42 and 43

Magpies 5-4 Salem
Magpies 1-4 Salem
Magpies 12-1 Salem
St. Paul 0-9 Magpies
St. Paul 7-10 Magpies
St. Paul 9-7 Magpies

- It took until the 13th inning before we finally defeated the Ironclads in the series opener. We got 20 hits and took 7 walks, and left an astonishing 19 men on base. The exact opposite of clutch hitting.
- Dave Plummer hit 2 doubles in the 4-1 loss in game two in Salem.
- The rout that won the Ironclads series was a terrific all-round team performance. Tom Hart threw a 1-run complete game. The offense scored runs in 6 different innings, with the highlight being Pedro Soto’s 3-run homer in the 4th.
- Israel Padilla (11-10, 2.73) and Walt Davidson combined for the shutout in the first game at home to St. Paul.
- In the second game, Robinson Ortíz left us in a hole when he came out of the game in the 3rd inning with a 6-0 deficit. But superb relief pitching from Ramón González kept us in it, and a 7-run 7th inning completed a stunning comeback.
- The Rockets took revenge with a comeback of their own the following night, after homers from Ángel Ochoa and Ángel Márquez had given us a 4-0 lead in the 1st inning.
- Our former infielder Juan MacNamara won Western League player of the week after hitting 12-24 for Lansing. I hope he doesn’t become another one of those guys where I look back and feel I traded him before giving him enough of a chance.

This week: 4-2
Record: 77-52, 1st place, 2 game lead over Lansing
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Old 07-02-2018, 06:01 PM   #533
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21 August 2051

FANGRAPHICS
Article: Bethel Hotdiggety-Dogg looks at Magpies relief pitcher Jesús Benítez

It’s a question every SCL general manager faces multiple times every season: how long do you stay patient with a guy who has all the talent in the world, and has been successful previously, but it just not able to get it together at the moment? Magpies’ GM Billy DePodesta is facing just such a situation at present with his reliever Jesús Benítez.

Drafted in the second round of the 2048 draft, 24-year-old Benítez progressed rapidly and made it to the Magpies’ big league roster mid-way through the 2049 season. There he thrived, posting a 3.66 ERA from 37 appearances. He was even better last season: over 70 games he put up a 2.00 ERA and 2.42 FIP. Off the back of these impressive numbers, over the last winter DePodesta agreed a 3-year contract extension with him to keep him at the club through to the end of the 2054 season.

This year, though, has been a completely different story. Benítez’s headline numbers have slumped badly compared to his breakout 2050 performance: he has a 5.09 ERA and 4.78 FIP. Even peeking under the analytics hood shows his numbers down across the board. He’s walking 3.86 batters per 9 innings compared to 3.38 last year. Strikeouts: 10.18 per 9 versus 12.80 last year. WHIP: 1.47 versus 1.11. K/BB ratio: 2.64 versus 3.38. Home runs: 11 allowed in 58 innings versus 4 in 72. I could go on. His high BABIP of .336 is nowhere near high enough to suggest poor luck to be the sole explanation for this year-long slump.

Benítez is a brilliantly talented relief pitcher, of that there is no doubt. When he’s been at his best, he looks unhittable. But he seemingly has not recovered his confidence after his poor display in the Western League wildcard game last year. DePodesta needs to decide what to do. So far, he’s backed Benítez to turn things around. But as the year goes on towards September and Benítez’s disappointing displays continue, will DePodesta finally decide that the young man needs a spell in the minor leagues?
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Old 07-02-2018, 06:03 PM   #534
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26 August 2051

GM’s notebook - Series 44 and 45

Magpies 2-12 Baton Rouge
Magpies 4-8 Baton Rouge
Magpies 6-9 Baton Rouge
Lansing 6-4 Magpies
Lansing 4-3 Magpies
Lansing 4-3 Magpies

- Jesús Benítez gave up 5 runs in a terrible 7th inning of the opening game against the Deltas. I have stuck with him all season, waiting for a turnaround, but today’s the Rubicon that signals he needs a confidence-rebuilding spell away from the big leagues. He will certainly be back with us, but for now Robert Terry has returned to the bullpen in Benítez’s place.
- A rare bad day from Cory Adams on day two: he allowed 7 runs from 4.1 IP.
- I’m inclined to agree with those who say I don’t know what our best 25-man roster is. Infielder Nick Baker has not done much (with admittedly fairly few opportunities) so I’ve decided this is the time to let Eric Warner return to the roster.
- Baton Rouge are admittedly an excellent team, but we were diabolical in the series. Even Tom Hart got in on the act in the final game, getting pounded for 5 runs in 2.1 innings. We need an immediate rebound against Lansing, who come to the Iowa Ballpark just 1 game behind.
- Ángel Ochoa hit 3-4 in the 4-3 defeat to the Sharks which put them top of the North Division and extended our losing streak to 6. The ever (un)dependable David Gaines gave up the winning HR in the 10th inning.
- Jesús Zamora is eligible to come off the DL; he goes back in the major league bullpen and Gaines is unhesitatingly returned to the minor league roster.
- The less said about this week the better. It leaves us 2 games behind Lansing and with only a 4-game cushion in the race for the wildcard spots.
- We and Madison currently sit in the two wildcard positions. It’s St. Paul that are the closest challengers, so looks like our North Division may well get both wildcard teams for what would be a sixth straight season.

This week: 0-6
Record: 77-58, 2nd place, 2 GB from Lansing
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Part 2 - The Secret Diary of Paulie Beane, Aged 43 3/4
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Old 07-02-2018, 06:05 PM   #535
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2 September 2051

GM’s notebook - Series 46 and 47

Magpies 8-10 Bismarck
Magpies 4-3 Bismarck
Magpies 8-6 Bismarck
Austin 3-0 Magpies
Austin 5-6 Magpies
Austin 2-5 Magpies

- 3 runs in the 8th and 4 more in the 9th couldn’t save us from a demoralising thumping, and 8th consecutive loss, in the first Bismarck game. Jeffrey White hit 3-3, 2 DBL, BB but to no avail, as Tom Hart had another poor outing.
- The coaching staff and I had a crisis meeting in the team hotel that lasted deep into the night. We concluded that our problem of giving up runs was actually defense not pitching. The outfield has lots of strong arms, but without Gianni Hagenaars in CF, a lack of range. Rob Crawford and Pedro Soto at the corners need someone to sweep up balls hit into the gaps. While he’s a good outfielder, Joe Merrill does not have that range. So Hagenaars has been recalled to start at CF. António Fernández, who has batted fairly well (.728 OPS), but is probably the weakest defensively and is out of contract in the winter, so is the unlucky man who loses his place.
- Hagenaars’s impact was immediate. We looked so much better in the second Bismarck game. The Coyotes only scored their runs in the 8th inning. Dave Plummer’s pinch-hit double drove in the winning run in the top of the 9th and halted the losing streak.
- The effect was less obvious in the rubber game, as Israel Padilla gave up 6 runs in 2+ innings. But we fought back magnificently, tying the game in the 8th and winning with 2 runs in the 10th. The much-maligned bullpen combined for 8 shutout innings.
- As rosters expanded, we called up 3 players. Jesús Benítez has had a couple of good minor league outings and returns to give an extra arm to the bullpen. Terry Lawrence is recalled to provide a left-handed bench bat and help a slumping Rob Crawford in LF. Young outfielder Mike Howard is called up purely as a pinch-running threat.
- White showed the kids how it’s done with a walk-off home run in the 9th in the 6-5 victory over Austin, which came after Ken James had blown a save for only the second time in the top of the inning.
- Crawford blasted his 10th HR of the year in the 5-2 win that took the Austin series. Hopefully that’s the slump-breaker.

This week: 4-2
Record: 81-60, 2nd place, 2 GB from Lansing
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Old 07-02-2018, 06:06 PM   #536
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2 September 2051

From: Gianni Hagenaars
To: Billy DePodesta
Cc: Johannes Kepler, Bryce Troutslam

Hi Billy,

I just wanted to express my thanks for your decision to return me to the Magpies active roster to resume my role as the team’s starting center fielder. I have always taken great pride in my defense, but I totally understand that my offense has not been good enough this season. I’ve used my time on the minor league roster to work on some things with hitting coach Bryce Troutslam, and hope this will help return me to my best form. I’m really thankful to Bryce for all the work he’s done with me and the support he’s given. I hope I can repay you both over the remaining few weeks of the regular season and help the boys grab yet another playoff place.

Go Magpies!

Cheers,
Gianni
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Old 07-03-2018, 06:47 PM   #537
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3 September 2051

The SCL Armchair Almanac, 2051 Edition

SCL CUP FINAL SERIES CHAMPIONS, 2017-PRESENT

2017 - Albany Firefoxes
2018 - Austin Tycoons
2019 - Austin Tycoons
2020 - Concord Jackals
2021 - Nashville Kings
2022 - Salem Ironclads
2023 - Phoenix Raccoons
2024 - Annapolis Mustangs
2025 - Atlanta Hurricanes
2026 - Atlanta Hurricanes
2027 - Atlanta Hurricanes
2028 - Atlanta Hurricanes
2029 - Lansing Sharks
2030 - Boston Adventurers
2031 - Sacramento Stingrays
2032 - Boston Adventurers
2033 - Richmond Eagles
2034 - Austin Tycoons
2035 - Hartford Tarantulas
2036 - Indianapolis Wildcats
2037 - Albany Firefoxes
2038 - Trenton Colts
2039 - Lansing Sharks
2040 - Annapolis Mustangs
2041 - Albany Firefoxes
2042 - Bismarck Coyotes
2043 - Hartford Tarantulas
2044 - Baton Rouge Deltas
2045 - Austin Tycoons
2046 - Des Moines Magpies
2047 - Tallahassee Islanders
2048 - Montgomery Cruisers
2049 - Montgomery Cruisers
2050 - Montgomery Cruisers
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Old 07-03-2018, 06:48 PM   #538
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8 September 2051

GM’s notebook - Series 48 and 49

Magpies 6-3 Santa Fe
Magpies 0-1 Santa Fe
Magpies 4-2 Santa Fe
Carson City 3-5 Magpies
Carson City 2-6 Magpies
Carson City 2-8 Magpies

- Cory Adams wasn’t quite fully fit in time for his scheduled turn in the rotation, so Robert Terry made a spot start against Santa Fe. He was superb, allowing just 2 runs on 3 hits through 7.1 innings of work. Ken James earned his 34th save.
- Madison’s Julián Emery is on for a rare batting triple crown, as he is leading the Western League in average, RBIs and HRs. His closest challenge is on batting average where he leads Phoenix’s Jeremy Black by only the narrowest of margins (.346 to .345).
- There was a terrific pitching duel between Israel Padilla and Santa Fe’s Donnie Lee in game two of the series. Padilla left the game after 7 innings with the scores still tied 0-0. Guess who, Jesús Benítez, allowed the winning run in the 11th inning.
- Jeffrey White hit 3-5 and Dave Plummer went 2-4 with a double in the 5-3 victory in the opening game against the Rattlesnakes.
- First baseman Gonzalo Torralda has been in a mini-slump the last week or so, but hit 2-3 with a double and 2 walks to get player of the day in the second win versus Carson City.
- Tom Hart’s record is now 15-6, 2.24 after a great performance to complete the sweep: 8 IP, 6 H, 2 ER, 2 BB, 9 K. White hit 3-5 with 2 doubles.
- We’ve rebounded well from our 0-6 disastrous week, with four winning series since then, and are back tied with Lansing at the top of the North Division. That turnaround cannot be unconnected to recalling Gianni Hagenaars and his +20.3 ZR at CF.
- We have a 7-game cushion for one of the WL wildcard spots.

This week: 5-1
Record: 86-61, =1st place, tied with Lansing
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Old 07-03-2018, 06:49 PM   #539
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9 September 2051

onlytheboxscore.com/Magpies
Hagenaars’s defensive excellence sets up Magpies for final push
Posted by Jenny Librarian, @sexywithmyglasseson

On 13 August, the Des Moines Magpies took the decision to demote CF Gianni Hagenaars to the minor leagues. Over the subsequent 13 games, they went on a 4-9 skid, losing the lead in the North Division to Lansing, and putting their hopes of even holding onto one of the two Western League wildcard spots in jeopardy. The team allowed 78 runs during that run: exactly 6 per game.

There are rumours that, after a dreadful defeat by Bismarck in that 13th game, GM Billy DePodesta called an emergency meeting of front office and coaching staff which ran into the early hours. The following morning, Hagenaars was recalled to the active roster to start in center field. Since then, the Magpies have gone 9-2, and are back tied for the lead in the North Division.

Sources with knowledge of the meeting tell SCL At-Bat that DePodesta and the club’s analytical staff admitted that the decision to send Hagenaars down was taken with too much emphasis on his batting statistics (.177/.251/.311), and under-valuing his defense. Without Hagenaars, the Magpies were typically playing Joe Merrill (range: 7/10) in CF, Pedro Soto (range: 6/10) in RF and Rob Crawford (range: 4/10) in LF. All three guys have hammers for arms, but the problem seemed to be one of getting to the balls in the first place. Crawford and Soto have limited range at the corner outfield spots. That in itself isn’t a problem if the CF can compensate and cover balls hit into a large swathe of the field down the middle. Unfortunately, Merrill (zone rating of -0.5 in 21 games this season at CF) couldn’t get the job done. The Magpies front office assessed that the defense were leaking runs on hits that the outfield trio couldn’t sweep up. Hagenaars (range: 9/10) does get the job done.

Statistical coincidence? Or were the Magpies front office astute diagnosticians of the team’s struggles? Perhaps it’s too early to tell. Either way, the team has hauled themselves back into the race when they looked like sinking. With 15 games to go, the Magpies look assured of a wildcard spot at least, with a 7-game lead on the chasing pack.
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Old 07-03-2018, 06:52 PM   #540
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15 September 2051

GM’s notebook - Series 50 and 51

Magpies 2-3 Phoenix
Magpies 0-3 Phoenix
Magpies 4-8 Phoenix
Madison 6-2 Magpies
Madison 3-0 Magpies
Madison 3-4 Magpies

- Every time we face our former starter Philip Givens he seems to give us all kinds of trouble. He threw 7.2 scoreless innings in the second game versus Phoenix, and his bullpen colleagues finished off the shutout.
- We looked on course to avoid getting swept by the Raccoons until Robinson Ortíz gave up a grand slam in the 4th inning of game three. Leadoff man Pedro Soto hit 2-4 with a HR (17) and a double in the loss.
- The 6 runs allowed in the opener against Madison wasn’t the fault of the defense; it was down to the brilliance of their future Hall of Famer Julián Emery.
- Our offense has gone AWOL and mustered a meagre 2 hits in the 3-0 defeat to the Brown Bears. We have undone all the good recovery work of the last two weeks.
- The lineup finally stirred with 2 runs in the 8th and 2 more in the 9th to steal the final game of the week from under Madison’s noses. Gonzalo Torralda hit the clinching walk-off 2-run homer.
- Montgomery’s superstar third baseman Bryan Powell hit 3 HR and 2 doubles in a 19-4 win against Albany.
- The North Division title has not completely gone yet, but after that awful week our focus needs to be on making sure we don’t miss the wildcard game. St. Paul are the leading team outside the wildcard spots, so we have a 5-game advantage with 9 to play, and a magic number of 5.

This week: 1-5
Record: 87-66, 2nd place, 3 GB from Lansing
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