I guess I should start out by saying that I am surprised with a 24-16 record. Additionally, whom would I be kidding if I were to say that starting out 12-3 wasn't a big deal for me? At the very least, I eased the painful memory of a pitiful Homer Simpson's start of a year earlier.
I realize that 24-16 means nothing over a 162 game season. I know that the playoffs are a long way off, and that I am still a huge underdog to capture a playoff spot. I can vividly recall Greg and Keith at last December's Winter Meetings, doing a so-so impersonation of Peter Gammons and Harold Reynolds, all but crowning Dave and his Rainmakers as the Cousin Chad Division Champs.
I am a long shot, but hey, I'm glad to be here.
Alomar -- Most hits, top three in batting, on base pct., stealing, and other categories.
Pitching -- It may not last, but I'll take the 4.24 ERA considering I didn't put an early emphasis on pitching in the draft. Sele has been solid.Overall, opponents only scored 37 runs in innings 7-9 over the 40 games. Relievers have done a nice job. Opponents are batting .240 against the staff.
Ichiro - Though he may not be a great APBA player in terms of numbers on cards, his arm and his speed make him fun to have on the team. I've had the pleasure of watching non-scrubb managers refuse to test his arm. After a slow start, his batting average and on-base percentage are climbing, and he has delivered some timely hits.
Mientkiewicz- A nice offensive surprise.
Swinea - No Swinea
Swinea #2 - No return emails from Swinea (Seriously, I've attempted to email him like 4 times and he didn't respond. Is he mad at me for some reason?)
Green - Bigflop, hitting .204, slugging .362. His runs created per game is 3.2. He can't even steal a base these days. Looking for a big recovery.
Edmonds - He is batting just .205 with an on-base percentage of .245. Yes, I like the 9 homers and 29 runs batted in, but even with those numbers, he is only creating 3.6 runs per game. He is on pace for less than 30 walks after walking 93 times last year.
Giambi - I was expecting more than just a good on-base percentage from one of the top-rated offensive players of the draft.
After starting out 12-3, I went 12-13. My team struggles to produce runs, and my line-up against lefties is unproductive. I hope my big three, Giambi, Green, and Edmonds, turn things around offensively, because I suspect my pitching will eventually yield more runs. Defensively, I have few complaints.I like my speed and I like my bench.
I predict that it will be a competitive season, with close playoff races in each division. Good luck to all.