Pocatello Mello Yello
The Pocatello Mello Yello took their name from the soda of
the gods, and a soothing thirst quencher of many a hungover
day of parking cars.
We went with pitching again this year. Greg Maddux (22GXZZ) wasn't a
bad first pick, and the rotation added Randy Johnson(14), Jimmy Key(15Z),
Danny Jackson (14Z), and Bobby Jones (13G). The bullpen wasn't
great but Fetters (17), Leiper (17), Plunk (17) and Ryan (17) gave me
great depth and leverage, and Bob Wickman (14) gave me 70 games to blow an
out at a time.
A great defensive team, perhaps the greatest defensive team in SL history.
Now they didn't have the highest defensive total in league history, but
they had the peripherals and depth to make their defense one of the best
of all time. The catching platoon was Pagnozzi and Santiago, both 8+5.
Caminiti, Bell, Schmenke and Palmeiro provided a solid infield. The
outfield had Brady (34? arm)in center, with Buhner (38) and Salmon's (37)
cannons on the wings, along with Van Slyke (OF3-35) and Whiten (OF2-38) on
The lineup was something like:
The only players left to mention are Rey Sanchez, who I believe I dropped
in a free agent move, and Vince Coleman (B33), the first of many pinch run
experts in the franchise.
The lineup was very top heavy, the last three hitters probably had a
combined OBP of .250. We relied on pitching, defense, and speed to win
games. I was in the same division as my main advisary in the Summer
League, Keith Klein. As of this writing (12/98), Keith and I have won 10
of the 13 division titles in league history, each of us failing one time.
'95A was the only season we were matched up in the same division, and we
had a neck-by-neck race for 80 games towards a title. We finished the
regular season tied with the best record in baseball, and had it all
riding on a one-game playoff. I had Maddux on the hill, and Keith had
Bere. We'll stay away from the philosophical discussions of the Bere
incident, and just sum it up that the Yello won.
We were back in the World Series for the second straight year, matched up
this time against Ken's Walla Walla One-Eyed Wonder Worms. I don't
remember much of the series, other than the fact that we won 4 games to 2,
taking the league's and franchise's second world title.
'95a was also my initial, and only, venture into team paraphernalia sales,
with the famous POMY hat. Always the rival, Keith responded with the
House of David Plain White Shirt, which had more widespread adoption than
the POMY hat.
The '95a season was the beginning of the end of the golden era of the
Summer League, before many managers got a life outside of APBA. It was
the first of three seasons we attempted to play that summer, and (since it
was the only season I won) it was the best. The SL/car parker group begin
to unravel after '95. I only worked part time in '96, as I had an
internship with the Quaker Oats company that summer. '95 may have been
the last carefree summer of my youth, so I'm glad we played a lot of games
that year. It was the best of times, it was the worst of times...