#4 Arrogant Bastards vs. #2 Devil Dogs
A little over two years ago I think I was having lunch w/ Brandon and Mike. We were talking about APBA and the OOTL was in search of a new manager. So I said to Mike, “if you join the league, I’ll come back.” He did and so did I.
On Saturday afternoon I finally won the whole damn thing! To my playoff opponents Bob, John and Barry, I was on the lucky end of 3 VERY GOOD series. Down 2-1, 3-1, and 3-1 I rallied to go 8-0 in elimination games and that’s only half of it.
I try to go into every year with a goal of leaving the draft as a potential playoff team. Normally I’m pretty loyal to players and don’t make too many trades. So this year I went against that by making 3 trades prior to the draft obtaining Adrian Gonzalez, Kenley Jansen and Homer Bailey. Three pieces that I needed this season.
At the draft my goal was to get better in the bullpen and I did that. I also drafted a guy with these words, “I hate this guy but I’m taking Russell Martin.” It was the right move. As my draft wound down I looked at my team and knew it could contend. But I’d lost to a playoff rotation for the ages a year prior. So I drafted Tanner Roark…then near the end if my draft I made a decision to build a playoff team that could win it all and I drafted Jared Cosart. Including the playoffs Cosart started 9 games – I won each game – he went 8-0.
As the regular season moved along I hovered around the 4th or 5th playoff spot. But I had a hole or two. Starting a 1 left fielder who was hitting under .200 wasn’t cutting it. Matt Holliday was my leading hitter hitting over .350 but a move had to be made. So I traded for Allen Craig, David Ortiz, and Mark Ellis. I wanted Choo, but Brandon keenly pointed out that Craig was a 4 at first base and could back up Agone. (Craig moving from LF to First after running for Agone helped me win 2 or 3 games.) Papi, well Papi is Papi. Ellis improved my infield D. And I also traded for Caleb Thielbar. But did I have enough? In addition to these deals I nearly pulled the trigger on a trade that involved Giancarlo Stanton and Danny Duffy and others, but I decided to keep the beast. Matt Holliday hardly played again.
So I was set…I felt if I get to the playoffs I have a shot to win this. But that comes down to luck. Game 5 of my first round and I’m down 2-0 in the 9th with an out and Matt Wieters ties it with a HR; and I go ahead on a SAC fly later in the inning…and win the series 3-2. Luck on my side.
Then I fall behind the Lymebees 3 games to 1 and in game 6 Bottom 10th, 2 outs, and I’m down 5-4; and Matt Wieters hits another 2-run HR to walk off to game 7. More luck . Mike Trout delivers in the bottom of the 7th of game 7 to send the ABs to the Series.
There were 3 shutouts in the WS – games 1, 4 and 6…and I found myself down 3-1 in the series again. A 12-inning game 5 win sent the series to Saturday afternoon. Lee and Hamels went 5 innings in each game for the wins. After that my pen took over as they had in each series. Adrian Gonzalez knocked in both runs in game 6. And Papi jacked a 1st inning 2-run HR to set the tone in game 7. Trout also homered. And when Ellsbury flew out to LF with a man on in the 9th, the 4-1 victory and 3rd series comeback was complete. Again I was very lucky. I was helped out by John and Barry’s dice. I guess it was my time.
Thanks again to Bob, John and Barry for 3 great series. Also thanks to Craig for providing some insight during the playoffs…he kept believing from Florida! Also thanks for all the other well wishers. Rumor has it Mike was on the Moon the entire series chanting, “BASTARDS BASTARDS BASTARDS”.
It’s great to win but ultimately I’m a baseball fan who generally tries to draft and remain loyal to guys that I like. When I got home I thought that in this league it’s great that names like Utley, Hamels, Howard, Lee, Longoria, Stanton, Holliday, Trout and even Ichiro can be a part of an OOTL championship team.
For the stat whores, here are my team relief pitching stats for the playoffs. Not too shabby:
Innings – 66.0
Hits – 40
R – 8
ER – 7
HR – 2
BB – 9
K – 72
E – 1
HBP – 1
WHIP – .74
ERA – 0.95
I’ll savor this one for a while but it’s now time to start preparing for the 2015 draft. That is where the marathon begins. Thanks everyone. Happy New Year and good health to everyone! See you ALL at the draft.
THE ARROGANT BASTARDS
2014 OOTL CHAMPIONS