The regular season is behind us and it ENDED IN STYLE. While some are sad (me) that we didn’t need to come up with some sort of deranged 5th tiebreaker for the 6th and final playoff spot, we are also happy to report that THE POINT LOMA X-RAYZ have shocked the world and grabbed the #1 and first playoff spot. For those keeping score at home, the X-Rayz haven’ been in first place since Week 3 AND YET…… when the dust finally settled and the smoke finally cleared and the chickens finally came home to roost and whatfuckingever…….. Mike “West Coast Best Coast” Odom is our #1 seed. CONGRATULATIONS TO THEM as it was well-earned (7-2-1 over their last 10 matchups). This of course means that the Main Street MooniniteZ fell out of first but fear not fans because they had their bye wrapped up in Week 19 (8-2 over their last 10 matchups). Expect much discussion of a certain former dynasty in the days to come. But FOR NOW, lets review the story of Week 20: a new #1 seed, a tight battle for the 6th seed, and in the end the seeding remained exactly the goddamn same (except for the whole switcheroo at number one which I just freaking covered a bit). ON TO THE LAST OF THE REGULAR SEASON REVIEWS………
Editor’s Note: To honor Springfield Isotopes owner Michael Turtora, who will be sitting out the Backyard Playoffs for the first time ever or whatfuckingever, we will be using an annoying amount of hashtags in this review as this would be our best guess at his last wishes. #RIPT #YouAlmostNeverWonOnceYouHitThePlayoffsAnywaysSoBigFuckingDeal
MVP: Kris Bryant – Kris Bryant is realllllllly in fine form heading into the fantasy playoffs and that should concern whomever has to take on the Fishing Club and so perhaps it’s a stroke of GENIUS for the MooniniteZ to let go of that #1 seed, is how I am spinning that (#AssumingBothHigherSeedsWin #Strategy). 9/21, 8Rs, 2 doubles, 4HRs, 6RBIs, .519OBP
LVP: Javier Baez – Perhaps it’s a bit silly to single out individual performance instead of pointing out the fact that Ryan had already gone fishin’ for the 2016 fantasy season but to hell with it, I am not giving Ryan LVP and I’ll probably give Cliff LVP and at least I am taking ownership of my hypocrisy and at least Ryan took ownership of his tank job. None of this 8 start half-assing it shit like Cliff. So yea, Javier Baez. 3/20, 1SB, .190OBP
Say what you will about Ryan’s #ShamelessTanking over the past 2 weeks, but you can’t say the team didn’t buy into the philosophy this week. The Fishing Club had about as strong of an offensive showing as you’ll see in this league, but even a third of that effort should have been enough to overcome the Punchouts enviously awful offense. The Punchouts were out-homered in Week 20 by Gary Sanchez and tied by Kris Bryant, the latter of which is more important because that guy was on their opponent’s team. So yea bad offense. HOWEVER Heroy’s Fishing Club also put up a .414OBP, nearly matching their 2016 season record .422OBP from Week 14. Add that to the rest of the impressive offensive stats (55Rs, 18 doubles, 17HRs, 52RBIs, 8SBs) and then add that to the fact that the Punchouts only started 4, and you have an easy win in Week 20 for the OGTFC but one that doesn’t really hold up to scrutiny if you’re looking to call it a #cheapie. With the victory, Heroy notches 11 wins for the second straight year AND THE FANS ARE TIRED OF YOU NOT GETTING IT DONE IN THE PLAYOFFS GREG. With the loss, Ryan misses the postseason for the first time since 2013 AND YOUR POST-CHAMPIONSHIP (#2014) GRACE PERIOD IS STARTING TO RUN OUT RYAN. This is a what have you done for me lately kinda league people get used to it.
OGTFC hitter of note: The youth movement should be equally concerning for potential opponents of the former Youth Movement, chief among them Trea Turner that speedy little fuck (16/32, 6Rs, 1 double, 1HR, 1RBI, 4SBs, .515OBP).
OGTFC pitcher of note: If Heroy wants to FINALLY turn that golden roster of his into fantasy gold, continued golden performances from Jose Fernandez would be helpful….with that #goldtalk (7IP, 0ER, 9Ks, 1QS, 1W, 0.00ERA).
Punchouts hitter of note: This was as close to a “not applicable” as I maybe have seen all year so kudos to George Springer and the rest of the Punchouts batters for buying into the quitting (3/24, 3Rs, 1SB, .222OBP).
Punchouts pitcher of note: Carlos Rodon had 50% of Pine Lake’s starts and kicked ass for 100% of those #SilverLinings #2017AceMaybeIfWalksStayDown (12.2IP, 1ER, 10Ks, 2QS, 2Ws, 0.71ERA).
Next Week aka PLAYOFFS FIRST ROUND: OGTFC host Rojo’s Resurgence in the #4 vs. #5 matchup (#IExpectTheseTwoToBeVeryCivilTowardsEachOther #DoNotStoopToLobmanAndBriansLevel #WEARENOTTHEM…..WeAreNot….Them), Punchouts host NOTHING they are sitting the 2016 playoffs out.
Barnegat Banana Slugs Re-Eliminate The Already Eliminated Bad Drake Puns Just For Good Fucking Measure – 9-4-1
MVP: Josh Donaldson – Josh Donaldson is evidently in fine form himself, which renders my whole argument up top about trying to avoid Kris Bryant kinda useless. Le sigh. 9/23, 9Rs, 5HRs, 10RBIs, .517OBP
LVP: Jose Altuve – Happy to report fantasy MVP Jose Altuve had KINDA A DOWN WEEK last week, for a change. I mean he still grabbed some counting stats here and there but hey, a nice sub .200 OBP to conclude Connor’s season. That’s what you get for (wisely) refusing to trade him, sir. 4/25, 2Rs, 1 double, 1HR, 5RBIs, .154OBP
The Banana Slugs came into Week 20 looking for a few things to break their way that might get them into a first round bye, and those things happened to break the opposite way but AT LEAST they now takes some momentum into the first round. The Slugs of Barnegat didn’t exactly set the world on fire with their Week 20 performance, but they benefited from an even less-inspired from the already-well-eliminated Bad Drake Puns and they certainly won’t complain about the extra win on the old record. 10HRs (50% of those belonging to Josh Donaldson) and 35RBIs may not have gotten the job done against most other opponents in Week 20 but against the BDP they were PLENTY, as in enough to win the HR cat by 1 and the RBI cat by 2. The most important aspect of this matchup is that it happened and it ended and now that it ended The Runner Up Curse ™ has well and truly been defeated. May its trademark quietly expire into the night. A lot of credit due to Brian, who absorbed a years-worth of curse talk and quietly marched on to finish the regular season with a very impressive 12 wins, a mere half game out of a first round bye. For his efforts he gets rewarded with a championship game rematch against the #6 seed River City Cuban Missiles. OH YES……there will be memes. Oh yea and Connor uhhhh, sucked for the second year in the row. Which is just what he deserves for 1) that traumatizing run to the championship game in 2014 and 2) fucking running some other league like some sorta dickhole and guilting people from this league into joining that league. WILL BE ADDRESSED IN THE NEW LEAGUE BYLAWS.
Banana Slugs hitter of note: Most of the Slugs performed pretty poorly last week imho, and will need to be better to get the Banana Slugs back to the championship game imho, but David Ortiz was still pretty solid, that old fuck (8/27, 6Rs, 2 doubles, 2HRs, 4RBIs, .321OBP).
Banana Slugs pitcher of note: Rich Hill HAS RETURNED, and at least for one week his thin-skinned fingers allowed him to throw six shutout innings (6IP, 0ER, 3Ks, 1QS, 1W, 0.00ERA).
BDP hitter of note: Mark Trumbo hit 3 more HRs last week and I for one cannot WAIT until he’s awful next year, so I can complain that he should have been sold high to a championship contender at the trade deadline this year…..of which Connor was not (6/21, 7Rs, 3HRs, 6RBIs, 1SB, .464OBP).
BDP pitcher of note: Carlos Carrasco you, too, deserve a better home (12IP, 3ER, 17Ks, 1QS, 1W, 2.25ERA).
Next Week aka PLAYOFFS FIRST ROUND: Banana Slugs host the Cuban Missiles in Round 1’s #3 vs. #6 matchup (#THECURSEISLIFTED #TryNotToHurtEachOthersFeelingsYouThinSkinnedLowEnergyDouchebags), BDP v. whatever dumb fantasy football league he is probably commissioner of (#NoOtherLeaguesOfAnyKinds).
Sprinfield Isotopes Flirt With A Shocking Playoff Berth, Ultimately Fail To Close The Deal, Still Get Lucky With The Main Street MooniniteZ, Win – 8-5-1
MVP: Unfortunately this is either fucking A-Gon or fucking Pedroia or something? ugh…..I guess Dustin Pedroia – HOW FITTING that in Mikey T’s Topes’ final matchup of the 2016 season, with the playoffs potentially on the line, they would be carried by guys whose names were most relevant 5 years ago. Says it all really. Pedroia contributed more than anyone else to the all-important-in-this-particular-matchup steals and OBP cats. 15/25, 5Rs, 2 doubles, 3 RBIs, 2SBs, .643OBP
LVP: Danny Duffy – Most of the MooniniteZ played hard in Week 20 and I hold no ill will towards any of them except YOU, Danny Duffy. You broke. My heart. Against the Sawks no less. 5IP, 7ER, 2Ks, 12.60ERA. #IStillBelieveInDanielDuffy
WHAT CAN I SAY, the momentum of the ‘Topes Train knocked me right the fuck out of first place and I will be the first to admit that the MooniniteZ got beaten and beaten squarely. This was a beating that one can live with, because aside from some shaky fucking pitching the MooniniteZ performed rather well and the Isotopes of Springfield just flat out performed #weller. Sometimes the team with the worst ERA in the LEAGUE this year throws up a 3.15 with 7QS and a CG against you, and sometimes you bite the dog. Or something. This matchup stayed close until a bit into Sunday afternoon by my calculations, with Mikey T’s team being aided by a rare 5 steal week (only 51 on the season, so pretty much 10% of his season total in one week, so my math tells me it should have been more like 5% so RIGGED). With the victory, the ‘Topes ended the season on a truly impressive 4 game winning streak that had them sniffing the playoffs (ultimately snuffed by the Missiles victory) and left them with at least a somewhat respectable record plus a lot of confidence heading into 2017. #PlayoffsStreakOverOrWhatever. With the loss the MooniniteZ allowed themselves to be LAPPED by former co-dynastier(sp?) Mike Odom, however they approached the week with a certain level of comfort knowing that the 2nd bye was already secure at worst. At worst is what the MooniniteZ got, and there will surely be debate about whether or not seeding matters depending on which teams line up in Round 2. #NothingReallyMattersLifeIsAMeaninglessVoidPleaseContinueToEnjoyArbys
‘Topes hitter of note:
So now I guess this is Adrian Gonzalez, SAYS IT ALL REALLY Never mind it is Freddie Freeman #FuckAGon (9/28, 8Rs, 3 doubles, 3HRs, 6RBIs, .424OBP).
‘Topes pitcher of note: With Freddie Freeman being all good and Anthony Descalfani showing promise PERHAPS the future isn’t quite as grim for the ‘Topes as pundits have painted it (9IP, 0ER, 9Ks, 1QS, 1W, 1CG, 0.00ERA) (then again perhaps it is precisely that grim).
MoonZ’ hitter of note: My only concern is that perhaps Gary Sanchez has hit tooo many(?) HRs currently and thus will have none left by the time this bye week has passed but also jk he is the greatest hitter there ever was (12/23, 7Rs, 3 doubles, 5HRs, 9RBIs, .607OBP).
MoonZ’ pitcher of note: Alex Reyes FINALLY GOT A START everybody, but it only went 4.2 innings, but still beware the Moon(Z) (future) is bright (7IP, 1ER, 8Ks, 1.29ERA).
Next Week aka PLAYOFFS FIRST ROUND: Isotopes v. NOBODY THEY ARE ELIMINATED (#PlayoffsStreakMehhhhh #OnlyLosersCelebrateTheRegularSeason), MooniniteZ vs. NOBODY BUT THAT IS CUZ THEY ARE RESTING AND WAITING PATIENTLY FOR THEIR ROUND 2 OPPONENT (#IfIWasOnSocialMediaIWouldBeQuittingItRightNowAndCallingIt”DarkSideOfTheMoon”)
MVP: David Price – Maybe the offense struggled a bit but the pitching was rather strong and Odom has to be encouraged by David Price’s work of late. 14IP, 2ER, 15Ks, 2QS, 2Ws, 1.29ERA
LVP: Cliff because I am a hypocrite and also Jay Bruce – I mean AT LEAST RYAN HAS FOUR RELIEVERS. Maybe. I forget at this point so I haven’t exactly fact checked that. But also Jay Bruce sucked. 2/14, 1 double, .143OBP
Now for the FEEL GOOD STORY OF 2016, the Point Loma X-Rayz. The X-Rayz took advantage of two absentee team owners in the final two weeks, this is true, but this is a team that went 7-2-1 over its last 10 people and they deserve the #1 seed as much as anyone. After being ranked eighth in Brian’s HBO-sponsored pre-season Power Rankings #BehindTheTopesEven!, then dealing with the never-ending critique about the lack of draft picks, then starting out the year 2-3-1, the X-Rayz used their signature wheeling and dealing and base stealing style to storm all the way back and take this league’s top spot heading into the 2016 playoffs. TRULY a remarkable tale, and one that wasn’t without its Week 20 drama as the X-Rayz offense decided to keep things as tight as possible. Needing mostly just to, yanno field a full roster in order to beat Cliff’s mess, Odom was still forced to sweat out the week (and send Carlos Beltran) packing while his offense threatened to give the matchup away. In the end, despite losing their signature steals cat, the X-Rayz took home their backup signature triples cat and enough of the pitching cats to claim top o’ the mountain. I don’t want to talk about Cliff’s team. WITH THE VICTORY, Odom follows up an impressive 11 win 2015 campaign with an even more impressive 12 win 2016 campaign and gets to up and skip the first round that vexed him last season. With the loss, Cliff continued to Cliff and whom (#MikeyTLovedTheWordWhomIUseItInHisHonor) knows if he is ever heard from again.
X-Rayz hitter of note: The Davis’ were bright spots for the X-Rayz in Week 20 but Khris was perhaps slightly better than Chris so this goes to Khris….Davis (6/22, 7Rs, 1 double, 1 triple, 2HRs, 6RBIs, .360OBP).
X-Rayz pitcher of note: Equally encouraging work from Chris Archer across two starts last week, as the two aces of the X-Rayz staff look to put an up and down season behind them and finish strong (12IP, 4ER, 16Ks, 1QS, 1W, 3.00ERA).
Bulldogs hitter of note: Brian Dozier remains one of the most underrated fantasy middle infielders and I look forward to possibly attempting to acquire him should the Bulldogs fall under new ownership….ahem (9/27, 8Rs, 3 doubles, 2HRs, 4RBIs, 2SBs, .379OBP).
Bulldogs pitcher of note: Vince Velasquez got started by Cliff against Cliff’s beloved Mets on Sunday, so I suppose that is noteworthy (5IP, 1ER, 7Ks, 1.80ERA).
Next Week aka PLAYOFFS FIRST ROUND: X-Rayz v. motherfuckin’ NOBODY cuz they are chilling in the bye week as the #1 seed (#WeSnatchinUpAllYoByes), Cliff v. NOBODY FOREVER PROBABLY (#AStrongerCommishWouldHaveGottenHimOutThreeYearsAgo #NeverT).
THE IMODIUM “TRY NOT TO SHIT YOURSELF OVER THE PLAYOFFS STARTING NEXT WEEK” LAST O’ THE YEAR…… GAME O’ THE WEEK
River City Cuban Missiles Complete Sad Slog To The Sixth Seed, Also Complete Rojo’s Resurgence’s Sad Fall From Grace, Win – 6-5-3
MVP: Manny Machado- If the Cuban Missiles make any noise in the playoffs it will more than likely be due to Manny Machado going off, although more than likely they will just make no noise in spite of Manny Machado going off #QuieterThanABlackHole #KindaLikePrettyMuchEveryMikeyTPlayoffAppearanceEver. 13/33, 7Rs, 2 doubles, 3HRs, 7RBIs, .394OBP
LVP: Hunter Pence – Just because like, stop being hurt all the time Hunter Pence. Yanno? Just cut it out already. 2/11, .182 OBP
TRY NOT TO SHIT YOURSELF but I am almost done with this final regular season review which means the regular season is over which means all you first round participants should be frantically checking lefty righty splits for every bat on your roster. Or just I dunno continuing to live your lives. ANYWHO, Lobman surreeeee roped us all in with the promise of the intrigue of the possibility of some sort of Mythical 5th tiebreaker that could have destroyed the very league. AND THEN, with a nice assist from that lay-down-like-a-dog sonofabitch Sunday Resurgence offense, it was all taken away from us. I don’t know or care to know the particulars of what went wrong on Sunday but alls I know is Lobman went into the day looking a bit grim and came out of it sitting pretty in his undisputed 6th spot. SAD! A cursory analysis of Sunday says that the inability of the Resurgence to hit any HRs on Sunday, combined with the ability of the Missiles to hit 4HRs on Sunday, combined with a team designed to win holds every week ONCE AGAIN not winning holds in a week, lead to Rojo’s final slide on down the standings and Lobman’s final pathetic stumble forward into the playoffs. CONGRATS TO BOTH TEAMS ON A COMPETITIVE SEASON! With the win, the Cuban Missiles crushed the field good story that was the Isotopes playoff push and afforded themselves the opportunity to at least casually participate in a title defense. With the loss, Rojo’s Resurgence’s Desurgence came to its final resting place as the 5th seed, after many weeks as the #1 seed. This review author hopes with all his heart that Rojo found peace and happiness and learned to love again during that period of time. Fin.
Missiles hitter of note: (32 year old) Yulieski Gurriel made his LONG ANTICIPATED debut, but really only “anticipated” if you are Mike Lobman and you like to pretend every prospect you add is the next Joe fucking DiMaggio #AtLeastHeIsCubanIGuess (4/1, 2 doubles, 2RBIs, .417OBP).
Missiles pitcher of note: Truthfully Kevin Gausman may have been most responsible for this most important of wins for the Missiles, and good I’m a fan (13IP, 0ER, 11Ks, 2QS, 2Ws, 0.00ERA).
Resurgence hitter of note: This fucking Hernan Perez character keeps stuffing stat sheets I tell you (5/19, 4Rs, 1 double, 1 triple, 2HRs, 6RBIs, 3SBs, .300OBP).
Resurgence pitcher of note: The Resurgence can only go as far as their Asian pitching takes them imho, and one of those Asian pitchers is Masahiro Tanaka (7IP, 0ER, 5Ks, 1QS, 1W, 0.00ERA).
Next Week aka PLAYOFFS FIRST ROUND: The #6 Cuban Missiles travel to Barnegat to take on the #3 seed Banana Slugs (#FriendshipsWillBeTested #FatherToBeVersusFatherToTwo), the #5 Resurgence travels to Ocean Gate to take on the #4 seed Trout Fishing Club (#HoldsVersusHeroy #ResurgenceVersusRacist).
And that was the THRILLING conclusion to the 2016 season. When it was all said and done, the 2016 season saw 5 teams with 11+ wins and 3 with 12+ wins. Maybe that’s some sort of record I don’t know. AND NOW THE REAL SEASON STARTS #OnlyLosersCelebrateTheRegularSeason. BEST OF LUCK TO ALL PARTICIPANTS #FantasySportsAreAMixOfSkillAndLuckKindaLikePokerButCrueler