Down On The Farm

No, silly, not THAT kind of farm! WAAAAY back in the day someone (Greg? Odom maybe?) did a little review of sorts on each club’s minor league stable. Now, this is a far deeper dive since back then we only had an 8 player minimum (this was in 2017) but maybe not because T only had 6 (Judge as a prospect!) but Odom had 10 because of his high minors obsession and constantly rotating team.

That said, consider this an editorial. The guidelines I’m going to use are two-fold. I did consider MLB dot com’s rankings but heavily factored in the rankings from Fantrax, since they are geared specifically for fantasy. Obviously, this is MY opinion and mine alone and if you don’t like it write your own fucking content.

These are done in no particular order, just however I felt like doing them. Keep in mind, Fantrax ranks 400 prospects while MLB only ranks 100, which is why you’re going to see a LOT of not ranked (NR) on the list.

Editor’s note: I put the prospects lists together sometime in mid-late February so if they’re not 100% accurate, that’s why. I ain’t got all day to stay on top of everyone’s constantly changing lists.

Silverton Sluggers

Edouard Julien

PlayerTeamFantrax RankMLB dot com Rank
Edouard JulienMIN48NR
Jordan WestburgBAL5874
Esteury RuizOAK63NR
Tyler SoderstromOAK6439
Will BrennanCLE127NR
Hayden WesneskiCHC139NR
Jordan DiazOAK181NR
Masataka YoshidaBOS205NR
Michael TogliaCOL213NR
Jake EderMIA265NR
Luis CampusanoSDNRNR
Stuart FairchildARINRNR
Mark MathiasTEXNRNR
Robert SuarezSDNRNR

Hashtag Analysis: Well, this is certainly one way to put together an inaugural prospect pool. Given the talent available, the Sluggers went with more current players during their startup draft and only time will tell how that will pan out. There are some interesting names at the top. I’m a big fan of Edouard Julien and his 20/20 potential. Jordan Westburg looks to be legit and a big part of the O’s resurgence. Then there’s the ever present Tyler Soderstrom who I feeeel like I’ve been hearing about since 2010 but hasn’t debuted yet still sticks around on these lists. Looking down, there’s a few other names that maybe have lost some prospect luster, like Campusano and Suarez. One may ponder if Mathias and Fairchild are there just to fulfill the minor league requirement,

Overall Grade: D+

While this may seem a bit harsh, the absence of a legitimate top flight prospect and some questionable unranked players means this group needs some work.

Barnegat Banana Slugs

PlayerTeamFantrax RankMLB dot com Rank
Jackson ChourioMIL68
Jackson HollidayBAL2112
Eury PerezMIA2813
Oswald PerezaNYY3252
Matt MervisCHC55NR
Brennan DavisCHC6992
Ken WaldichukOAK15076
Austin MartinBOS187NR
Kristian RobinsonARI287NR
Roki SasakiNPB376NR
Hunter BishopSF383NR
Stone GarrettWASNRNR
Kyle NelsonARINRNR
Erich UelmenPHINRNR
Tommy WhiteLSUNRNR

Hashtag Analysis: The Slugs have been home to many exciting prospects over the life of the league (Vladdy & Bo most recently) and this year is no different. While some of their top prospects are unlikely to debut this year, there is definitely a bright future in Barnegat. Jackson Chourio is a fast riser up prospect charts at just 18 years old as is Eury Perez at just 19 years old and we know the Marlins have been a pitching factory lately. Peraza and Mervis look poised to make an impact in 2023 for their respective clubs. After the top 5, there’s a LITTLE drop-off with some also-rans in the prospect world. Is Austin Martin a guy? Will Kristian Robinson EVER resolve his visa issues? Hunter Bishop is still floating around? I’ll admit that Sasaki was a sneaky good add when the rules allowed for it so there’s some pitching reinforcements on the way in a league where pitching can often be king.

Overall Grade: B+

The top end of their minor league system has a very high ceiling that makes up for the back end’s minor shortcomings.

Queensboro FC

PlayerTeamFantrax RankMLB dot com Rank
Corbin CarrollARI12
Austin WellsNYY34NR
Nick YorkeBOS95NR
Heston KjerstadBAL11480
DL HallBAL13797
Kyle MullerOAK237NR
Jordan GroshansMIA297NR
Jeter DownsWASNRNR
Ron MarinaccioNYYNRNR
Brailyn MarquezCHCNRNR
Kirk McCartyFANRNR
Jonathan SotoCHCNRNR
Zack ThompsonSTLNRNR

Hastag Analysis: We all know how well Mikey T is DIALED IN to the prospect world. Obviously the big name here is Corbin Carroll, someone yours truly was into several seasons ago. But, he’s in Queens now and is poised to light MLB on fire and is arguably the most exciting prospect since J-Rod. But, after Corbin, there’s Austin Wells and then some big question marks. Yorke seems be lost in Boston, Hall might be a bullpen guy and Baz is recovering from TJ so reinforcements might be a bit off if the major league product fails to deliver on the field.

Overall Grade: C-

I can’t go lower because of Corbin Carroll but the remainder of the group lacks excitement.

Ocean Gate Fishing Club

PlayerTeamFantrax RankMLB dot com Rank
Ezequiel TovarCOL925
Grayson RodriguezBAL117
Gavin WilliamsCLE3942
Michael BuschLAD7754
Brady HouseWAS105NR
Khalil WatsonMIA117NR
Brice TurangMIL163NR
Kumar RockerTEX264NR
Ethan SmallMIL340NR
Maxwell ClarkHSNRNR
Esteven FlorialNYYNRNR
Yunior MartePHINRNR

Hashtag Analysis: In keeping up with my back and forth between MEH farm systems and good ones, we turn our attention to Ocean gate. Things are exciting at the top with several guys ready to make an immediate impact. Is this the time a Colorado prospect works out? G-Rod might be set up with an innings limit in 2023 but they could be seriously useful innings. Gavin Williams has quietly climbed rankings and could debut this year. The back end could use some work, and they’re a little short on the total, but I like where this group sits entering the season.

Overall Grade: B

The only thing keeping this from being an A is the very back end being a bit underwhelming and a little short handed.

Toms River Swamp Rats

PlayerTeamFantrax RankMLB dot com Rank
Jasson DominguezNYY3047
George ValeraCLE9751
Cade CavalliWAS11358
Garrett MitchellMIL138NR
Ryan PepiotLAD15570
Emerson HancockSEA174NR
Sixto SanchezMIA328NR
Xavier EdwardsMIA394NR
Jose DeversMIANRNR
Monte HarrisonLAANRNR
Jared OlivaPITNRNR
Nate PearsonTORNRNR
Tomoyuki SuganoNPBNRNR

Hashtag Analysis: So, if you’ll recall earlier in the article (and I know you read all of them not just your own team) I kinda came down on one of the n00bs for their minor leaguers. This group here, uh, needs some work. (I’m trying to be nice) but this is basically Jasson Dominguez. Valera and Cavalli were once on a more upward trend but have quietly plateaued since. Garrett Mitchell could still be a thing and Pepiot could be somewhat useful but after that the dropoff is significant. The consensus is pretty much out on Hancock and Sixto and the rest have lost their luster quite some time ago. I GUESS Pearson could be a guy one day should he get and stay healthy. Sugano will likely never pitch stateside.

Overall Grade: F

We have 15 minor league roster spots and this largely starts and stops at Jasson Dominguez.

Lakehurst Leviathans

PlayerTeamFantrax RankMLB dot com Rank
Druw JonesARI1015
Triston CasasBOS2423
Daniel EspinoCLE3316
Termarr JohnsonPIT3626
Robert HassellWAS3735
Joey WiemerMIL3890
Taj BradleyTB4220
Ceddanne RafaelaBOS4786
Marco LucianoSF4922
Masyn WinnSTL6050
Oscar ColasCWS7285
Brandon PfaadtARI9859
Jack LeiterTEX11578
Quinn PriesterPIT11960
Pedro LeonHOU131NR

Hastag Analysis: I’m going to try to be objective here (HA!) but after years of losing, the prospects have finally started to pay off. While this group doesn’t boast several top fives like it did last year, this is still a strong group highlighted by Druw Jones. Casas looks to make an immediate impact on the scoresheets. After that, some injury risks follow and a big “when will he be a guy” like Luciano it does get a little lighter towards that back with another recent struggler like Leiter. No, this is probably not the best group out there, but it’s sure as heck not bad to look at.

Overall Grade: A-

With only one unranked prospect, the list goes 14 deep from MLB (and that doesn’t include Gabriel Moreno that I was too lazy to add another row for and whom has apparently graduated from lists but not rookie limits but WHATEVER) the only real risk besides obvious prospect busts is some concerning injuries near the top.

East Coast Mambas

PlayerTeamFantrax RankMLB dot com Rank
Noelvi MarteCIN1429
Pete Crow-ArmstrongCHC1628
Harry FordSEA4049
Luisangel AcunaTEX4571
Kevin AlcantaraCHC5287
Dustin HarrisTEX80NR
Blaze JordanBOS109NR
Cristian HernandezCHC111NR
Carlos ColmenarezTB189NR
Owen CaissieCHC211NR
Reginald PreciadoCHC308NR
Robert PuasonOAKNRNR
Jackson RutledgeWASNRNR
Drew WatersKCNRNR
Forrest WhitleyHOUNRNR

Hashtag Analysis: I have some mixed feelings about this group of misfit toys from the Mambas. Up top, there are some quality names like Marte, PCA and Ford. Go towards the bottom and you’ve got some names who might not ever amount to anything and whom have lost some considerable prospect shine like Puason, Whitley and Waters. AWFUL LOT OF CUBS THOUGH RYAN. But, some sneaky good names in the middle of the group though with Dustin Harris and Owen Caissie making a splash recently.

Overall Grade: B-

A very strong top six makes up for a questionable back end.

Big Red Machine

PlayerTeamFantrax RankMLB dot com Rank
Gunnar HendersonBAL21
Anthony VolpeNYY75
Andrew PainterPHI176
Josh JungTEX2031
Marcelo MayerBOS239
Curtis MeadTB2633
Francisco AlvarezNYM313
Tink HenceSTL4677
Edwin ArroyoCIN5344
Logan O’HoppeLAA5453
Cam CollierCIN6669
Bo NaylorCLE7064
Gavin StoneLAD8356
Kevin ParadaNYM10336
Jace JungDET13483
Spencer SteerCIN142NR
Drey JamesonARI232NR

Hashtag Analysis: Our second newcomer on this list went prospect heavy early and often and sure made this a fun list to review. HOTLY -probably- debated whether or not Gunnar is #1 or #2 makes little difference as he is as exciting as it gets. They selected five top 10 players on the MLB dot com page and six in the top 26 for Fantrax with several more recently debuted or soon to debut players. We all know every prospect works out so this could be an entire team to reckon with for quite a few years.

Overall Grade: A

Ryan #2 (sorry, actual Ryan was here first) paid close attention to the future during the dispersal draft and put together arguably the strongest group in the league.

River City Fightin’ Margs

PlayerTeamFantrax RankMLB dot com Rank
Elly De La CruzCIN310
Jordan WalkerSTL44
Miguel VargasLAD1237
Elijah GreenWAS1946
Ricky TiedemannTOR2232
Kyle HarrisonSF4318
Hunter BrownHOU5043
Jackson MerrillSD5619
Brett BatyNYM6521
Kodai SengaNYM75NR
Bobby MillerLAD8124
Max MeyerMIA8467
Henry DavisPIT8557
Tanner BibeeCLE8765
Mick AbelPHI9448
Jackson JobeDET12263

Hashtag Analysis: I hate that I have to say nice things about Lobman. Ok, to be fair, I don’t have to say anything nice about HIM, he’s a prick nice enough guy. But he knows how to build a farm system. He’s got guys ready to contribute now like Walker, Senga and Vargas, guys ready to post numbers soon enough like Baty and Harrison and guys who will probably be stars down the road like Green and Elly.

Overall Grade: A

From top to bottom, there’s not a name to scoff at. We all know that every prospect works out, so this could be a dominant team for years.

Grandpa’s Team

PlayerTeamFantrax RankMLB dot com Rank
Jordan LawlarARI511
James WoodWAS817
Colton CowserBAL1340
Kyle ManzardoTB1573
Connor NorbyBAL18NR
Endy RodriguezPIT2555
Royce LewisMIN2745
Evan CarterTEX2941
Zac VeenCOL3527
Cristian Encarnacion-StrandCIN57NR
Diego CartayaLAD7314
Brooks LeeMIN9231
Yainer DiazHOU106NR
Kyle StowersCHC161NR
Orelvis MartinezTOR221NR
Randy RodriguezSFNRNR

Hashtag Analysis: Until Keith takes a few seconds to do, well anything in the way of naming the team, it’s just “Grandpa’s Team” but he also seems to have paid some attention to those darn kids that are constantly on his lawn field. He’s got some fast risers like Carter and potential #1 prospect as soon as next year in James Wood. Connor Norby is often overlooked in a deep Baltimore system but he should not be ignored. Royce Lewis might play one of these days, I guess.

Overall Grade: A-

Another who paid close attention during the dispersal draft, this group is set up nicely for the future.

Down On The Farm

2023 Is Happening! (I Swear This Time Edition)

Though it never really went away, we’re back for 2023 and with it brings in the winds of change, like it usually does. But relax, there isn’t going to be anything radical.

Dispersal Draft

This is going to be the most “off the wall” thing but none of the people who might accidentally read this will be affected. Since we lost both Seans to retirement and my repeated failed attempts to replace Rojo, I have tried once again to refill the coffers and I think I have this time. For reals.

The rules of the draft are simple. The three new owners, whom I’ll detail in another post down the road, will be put into a draft room with all three departed team’s players plus available free agents. They will refill their own rosters to the max and once completed (ALLEGEDLY on Wednesday that happens) all remaining players will go on waivers and transactions will be open again, including trades.

Every other team’s players will be locked as keepers and show in the draft room as picks. These can be viewed now (right??) and yes, I took the time to KINDA place them where they’d be taken if you picked the team fresh. No, it’s not perfect. Gausman in the 4th and Trout in the 5th ain’t right but you’ll get where I was going with it.

Complete Games

Or rather, the new lack of them. I did some digging and have already detailed most, if not all of you, why they are going away. If you forgot, long story short, they almost never impacted a matchup in the 5 years of data I looked through. Yes, I did literally look at every matchup the last 5 years. It was something like 2% of the time. To the ether they go. I’m not going to replace them with anything since we can’t be adults about it. The lack of a new category will impact the week to week as much as complete games ever did so IN REALITY there’s no change to scoring. Let’s just say that and move on.

First Year Player Drafts (FYPD/Rookie Drafts)

YES, these are coming back! As we get closer to them, I’ll detail them much further but for now, some basic reminders.

These will now become only once per year, prior to the next season. These will resume for February 2024 and take place in the group me chat (or side chat) as it used to. You’ll have 3 picks, which can be traded starting immediately after the dispersal draft this season should you so desire.

Order is determined by lottery for the non-playoff teams, then reverse order of finish. So while you can trade these picks right away, you won’t know their actual position until October-ish.

As it was in the past, you’ll have to drop prospects (or anyone really) to accommodate incoming draftees, as long as you have the league minimum of 15.


Yeah, they’re gone. As if anyone cares or noticed.

Final Thoughts

For now, anyway.

I can honestly say this is the most excited I have been for a season in AWHILE. Sure, COVID sapped some life and a few owners being….less active, let’s say did not help. But this is the the start of a new beginning for the Backyard, and I can’t wait to see what the future holds.

2023 Is Happening! (I Swear This Time Edition)

The Return Of T

Holy crap two posts in one week?!

Quite. It’s real. Baseball has returned as has the Backyard and maybe even this blog? Formal announcements for a few things that you probably already know about.

The Rumors of the Retirement of Mikey T Have Been Greatly Exaggerated

As you’re all very well aware, I have used my wonderful skills of persuasion (how else would I have so many kids if I didn’t, amirite?) and we will see the return of Mikey T to the league after a brief, self-imposed “timeout” of sorts. Not only is he back, but I have secured the Isotopes also be returned to him by the graciousness of “The New Guy” Chris who will “definitely be in the chat” this year. And I have unceremoniously removed my second failed attempt at a brother in the league again and Chris will run that team.

Universal DH

Now that the National League has implemented the DH rule FINALLY, we will do the same. Starting this year, one of our utility spots will be converted into a DH spot. I have also reduced eligibility carry-over to 15 games so more are eligible to be placed there right away, with more quickly following once games get underway.

Killing Off Complete Games


Prize Money!

You read that right. Sean CLAIMS to have pitched the idea before but I didn’t exactly have to convince anyone so DID HE?? ANYWAY…this year, it’ll be $20 of “dues” if you will. Half of that will go to Fantrax to pay for the site and half will go 100% to the winner of the Backyard Bracket. If it goes well, we can look into increasing it in 2023 if I have time to address that instead of saving the league AGAIN. The easiest way will be to send it to me since Fantrax wants to charge per transaction, (it’s 50 cents but come on) so I can pay it in one shot. And the prize money will be held via the Fantrax Treasurer that pays out automatically to the winner, so there’s no chance the shit bag commissioner runs off with it. The easiest way would be to Venmo it to me (@monkees19) and I’ll take it from there.

That’s…all for now? Stop making me do stuff and you won’t have to read these. Maybe WEEKLY RECAPS make a return? We. shall…see.


The Return Of T

YAY BASEBALL (Sorry Greg) And Some League Business

Perhaps I might be the only excited person but ask me if I care. I’m gonna be so excited that it’s gonna rub off, just watch. I do want to glaze over a few things as things return to the “new normal” in The Backyard as discussed in the off-season.

Return of Pre-COVID Bench

During the previous two seasons, we had an extended bench to account for the whole COVID thing in lieu of a larger IR/IL/DL/WHATEVER. Since we all know the pandemic is 100% over, the Backyard is going to drop two bench spots heading into 2022. This will go into effect April 1st but feel free to make those cuts early. That’s just when I will make the change and anything after will make the roster illegal.

Fantrax Fee

I was very diligent this off-season trying to find an alternative to Fantrax and I just couldn’t find an acceptable one that would fit all of our league needs. Many had features but lacked out scoring format. Others would do it, but not allow the customization we need. Of the three most popular scoring formats, ours is less popular than points or roto so until something else emerges, Fantrax it is. And since we are a premium league, it does come with a cost that I have not been able to circumvent a third time. This $10 per person fee can be paid directly on the Fantrax site/app, not to me. There’s a deadline on the app, probably.

Everything Else

Honestly, not much. You’re free to make trades and free agent acquisitions as needed and as always. If there are any further concerns, ya’ll know where to reach me.

YAY BASEBALL (Sorry Greg) And Some League Business

2021 SEASON/POSTSEASON REVIEW & BCS PREVIEW: Ding Dong The *Witch Is Dead Edition

*……by witch i mean bitch, perhaps it autocorrected cuz i’m doing this BY PHONE

SPECIAL REPORT from Seattle….

Fucks sake, it’s been nearly a year since I wrote one of these things and boyyyy do I not miss it and boyyy do I regret attempting this on a phone but it’s happening now and BOYYYY WHATTA YEAR it has been. ~Backyard~ bitching is probably near an ATH, I can’t quite quantify that because I’ve all but stopped looking at the chat (honestly how much covid content can you fucking cram in there MIKE). Overall engagement with the league seemingly ebbing and flowing team by team, to the point where Rojo and I didn’t find out Mikey T had quit until like 3 weeks later (Rojo has since also quit). And yet….the league….trudges on. Have there been some great storylines? MAYBE. Mikey T quitting like the undersized little leaguer he’s always been is kinda fun, Shane’s worst to first routine is nice to see. Brian getting trounced in the playoffs ALWAYS a welcome sight. Have there been some trades? I think so. Our noble commissioner really wouldn’t want me digging too deep into this Nolan Arenado fiasco I know that much. Am I now in the BCS and writing this just to take some cheapshots at all of you LOSERS that aren’t? Almost certainly. Let’s recap the year as concisely as possible shall we? Cuz I’ve got an “Underground Tour” in like 90 mins….

THE 2021 SEASON ….. What can I say about this season that hasn’t already been said? Literally anything, because the blog has withered and died like so many of our hopes and dreams. Shane valiantly attempted a Power Rankings 5 weeks in, and it’s possible the Weekly and All Time Records are somewhat accurate, but other than that we got not a lot. The Power Rankings DO show the two eventual BCS-bound squads in the top 3 so that’s a nice time capsule. The Margs at number one but we SAW how they went out now didn’t we (I beat them. is how.) Ultimately this whole thing is like a nice time capsule now isn’t it. Let’s do some quick hits:

Favorite 2021 Backyard Storyline: LAKEHURST LEVIATHANS

Hard not to get at least a lil bit misty-eyed about the slow buildup of the Lakehurst Leviathans run to the numero uno seed here. This is a team that was 3-8 in that sham of a 2020 season but also 6-12 in ‘19, 2-16 in ‘18, 3-14-1 in ‘17. SHANE HAS ALWAYS BEEN REALLY BAD AT THIS. And now for the first time he’s really been pretty good at this, this season, and it’s just a shame people haven’t been more supportive of that. The Leviathans have gotten a helluva rookie year out of Jonathan India and StarMar has stolen a buncha bags and Zack Wheeler has been really good and aside from that I’m not sure how they’ve done it folks. When Shane lost (so very often) he didn’t lose the lesson, I guess. THE DALAI LAMA LOOK HIM UP

Runner-Up Fave Story: All the quittings. So longggg suckerrrrrs (also maybe save a seat on the bus outta here for me and my trophy)

Runner-Up to the Runner-Up Fave Story: Doch’s reign of terror finally coming to an end. It was a great 2.5 season run Doch, but go fuck yourself. Truly.

2021 BACKYARD AWARDS (poorly researched):

MVP: Shohei Ohtani (Bashers) – He’s been ridiculous and I enjoyed the idea of him languishing away on Rojo’s team, surrounded by empty roster slots.

Cy Young: Adam Wainwright (‘Topes) – Could very easily also give this to Ohtani but SOMEHOW Wainwright has been really good and twirled 3 CGs and so TECHNICALLY the rating system has him higher. And let’s let the old guy have it. And look how these two guys are on teams with new ownership, THIS LEAGUE IS GONNA DO JUST FINE.

ROY: Jonathan India (Leviathans) – I mean I just ASSUME, they’re in the BCS after all.


Luis Garcia getting ready to contribute LITTLE TO NOTHING to the Bears BCS Monday

I wouldn’t want to spend too much time devoted to the LOSERS of these earlier rounds cuz really this is all about me and Shane. But the earlier rounds had to happen first so let’s have at it…


The Leviathans and Bears sat back with their byes and watched the Banana Slugs get absolutely TROUNCED by the league’s reigning champeens, 10.5 – 3.5. Chalk this up as another season when the Slugs SURELY felt they had a top team but were surely wrong. The Margs and OGFC played a far tighter one, ending in a 7-7 draw when uhhh Bradley Zimmer or some shit couldn’t do enough in the Sunday night game (to be fair it sounds like a lot was being asked of him). Margs move on as the higher seed and we are on to the semis….


Here’s where it gets fun you guys. First let’s get it out of the way, yea yea I stomped out the Fightin Margs and GOOD fuck them. If i were to say something nice I would say it’s impressive that Mike’s squad always seems to get at least one dub in the playoffs and that shows some genuine uhhh fantasy baseball team constructing chops? (not something you’d want to put on a Tinder profile) But also a few of those playoff victories have come at my own expense and so….yanno….fuck them.

MORE FUN THAN THAT was the Lakehurst Leviathans defeating the Lacey Township BackdoorSliderz HANDILY, 11.5-2.5. Again I remind you, while Doch was on his 2.5 year reign of terror as back-to-back-to-halfback champion of this league Shane’s squad was putting together last place-type finishes and just looking generally bad. And now it’s 2021 and the world is irreparably damaged and the Leviathans are ROLLIN BAYBAY. As for Doch, what can I really say about him that hasn’t already been said no matter how horrible. Things that even the people he thinks “love” him (if such a creature could truly warrant love) say behind his back, and often. Ultimately the BDSliderz put together one truly dominant season in 2019 but managed to sandwich championships around that season as the 6 seed in both the 2018 and the (barely worth actually counting) 2020 seasons and that is something that he can cling to on cold and lonely nights (of which I’m sure there are many). The injury bug may have bit a bit too hard this season, or maybe he got LUCKY to sneak into the playoffs in 2018 and then LUCKY to find a trade partner so willing to build up his fellow Sean’s roster. Or maybe it’s alway a bit of a luck/skill hybrid where it’s tough to tell which had more to do with it. Like poker or drunk driving. ANYWHO rest in piss, Butt Sliderz (plz note: IRL I find Doch to be a generally pleasant young man his stupid stacked team just needed to stop winning, and now it has, and now we can begin to heal our relationship and I think I see some great things in our future 🙂 )


And so now we have the #1 seed Lakehurst Leviathans (14-4) vs. the #2 seed Island Beach Bears (12-4-2) for allll the marbles. Wheeler vs. Musgrove. India vs. Semien. etc. etc. you get the idea. For Shane, he’s seeking to fully complete the turnaround and enter an exclusive group of Backyard champeens. For myself, it’s the seeking of a FOURTH championship (absolutely nobody disputes this) but the first without my POC PIC. A victory for Shane invites added and unneeded scrutiny into the Commish’s EXTREMELY SUSPECT Nolan Arenado trade. A victory for myself invites the possibility I choose to “retire on top” (don’t worry I could also choose to “retire in shame” if I lose it’s an option either way). One thing is for certain and that’s this: Surely everyone will be watching this matchup closely, edge of their seats nail-biting type stuff, and surely this “blog post” won’t be chock full of errors and weird formatting issues despite being written on an iPhone, and surely I’m going to think of a nice way to wrap this thing up just in case it’s the last post I ev

2021 SEASON/POSTSEASON REVIEW & BCS PREVIEW: Ding Dong The *Witch Is Dead Edition

2021 Early Season Power Rankings

Yay for content! It’s about time someone did it anyway. See above as I have updated the season long records to reflect, ya know, the actual season going on, NOT 2019. And since we didn’t have a pre-season power rankings you’ll have to just let me do what I do. Don’t like how I do it? Too freakin bad, do it yourself then. I’ll be doing them in reverse order because that’s how I do things.

#10 Toms River Swamp Rats

2021 Record: 1-4

League Leading: 3B (T-1st)

League Worst: Runs, HR, CG (only team without one)

Team MVP: Jack Flaherty (5 W, 4 QS, 3.15 ERA, 36 K (in 34.1 IP)

It’s a rebuilding year for the Swamp Rats and it shows in the record. There are signs of life after a week 3 win over the Topes, but being in the bottom half of just about every statistical category isn’t gonna do you any favors in these here rankings.

#9 Rojo’s Renegade Force

2021 Record: 1-4

League Leading: None

League Worst: 2B, K

Team MVP: Shohei Ohtani (24 R, 8 2B, 2 3B, 9 HR, 21 RBI, 6 SB, .322 OBP)

While the week 2 victory over Island Beach in and of itself was impressive, the other four weeks have not been as much, including an opening week shutout (12-0-2) to the Slugs. Ohtani is doing Ohtani things but the rest of the lineup, when it’s set, isn’t carrying it’s weight.

#8 Astoria Isotopes

2021 Record: 1-4

League Leading: HLD

League Worst: SV, W, SB

Team MVP: Nolan Arenado (6 HR, 23 RBI, .340 OBP)

The Topes are gonna need to beat more than the previous team to earn a higher spot in these rankings. They are in the top half of most offensive categories, so there could be some positive regression.

#7 Ocean Gate Fishing Club

2021 Record: 2-3

League Leading: 2B, SV

League Worst: None

Team MVP: Kris Bryant (13 2B, 9 HR, 22 RBI, 1 SB, .397 OBP

Bryant is having a huge year and Trout is Trout, but they can’t do it alone on offense. The team is middling overall with a bat in hand and while the pitching has been excellent, hitting counts just as much, which is why they land in this spot.

#6 East Coast Mambas

2021 Record: 3-2

League Leading: None

League Worst: 3B, RBI

Team MVP: Carlos Rodon (4 W, 3 QS, 1 CG, 0.69 ERA, 35 K (in 26 IP)

The top of the rotation has done well and kept them in most weeks, but the offense needs a boost, being in the bottom half of every category on the year. Both losses have been to 1-loss teams.

#5 Lacey Township Backdoor Sliderz

2021 Record: 2-3

League Leading: QS

League Worst: HLD

Team MVP: Ronald Acuna Jr. (29 R, 10 HR, 22 RBI, 5 SB, .409 OBP)

The defending champs have had an overall tough schedule so far and are doing okay on the year with the counting stats. Despite the losing record, you earn some respect until proven otherwise, but losses to team’s above them keep their rating where it is.

#4 Barnegat Banana Slugs

2021 Record: 4-1

League Leading: 3B (T-1st) CG, W (T-1st)

League Worst: OBP

Team MVP: Vlad Guerrero Jr (7 HR, 23 RBI, .447 OBP)

Despite a downright ugly OBP the offense has been humming along as is the pitching, which is no worse than 4th in any stat on the year. A loss to the next team keeps them here.

#3 Lakehurst Leviathans

2021 Record: 4-1

League Leading: Runs, RBI

League Worst: ERA, QS

Team MVP: J.D. Martinez (10 2B, 10 HR, 31 RBI, .427 OBP)

Yea, I know I’ll get some shit for putting MYSELF here, but with only one loss, argue against it. Top 4 in every offensive category and at least middling pitching rankings (except that ugly ass ERA) MAYBE THIS IS THE YEAR they actually EARN a playoff spot.

#2 Island Beach Bears

2021 Record: 3-2

League Leading: OBP (T-1st)

League Worst: None

Team MVP: Nick Castellanos (24 R, 8 2B, 9 HR, 22 RBI, .357 OBP)

Despite having a worse record than a couple of teams below it, the Bears are near the top in most categories and beating the #1 team will earn you some sway around here.

#1 River City Fightin’ Margs

2021 Record: 4-1

League Leading: HR, OBP (T-1st) W (T-1st) Ks, ERA

League Worst: None

Team MVP: Giancarlo Stanton (he’t not hurt!!) JUST KIDDING IT’S Corbin Burnes (2 W, 4 QS, 1.53 ERA, 49 K (in 29.1 IP) and STILL 0 BB

It was actually difficult to pick a team MVP here, which says a lot about why this team is ranked #1 right now. Top 5 at least in every pitching category and top 3 in almost all offensive ones make an easy case for this spot. A tough loss to a tough opponent and quality wins (except T haha) put the Margs firmly in the one spot for now.

2021 Early Season Power Rankings

2021 Minors Expansion

Hello fellas.

As has been discussed ad nauseum to some degree during the off-season, it’s become clear that just about everyone is hungry for more. More prospects. More minor leaguers. So more we shall have. Sometime tomorrow, 1/20/21, I will add 3 minor league slots to everyone’s teams and place everyone on waivers, the same as last year.

That said, there has also been discussion that more is too much. It’s been a mixed bag so we will have a league wide vote (see, I care) about contracting the amount on bench spots we have in our roster. At present, there are 12 spots. So, sometime this weekend, we will vote on either keeping it the same, or cutting one or two reserves.

Also on the docket, it has been discussed about fiddling with the starting roster. It has been proposed that the 1B/3B spot and 2B/SS spot be condensed into one INF slot and a DH spot be added. I would like to wait until the NL rules on the DH rule for 2021 before voting. If they strike it down, perhaps an additional UTIL spot instead. Who knows? It’s something that does need to be discussed and will be, in time.

That’s all for now. Forgive the shitty editing and lack of fun images, but I had to do it on my cellular telephone or put doing this off YET AGAIN.

2021 Minors Expansion



and congratulate the Lacey Township Backdoor Sliderz for winning an IMPRESSIVE and NEARLY UNPRECEDENTED 2.5 BCS Titles in a row. 0.5 BCS Titles from tying the all-time in-a-row record with a chance to overtake that in a theoretical 2021 season that we will theoretically be having in the Backyard. It is absolutely impressive what the Lacey contingent has accomplished in their first 2.5 seasons. Even though it came via a tie (thanks to a SIX inning 5 ER CG, no less) to an “8th seed” team that shouldn’t have been allowed in the Bracket. Even though that was how it all went down. The Backdoor Sliderz are clearly the best roster in the Backyard and somehow that’s allowed them to win 2.5 titles in a row, which is I dunno good I guess. It’s like having pocket aces and not getting fucked on the river or something, I guess? 2.5 hands in a row. And there’s nothing I can say here that can change that. And to attempt to say more would be to have to write more words and I’ve already planned a BUNCHA words for the finale down there so let’s just MOVE ON, BRIEFLY TOUCH ON THE BCS MATCHUP, BRIEFLY TOUCH ON THIS BLOG’S UNCERTAIN FUTURE, WORK IN SOME MORE CAPS LOCK AND PARENTHESES AND BE DONE WITH THE 2020 FANTASY BASEBALL SEASON. Sounds like an excellent plan. (ONWARD…..)

#8 Astoria Isotopes


#6 Lacey Township BackdoorSliderz


[BRACKET MVP — Freddie Freeman] (he did alotta good stuff the whole Backyard Bracket go look it up if you don’t believe me)

BCS MVP — Juan Soto (6 Rs, 2 2Bs, 2 HRs, 5 RBIs, 3 SBs, .571 OBP

BCS LVP — Paul DeJong (2 Rs, 1 2B, 1 RBI, .200 OBP

WHAT WENT RIGHT — Backdoor Sliderz:

Aaron Nola grabbed a hideous 6 inning “CG”…..the Braves kept on fucking hitting…..5 gents with 5 RBIs (Freeman, Soto, Albies, Bregman, Will Smith for some reason) and 4 gents with 4 RBIs (Brandon Lowe, Tatis Jr., Teoscar Hernandez, Maikel Franco) and boom you’ve out-RBI’d the ‘Topes bats with only 9 gents…..24 Ks outta deGrom…..


Aaron Nola grabbed a hideous 6 inning “CG”…..sub-40 Rs & RBIs isn’t a GREAT sign of your team offense clicking, I guess, I dunno…..6 SBs is enough to win a lot of weeks but NOT THIS WEEK, cuz yanno the LTBS had 10 and all…..pretty bleh K numbers if you ask me…..

This one was ULTIMATELY a valiant-ish effort from the ‘Topes, but with Arenado out the offense could not keep pace with the……Braves basically. A 3 Save Sunday scored them the tie and makes that disgusting CG a hard pill to swallow, but hey these things happen. Next time find a disgusting CG of your own.


What’s next for the league or whatfuckingever? I imagine it will continue and I imagine I will continue to be in it. Which is okay I guess. Either way on that one, tbh, but what I’m really interested in opining about is what’s next for this horrifically named blog.

When I started this blog in 2015 I wante….jkjkjk I didn’t start this fucking thing, Mike did. Hence the ridiculous name. I think there was another wordpress named “Backyard Views” or “Views From The Backyard” or some shit and it was just filled with bad poetry, and honestly I prefer that one. ANYWHO, BEHOLD Mike’s first post:

“Oh hey guys.

This site is here to continue with the overwhelming information stream that we already have for our fantasy baseball page, and life in general. I’ve been thinking about making this for a while, mostly to track some of the happenings on the site, and really to give everyone a forum to post, well, anything they want really. Mainly we will focus this thing on the fantasy baseball page, but hey, go nuts with whatever you’d like.

Please note: This will be a good storage site for all of our favorite stories, rankings, T’d Up episodes, Trade Block discussions, etc.

There’s also an app, so maybe it’ll be good. I’ll check it out and let you know.

Feel free to make an account and post something. Ya know.


Wow wouldjya look at that Mike was even sort of ENCOURAGING poetry to be posted on here, is how I read that. Can’t believe Brian continues to let that opportunity go to waste.

ANYWHO when I look at that post now there’s a picture of an enlarged prostate just below it (“Urologist: Enlarged Prostate? Do This Immediately (Try Tonight), and that feels pretty fucking fitting here. This thing has gotten a bit longgggg in the tooth, as have I, and we’ve grown together… and this thing. Both for the worse. I’m FAR TOO indispensable a County employee to continue to hastily bang out reviews whilst @ work, and also FAR TOO busy being fucking cool (or napping or drinking or something) when not @ work so it’s tough to say…..what the future holds…..for this blog. Also, if I’m being perfectly honest WordPress’ new format fucking sucks a spiky one. I am DISGUSTED by the spacing on these latter posts of mine and I have no plans to learn how to properly format these things, and the blog deserves better. Deserves better spacing. Deserves better effort all around.

There’s a temptation to Viking Funeral this thing but also that sorta defeats the purpose of whatever it was I was attempting to do this year, by putting out shitty reviews of the Backyard Bracket and such. So it stands as some sort of historical record. And PERHAPS there’s some sort of collaborative effort to reclaim its glory as something capable of making an owner quit the league, but the key word there is “collaborative” and you’re all lazy fucks so uhhhh….yea. BASICALLY I’m just saying this thing might get pretty dusty in the 2021 fantasy season (I guess we are gonna have one of those?) and this is me making peace with that. If this is my last post my only regret is not saying meaner things about Dochney in it. Cuz




#BlogForever #BearForever


The Backyard 2020 Return To Play

As we all know, the MLB season is set to get going (as of now, anyway) on July 23rd. I wanted to get us going on the season so we can give Fantrax the proper run through and see it in action besides just making moves. Since we are playing with, let’s say, a light schedule this year, I have a plan for us to get our fantasy fix. Please note: This is not hard lined, deal with it, it’s happening stance, but SOMEONE has to bring them up.

The Schedule

Each week will consist of two opponents. The first will be Monday through Thursday and the second will be Friday through Sunday. The regular season will last from Opening Day (7/23)to 8/30. This gives 11 total matchups for the regular season.

The Playoffs

This season is kind of a joke, so why not give everyone a punt at the playoffs for this year at least. Every team makes the playoffs and will be seeded by record and any tie breakers will be the same as in previous years. Playoff matchups will return to full weeks. The first round will be the bottom four teams playing each other while the top six have a bye. The winners are reseeded 7 & 8 as needed and then go to the bracket of 8. Which of course reduces by half as winners move on. The Championship will end 9/27.

Roster Adjustments

We will add a DH only slot to account for the NL adding it as well because we are progressive like that. We also are going to add five bench spots to help account for the anticipated COVID related incidents and player opt outs without seriously disrupting your roster.

No Stat Changes

One of the benefits is to get a feel for how the league plays. Not that we think there are any drastic differences to ESPN but there are bound to be some quirks on how it is presented in Fantrax, We are unlikely to see many QS or CG (if any at all) but it’s not worth changing this year.

Of course, all this will end up being moot when they cancel the season ANYWAY but in the event it DOES get off the ground, we will be ready.

The Backyard 2020 Return To Play

2020 Backyard Draft Order and Results


I forgot to post the draft order cuz I have jobs and stuff so here it is. You’re drafting to fill out your roster, with Devon being the exception with what we agreed on.

Round 1

  1. Rojo – Evan White, 1B, Seattle
  2. Greg (via Lobman) – Kumar Rocker, SP, Vanderbilt
  3. Shane – Yoshitomo Tsutsugo, LF, Tampa Bay
  4. Brian – Tarik Skubal, SP, Detroit
  5. Mikey T – Jeter Downs, SS, Boston
  6. Sean – Joe Musgrove, SP, Pittsburgh
  7. Devon – Aaron Civale, SP, Cleveland
  8. Ryan – Noelvi Marte, SS, Seattle
  9. Greg – Archie Bradley, RP, Arizona
  10. Doch – Adrian Houser, SP/RP, Milwaukee

Round 2

  1. Rojo – Kwang-Hyun Kim, SP, STL
  2. Lobman – Nico Hoerner, SS, Chicago
  3. Shane – Shogo Akiyama, OF, Cincinnati
  4. Brian – James Karinchak, RP, Cleveland
  5. Mikey T – Brailyn Márquez, SP, ChC
  6. Sean – Nick Anderson, RP, Tampa Bay
  7. Devon – Sean Murphy, C, Oakland
  8. Ryan – Jackson Rutledge, P, Washington
  9. Greg – Austin Hays, OF, Baltimore
  10. Doch – Brady Singer, P, Kansas City

Round 3

  1. Rojo – Jarren Durran, OF, Boston
  2. Lobman – Carlos Rodon, P, CWS
  3. Shane  – Asa Lacy, P, Texas A&M
  4. Brian – Aaron Bracho, 2B, Cleveland
  5. Mikey T – Aristides Aquino, OF, Cincinnati
  6. Sean – Nick Solak, 2B, Texas
  7. Devon – CJ Cron, 1B, Detroit
  8. Ryan – Luis Matos, OF, SF
  9. Lobman (via Greg) – Michael Fulmer, SP, Detoit
  10. Doch – Kris Bubic, P, Kansas City

Round 4

  1. Lobman – Keone Kela, RP, Pittsburgh
  2. Mikey T – Alex Verdugo, OF, Boston
  3. Sean – Chris Archer, SP, Pittsburgh
  4. Devon – Ryan Mountcastle, 1B, Baltimore
  5. Ryan – Luisangel Acuña, SS, Texas
  6. Doch – Domingo Santana, OF, Cleveland

Round 5

  1. Mikey T – Dellin Betances, RP, NY Mets
  2. Devon – Daniel Lynch, SP, Kansas City
  3. Devon – Mike Fiers, SP, Oakland
  4. Devon – Miguel Cabrera, 1B, Detroit
2020 Backyard Draft Order and Results