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NL West post-season wrap-up

Anaheim Anteaters

Anaheim’s 98 wins ruled the roost, led by superstar 1B Kip White (.390 average) and RF Billy Leary (43 steals and 136 runs scored). Patrick Spencer and Charles Jones both tossed more than 240 IP and made 37 starts, winning 20 and 15 games respectively. Jacob Foster went 15-4. Nerio Miller and Walt Leonard combined for 47 saves. As a team they scored the second most runs in the league, the second best ERA and 5th in fielding percentage.

Owner rls has two consecutive years with 90 or more wins. The farm system is very deep with all levels reaching the playoffs. The High A team won 101 games!

St. Louis Archers

St. Louis made the playoffs with 93 wins. Last year’s all everything and ROY Hong-Gu Hyan will continue to collect more mantle decorations. The .993 fielding percentage at CF should seal another gold glove. Mickey Garcia (1B) had a career year with 171 RBI’s. His best year prior to this year was 64 RBI’s. Melvin Martin stole 61 bases and hit 51 doubles. Owner Sockless Joe seems to have a direct pipeline to international talent.

Ted Davis, Jarodd Newsom, and Alex Carrasco won 15, 14 and 14 games respectively as starters. Relievers Ralph Cosby, Barry Wilson, Bo Jensen and Quilvio DeJesus all had sub-3.00 ERA’s with Wilson and Jensen post WHIP below 1.00. David Wanatabe converted 40 of 43 save opportunities.

As a team they scored the fourth most runs in the league, the sixth best ERA and 2nd in fielding percentage.

The future appears to be now for St. Louis. The farm teams finished out of the running. AAA right fielder Rick Abbott hit 49 dingers. AA Edgar Sierra (2B) showed promise with 111 RBI’s and a 5.55 RF.

Boise Idaho Tater’s

Boise went yard with sluggers Alberto Sosa (RF), Craig Phelps (C) and Alex Alomar (3B) hitting 48, 44 and 48 over the fence. Their six member rotation was led by Omar Johnson with 13 wins. Rubber armed John Ma contributed 123 IP from the pen. Journeyman Lariel Vidal posted a team best 3.93 ERA.

Manager Bobby Ray Griffey deserves an award for getting 74 wins with these players. As a team they scored the sixth most runs in the league, the second worst ERA and last in fielding percentage. Triple A through LoA teams all lost 100+ games. Better management is needed at all levels or perhaps a more active owner.

AAA right fielder Brian Christenson looks like a major league prospect. LoA Scott McCarty (3B) drove in 181 runs, Hal Cuyler (1B) 163 RBI’s. Could it be that after three seasons with 160+ RBI at LoA Hal deserves a shot at HiA?

Vancouver Maintaineers

The Maintaineers remained true to form for season 7, finishing with 70-something (74) wins for the umpteenth time. Studs Alexander Henry (1B) and Stan Lee (LF) led the offense with both slugging .663 and better with more walks than strikeouts. Rookie Willie Soto showed he belonged at third base ranking high in fielding percentage and RF while batting .281 for the year. Second baseman Hootie Roberts had a career year at the plate hitting .316.

Pitcher James Saitou appeared to reach his potential posting a 12-6 record. Defacto #1 starter Jim Robertson kept his sinker going long enough to get 11 wins and a 1.27 WHIP. Closer Al Howard posted 34 saves and a 1.06 WHIP. Set up man Jerry Woods did a creditable job. Youngsters Trevor King and Victor Julio combined for a 14-18 record.

Now the post-mortem: The Stu Strickland project failed, career numbers like 35-93 with a 1.59 WHIP doesn’t cut the mustard. Opening day relievers Coolbaugh and Spence had double digit ERA’s and were released. Rule-5 pitcher Dillon proved not ready for prime time. Center field remains a problem defensively. The home record of 30-51 must be fixed. They finished 10th in runs scored, 12th in ERA and 12th in fielding percentage.

Jesse Jackson says “Keep hope alive!” The AAA team in the World Series. High draft picks Paul Hayashi (14-6), RF Kordell Hernandez (99 RBI), SS Danny Carlson and CF Benny DeJesus (49 steals) could immediately improve the parent team.

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