Archive for March, 2013

BEML XXI Season Preview

March 31, 2013

FARMINGDALE–After an extremely competitive but tumultuous 2012 that bade farewell to three franchises–the Bears, Arsenal, and Ancient Maroners–BEML continued on course for its 21st season last Sunday with a draft here at Barracudas headquarters.

For 2013, the BEML welcomed two new teams to the fold: Cause Mickey Loves Ya and the Grove Street Villagers.

villagers sweatshirt cause mickey loves ya t-shirt The Villagers and CMLY are all over the merchandising already.

The defending champion Snowmen squad accepted their long-awaited 2012 trophy before the draft and went on to draft a team that should be in the mix for a repeat in 2013. A formidable outfield of 2012 ROY Mike Trout, Carlos Gonzalez and Josh Hamilton will back up what should again be one of the best bullpens in the BEML: Kimbrel, Papelbon and Axford. With Hamels, Greinke and Weaver on the mound, take this to the freezer…Snowmen are in it to win it again.

SAMSUNG DIGITAL CAMERA In a solemn pre-draft ceremony at the Barracudas compound, BEML founder and Craydawgs owner (R.) presents the BEML Trophy to the 2012 Champion Snowmen.

The Craydawgs have never gone four years without a title (’95 to ’99 being the longest dryspell) and will have to win in ’13 to keep the streak alive. The Dawgs should again field the League’s best offense with reigning MVP Ryan Braun, Evan Longoria, Billy Butler, Ryan Zimmerman, Dustin Pedroia and Matt Holliday. The Dawgs have also made an attempt to upgrade on the mound, opening the coffers to sign reigning Maddux Award winner David Price to a hefty new contract ($3.25) to go with Max Scherzer and Chris Sale on the mound. The back end of the rotation is a little sketchy with Brandon Morrow, Anibal Sanchez and Alexi Ogando, but the Dawgs should again contend.

The Dirty Dogs nipped the heels of the BEML title last year until the Snowmen stole their bone. Heading into 2013, the DDs appear to be a little short on power but have speed to burn with Jacoby Ellsbury, Elvis Andrus, Angel Pagan and Brett Gardner bedding down in the Shelter. The Dogs may have the best pitcher in 2011 Maddux Award winner Justin Verlander, and the best first baseman in 2010 MVP Joey Votto. Look out for Filth.

Determined in 2013 to spend early and often, the George Kents went on a spree at this year’s draft, paying full value for 30/30 threat Andrew McCutcheon ($4.50), Troy Tulowitzki ($3.75), Yoenis Cespedes ($3.25) and Prince Fielder ($4.75). The Kents refused to open the wallet for starting pitching, however, though they may have come up with some nice bargains in Mat Latos ($1.00), Jordan Zimmermann ($0.75) and Yovani Gallardo ($1.00). The Kents are driven to prove that the 2005 title was no fluke.

The Barracudas felt shut out of the closer sweepstakes but have proven in the past they can dig deep for saves when they need to. On the other hand, they loaded up on starting pitching and have the League’s most expensive–and most talented–rotation ($12.75) in Clayton Kershaw, Cliff Lee, C.C. Sabathia, Gio Gonzalez, Matt Moore and Yu Darvish. The Cudas’ offense is nearly as talented, ignited by Jose Reyes ($4.00) and Ian Kinsler ($3.00) with the dangerous though oft-injured Matt Kemp, Jose Bautista, and Carlos Beltran patrolling the outfield. Expect the Cudas to get back to their winning ways in 2013.

Cause Mickey Loves Ya made a splash early on in this year’s draft, shooting the moon on the consistently great Miguel Cabrera ($6.50). Combined with the power bats of Giancarlo Stanton and Jay Bruce, CMLY should lead the league in homers this year if everything breaks right. With a very talented pitching staff that includes Johnny Cueto, Madison Bumgarner and Kris Medlen, they should feel pretty comfortable in ERA and WHIP this year as well. Burgess Meredith would be proud.

Last but not least, the Grove Street Villagers managed to land the top catcher in Buster Posey, the top second baseman in Robinson Cano, and Albert Pujols (probably second only to Miggy) in the 2013 draft. Unlike the Ancient Maroners last year, the Villagers intend to let Stephen Strasburg loose this year under the tutelage of vets James Shields, King Felix and Jake Peavy.

BEMLBlog is going to go out on a limb yet again for 2013 and sees the top three going as follows: 1. Craydawgs; 2. Barracudas; 3. Snowmen.

SAMSUNG DIGITAL CAMERA Sixteen BEML titles were represented–along with a motherlode of straight-up machismo–at the annual pre-draft breakfast (L-R, the owners of Arsenal, Love The Drake, Craydawgs, Firemen and Barracudas).

2012 Season Wrap-up: Avalanche

March 31, 2013

NESCONSET — In their thirteenth season and after finishing in third place for three years running, the Snowmen smashed through the igloo ceiling and finally grasped sport’s most coveted prize: the BEML trophy.

snowmen crowd Denizens of the Snowmen Nation storm Icebox Field™ after the Snowmen took the BEML XX crown.

The Freeze were in the mix from the get-go, hanging around the League’s upper tier throughout the season along with the Dirty Dogs and Craydawgs. The teams battled for the lead on a daily basis for the latter half of the season before the Snowmen took over in the final two weeks, led by BEML Rookie of the Year Mike Trout (.326/94 R/25 HR/58 RBI/32 SB in just 383 AB) and Bonds MVP finalist Miguel Cabrera (.330/109/44/139/4). The Sons of Plattsburgh’s strong offense (35 out of 40 roto points) was also bolstered by healthy seasons from third baseman Adrian Beltre (.321/95/36/102/1) and shortstop  Jimmy Rollins (.250/102/23/68/30).

On the hill, Cole Hamels (17 W, 3.05 ERA/1.22 WHIP), Zack Greinke (15/3.48/1.20) and Cliff Lee (6/3.16/1.11) each racked up over 200 strikeouts and Craig Kimbrel (42 Saves, 1.01/0.65) led the BEML’s most dominant bullpen. The 2012 Snowmen finished in the money for the fourth straight year and became only the third expansion franchise to bring home the championship (Arsenal, Ballbags).

Coming in second were the Craydawgs, who once again fielded the BEML’s top offense (39 out of 40 points) but could not muster enough on the mound to bring home another title, finishing with the silver for the fourth time and for the second straight season. Bonds MVP Award winner Ryan Braun once again led the Dawgs (.319/108/41/112/30), while Albert Pujols (.305/76/30/100/8), Robinson Cano (.313/105/33/94/3) and Billy Butler (.313/72/29/107/2) filled out a potent lineup. Max Scherzer (162 Ks in 138 IP) and Chris Sale (166 Ks in 166 IP) helped the Dawgs lead the league in strikeouts, but could not keep the Dawgs from finishing last in ERA and WHIP — not a recipe for success in the BEML.

sale-n-snoop are craydawgs Craydawg Chris Sale poses with Craydawgs superfan Snoop Dawg (who has officially changed his name to “Dawg”).

The Dirty Dogs had a three-point lead with two weeks to go, but could not hold on for their first title and ended up in third, their second bronze in six seasons in the League. Where the Freeze and the Dawgs zigged, leveraging offense, the Filthy Ones zagged and came close to the title by managing the best pitching staff in the league (35 out of 40 pitching points). 2012 Maddux Award winner David Price (19 W/201 Ks/2.56/1.10) and Matt Cain (16 W/193 Ks/2.79/1.04) fueled the Filthies, who finished second in every pitching category. With Prince Fielder (.313/83/30/108/1) and Matt Holliday (.295/95/27/102/4), the Dogs had the power necessary to contend, but fell short in BA (7th place) and speed (a league-low 100 steals).

The BEML’s first father-son combo–the Ancient Maroners–finished fourth while crushing the league record for best finish by an expansion franchise (.579, beating the .417 set by New York Nine in 1994). Featuring the surprising R.A. Dickey (17 W/202 Ks/2.48/1.02), the Maroners led the BEML in ERA and WHIP and even flirted with the league records in those categories. Unfortunately, the competitive Maroners decided to leave the BEML after only one year and will not return to build on their promising start in 2013.

maroners sail away The Maroners sailed away after a successful 2012 season.

In their tenth season, the fifth-place George Kents balanced things out with 21.5 points in the hitting categories and 20.5 in pitching, but could not quite kick either into gear. David Wright (.315/91/21/93/15) carried the offense, but the Kents lacked a 30-HR bat. Free agent closer pickup Fernando Rodney excelled beyond any reasonable expectation (41 Saves/0.56/0.78), but the Kents lacked any standout starters on the mound.

rodney on george kents Rodney felt at home in 2012 on the George Kents.

The sixth place Bears went over the edge starting on draft day, when they saved up their money to bid on Mike Stanton. Unfortunately for the Bears, Stanton had changed his name in the off-season and had been protected by another team under his new name–Giancarlo Stanton. Certain that this turn of events was some sort of conspiracy and, driven to undermine the League, the Bears spiraled downwards. In one of the BEML’s darker chapters, the Bears negotiated a cash payment from Arsenal in return for the Bears’ best players. The rest of league vetoed the anti-competitive trade, and the Bears vowed never to return, ending their 15-season legacy of futility.

bears descend into madness The 2012 Bears descended into madness…

The 2011 defending champs the Barracudas finished in seventh after injuries to 2011 MVP Matt Kemp, slugger Jose Bautista and closer Mariano Rivera derailed their season. Stars Roy Halladay and Alex Rodriguez showed their age, while the youth movement–Zack Cozart, Peter Bourjos, Mike Moustakas–never quite delivered as hoped.

Arsenal got off to a hot start with Josh Hamilton (.291/72/34/101/7) and led into May, but Hamilton cooled, Jacoby Ellsbury never got off the ground (.271/43/4/26/14) and staff ace Jon Lester (6.15 ERA in 94 IP) never rounded into form. Arsenal finished in the cellar for the second year in a row and–despite collecting 18 protected slots and a good deal of talent heading into 2013–decided to take off the 2013 season to clear their heads.