Thursday, August 21, 2008

Season 2 Preview - Postseason

Swami Naktap - Special to Cobbfather Post Gazette

Swami Naktap has looked deep into the future, summoning the Ar within his spirit, and has foreseen great things in the postseason. Sharing what he has seen brings the swami great joy, so here now is what Naktap has seen.

National League
--Swami Naktap has seen the Texas Fried Pickles and the Honolulu Haoles earning the bye round. In the first wildcard series, Naktap has determined that the Fighting Cornish Hens of Sacramento will meet the Cyclones of Tampa Bay, and that after a great collision of wind, rain, and feathers, the miniature fighting fowl of Sacramento will prevail due to the strength of their pitching staff and the power of Moises Terrero. In the other wildcard matchup, Naktap has seen the Flying Pigs of Cincinnati take on the Goats of Memphis in a barnyard brawl. The winner will not only get control of the slop trough, but the chance to move on and play the Haoles, and that winner will be the defending champion Goats.

In the next round Naktap has seen the #1 seeded Fried Pickles giving the Cornish Hens indigestion, and easily dispatching them in 4 games. In the other series the matchup is a bit tougher and swami says that the Haoles will be pushed by the Goats to the brink, but will ultimately prevail and put Memphis out of the playoffs in 5 games. In the Division Final, Naktap has seen the Texas Fried Pickles superior offense ultimately being the deciding factor in their matchup vs. the Haoles, and should propel them to their first World Series in Cobbfather world in what promises to be an entertaining 6 game series.

American League

Swami Naktap has foreseen the Florida Shark Waves and the New York Pride of the Yankees earning the byes for the first round. In the wildcard series, Naktap sees the Huntington Heat playing the Fargo Rat Bastids in the first matchup. Swami says that the Bastids cannot handle the Heat, and Huntington doesn't have to sweat much in a 3 game sweep. In the other wildcard matchup, Naktap sees the St. Louis Wiffle Ball Kings taking a swing at the Monterrey Ducks. Unfortunately for the Wiffle Ball Kings, their bats are made of plastic, and these are not Peking Ducks sitting on a plate waiting to be devoured. Swami says that Monterrey wins this series in 4 games.

In the next round Swami sees the #1 seeded Shark Waves using their deadly combination of teeth, tidal surge, hitting, and pitching to quench the Heat. Swami says that the Shark Waves are possibly the best team in the league, and it will be hard for Huntington to match up. In the other series, Swami Naktap sees the Monterrey Ducks facing what might be the best offense in the universe in New York, but swami says that the Pride's pitching will show their youth and not handle the pressure of the series, and Monterrey will move on in 6 games. In the Division Final, Swami says that Florida will break through to the World Series with a hard fought victory over the Monterrey Ducks in 7 games, in what should be an exciting series.

World Series

Swami Naktap couldn't ask for a better series than the Texas Fried Pickles vs. the Florida Shark Waves. Swami doesn't see a clear advantage for either team, their hitting and pitching are evenly matched. Swami says that the series will come down to which team has a player who makes a critical error, a Bill Buckner if you will. Swami Naktap ate extra hot peppers to meditate in peace for this important prediction, and the result of his hours of deep thought is the Fried Pickles of Texas winning the World Series in a 6 game series over the Florida Shark Waves, setting off a huge binge eating frenzy in Dallas/Fort Worth, a

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Season 2 Preview - AL West

Swami Naktap - Special to the Cobbfather Post Gazette

AL West

St. Louis Wiffle Ball Kings (99-63, 1st place)
--Swami Naktap knows that St. Louis are not only the kings of wiffle ball, but also the AL West. Naktap doesn't see any other team in the division that is as complete as St. Louis, which means that even if the Wiffle Ball Kings show up to home plate with giant plastic bats, they should still outperform their division rivals. Swami sees this well balanced team taking the division, but not quite reaching 100 wins.
Prediction: 97-65 - 1st place

San Diego Spicolis (65-97, 3rd place)
--Swami Naktap sees the best pitching staff in the division playing in a pitchers park, and can say nothing but, "DUDE!" Unfortunately Naktap sees the lineup and can only say, "dude." But together the combination of dudes should equal a winning record in sunny San Diego. Swami says that with the addition of a few more hitters of quality, the Spicolis will be a team that Sean Penn would be proud of.
Prediction: 81-81 - 2nd place

Colorado Beer Bashers (73-89, 2nd place)
--Swami Naktap took one look at the power residing in Beer Bashers lineup and nearly spit out his hot peppers. If the pitching can hold opponents to less than 6 runs a game, the Beer Bashers should win more than they lose. But swami thinks that because they play in Colorado, that might not be possible. But it will be close, and when Naktap attends a game, he will be sure to bring his mitt to catch one of the many homers that are sure to be hit in Colorado.
Prediction: 80-82 - 3rd place

Tucson Tonsil Ticklers (54-108, 4th place)
--Swami Naktap learned many things whilst learning to become a baseball guru. One of them was to never pick a team from Tucson to have a winning record. Like a black mark hovering over a man walking under a ladder crossed by a black cat, Tucson is a cursed city. But still people try, and lv4sublime is the latest owner to try and break the runes that bind Tucson to underachievement. Unless Tucson can start Felipe Lacouna at catcher every day, Naktap sees a very high ERA in Tucson.

Season 2 Preview - NL West

Swami Naktap - Special to Cobbfather Post Gazette

NL West

Honolulu Haoles (101-61, 2nd place)
--Swami Naktap sees a team that will be living the aloha spirit in Hawaii, greeting opponents with what might be the leagues best pitching staff. Swami says that the Haoles are huge fans of Don Ho, and will just hang loose and just have fun all the way to a division title. But swami says that the race will be very close, as the rest of the NL West is very close in talent to Honolulu. Swami sees one weak spot on the Haoles that could cost them, and it is an everyday lineup that isn't quite as solid as Sacramanto or Vancouver's lineups.
Prediction: 98-64 - 1st place.

Sacramento Fighting Cornish Hens (101-61, 1st place)
--Swami Naktap would have picked the Fighting Cornish Hens to finish 1st this season, but the huge injury to elite setup man Mitchell McElroy helps put the Hens bullpen in the freezer section next to the larger edible fowl. Still, swami says that the acquistion of Moises Terrero changes the complexion of Sacramento, and gives the hens some cock fighting spurs that the lineup lacked last season.
Prediction: 97-65 - 2nd place

Vancouver Lumberjacks (88-74, 3rd place)
--Swami says these aren't the kind of lumberjacks you hear about in Monty Python skits, instead these are the kind that mow down opposing bats like chainsaws through twigs thanks to the arms of Tony Saunders, Odalis Diaz, Hiram Dong, and Calvin Pong. Swami says that if the lineup can match the pitching staffs production then 95 wins is a real possibility. These lumberjacks are definately ok.
Prediction: 95-67 - 3rd place

Las Vegas Hardways (73-89, 4th place)
--Swami Naktap says that Las Vegas definitely had it the hard way last season with three quality division opponents. Swami says that they won't have it any easier this season, but should still ante up in what might be the toughest division in the league. Swami sees the lineup equalling the outputs of the rest of the NL West, but sees the pitching staff having trouble keeping chips on the table.
Prediction: 78-84 - 4th place

Season 2 Preview - AL South

Swami Naktap - Special to Cobbfather Post Gazette

AL South

Florida Shark Waves (112-50, 1st place)
--Swami Naktap sees yet another season of Jaws induced terror for the rest of the league, as the Shark Waves did not lose any of their teeth from last season. In fact, swami says that Florida may have grown another row of deadly sharp razors with the feeding frenzy of trades that took place in the offseason. Naktap sees the rest of the AL as chum in the water for the Florida Shark Waves.
Prediction: 111-51 - 1st place

Monterrey Ducks (102-60, 2nd place)
--Swami Naktap feels bad for the Ducks. It is not an easy feat to win 102 games, and still finish ten games back in your division. But Naktap knows that the Ducks have the hearts of lions, and will rebound to give it another attempt. Swami says that Stuart Paulson will have another year to remember in the annals of all time Duckdom, and that Monterrey should take a wildcard spot.
Prediction: 99-63 - 2nd place

Wichita Heat Wave (60-102, 3rd place)
--Swami Naktap sees a team that made a very good decision in moving from Santa Fe to Wichita. But Naktap doesn't see the defense and pitching needed to utilize the cavernous Lawrence-Dumont Stadium. Swami says that the Heat Wave lineup will be complaining bitterly to management about their lack of hits and how it will affect their contract and arbitration negotiations, and sees the potential for corked bats by the end of the season. Still, it will be an improvement over last season, and swami knows that the Heat Wave are the coolest thing in Wichita.
Prediction: 72-90 - 3rd place

Mexico City Gringos (47-115, 4th place)
--Swami Naktap didn't know how to define the Gringos, so he looked them up. Gringo (feminine, gringa) is a Spanish and Portuguese word used in Latin America to denote foreign Spanish- and foreign Portuguese-speakers (regardless of race), especially English-speakers from the U.S., and Canadians, Britons, Australians, and Kiwis, and some Latin Americans. Hispanophones disagree whether or not gringo is derogatory. The American Heritage Dictionary entry classifies gringo as "offensive slang", "usually disparaging", and "often disparaging". The usages of gringo sometimes are derogatory, paternalistic, and condescendingly endearing, especially when a foreigner condescends to the people and culture he or she is visiting. Swami Naktap found all of this to be rather too much to digest, and just figured that Gringo also meant the worst major league team in Cobbfather.
Prediction: 38-124 - 4th place

Season 2 Preview - NL South

Swami Naktap - Special to Cobbfather Post Gazette

NL South

Texas Fried Pickles (97-65, 2nd place)
--Swami Naktap says the Fried Pickles are the very best of carnival food, superior to even the vaunted elephant ear. The product on the field will also be at the top of junk food alley, and will give opponents bellyaches like the morning after a night at the state fair. The lineup is as crushing as a giant pork tenderloin, and the pitching staff is sweeter than a funnel cake. This combination should propel Texas to a division championship.
Prediction: 101-61 - 1st place

Memphis Goats (99-63, 1st place)
--Swami Naktap would have liked to have been celebrating at Silky O'Sullivans after the Goats World Series triumph last season. The Goats won the division and took the series, but swami says that Memphis will have a hard time repeating that feat as Texas is an extremely deep team. But Naktap sees the Goats chewing their way through the fence and finding their way past the bar into a wildcard spot.
Prediction: 97-65 - 2nd place

Oklahoma City Fighting Lint (71-91, 4th place)
--Swami Naktap does not enjoy fighting lint, so he makes sure to clean the lint trap on his dryer after every cycle. Swami says the baseball fighting lint are like a mid grade $500 dryer, good enough to dry your clothes without ruining them, but not good enough to have a lingerie cycle. This middle of the road approach for a franchise in transition should yield a .500 season, which while a bit stiff in the neckline, is better than being damp-dry.
Prediction: 81-81 - 3rd place.

Jacksonville Klines (76-86. 3rd place)
--Swami Naktap believes that Buddy Poole is good enough to live up to the awesome legacy of Dallas Kline. Naktap also believes that the rest of the team has a ways to go to reach hall of fame potential. Still, like the all timer from Cobb World, the Klines have the never say die fighting spirit, and swami says they will be a tough out for any team, even if they are not elite as a unit. Naktap sees the offense driving the team to a respectable record, but the pitching staff having some letdowns.
Prediction: 76-86 - 4th place.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Season 2 Preview - AL East

Swami Naktap - Special to Cobbfather Post Gazette

AL East

Huntington Heat (100-62, 1st place)
--Swami Naktap knows many things, and one of them is that the Heat will be measuring their home runs in degrees Kelvin, their offense is that hot. But Huntington's Eble Park is a different animal than the friendly confines of Trenton, and it could result in more offensive explosions than the pitching staff would like to see. But swami says that with the additions of Ed Morris and Mendy Washington, the Heat should be too hot to handle this season.
Prediction: 100-62 - 1st place

Boston Massacre (81-81, 2nd place)
--Swami Naktap was not in the time or space of the original Boston Massacre, so he cannot comment on it's context to this baseball team. But if Swami Naktap sees what kinds of massacres are about to occur this season in Boston, and it is the annihilation of both exceptional and pitiful play, leaving only the remains of mediocrity. .500 is a noble goal, but swami says it isn't revolutionary.
Prediction: 81-81 - tie for 2nd place

Durham Radicals (79-83, 3rd place)
--Swami Naktap says that in chemistry, radicals (often referred to as free radicals) are atoms, molecules or ions with unpaired electrons on an otherwise open shell configuration. These unpaired electrons are usually highly reactive, so radicals are likely to take part in chemical reactions. Radicals play an important role in combustion, atmospheric chemistry, polymerization, plasma chemistry, biochemistry, and many other chemical processes, including human physiology. In baseball, Swami Naktap says Radicals are a .500 team.
Prediction: 81-81 - tie for 2nd place

Burlington Huskies (72-90, 4th place)
--Swami Naktap sees a great shift in organizational philosophy in the move from homer happy Hartford to the more bunt appropriate Burlington. Swami says that there isn't enough pitching to fully take advantage of the cavernous surroundings, but the superior defense should bail the pitchers out. Swami also sees a great amount of one run losses until the offense or pitching staff can become elite.
Prediction: 80-82 - 4th place

Season 2 Preview - NL East

Swami Naktap - Special to Cobbfather Post Gazette

NL East

Tampa Bay Cyclones (81-81, 2nd place)
--Swami Naktap sees a storm brewing in Tampa Bay, and a devastating cyclone is not out of the picture. The lineup is talented top to bottom, and should shower opposing pitching with many hits. The pitching staff has great control of their pitches, but their stuff isn't the thing riptides are made of. Still, a division championship could come spinning down from the clouds.
Prediction: 95-67 - 1st place

New York Primetimers (70-92, 3rd place)
--Swami says that the only problem with prime time is that it is on too late for east coast viewers, and too early for the west coast. With games going past midnight in primetime, Swami Naktap wonders who will be awake to see this young and exciting team. If they can stay up past their bedtimes, viewers should be able to watch New York compete for a wildcard spot.
Prediction: 92-70 - 2nd place

San Juan Orioles (89-73, 1st place)
--Swami Naktap thinks the move from the fast paced east coast lifestyle of Dover to the laid back tropical attitudes of San Juan may have a detrimental effect on the motivation of the Orioles players. It's hard to summon the motivation to compete when the rum and sun is so good in your home city. Still, Miguel Guererro and Justin Post should be able to tear themselves away from the luxuries of San Juan long enough to power the Orioles to a winning season.
Prediction: 85-77 - 3rd place

Pawtucket G-Maniacs (52-110, 4th place)
--Swami says it is a good thing the management of the Pawtucket team fixed the renaming contest, becuase otherwise the winner would have been the KAA-THUD, which is the sound that will be heard quite often in Pawtucket when frustrated G-Maniacs bang their fists on gatorade tubs. Jonathan Sheldon was a good signing in the offseason for the G's, but

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Season 2 Preview - AL North

Swami Naktap - Special to Cobbfather Post Gazette

New York Pride of the Yankees (99-63, 2nd place)
--Swami Naktap sees the best 99 win team in the league last season bettering that feat, and leaping past Fargo into 100 win territory. Naktap sees what might be the most powerful offense in the history of modern baseball of all time, ever, beyond all doubt, blast the haters right out of the Bronx. But swami says that even though the young pitching staff is good, they are not as collossal as their counterparts in the lineup.
Prediction: 101-61 - 1st place

Fargo Rat Bastids (108-54, 1st place)
--Swami Naktap sees a team that dealt away it's two best players in Moises Tererro and Ed Morris, and does not see who will replace the 100+ HR's lost in the trades. Swami says that Fargo will be competitive, but not the juggernaut they were last season when they flamed out in the playoffs after earning a first round bye. Like a graceful ballerina tripping in a critical part of a dance, Fargo will fall into a wildcard spot from their previously lofty heights.
Prediction: 98-64 - 2nd place

Sioux Falls Great Danes (71-91, 3rd place)
--Naktap sees great leaps forward from the Great Danes, chasing the ever closer giant Snausage that is the division championship. But Swami also sees the Great Danes being corralled by the electric fence of 3rd place, as Fargo and New York have a leash around Sioux Falls neck. As the abundant litter of puppies in the minor leagues grow into fierce gargantuan dog beasts, the Great Danes will break free of their position in the standings, but this year, they will be begging for table scraps from the top tier of the NL North.
Prediction: 81-81 - 3rd place

Augusta Angry Armadillos (65-97, 4th place)
--Swami Naktap wonders what an Armadillo does when it is angry. He thinks it rolls up into a ball and hides, stewing all the while cursing its inability to do anything other than roll away. Swami says that Augusta will have a similar season, unless Pinky Matheson can start every game for Augusta, and even then that might be an adventure. There is enough talent to keep Augusta from ending the season as roadkill, but swami expects a lot of close calls along the way.
Prediction: 72-90 - 4th place

Monday, August 11, 2008

Season 2 Preview - NL North

Swami Naktap - Special to the Cobbfather Post Gazette

After Miss Cleo proved to be a disaster in terms of billing and payments, the Cobbfather Post Gazette has contracted with respected prognosticator Swami Naktap, who has looked deep within the future of Cobbfather to determine who will ultimately prevail this season. Here are his predictions.

NL North

Cincinnati Flying Pigs (92-70, 1st place)
--Swami Naktap sees the great Santa Klaus bringing lots of gifts in the way of HR's and RBI's to the Flying Pigs. Naktap thinks the Pigs pitching isn't quite flying, perhaps more akin to a blimp or zeppelin than a jet, enough to get into the air but not enough to move very fast. The Queen City will once again have a winning team, but it might not be enough to hold the division.
Prediction: 90-72, 1st place

Syracuse Sycophants (64-98, 4th place)
--Swami Naktap saw the productive offseason the Sycophants had, and approves greatly of the new management. Naktap sees Cody Bell and Gordon Oliver having seasons worthy of a small shrine on the mantlepiece, but also sees Ralph Fonville and Billy Abercrombie competing for least effective starting pitcher in Sycophants history. Naktap likes the lineup, and thinks it will power the team quite well.
Prediction: 85-77 - 2nd place

Minnesota Blue Oxen (85-77, 2nd place)
--Naktap sees the Blue Oxen outperforming the quality of their lineup, and once again holding a winning record at the seasons termination. Swami says that the Blue Oxen's bullpen will swing a mighty axe and cut down opponants like Paul Bunyan does saplings. But the star quality in Minnesota is like that of a polluted sky, you can see them but they do not burn very bright.
Prediction: 84-76 - 3rd place

Rochester Rolling Rocks (66-96, 3rd place)
--Swami says that the lineup and pitching staff for the Rolling Rocks is like an empty pita pocket. All of the filling is currently playing in the minor leagues, leaving just a bland and wheaty bread experience for the fans at the big league level. Naktap cannot wait for the prospects to develop for a better gastronomical experience at the ballpark.
Prediction: (