NOTE: Iím just doing the teams in alphabetical order, so the order I do the analysis on has no real meaning to it.
First up, Antarctica Chill. Just yesterday, Rhiner traded Brooks Simmons and I for a bunch of inactives, but at least it got the number of players on his team up a little bit. These players include Maki Chang, Larry Jones, Greg Kowalczyk, Matt Patterson, Jay Soester, Jon Vish, and Anthony Withers. The only 2 players in the majors right now are Jason Rhner and Seneca Wallace.
Jason Rhiner: So far the best player on the Chill, and the GM. He tries hard to sign free agentís all the time that he can, but he is struggling. The only thing he had left was trading, which I said before, he got a bunch of inactives out of it. Still, he believes in his team, and we should give him credit for that. Aside from that, Rhiner is also a very good player. He has a long history of transactions, and was selected to every allstar game since 2006. He had won many awards including player of the week 2 times in a row. In 2008 alone, he had 79 homeruns! Thatís almost double what he had in the 2007 season. This shows that he is an excellent player, and is improving as each season goes by.
Seneca Wallace: Wallace is a very good pitcher, and would be very helpful to the Chill when the season starts. Rhiner was glad to sign him to the Chill, and how has even more hope for the team because of Wallace. He isnít at any sort of slump either, each year he has been improving more and more with just about everything he can improve on. Although he had more strikeouts in the 2007 season than the 2008 season, it doesnít make any difference to prove that he is an amazing player. His ERA got better every year too. Between the 2006 season and the 2008 season, he got his ERA down from a 3.00 to a 2.51. He was recently selected to the 2008 allstar game, and was also released from St. Louis, which gave him the opportunity to be on the chill. Wallace also can strikeout many players in one game. The most he had done was 24 batters in one game during the 2006 season.
Now lets take a look at all those players Rhiner signed that are in the minors now
Maki Chang: Chang is a below average pitcher, but you canít really blame him because he is an inactive. But lucky for Rhiner, Chang isnít the only pitcher he signed. Withers isnít much better, but Wallace is there to make everything look good. As far as transactions go, Chang was only traded 3 times, and once to be on the Chill from Frankfurt. But the bad part is that Chang was released from 3 teams as well, so getting traded didnít make much of a difference. His ERA was just horrible though. In 2006, he had a 17.18 ERA. I donít see how Chang would help the Chill that much, but itís Rhinerís decision.
Larry Jones: Larry is a very descent player. He doesnít have anything really negative, so I canít say anything bad about him. He was selected to the 2006 and 2008 allstar games, so thatís a really positive thing to say about him. The rest of his attributes/accomplishments are very OK. He was traded a few times, but he had a really good average in the 2008 season, which I think tops everything that I said about him. His average was .314, which was better than Rhinerís during the time! So from reading this, I can tell that Jones is an average player, and can be amazing if he ever becomes active again.
Greg Kowalczyk: Thereís a lot to say about this guy, and also the fact that I can barely spell his last name, and I canít even pronounce it. But aside from that, he has better attributes than Jones, which means that he could be an even better asset to the Chill. Another great thing about Greg is that he has been in the WBL since 2003, which I believe is the first season there was. His greatest accomplishment was getting the 2nd base Slick Fielder award 2 years in a row! In 2007, he had 23 homeruns, which is pretty good for his level as a player. The weird part is, throughout his whole career, he has only been traded once, and that was to Antarctica from Frankfurt. Well, hopefully he will do good as a member of the Chill, and be a realy asset to the team, much like Rhiner and Wallace.
Matt Patterson: There is way too much to say about this guy. His player history is incredible; he has as much stuff there as Rhiner does. He had hit for a cycle at one point, and he also won a number of awards. These include Slick fielder for 1st Base and player of the week award. He was traded many times, and most recently to Antarctica from Frankfurt. He was also selected to every allstar game since 2006, which is a great accomplishment. In 2006, he had a .396 average, which is even better then any average that Rhiner had, or at least that I remember. I can already tell that Patterson is going to be a great asset to the Chill, and Iím sure that Rhiner is proud to have him. If Patterson were to become active again, he could help out the Chill even more than he would be doing soon enough.
Jay Soester: He can be as helpful as Patterson when he gets the chance. He won the Leftfield Slick Fielder award in 2006, and was selected to the allstar game that year. Those are some big accomplishments, and if he were still active today, Iím sure heíd be very proud of himself. As far as any other attributes go, heís pretty average in everything. Nothing THAT special. Even so, he is better than a lot of the players that the Chill got out of that trade with Frankfurt. Now that I think about it, seeing all these statistics that these players have, theyíre all very good, even if they are inactives. Soester and Patterson prove that inactive players can turn out to be the best players, and Rhiner should be proud to have these guys with him.
Jon Vish: Yet another great player that Rhiner got for the Chill. He had a pretty good average that was somewhere in the high .200ís, and he won the Centerfield Slick Fielder award in 2008. He had 124 hits in 2006, which is again a very good thing that he has. He is also another player that was on Frankfurt that got traded to Antarctica, much like most of the players on the Chill. He also had many leader board appearances, unlike many of the players on the Chill. Vish was a good choice for Rhiner, and like a lot of the players on the Chill, he can really help out.
Anthony Withers: Well, here is something for a change. He is not an awesome player like the last few guys I mentioned. In fact, there is nothing that special about him at all. His attributes are OK, and he really hasnít accomplished anything that important. His ERA was 7.36, which isnít that impressive. It was lucky for Rhiner that he got some other really amazing players, so Withers doesnít screw anything up. Thereís not much Rhiner can do about this, Withers is inactive, so he canít make him update, which means that Withers will stay like this for the whole season.
So far, Antartica is doing pretty well. Rhiner will have to get some active players for his team to make a good improvement, but he is doing OK with what he has so far. As far as players go, Antarctica is doing the worst of the 4 expansion teams, but I think that sometime in the near future, they will do great. It is the first year for this expansion team, so really, Iím not expecting them to be like Montreal already.
Next up, the Caracas Cougars! Theyíre doing just a bit better than the Chill as far as players go, but I honestly think they arenít trying as hard as Rhiner is. But aside from that, they have some really amazing players on their team, such as the Guzmans and Manny Martinez. All their playerís are still doing OK though. They include Dan Wade, Shammond Guzman, Tony Pryor, Smitty Springfield, Jermaine Guzman, Manny Martinez, Josh Poole, Kyle Smith, Chin Hui Tsao, and TJ Farrell.
Dan Wade: He is new to the WBL, so you canít really say much about him. Nonetheless, he is a dedicated player, and I think he will grow up to be an allstar. He has solid fielding, though. His fielding percentage is kept at a crisp 1.000, and with that, he is getting better than a lot of new catchers out there. The Cougars should be glad to have him as a part of the team, and again, he will grow up to be a good player.
Shammond Guzman: Now here is a great GM for a soon to be great team. His player is really good, and because of this, he won some awards. This includes Player of the Week and 2nd Base Slick Fielder in 2008. He was selected for every allstar game since 2006, and that is something defiantly to be proud of. He had also hit a cycle before, which rarely ever happens. In 2008, he doubled the amount of homeruns he had in 2007! In 2007, he had 36, and 2008 he got 73! That is a really amazing accomplishment. Shammond has been on the leader board for a lot of things, meaning that he is an amazing player, and he keeps getting better and better as the time goes on. He should be proud to be the GM of this great team, and if I say so myself, he is doing a great job of signing players. Another thing to be proud of is that he came from a great team before the expansions came out. So all of this says a lot about him, and makes him the great player that he is.
Tony Pryor: Again, another new player. I canít say that much about him like Dan Wade, but I can say that he is doing just a little bit better. Like Wade, his fielding percentage is at 1.000. I really donít know who will turn out better by the end of the season, and maybe next season. Theyíre both dedicated players, and both will turn out pretty good.
Smitty Springfield: This guy has been in the WBL for a long time, since 2004, and because of that, he is now a great player. Like Guzman, he was selected for every allstar game since 2006, and had many more accomplishments. He too had hit a cycle, and he won batter of the month award once, which has never appeared anywhere on this article yet. Springfield is a very unique player, and has done many thing that others havenít. In 2008, he came first on the leaderboard for hits. Coming out with an amazing 156 hits, this shows that he is an amazing player. He also had come first in average. In 2008, he had a .370 average. Springfield is an amazing player that has a lot to be proud of, and like I said before, he has done many things that other players havenít ever done. Way to go!
Jermaine Guzman: Much like Shammond, he is also a very good player. He has also done something that nobody in this article has done yet; he won the WS with a team. In 2007, Guzman won the WS with Santo Domingo, which is something to be very, very proud of. Like Shammond, Jermaine was selected for every allstar game since 2006, but the brothers were playing against each other rather than with each other. The only bad thing about Jermaine is that he doesnít have much compared to Shammond. Shammond had much more appearances on leaderboards, and somewhat better stats. But a really good thing is that Jermaine won the WS before, unlike his brother. But it is true that Shammondís statistics are much better than Jermaineís. I personally think that they will both become amazing players and keep improving as time goes on.
Manny Martinez: You can really say a lot about this guy. He won Rookie of the Year award in 2007, which is something near impossible to achieve, especially with the excessive amount of players in the WBL there are today. He was selected for 2 allstar games, 2007 and 2008. In 2007, he came out with a 2.36 ERA, then the following year came out with 3.11 ERA. Although that got worse, everything else he had got better! He too had many appearances on the leaderboards, and gives a good name to pitchers. A lot of young pitchers should look up to him if they want to eventually win the ROY or become a good player. The bad part is that he hasnít been doing much lately, he has become an inactive, or at least I think so. His stats havenít been going up much, so he has been staying at the same level for a long time. That is something you donít want to do!
Josh Poole: Although he isnít a new player, you canít really say much about him either. He hasnít accomplished much in his time here, and probably the most thatís happened to him was an appearance on the leaderboard. It was in 2006 with saves, but that was a long time ago, so it still doesnít matter. He had a 3.38 ERA in 2008, which was pretty good. Yeah, he is a pretty average player, and defiantly has room for improvement. Lucky for him, he is on a good team, and surrounded by amazing players. Even if he messes something up in a game, somebody on his team can cover for him because they are just so good.
Kyle Smith: Kyle is an amazing pitcher, even better than Manny Martinez. He is defiantly the top pitcher on the Cougars. Although his ERA got worse by a lot in between the 2007 and 2008 seasons, he still has a lot to cover up for it. He, like many other players, was selected to the 2006, 2007, and 2008 allstar games. Although he never won a major award yet, he still had many appearances on the leaderboard, and can strikeout numerous batters in a single game. He struck out 21 batters in a game during the 2007 season, and that was his best ever! Kyle defiantly is someone to look up to as a pitcher, and if you want to become great, just follow him. He is a very valuble player, and any team should be so lucky to have him on it.
Chin Hui Tsao: He is a pretty good pitcher as well. Nothing too special, but still good enough to be in the majors and make a difference in the teams performance. He too had numerous appearances on the leaderboard, but that probably is his biggest accomplishment, much like Poole. The only difference is that Tsao had many more than Poole did. His ERA got so much better between the 2007 and 2008 seasons, itís unbelieveable. He went from 5.85 to 2.80! That is something I have not seen in a long time.
TJ Farrell: This is the last player on the Cougars, and is a pretty good pitcher too. He won the WS with Montreal just in the 2008 season, and thatís quite an accomplishment for him. He improved his ERA even more than Tsao did, which again, is pretty amazing. He got it down from 24.81 to 6.92 in the course of 1 season! That is the biggest jump I have ever seen! Farrell will defiantly make a big difference in the Cougars performance, along with the other great players on this amazing team.
I personally think that Caracas Cougars will become a great team, and will eventually go to the WS, when the time comes. Guzman made a lot of good choices with the players that he signed, and is still doing so. Good job Guzman!
This is one of the expansion teams in the Eastern Hemisphere. They have a good GM, and heís doing a great job of signing people. He also got some very good players on his team that could lead them all the way to the top. They only have one player in the minors, Dillon Shooper. All their other players are Jesse Newcomer, Boblios Ordonez, Shawn Baig, Jason Wall, Quint Newcomer, James Conway, Justin Lewis, Pedro Ortiz, Travis Torlone, and Ernest P. Worrell.
Jesse Newcomer: Well hereís one of your GMís players. Heís pretty new, so he isnít anything special, but he did win the Catcher Slick Fielder award in 2008. I have a feeling that he will grow up to be an amazing player, only because Quint Newcomer turned out to be really amazing. Anyway, he is doing a really good job of being a GM. As I said in my opening paragraph, he signed some really good players, and I think that this team will be very good in the future.
Boblios Ordonez: He is also a new player, so I canít say much about him. All I can say is he got signed to a great team, he has a great GM, and he will become a great player. Good luck with your team, and I hope you will do well with them.
Shawn Baig: Well hereís an amazing player. I can say a whole lot about this guy. First of all, his name was all over the leaderboard in 2008, and was in 1st place for a lot of things, including average for the 2006 season and the 2008 season. He was also 1st in hits for the 2008 season. He played for the 2007 and 2008 allstar games, and he won the WS with Santo Domingo in 2007. He gets better and better everyday, and he will really make Seoul become a great team. Newcomer sure picked a good guy to sign right here. Baig, along with some other players on the team, will make Seoul a very successful and powerful team in the 2009 season!
Jason Wall: Jason is a new player to the WBL, so yet again, I canít say much about him. Like I said for everybody else, heís on a good team, and the best of luck to you.
Quint Newcomer: Now hereís the best player on the team and your GM. He was only in the 2006 allstar game, I donít know what happened in the 2007 and 2008 seasons, but that doesnít make him a bad player. He won the Shortstop Slick Fielder award 2 years in a row, which nobody has done so far (on this list anyway). He also won the WS with Montreal in 2006, and Iím sure he made it all come true. Quint is an amazing player, and he really deserves to be the GM of Seoul. Along with all this, he was all over the leaderboards, much more than anybody else here. He was 1st in runs during the 2006 season, and he was 1st in BB for the 2006 and 2007 seasons! Quint has a long and tough season to look forward to now, but he believes in his players, and they can really do it for him. The surprising thing is that he doesnít have a huge trading record like most allstar players. Either way, Quint is still doing very well for himself and his other player, Jesse.
James Conway: He is the only outfielder on the team, so I suggest that Newcomer had better sign some more pretty soon. But even if he doesnít, Conway can do everything alone. He is a very good player, and has a lot to be proud of. He had hit a cycle before, and he was selected for the 2006 and 2008 allstar games. He also won the Centerfield Slick Fielder award in 2007. His name isnít all over the leaderboard like most allstar players, but that doesnít stop him from being where he is today. Conway gives a good name to outfielders, and other young ones should look up to him.
Justin Lewis: Here is the first pitcher on Seoul, and also is a very talented one. In 2007, he had an AMAZING ERA of 1.58, which brought him to the 1st place position on the leaderboard. Many other things also put his name on the leaderboard, but this is defiantly the biggest. He was also 1st in wins during the 2006 season. Aside from that, he won the WS with Montreal in 2006 and was selected to the allstar game that same season. Lately, his ERA has been slipping, in the 2008 season it was somewhere in the .5.00ís. Still, the time before that and even then he was a great pitcher. The most strikeouts he had in one game were 21, against Frankfurt in 2006. All of this proves Lewis to be a good player, and a major asset to the Storm.
Pedro Ortiz: Pedro isnít the best pitcher around, but he isnít the worst. He has room for improvement, and should use it. But other than that, he is an OK pitcher. His name was on the leaderboard a lot, thatís something to be proud of, and he won the Pitching Slick Fielder in 2008. Thereís not much more that Pedro did to make himself look like a star, but he can still help out Seoul a lot and bring them to victory. His ERA has gotten a lot better since 2006, though. It started out in the 20ís, and now itís down to 4.68. Thatís a pretty good jump, but then again, he had plenty of time to do it. Overall, he is a descent pitcher, and can do something for the team to change their performance.
Travis Torlone: Torlone is an even better pitcher, and can do a lot to bring Seoul to victory. His name, too, was on the leaderboard, and he won the Pitching Slick Fielder award in 2007. His current ERA is 3.93, which isnít bad at all for his level. The only bad thing about Travis is that he hasnít accomplished too much, unlike many other amazing pitchers. He can do it though, everyday he improves, and by the end of 2009, he could be Seoulís top pitcher, depending on Lewisís performance and Worrellís performance. Still, those 3 pitchers are really good, and theyíll do a lot for Seoul to help them win.
Ernest P. Worrell: He is a good pitcher. Like Pedro, he isnít the best, isnít the worst. But he did something no pitcher has done yet, at least the ones that are on the expansion teams. He pitched a perfect game against San Juan in 2008. That is quite an accomplishment. He also won pitcher of the month award before. His final great accomplishment was pitching a no hitter game against Great Britain in 2008. He too had his name on places in the leaderboard, but not THAT much. His ERA was at 1.98 in the 2008 season, which is amazing compared to his 2004 11.39 ERA. Yeah, Worrell is an overall good pitcher, and really helpful towards the team.
Dillon Shooper: Another new player, who is the only one in the minors at this point. I think that they will bring him up eventually, but for now, heís staying down there. Canít say much about him because he is new, but so far, he has been improving a lot.
Seoul has some really good players, some arenít as good, but still, they are a great team. I think they will turn out to be one of the top teams, maybe not this season, but eventually they will.
Finally, the last expansion team, South Africa. Max Powers is doing a great job of being a GM. He signs players like crazy, but lucky for him, they all turn out to be good, or at least most of them. He is probably the most dedicated GM of the expansion teams, and it paid off. His team includes Victor Vargas, Kevin McGlynn, Ronnie Payne, Jerry Owens, Tim Johnson, Mike Bazinet, Max Baez, Darnell Cotton, Daryll Fink, Max Powers, and Robert Kurz.
Victor Vargas: Now hereís a good catcher. He can do a lot for South Africa, including bringing them to victory. He accomplished so much in his time in the WBL. He has his name all over the leaderboard, and he won numerous awards. He won Catcher Slick Fielder award in 2008 and in 2006. He was selected for the 2006, 2007, and 2008 allstar games, and is doing really well as of now. There is absolutely no way to call Vargas a bad player, and along with his teammates, he can take South Africa to the top! Also, to add something in, he has an impressive average of .270. This all proves him to be a good player.
Kevin McGlynn: Although he is not a new player, there is not much I can say about him. He really hasnít accomplished anything in his time here, and his stats arenít the best there are. Like most people, he is on a good team, so he should at least be lucky for that much.
Ronnie Payne: Here is a new player on South Africa. He just joined the WBL not even a week ago, so Iím not expecting much from him yet. He tries, and is doing an OK job with improving. Nothing special about him, so Iíll be moving on nowÖ
Jerry Owens: Owens is pretty good when it comes to fielding. He had many jobs in the field, like 2nd Base, 3rd Base, and Shortstop. He wasnít on the leaderboard much, just with 2 things, but he did accomplish a lot. He won the WS with Montreal in 2006, and won the Shortstop Slick Fielder award in 2007. So he isnít the best player around, he is still good and can support South Africa a lot with his good fielding skills.
Tim Johnson: Iíve never even heard of this guy, but he is still a good outfielder. He won the Leftfield Slick Fielder award in 2006 and played in the 2007 allstar game. Youíre not going to find his name all over the leaderboard, but that doesnít make him a bad player. Overall, he is OK. He doesnít have many accomplishments, besides the award, so heís not the best of the best. But he is still good enough to make South Africa have a good outfield and make it a good team.
Mike Bazinet: Mike is a new player to the WBL, and isnít active either. I donít know what heíll make of South Africa, but it isnít going to be good. Itís also surprising that heís signed through 2013. Iím very confused about this, but its Powerís decision, not mine, and so let it be. Anyway, best of luck to South Africa, even with this guy on it.
Max Baez: Iíve seen better, and seen worse. He is a good pitcher, though. His name is all over the leaderboard, and he won the Pitching Slick Fielder award in 2006. He was also selected for the 2008 allstar game. You know, both of these things arenít that rare, they seem to be happening to everybody now, so itís not that special. Especially getting picked for the allstar game, almost everybody here did. Baez finished off the 2008 season with a good ERA of 2.58, which was good enough to make 4th on the leaderboard. I tink that Baez, along with other players on the team will make South Africa one of the top teams in the WBL.
Darnell Cotton: Another new player in the WBL, I canít say much about him. In fact, I canít really say anything but the fact that heís trying to improve, but it isnít doing much for him. Like many of the other new players, theyíre on good teams, surrounded by amazing players.
Daryll Fink: This guy is really something. Not only is he a great player, but he can also strikeout more than 15 players in a game continuously. Since 2006, heís done it 15+ times, thatís really amazing. Also, he was selected for the 2006 allstar game, and won player of the week award soon after. His name isnít all over the leaderboard, but you can find his name in the 1st place spot for losses. His trading record is pretty small, nothing much going on with that. He would make a great asset to South Africa as one of their best pitchers so far. As far as ERA goes, he hasnít been doing so hot. Each year, his gets worse, and in 2008, he ended up with 4.53. Not that bad, but bad in the sense that itís the worst he had.
Max Powers: Here he is, your GM, and the best player on the South African Lions. There is just too much to say about him. Not only is he a great GM, but he has a way with people by being able to sign all these players to his team. His stats are also amazing, and he accomplished so much in his career. I canít even name the amount of awards heís won, and how much of the leaderboard heís on. He is just an amazing player, and recently won CY young! As far as the leaderboard goes, he came in 1st place for more than half the things he was listed in. He had 296 Kís in 2008!!! That is just amazing. He is just an amazing guy, amazing player, and an amazing GM. If you consider being on any expansion team, consider this! Now Iím not insulting the other oneís, but you got a great GM right here. Way to go Powers! Keep it up.
Robert Kurz: Pretty new, and a pretty descent player. He came in 1st place for saves in the 2007 season, I guess thatís something to be proud of. He doesnít have any amazing history like Powers or any great pitcher, but he is doing well so far, and would be a great closer for South Africa. Along with every single teammate he has, they could take South Africa to the top because they are a great team.
I have nothing else to say, all 4 of these expansion teams are great, they have great GMís, and have some great players on each team. I want all of the GMís to keep it up, and eventually you guys can win the WS!