This project is taking me forever to finish, but I’m near its end. I shelved the master game for a time to familiarize myself with the basic game. I have several seasons of cards sitting on my shelf, never seeing the light of day. I decided to run a “2nd Chance” tournament with teams from my so-called glory days of baseball which is from 1980-2010. I was born in 1980 and I religiously followed baseball through 2010. I still do follow the game, but not nearly as close as I used to. Coincidentally, that’s about the time I really got involved with APBA.
Anyway, I wanted to hold a 64 team tournament, similar to the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament. I know this concept has been done several times in the APBA Baseball World. My tournament would consist of all of the World Series losers from 1980-2010, followed by the rest of the field being selected at random (out of a hat). The teams eligible had to fulfill one of the following requirements:
*Qualified for the postseason (All 1994 division/wild card leaders were eligible)
*Won at least 100 games, but did not qualify for the postseason
*Qualified for a tie-breaker game, but lost
There’s a pretty impressive number of teams. The 1980’s are very interesting because of the lack on a single dominant franchise. However, from 1994-onward, there are so many more teams from that era in the pool because of the added divisions and wild cards. I drew the teams and ended up with a fun bracket full of great teams from my youth and beyond! For the tournament, teams are able to use their top two starting pitchers. For example, in the first round, a team uses their #1 pitcher. If they win, they’ll have to use their #2 for the second round game. If their team makes it to the Sweet 16, the rotation resets and the team will use their #1 again. This way, teams are forced to go a little deeper into their pitching, but for the most part, these teams have a pretty good 1-2 punch (unless you’re the 1994 Yankees or 1995 Rockies, for example). I also use the DH for all games and score all games by hand (I usually use the iScore app on iPad, but I wanted to get back to my roots and go off the grid).
I will say doing a tournament is a lot different from a single-team season replay – My organizational skills have been challenged to say the least. I have really enjoyed just thumbing through all of the different cards and reading up on some of these teams and players I’ve forgotten about. It’s also given me some ideas as to what my next season replay will be, and teams to take to an APBA Tournament someday. Most of these games have been very close right up to the last dice roll!
Below is the bracket so far. Four regional games will decide which teams will advance to the Final Four, which will be held at Cleveland Municipal Stadium.
The pitching matchups are set, and the dice will be rolling with a few 66’s for sure!
2000 Oakland A’s (Heredia CYZ) vs. 1994 New York Yankees (Perez CY) – RFK Stadium
2008 Milwaukee Brewers (Sheets BYZ) vs. 1996 Atlanta Braves (Maddux BYZZ) – HHH Metrodome
2003 Chicago Cubs (Zambrano BX) vs. 1994 Montreal Expos (Fassero BZ) – Kingdome
1992 Oakland A’s (Stewart CY) vs. 2010 Minnesota Twins (Duensing BZ) – Joe Robbie Stadium
My predictions? 2000 A’s, 2008 Brewers, 2003 Cubs, and 2010 Twins
We shall see!