Until now, our LGT OOTP Perfect Team hasn’t hit any speedbumps. In fact, going into Sunday, I felt our chances for a deep run into the playoffs were excellent. We’d have to punch our way through the wild card game because of a difficult division, but once that was over with we’d be locked in for promotion and have a great chance at the World Series.
Unfortunately, losing the Wild Card game (in painful and dramatic fashion) means that we won’t earn promotion to the next level despite winning 98 games and owning one of the best records in the league.
Silver league, coincidentally, was the most difficult league to achieve promotion out of this season. Because reasons? Twelve teams from each Diamond league are getting promoted to perfect league; ten teams from gold up to diamond; another bunch from iron to silver.... I just don’t get it.
Also, I don’t agree with promotion being dependent on playoff luck. I get it; if you make it to the A/NLCS you’re ranked as one of the top four teams for promotion... but I don’t agree with it. I wish it would go strictly by regular season record except for the team that wins it all. So if an 84-win team sneaks through and wins the World Series (they didn’t), they get promoted, but the team with the fourth-best record in the league that played seven wins worse than it’s pythag doesn’t get boned.
In my ‘19 save I have a team that’s averaged 97 wins in diamond league on Perfect Team for twelve consecutive seasons, making the playoffs in all of them. They have yet to make a World Series and advance to perfect league.
I’m really, really hoping that luck doesn’t carry over to this team. We’ll see.
State of the Roster
Here are our end-of-season WAR rankings for position players and pitchers.
Yeah—the bullpen is still a problem. Making Carrasco pitch 140 innings of relief definitely helped, but we’re going to need another elite arm in there to compete consistently.
As for the lineup: I just couldn’t pass up that Bobby Avila card. He’s an excellent defender, a fine hitter, and he lets us lean into Joe Sewell as a true super utility guy. That keeps everybody on the infield fresh without much of a drop in talent. We also shifted Omar Vizquel to third base, where he will still be an elite defender. The infield is set for a while unless we stumble upon a ridiculously good card to replace any of these guys.
Also, our Thome card had a nice little bounce back. We’ll see if he can repeat that performance, or if the .5 WAR from last season is more indicative of its true value.
Meanwhile, Rick Manning is gone and replace by 1961 Jim Piersall. Piersall actually ranks better than Kenny Lofton in CF defensively. He’s also a high contact guy, which we love. Francona becomes our fourth outfielder rather than a platoon bat, and Lofton move to RF full time, where he is going to become an absolute beast defensively.
I’m planning on sitting on this roster for another season. I expect to win more than 100 games with this lineup unless any of the live cards took severe hits with the live stat adjustments. From there, I’m hoping we can grab a 1995 José Mesa to get a truly elite reliever into the bullpen to help out Weird Relief Ace Carlos Carrasco.