Tuesday, July 1, 2008

July 1st and looking for the USCL

Hiya, Hiya, Hiya. Hope all the readers have had a good summer, especially the 4 days of summer we have had here in the Pacific Northwest. We have had some colder than normal weather, but that has nothing to do with your ... SEATTLE SLUGGERS!!

We are about 8 weeks away from the start of the season and there hasn't been any news about the Sluggers, at not in my ears. This is the time for the fans to start talking about what could get the Sluggers into the playoffs and over the hump. New players? Better matchups? Brighter lights? What do you think would help? Personally, I don't know if any new players on the books or maybe there is some lower player that is going to turn into a big surprise, but I have lots of ideas. Here's one: a contest for the fans where the fans guess the final score of that weeks match and as a tiebreak the total number of moves in all 4 games and the winner is the one closest to the actual number without going over, prize is a Sluggers cap or shirt! Here's another: a couple of times a season have special home matches where there is a guest team captain... somebody like Shaun Alexander (ok, he left but you get the idea... somebody who is kinda into chess and has a bit of a name). How about this: the Sluggers have had some trouble with internet connections in there early matches, so why not have a couple of warm ups? My idea is to get 4 of the Sluggers, probably only one of the titled players at a times, and play a match over the net with a local high school or junior team? You could get the juniors a location in some school, they all are wired nowadays, and just have a friendly warm up? Certainly isn't the worst idea I have ever had.

Ok, without knowing who the players are going to be we can take a quick look at the schedule. Here is a quick peak

-New Jersey
-New York
-San Francisco

This is an interesting schedule. Start out with a rematch of last year's week 10 match that got the Miami Sharks into the playoffs and ended the Sluggers season, then the Tempo who I suspect will be better this year, a likely tough match with New Jersey and a week 4 face up with expansion Chicago. All of these matches could be hard but, if the Sluggers can get through that point without any major accidents they are likely to be in contention for first place, Dallas plays SF and Boston while the Mechanics have a match with New York. The middle 3 are the gauntlet with the New York Knights, a team the Sluggers have struggled mightily against, between matches with division rivals Destiny and Mechanics. The last 3 matches will either be a sprint as the Sluggers have a playoff chance in their control or a forced march with them checking the scoreboard for some help. We have no real idea how good the Arizona team will be, but expansion teams seem to lose poise the later in the season it gets. It doesn't seem to me that there is anything to complain about in this schedule, except maybe an extra match with Miami (payback you know). The odd thing is that the schedule looks like 7 - 3, but with a little luck one way could be 8 1/2 - 1 1/2 or the other way to 5 and 5. I will say 7 1/2 out of 10 and into the playoffs.

Well, that is my initial take on this. As I hear more I will share with you dear readers. Don't forget to go to the Wachess bulletin board and talk up the Sluggers!!!