Howdy folks, it’s Divergent League Update for February 5th 2021, but of course in Divergent League we’re all the way back on June 21st, 1993.
All-Star Weekend is NEXT weekend, which will include the Hardship Draft, the Home Run Derby and the All-Star Game proper on Saturday. Check divergentleague.com for the Home Run Derby and All Star Roster information on Friday, February 12th.
Some big moves have changed the face of the league, but this is baseball. You string a couple wins together and those division standings can change before you know it.
We’ll start off as we always do- The Dingers!
The Big Hurt Frank Thomas has overtaken Mark McGwire, and now leads all of baseball with 26. Big Mac follows with 24. Matt Williams leads the NL with 21. Dawson, Palmerio, Bonds and McGriff are all in the mix with 19 or more. The Cubs Sammy Sosa trails with 15.
Taking a quick look at the standings, the Orioles maintain their massive lead in the AL East, with the 2nd place Blue Jays down by 14 games at just under 500. The Yankees are 21 games out in 4th place.
Over to the Central, where the Tigers are 1.5 games up on the White Sox. These two have been trading places all season, but the Royals are on their heels at just 4 games back.
In the AL West the Rangers have surged, and are just 1.5 games behind the division leading Astros. Seattle is still in 4th, 9.5 games out.
Onto the NL East, the Phillies have pulled ahead of the 2nd place Expos by 4.5 games, with a best-in-baseball record of 54 wins against 21 losses. The Braves have dropped a few this month, and are in 3rd place at 12.5 games back. The Mets, baseball’s worst team, sit in the cellar at 22-54, an incredible 32.5 games out of 1st.
In the NL Central the Cubs and Reds are sitting in 4th and last place respectively, at 10 and 14 games out of first place.
A-way out west we’ve got the Giants, firmly in control of the division with an 8 game lead over the Pads.
In Divergent League we have a little some called The Hardship Draft. The Friday before All Star Weekend, the bottom 20% of the league by record get an extra draft pick, and can choose ANY player not on a human-controlled team. This season has 14 teams, so we’ll round up and say 3 Hardship Draft picks are available.
Hardship draft leaders as of this broadcast are the Mets, Yankees, and Reds. The Mariners and Cubs aren’t far off.
Flipping over to the stat sheet, our biggest news is the Yankees Wade Boggs had a stellar May and early June, now leading baseball with a .392 average. Braves rookie sensation Mike Piazza remains at the top of the NL at .343. Joe Valentin, and David Segui are close by in the .340s.
Boggs, Marquis Grissom, Lenny Dykstra, and Chad Curtis lead in Doubles with 24 a piece.
Taking the short train to Ribbie Town, The Big Hurt is unsurprisingly in the lead with 69. Nice. Mark McGwire, Tim Raines, and Andre Dawson follow in the AL. Bonds with 62, Darren Daulton, and Matt Williams, are at the top of the NL.
A pair of Angels lead the league in stolen bases, with Luis Polonia and Chad Curtis at 24 and 22. Rock Raines trails with 21 to round out the AL. Rockies bright spot Eric Young leads the NL with 22, with the Expos Grissom at 20.
Looking at the leaders from the mound- Baltimore’s Mike Mussina is tops in Baseball with 10. Detroit’s Bill Gullickson and The Os Fernando Valenzuela sit at 9. Over in the NL, Bill Swift, Tommy Greene, Allen Watson and Dennis Martinez are all tied with 10 Ws.
Gregg Olson leads all pitchers with 32 saves. David West’s got the NL lead with 30. Looking in on ERAs, Nolan Ryan leads everyone with an astonishing 1.23. The Padres Andy Benes has maintained an outlandish 1.39.
Randy Johnson leads the league is strikeouts at 125 already in the season. Mike Mussina follows with 118.
Standings and power rankings for Week 4 are available on divergentleague.com