Walker Division Preview –

2020 Predicted Order of Finish:

  1. Yorkshire Moor Hens (90-72)
  2. Sacramento Plaidsox (90-72)
  3. Nassau Sharks (78-84)
  4. Fort Worth Parrots (77-85)

The Yorkshire Moor Hens 2019 Version:  96-66 – Walker Division Champion

Ronald Acuna Jr – Top hitter left after the Purge of 2020 and promises to continue leading in the far future.

In case you haven’t been paying attention there is a new power in the “Far” East.  No, it is not Bristol – but Yorkshire.  For the past few years, through adept drafting and trading the Shawn Mosher has built for himself a team that is contending now and should be fighting for Top Spot for several years to come. The team is not build for a one year run, this team is built for the long haul. Many of their top performers are youngsters who hold to more promise in the future than the present.

Last season saw the Hens make the playoffs for the first time in a few years, and lose to eventual Champion (and future trading partner) the Hamilton Redbirds.  With a ten-game buffer in the division, they managed to take two games away from Hamilton in the Semi-Finals.

Cole18-6 3.65
Verlander13-9 3.92
Buehler11-13 5.04
Giolitto8-9 5.06
E. Rodriguez9-10 6.00

The 2019 Team featured strong hitting throughout the lineup, with MVP Candidates Christian Yelich (.304-41-108) and in Jorge Soler (.254-68-145) – who had one of the greatest HR hitting seasons in BDB History – supported by Josh Bell (.280-40-105) and youngster Ronald Acuna jr (.248-45-91) — and on the other side of the coin — the 1-2 punch of Gerrit Cole (18-6 3.65) and Justin Verlander (13-9 3.92) was one of the best in the league, especially with their wins protected by Giovanny Gallegos (27 saves) out of the pen.

The 2020 Version of the Yorkshire Moor Hens:  90-72.  The Hens will be neck and neck with the Sacramento Plaidsox, and took a dip from their incredible great run over the last five seasons.   They will certainly be in the big dance at the end of the season, they just don’t know if they will be there as Division Champion or Wild Card entrant.

Yorkshire traded away Two Top Picks, Bo Bichette and Dustin May for the promise of Oft Injured Fernand Tatis Jr.

Dylan Bundy5.4
Lucas Giolito5.4
Hyun-Jin Ryu4.9
Gerrit Cole4.1
Julio Urias3.5
Drew Smyly1.1
Freddie Freeman8.9
Fernando Tatis Jr.7.8
Manny Machado7.0
Ronald Acuna Jr.6.5
Miguel Rojas4.3
Travis d’Arnaud4.3
Giovanny Urshela4.3
Alex Verdugo4.3
Jeff McNeil3.2
Tommy La Stella3.2
Kevin Pillar3.0
Alex Dickerson2.2

The lineup is going to look a lot different going into this season. Gone are the two MVP Candidates Yelich and Soler, and 40 HR 1B Josh Bell, and welcome BDB Champion Firstbaseman Freddie Freeman (.341-35-144) and oft injured Shortstop Fernand Tatis Jr (.278-46-122) and welcome back Manny Machado (.304-44-127) from a couple of off par seasons.

The lineup is not the only place on this team to see change. Although Cole is still around, he won’t counted as the Ace of the staff, instead that will be a battle between surprising youngsters Dylan Bundy and Luca Giolitto and Korean import Ryu.

Look for this team to continue tinkering with their lineup and rotation in order to get the best winning combination for this season, and maybe the next two after.

The 2021 Version of the Moor Hens:  86-76.  Continued rise of Tatis jr, Acuna Jr, continued support from Machado and Freeman.  Look for Giolito to take the help as top pitcher over these next coming years.

Traded Trout to land Gio — seems to be wanting to lead the team forward for years to come …
Lucas Giolito5.8
Gerrit Cole5.7
Hyun-Jin Ryu3.3
Dylan Bundy2.5
Julio Urias2
Kris Bubic1.6
Fernando Tatis Jr.5.8
Ronald Acuna Jr.5.6
Manny Machado4.6
Freddie Freeman4.5
Jeff McNeil3.3
Luis Arraez2.9
Alex Verdugo2.7
Giovanny Urshela2.5
Travis d’Arnaud2.3
Miguel Rojas2.2
Carson Kelly1.7
Tommy La Stella1.6

The 2022 Version of the Moor Hens: 87-75 – Tops in Division – See above for reasons.

Cole promises to bring plenty of winning attitude despite the rise of the young performers.
Lucas Giolito5.4
Gerrit Cole5
Dylan Bundy2.1
Hyun-Jin Ryu2.5
Justin Verlander2.7
Julio Urias2.2
Ronald Acuna Jr.6.5
Fernando Tatis Jr.4.7
Freddie Freeman3.6
Manny Machado3.4
Luis Arraez3
Jeff McNeil2.8
Giovanny Urshela2.3
Alex Verdugo2
Rowdy Tellez1.7
Miguel Rojas1.7
Carson Kelly1.6
Travis d’Arnaud1.5

Hope for the Future:  Fernando Tatis Jr is 21, Ronald Acuna is 22 – The future rests with these two hitters.  Jaime Berria and Julio Urias will most likely provide trading chips for immediate talent for their next three-year run. Look for a tinker there, and tinker there … but there won’t be much hope on youngsters for tomorrow, but proven veterans.