So… is this team making the playoffs?

Updated: May 18, 2016

August 14th, 2023

After an excellent 6 win week, the Bureaucrats are back within a half game of first place in the Seaboard division. They still own the best run differential in the division, and the folks at the StatsLab are giving them around a 71% chance to win the division and an 81% chance overall to make the playoffs.

“But wait!” you say, “weren’t the ‘Crats sellers at the trade deadline?!” Why yes they were! But they didn’t blow the whole roster up to start from scratch. In fact, they retained many young players that project to be around for several more years. Some of those young players are now getting more playing time in the wake of the deadline trades so it’s not like Angel Cortez‘s spot in the line-up was given to a scrub. Cedric Hunt and Jaime García are now being relied on more and Hunt has definitely capitalized on the opportunity.

The rotation was virtually untouched and the trio of young, high-upside arms have been heating up. Luigi Bright and Manuel Pacheco have both thrown no-hitters; Pacheco’s was actually his second complete-game shutout in a row! Luis Medina is still growing into his electric stuff and his July showed us he can get after it with the best of them.

Now that I’ve gotten everyone excited about Arlington’s inevitable Rodriguez Cup victory, we do have to look at what might keep the post-season out of reach. They still have eight fewer wins than their run differential would predict and losing Shawn Marshall probably isn’t going to help them shrink that deficit. That eight game discrepancy can be explained as luck, or it could mean that Arlington’s bullpen is fond of coughing up leads in tight ballgames. The unit as a whole currently ranks 8th in the IL in ERA (3.68) which isn’t great for a team with play-off aspirations and if you’ve watched any of their games this season you know they have a knack for epic late inning meltdowns (I’m looking at you, Jorge García!). For some reason someone named Kyoji Uchiyama is currently listed as the team’s closer – likely a temporary experiment after Marshall’s departure but his 9.51 ERA definitely doesn’t belong anywhere near a late game lead. In fact, the last game Kyoji pitched Javier Moreno had to come in with the bases loaded in the 9th with a one-run lead and bail him out. I’m not a betting man, but if I were my money would be on that situation NOT playing out favorably ever again.

So, TL;DR – The Bureaucrats still have a bunch of young talent (and some wily vets) but probably need a bunch of breaks in their favor in order to make it to the post season.

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