Tournament of Champions* tomorrow is the grand finale of Fall season, aka preseason. BoPo right around the corner, and now we are getting close to some teams in the preseason rankings that can dream of hanging a banner.
#15 UREA! – Thursday A: Last season was a franchise changing one for UREA! They went from also ran to Tuesday B champs, and now they move up in weight class to play with the A’s. I don’t think they’ll be overmatched. J-Bird is a former Captain of the year and once again she made some savvy offseason moves. This time she brought in the underrated Purple Nurple as a free agent. She also seems to have coaxed Knuckles out of retirement. Add that to her big signee last season, Steff Infection, and the team’s bell cow T-$ and you’ve got a team that is talented and really fun. Girl power!
#14 Young & The Bowled – Thursday A: These guys may take having another team with a similar name (Bowled & The Beautiful) join their division personally. They could use the motivation as they have seen some major roster turnover. They lost Lucky and Irish Scotsman to IBS, and Lou Dawg retired again. They do return Pistol Pete as the new Captain, and Senator ITZ is back and finished last season bowling very well. Hark will need to show more consistency, but the big moves have been in free agency. Pistol signed The Cleaner from his restaurant league rival, and perhaps Nugget who as of this posting is unsigned but was leaning toward these guys (she originally looked destined for another team but needed to play on Thursdays). If they can wrap her up they can definitely play with the top squads in A and maybe even upset a contender or two.
#13 Cunning Linguists – Thursday A: The Linguists are moving to Thursdays and I think the move will suit them well. They are leaving Pauly Ringwald on Tuesdays, but the rest of the squad seems to be intact. Captain Col. Angus will have the opportunity to step up (and sign a free agent), and he has done a good job holding the team together when it looked like it might disintegrate. Returning are the always strong La Gatita, sneaky good Gutterslut, and the consistently improving EHD and Wendiesel. Who fills that extra roster spot? That as much as anything could determine whether these guys are just a solid team or a team that can make a long playoff run.
#12 TDYOB – Thursday A: Yet another Thursday squad. Dr. Thunder’s team made a splash this year by picking up the hirsute Shifter Pawl. It is a fascinating acquisition as the Dr. thrives on being the best guy on his team and has now made that a much more serious challenge. Personality wise the fit seems like a good one – Shifter can drink with the best of them. Space Farmer returns after a strong Draft regular season and could also push for top average. Munson has taken a season off and comes in hungry – his practice scores have been really strong, but unsure if that will translate to game action. Sneaky Pete offers them a clutch playoff roller. TDYOB has a history of unnerving their opponents and has made playoff runs in the past. Now that folks are used to the Dr. he can’t rely on rattling them – but he did add the big piece in Shifter. Sobriety will be a challenge.
#11 Yay! – Thursday A: Well the Yay! boys did just win a Draft League title since I had ranked everyone, but when I look at the teams ranked ahead of them I can’t really see moving them up. That’s not an critique of Yay but more of a comment on the depth of the league this year. The aforementioned Romo and Bombpop are a very solid 1-2, and Jewdy’s crazy hooker is a shot with a lot of big game potential. Probie is subject to some of the wildest score swings of anyone in the league. The ladies are excellent – Ralphie is a perennial all-star and Mona Laudley is one of the most underrated rollers out there. This team is very good and can beat any team in the league on a given Thursday – but over the course of the season I just see them falling slightly outside the top 10.
Here are the opening week matchups –
|Pinny Candy||5 O’Clocks|
|Three Livers||My Balls|