Welcome back everyone, hope you enjoyed your hiatus. Well, a hiatus for many of you anyway: a small but growing number of BoPoers are starting to play year round in Business League and Casco Bay Leagues. Soon they’ll be taking jobs with Bayside’s top December party corporate clients like IDEXX just to make sure they get lanes in our business month. It’s awesome. Doubles league has started, and since the draft all the old faces who haven’t played this Summer have been showing up. Tonight is like the first day of school, except a million times cooler. No homework.
So it’s back to writing lines for me. Draft league lines are tough, the teams are usually so evenly matched. Last year of the 18 teams, 15 finished between 4-6 and 6-4. This year Draft is at an all-time high of 20 teams, its max (until expansion: more on that in future posts). I’ll tend to pick teams with folks who’ve been bowling all Summer for these first few weeks. Lot’s more BoPoers getting new balls and lessons this season so that could show up too. I’m only going to do a top 5 for draft power rankings since there are only 20 teams. Remember the divisions are important this season because you only play teams within your division. Go West! Go East! Division winners get byes to the quarters. Teams 2-7 in each division qualify for the play-offs. So without further ado, the rankings and lines.
Preseason Power Rankings:
1. McGuyvah: Probably a lot of head scratching out there right now since 90% of you have never heard of this guy. He is a newcomer to BoPo, and while he is a decent bowler his team is ranked here because he’s a great drafter. Tango has not taken a break from bowling and won another title last night. Spidey was the steal of the draft in the 2nd round. Baller is another CacsoBayer friend of Tango, and Rufio! is a gamer who won Draft last year (plus she’ll be psyched to be joined be fellow Lovernaut Rinni).
2. Bombpop: After grabbing the legendary Oz in the 1st, Bombpop grabbed his Yaymate Yao 2nd to have perhaps the best 1-2-3 (on paper) in the league. Then he drafted his brother. These guys are all pretty familiar with each other. They picked up Miz Tizdale who is a proven commodity, and Lillabot who is in it to win it as she only participates in Draft League and liked bowling enough to marry her bowling instructor.
3. Chernobes: AKA, Binga’s. Layne didn’t set out to draft her BoPo team but the picks just fell that way. Who’s going to pass up Jerk at 10th pick? Or Tso at 30? Only Cookie got away but Rick Vaughn’s team will take care of him. After the three Binga’s you get an odd mix of Snapshot, DC Lane and J Bird, not standard Binga’s players but solid bowlers. This team is like a social experiment that could result in a title.
4. Big Whoop (McStriker): Just draft champions, that’s a solid strategy. Booth and Cheese account for 7 titles between them, including three Draft League titles. They know what it takes. Dude reached the finals last year and McStriker gives herself an ace woman. Burt the Bandit proved his clutch credentials last year and Clarified Gutter will probably kill it now that she doesn’t have to worry about dragging Peanut Gutter home after 2 kamikaze pitchers.
5. Munj: I’ve already started doing paragraphs for three other teams as #5 (T-Square, Diesel and E-Motional) and talked myself out of them as I wrote. If I finish this writeup then these guys stay at 5. Gutterboi is always a solid pick, and a good coach. He should get the most out of Gutterslut, and Gutterlicious is a BoPo all-star. Sparetime has become semi-famous for BoPo playoff upsets and near misses, and Munj is psyched to roll on a team where he can safely be the #3. Mystery Girl turned out to be Gracer, we’ll have to see what she’s got. Well, I finished the paragraph.
Game of the Week
LATE: #2 Bombpop (-1) vs Cilantro: Yeah, I ranked Bombpop 2nd then only favored them by 1. These guys will be good but could also start off a bit rusty. Cilantro has been getting in work and was a BoPo playoff hero. He’s got the ever consistent Cheddar, sneaky good Magic, and new LOSer Nugget. in his top 4. That’s a hell of a group. If I hadn’t already finished rankings I’d revise them to include these guys. As it is, it’s my game of the week!
# 3 Chernobes (-3) vs Deputy: No one works harder than Deputy, always practicing, always changing his games, always sleeveless. He’s got a decent little squad with his 2v2 buddy Duke and Pauly, plus reigning BoPo champ Alleyluejah. They look like a playoff squad but I just ranked Chernobes 3rd so I have to stick with that. Did I mention Binga’s has a new locker room directly across the street from Bayside’s parking lot?
Diesel (-1) vs Colucci Kid: This could be a sweet match. Precious returns to the lanes for the first time since his heroic playoff run, but he faces defending Draft Champ Diesel. Danny D has some big guns in Bustah and Beef Wellington. The Kid grabbed the sought after Steff Infection (also a new Bayside hire, yes!). Should be a battle but I’ll give the slight edge to Diesel’s crew.
#1 McGuyvah (-5) vs Gatch: Well, they are my preseason #1. That, plus Gatch is out of town. Seatown, Wildcard, Bonita and Southpaw will try to pick up the slack while he’s gone and Budwesier Joe makes his Draft League debut.
#5 Munj (-5) vs Squampch: I already wrote about the Munjes. Squampch is also out of town tonight, one of multiple MIA Captains in week 1. Boots will be good but this is his Bayside debut and there is usually an adjustment period. Sloppiness and Lala will need to step up since they are fresh off title games last night.
T-Square (-3) vs Tootsie: T used the #1 pick wisely by selecting Bama, an unassailable pick. Grabbing T-$ in the 2nd round was a nice little bonus. The team is full of gamers in Knuckles, Automatic and J-Walker along with the Captain herself who has aeon a BoPo title. Tootsie is returning to BoPo play after founding, then leaving, Turkey Club a few years back. He’s got an interesting mix: few bowl more often than Sparkles. Skittles is a crowd favorite and Jenerator has more Restaurant titles than you can shake a rolling pin at. I think this team will take a while to come together, however, so I’m picking T-Square.
Dick’s Pick’s Vol. IV: (-1) vs E-Motional: So much drama! Dick vs McQueen in what has been a turbulent offseason for OC. E-Minor and, well, just E-minor. Lots of Waterville in this match (Dick, McQueen, Barry Violet). I’m going with the Picks assuming Mr. Stiffy is back around and they use mostly uppers tonight.
Hot Sauce (-3) vs Hexy: Hot Sauce took the gamble on the Shifter McNasty pick and tonight may be one of the nights when it pays off as I think both will be there (of course there will be many nights with neither). Hexy shocked the world by selecting Coco Lopez at #2 overall – will it pay off? She is coming off a season with 3 major titles. I’ll take the Sauce in this one though.
#4 Big Whoop (-5) vs Rick Vaughn: Ol’ Ricky missed the draft, and I tried to the best I could for him with the draft list he provided. He was dead set on Bijou in the first round, and she could be back to form not bowling 8 months pregnant. Cookie gets his shot at being top dog. Probie and Ramrod both bring the heat, and Rick Vaughn loves the heater. This team will enjoy itself.
Roadhouse (-3) vs 100% Down: Just when you thought it was safe to bowl without ear protection, he’s back. With only three roster players available Slow Roll and 100% down are bringing Dr. Thunder out of retirement for a cameo. They’ll be without Nuber, Luke and Seachellz, however, and the Karl H?uncle Jesse combo will be wildly unpredictable. Coversely, Roadhouse and Natro both have been bowling consistently well and will be tough to top. Tilt-A-Whirl may finally get her look at a championship, while Saw is looking for a Draft League repeat.