The Illusion of Grand Historical Narratives, Low Scores, and Ties: Week 16 in the FFBL

Oftentimes when we look at history, we see can forget the miniscule details that drive it forward. We only view the large tapestry, not the threading that goes into it. History is presented as a narrative. It is taken as a narrative, ingested by human beings as said narrative, one cohesive whole that comes together as a unified, intelligible story. But normally that is not the case. History is a mess. It’s a thousand insignificant and miniscule decisions, indecisions, and moments that multiply over time. It’s Herbert Hoover passing the Smoot-Hawley Tariff. It’s Gabriel Principe joining the Serbian black hand. It’s Czar Nicholas II abdicating the thrown. It’s the D-Train ignoring that Ryan Braun is listed as DTD and keeping Cameron Maybin on the bench.

Week 16 gave us the first tie of this year’s season. Ties are like bigfoot. They are absolutely, 100%, definitely real. There is no doubting their existence, but they’re incredibly hard to come by. They happen, but barely ever. But this week, there was a tie between the “D-Train” and the woefully named “McBadbats.” Thanks to a blown game by reliever Steve Chisek late Sunday night, the “D-Train,” lost their razor thin lead and ended up with an identical 240 points. With such a tight race for the top of first in the division, this is a tough loss. It not only drops them to second in the division, but fifth in the playoff rankings. This must fill the “McBadbats” with glee. At this point they’re mathematically eliminated, but they can still play spoiler, and what a better team to do it against. It’s well documented that the “D-Train’s” owner have shares in the media organization that report on this league. It’s also well documented that this organization has a strong editorial bias against the “McBadBats.” So it must have felt really great after a season of being mercilessly berated, taking more abuse from the media than a presidential spouses looks, for the “McBadBats” to give the “D-Train” such a feeling of insecurity right in the weeks preceding the playoffs. It did didn’t it? Did it? Did it “McBadBats?” Huh? Huh?

While last week was a slugfest, Week 16 featured much lower scores and overall more nuanced performances. Only the matchup between the “Benny Bombers” and “A-Rod’s Girlfriends” had two teams score over 300 points this week. The “Bennys” came out on top this week clinching advancing them to 10-4 and clinching them a spot in the playoffs. The “Benny’s” look hot heading in. They’ve outscored the league in the past two weeks, and are on a two game win streak. On the other hand, this loss for the “Girlfriends” inches them further away from the playoffs. They’re not mathematically eliminated yet, but in order to get the final seed, they’ll need to win out. Well not just win out, they’ll also need either the “Credible Hulk,” or “The D-Train” to lose out. There’s nothing more nerve-wracking than not being in control of your own destiny, but when you spend a whole season putzing around .500, sometimes that’s the situation you’re in.

Three other teams clinched the playoff this week. Actually, the “Mikey Bombers” probably clinched a few weeks ago, but whatever. “Green Day’s Mookie” sealed their playoff spot with a win over the “Credible Hulk.” It seems the “Hulk” squandered their Team to Watch Out For tag. This loss ends their three game win streak and puts them as the sixth seed in the playoff picture. With a matchup against the “D-Train” this week, a loss could make their playoff spot a lot less secure. While “Mookie” may have secured a spot in the playoffs, they still haven’t won the division. At this point, they are only one game ahead of the “D-Train.” These two teams have wrestled for first like Cain and Abel over a primitive, biblical stone toy car. Over the next weeks, they play the “Mikey Bombers,” the “Benny Bombers,” and “Meat is Murder.” This is a gauntlet. Facing off against three of the leagues best, plus the advantage “the D-Train’s” tie gives that team, their handle first place is not yet secure.

This week, “the Durag Vince McMahons” finally gave a performance worth mentioning. No, they didn’t win. They most certainly did not win. But they did at least challenge “Meat is Murder,” who grabbed a playoff spot with this victory. Like an off-brand PETA high on meth, “Meat is Murder” is on a tear right now. They’ve won three in a row. They have the tiebreaker for second place over the “Benny Bombers.” And probably most importantly, they have the second most accumulated points in the league. Subtly, they will probably be the team best equipped to challenge to the “Mikey Bombers” come playoff time

Depending on the results of this upcoming week, “Mac’s Smelly Sox,” could find themselves playing spoiler to the “Credible Hulk” in the final week of the season. This of course is contingent on a lot of different moving parts, but it gives the team something to play for even while officially out of the playoffs.

It is very possible that the “Durag Vince McMahons” only win one game this season. It’s very likely. Their next best chance will be in their final matchup against the “McBadBats.”

Team to Watch Out For: The Durag Vince McMahons– The ultimate “will they or won’t they.” They’re like a bad sitcom romance rolled into one body. They have it all- frustration, emotional investment, and edge of your seat sexual tension. Their campaign for their second win is more exhilarating as the playoff race.

Matchups of the Week: The Credible Hulk vs. The D-Train– You know that band Five for Fighting, well if you inversed their band name you would get the summary for this matchup: Fighting for Five. Both teams, try to wrestle for that fifth playoff spot.

The McBadBats vs. A-Rod’s Girlfriends– The McBadbats can end it all for the “Girlfriends” with a win this week.

East:

  1. The Mikey Bombers (12-4) *
  2. Meat is Murder (10-6)*
  3. The Benny Bombers (10-6)*
  4. The Credible Hulk (9-7)
  5. The McBadBats (5-10-1)

West:

  1. Green Day’s Mookie (10-6)*
  2. The D-Train (9-6-1)
  3. A-Rod’s Girlfriends (7-9)
  4. Mac’s Smelly Sox (6-10)
  5. The Durag Vince McMahons (1-15)

*clinched playoff spot

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