The Fort Fantasy Baseball League Week 2 Recap: Holy Week

Leading up to Easter, the final days of lent in the Catholic Church are called “Holy Week.” Beginning with Palm Sunday, the week culminates in Good Friday, a celebration of the passion of Jesus Christ. The week and the lenten season end three days later on  Easter Sunday, the day when Christians celebrate the risen lord. This past week the Catholic Church celebrated Holy Week, and one wonders how this might have affected the only team in the league with deep religious roots, “Tim Tebow is Jesus.”

Although at times, “Jesus’” week seemed to mimic Jesus’s week(on Saturday, the team scored a dismal six points, and rose on Sunday to offer up 41), their Easter surge could not deliver them a victory over “Green Day’s Mookie.” While they had certainly risen on Sunday, their reincarnation was far from the rebirth of the son of God in union with the Holy Trinity.

“Green Day’s Mookie” must be happy, though. On Friday, they racked up almost ninety points in a single day, giving them a comfortable lead into the weekend. This game makes “Mookie” 2-0 on the season, a record their owner must be excited about. As we mentioned last week, they’re out for blood this season. Like a shark named Rambo, they’re still reeling over their second round postseason lost last year. While that flame can drive these guys for most of the season, they better hope that their fire has a few duraflame logs, lest they run out of gasoline.

After their Week One defeat to “The Machado Man,” the “Benny Bombers” showed up like Simon Peter Gruber in early nineties Manhattan. Facing off against “Meat is Murder,” this matchup played out in a manner similar to the best Die Hard movie, Die Hard with a Vengeance; albeit if John McLane didn’t win. The game was packed with some of the best action of this young season. These teams were this week’s top two scorers, which was fun for all the fans, but only one team came out on top. “The Benny Bombers” seemed just a step ahead of “Murder,” leading them on a “simon says” style phone call chase across the Fantasy Baseball equivalent of New York City, from Wall Street, to Yankee’s Stadium, to the NYCPS. Even the Gruber-McLane emotional core of the film seemed present. Division rivals in their first matchup since a close playoff matchup last year, it was the stuff of far superior third entries in a classic film franchise. But unlike John McLane, “Murder” never was able to catch up to the “Bombers” and run them down in Quebec.

“Murder” did play a strong week. Their front office has tried to stress that they “would have beaten any other team this week.” That’s all well and good, but they didn’t play any other team. This type of mentality can be toxic after a while, as players fall into a self pitying tarpit where their focus drifts from winning games, to just feeling victimized. “Murder” is undoubtedly a strong team. They need to make sure they keep their attention on winning, and not just lamenting what could have been. On the other hand, this win was what the “Bombers” needed this week. This is the same team from last year, maybe even better. And after spending their 2016 on the brink of greatness, they’re ready to make a grab at it in 2017.

This might be made a bit easier if  “The Mikey Bombers” continue on their current trajectory. In Week Two, they faced off against “The D-Train,” their 2016 Championship opponent. This game felt more dire for both teams than an early rematch between should have. Both teams lost in Week One, and the head to head matchup meant that one of last year’s division champions was bound to start off 2017 winless. The game was decided on Sunday. Despite being close, the game didn’t provide the thrill you’d expect.

“The D-Train” entered Sunday leading by ten, but the “Bombers” still had a pretty strong advantage with some pitchers going on Sunday. Easter saw a back and forth jostling between the two teams through the day games. The “Bombers” players all finished up early, while the “D-Train” still had three batters appearing in the Sunday Night prime time game. Up one point, the “Train” had it locked up, barring if any of his players scored in the negative. Last year, the “Train” would have pulled the players and taken the win, but not yesterday. Fortunately, he stole some strong late game performances and finished the with a twelve point victory.

This loss hurts for “The Mikey Bombers.” No, we’re not ruling them out and dancing on their grave just yet, but these were the type of games the “Bombers” thrived in last year. In the midst of their win eight game win streak, it seemed each opponent poised to break it was treated to a weekend comeback from the “Bombers.” I’m pretty certain I compared them to the Red Army during World War II multiple times. Maybe they’re letting the kids play while they recover from their championship hangover, who knows. But being in the bottom three in scoring is not a place this team is used to.

This past week, Disney released the trailer for Thor: Ragnarok and treated us to some clips of a cage match between the Norse Macho Man and the Incredible Hulk. This came in the middle of a game between a different Hulk, one that is slightly more credible, and the “Machado Men. “The Men” handed the “Credible Hulk” a loss in Week Two. Both teams showed strong performances and posted days with more than 100 points, but it was the “Men” who came out on top.

For the “Hulk,” this situates them at 1-1. They gave a strong showing, but just couldn’t overcome the “Men.” On the other hand, “The Machado Men” advanced to 2-0 making them one of two teams (along with “Mookie”) to be lossless so far. This is quite the turnaround for this organization. Granted in the past, they’ve shown that the slightest taste of minor success goes to their head immediately, but this year the team’s management seems subdued, almost cautious. They know it’s early in the season and a lot can change by Week 19, but if they keep up this pace, prepare for their owner/manager to become the most insufferable human being on the fucking planet for the entire summer.

Speaking of ill-fitting bravado, “Piscotty 2 Hotty” won their first game this year, after barely hanging on to a lead against “Mac’s Smelly Sox” on Sunday. We set an over/under on total wins for this club at two for 2017, and after this week they’re already halfway there. But the win left the “Hotties” with a strange sense of grandeur. The management took to the media speaking and acting in a manner that can only be described as unhinged. After only one win, their owner began babbling mythical nonsense about “one Luke ruling” them all, and rightful spots being fulfilled. It should be noted: this is their third win as a franchise.

For the “Sox,” this loss takes them from first to worst in the league in terms of scoring. They’re 1-1 now, and, while granting a franchise their third win ever is frustrating, they shouldn’t be too worried. The Fantasy Baseball season has ups and downs. It’s Week Two, and there’s more than half the season to go.

Team to Watch: The Benny Bombers – After a Week One loss, they reminded us all that they don’t fuck around. While they missed out on the championship game last year, they finished one game behind “The Mikey Bombers,” driven by a few win streaks that rivaled those of the champ himself.

Game to Watch: The Mikey Bombers vs. The Machado Men – You had to see this one coming, folks. The reigning champ is 0-2. “The Machado Men” rebranded and risen from the ashes of the “McBadbats,” have started 2017 with a 2-0 record. Even against a winless “Bombers,” this game will help show us if the “Men” are just kidding around.

Standings:

East:

  1. The Machado Men (2-0)
  2. The Benny Bombers (1-1)
  3. Meat is Murder (1-1)
  4. The Credible Hulk (1-1)
  5. The Mikey Bombers (0-2)

West:

  1. Green Day’s Mookie (2-0)
  2. Mac’s Smelly Sox (1-1)
  3. The D-Train (1-1)
  4. Piscotty 2 Hotty (1-1)
  5. Tim Tebow is Jesus (0-2)

Fun Fact of the Week: The last time the franchise formerly known as “The McBadbats,” among other things, and currently known as The Machado Men started 2-0, they went on to become champion. Is this indeed a fact, you ask? Maybe it is. Maybe it’s not. Maybe it’s as alternative as late 90’s/early 2000’s Green Day. Who really knows anyway.

By Alex Sniatkowski

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