Kings of the North
The Bucks began last season looking for there third straight National League North division title and got it after a tough battle with the New Britain Fisher Cats. The season ended for the second straight year in the National League Championship series to the Stars. To that end, the Bucks saw there offense take a small dive in numbers but the pitching staff really pick up and took up some of the slack. Without further ado, let’s introduce you to your Season 9 Milwaukee Bucks:
1- RF Tomas Olivares (29 years old)- Olivares really struggled last putting career low numbers in just about every catergory last season. Olivares scored 86 runs in 140 games, with 33 stolen bases and a .252/.324/.364 line. I would expect Olivares to normal range of a .300 average with around 100 runs scored this season.
2- CF Orber Sierra (26 years old) – Sierra is probably one of the best number two hittes in the league. Sierra should improve on his numbers last season where he hit .289/.367/.501 and fell just just six homeruns from having a 30/30/30 season. Being part of the All-Star wouldn’t be out of the question this season.
3- 2B Sal Moore (28 years old) – With the numbers that Moore has been putting up for the last four season it was only natural that the Bucks offered him a contract extension and making just under 10 million dollars for the second five years. Last year Moore saw his numbers hit hit all time highs, he went .298/.377/.536 and with a league leading 84 stolen bases.
4- LF Danny Harding (26 years old)- Harding is just another young big offensive player for the Bucks and the scary thing is that he’s just now hitting his prime. Harding numbers fell last year but with the numbers he put up during season seven it would have been hard to repeat. Harding hit .260/.342/.630 with another 50 homerun, 30 stolen base season.
5- C Guy Williams (37 years old) – You have to wonder how much longer Williams has got in those 37 year old knees but he just keeps finding a way to put up great offensive numbers year after year. Last year Williams hit .274/.351/.492 and getting his eigth straight year with at least 30 homeruns.
6- 1B Julian Hartley (32 years old) – Hartley bounced back last season after a very disappointing year during season seven. Hartley hit .279/.356/.484 but I could see his career numbers beginning to fall this season.
7- 3B Nicholas Lowe (23 years old) – With the way that the Bucks have been turning out young players for the last couple years I wouldn’t be suprised to see Lowe has a shot at the Rookie of the Year award.
8- SS Heinie Miller (29 years old)- Miller for years has been known for his defense and with some power but low hitting average. All that changed last season when Miller had his best season hitting .276/.353/.433 with career highs in hits, doubles and RBI’s.
The bench will be filled by veterab LF/RF Manny Vanguri (only 2 homeruns during his first season coming of the bench), CF Ted Huffy (main defense player who hit .360 last season) and rookie 2B Vin Welch.
SP1- P.T Ramirez (31 years old) – Ramirez saw his best season last year and has turned into a reliable ace for the team. With the teams offensive it’s easy for Ramirez to just pitch and not worry if he gives up a couple runs a start.
SP2- Raymond Walton (30 years old) – Walton really took a big step last season with only 12 wins and a career high in losses with 11. The team is expecting better numbers from him this season if they plan on repeating as National League North champs again.
SP3- Emmanuel Navarro (34 years old) – The best thing about Navarro is that he seems to get better with age. Navarro really seems to a perfect pitcher if you can keep him under six innings a start and with a good bullpen his win totals should still be high.
SP4- Joaquin Diaz (35 years old) – Diaz comes from St. Louis and will had another veteran arm into the rotation and with this team Diaz could put up career high in wins.
SP5- Vern Buckley (24 years old) – Last year Buckley proved that he could pitch for this team and with the veterans pitching in front of him the Bucks are expecting some bigs things from him in the future. Buckley could see about 10 wins this season but his ERA could be a little high as he’s prone to giving up the long ball.
Closer- Jim Nathan (28 years old) – Nathan was given the closer role last season for the first time in his career and he responded with 31 saves but it wasn’t easy as his 4.27 ERA made the late innings exciting at times.