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OOTP 13 – The Road To Release, Part 2

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OOTP 13 – The Road To Release, Part 2

Posted on 04 April 2012 by Out Of The Park

OOTP 13 – The Road To Release, Part 2:
Real-Time Simulation: Your New OOTP Addiction!

Remember September 28th, 2011?

Watching the day unfold, with all eyes on Atlanta, Baltimore, and Tampa, was an experience never to be forgotten.

In Out of the Park Baseball, fans have the ability to enjoy such excitement year-round. However, unless you watched one game play out, you were limited to simming out the day. It could provide a singular “wow” moment, but…well, the moment was fleeting.

Not so in OOTP13.

Welcome to Real-Time Simulation…aka, Your New Addiction!

(NOTE: The game does not ship with real logos! Screenshots containing logos were taken by using a beta version of the game and are for demonstration purposes only.)

What is Real-Time Simulation?

With Real-Time Simulation (RTS), you can watch the events of each day unfold in actual real-time. Or, if you wish, you can increase the speed of the day by factors of 2, 5, 10, 20, 60, 120, or 300. During RTS, you have the entire universe at your fingertips. You can look through any part of your league or association while the day plays out. But don”t worry about missing events as they happen: the RTS Live Update Bar, positioned atop the screen, gives you all scoring updates, as well as news of special events in the making. You also have the option of speeding up or slowing down your day, as well as pausing the action.

In this particular universe, fans woke up on October 3rd to a plethora of races. While Boston, Cleveland, and the Angels had punched their postseason tickets by winning their divisions, nothing else was settled. Here is how the standings looked heading into the final day of the season:

The key match-ups worth watching, as they involved teams with playoff aspirations, were:
7:10: Philadelphia (Worley, 7-14, 3.82) @ Washington (Gonzalez, 15-10, 3.98)
7:10: Boston (Beckett, 18-8, 3.58) @ NY Yankees (Sabathia, 12-14, 4.39)
7:35: Atlanta (Hanson, 12-7, 3.24) @ Pittsburgh (Morton, 9-16, 4.69)
8:10: Baltimore (Matusz, 6-5, 3.39) @ Tampa (Cobb, 8-13, 5.12)
8:35: Colorado (de la Rosa, 14.8, 3.67) @ Arizona (Kennedy, 15-10, 4.32)
10:10: LA Angels (Bell, 13.9, 3.73) @ Seattle (Beaven, 4.4, 2.79)
10:10: San Francisco (Bumgarner, 11-11, 2.72) @ LA Dodgers (Capuano, 13-12, 3.49)

(All times EST)

The big game, however, was found in St. Louis, where a de-facto one-game playoff for the NL Central crown was held. Mat Latos, who had lived up to the hype as a front-line starter, took his 21-7 record and 2.90 ERA against the Cardinals” ace Adam Wainwright (15-12, 2.82).

That”s a lot of channel flipping. Thankfully, with RTS, you”re only as far away as the click of your mouse.

How do I use RTS?

October 3, 2012 got off to a rousing start:

2:30pm: Justin Ruggiano hits a two-run home-run in Chicago, putting Houston up 2-0. Earlier in the day, Justin Morneau”s two homers, including one in the tenth, led the Twins to a 6-5 win over the Blue Jays.

In the screenshot below, you can see RTS Central. Note the Fenway-based scoreboards that show the entire linescore, as well as the most recent action of the game. You can also see the activity on the bases. Notice a rally taking shape? You can jump right into a game via the “Watch Game” button. You can also check out the box score to see how your fantasy players are doing.

You can look at the history of the day”s scoring updates, as well as a fluid list of the day”s top performers, at the bottom of the screen. The player names among the Top Performers are clickable and will take you to the player cards.

The day goes on and Houston holds off Chicago, 7-3, while Oakland cruises by Texas, 6-1. Now the fun begins.

The Joy of RTS: October 3, 2012

7:17: Mark Teixiera”s single scores Derek Jeter. With runners on the corners and one out, Robby Cano is the batter. With Beckett on the mound, this is a fantastic chance to see some early drama. Thankfully, with RTS, it”s easy to move in and out of games seamlessly. Click the “Watch Now” button to get into the game; after you arrive, you have an added “Leave Game” option that brings you back to the RTS screen.

7:22: The Phillies begin to mount a rally, putting two on with one out. After Carlos Ruiz pops up, Ty Wigginton”s single scores Chase Utley. Scoring updates can be found in green on the linescore.

7:36: Nick Swisher homers, giving the Yankees a 3-0 lead. Want to check up on the latest news, injuries, leaders, or just about anything related to your league while the day is playing out? You”re in luck! During RTS, you have the entire universe at your fingertips. You can look through any part of your league or association while the day plays out.

But don”t worry about missing events as they happen: the RTS Live Update Bar, positioned atop the screen, gives you all scoring updates, as well as news of special events in the making. You also have the option of speeding up or slowing down your day, as well as pausing the action. During my time spent looking at the standings, the Red Sox rallied to tie the score. Getting back to RTS is easy: just click the League pull-down menu, then click on “LIVE SCORES” under Special Event. That brings you right back to the screen. You can also click on the RTS Update bar atop the screen, which will bring you right back to RTS Central.

7:54: Matt Hague doubles home two, giving the Nats a 3-1 lead over the Phillies. Meanwhile, Pittsburgh scores in the bottom of the first as Neil Walker singles home Andrew McCutchen. Braves fans are hoping lightning doesn”t strike twice.

8:05: The Yanks score two on ground-outs in the third to go up 5-3, while Washington adds another on Danny Espinosa”s single, giving the Nats a 4-1 lead. Miami has a 5-0 lead on the Mets, on Aaron Rowand”s three-run homer, while Cleveland is up 2-1 on the ChiSox.

8:17: Carl Crawford singles home Ryan Sweeney, then scores on Darnell McDonald”s two-run single, giving Boston a 6-5 lead in the fourth in the Bronx. Also, the Game Of The Day begins in St. Louis with a silencer: Joey Votto hits a three-run jack off Adam Wainwright, giving the visiting Reds a quick jump on the Cards.

8:27: The Phils load the bases on Gio Gonzalez in the fifth, only to see Ryan Zimmerman make a brilliant stab of John Mayberry”s liner, ending the threat. 4-1 Nats as the game is now official.

8:36: Kendrys Morales, acquired by the Angels earlier in the year, singles home a run, giving the Indians a 3-1 lead. Meanwhile, Jhonny Peralta hits a two-run jack, giving Detroit a 2-1 lead over the Royals in the second.

8:39: In Arizona, Carlos Gonzalez doubles home Todd Helton and Marco Scutaro, giving the Rockies a 2-0 lead in the top of the first. The Rockies need a win, plus a Giants loss, to force a one-game playoff for the NL West title.

8:41: B.J. Upton”s ground-out scores Matt Joyce, giving the Rays an early 1-0 lead against the Orioles. The Rays are in the same spot as Colorado: they need a win, plus a loss by the Yankees, to force at least a one-game playoff for the Wild Card. So far, so good.

8:42: Michael Cuddyer hits a solo shot. 3-0 Rockies.

8:50: A-Rod scores Teixeira on a single. Tie game at Yankee Stadium after five.

8:54: Atlanta plates two in the fourth, the key being Drew Sutton”s triple, giving them a 2-1 lead in Pittsburgh. Sutton, used semi-frequently in a few cups of coffee to the show, has come through in a key spot in the game. You can see his 2012 stats in the screenshot below. A careful observer would also notice that Adam Wainwright”s single has gotten St. Louis on the board in the second. The Reds still lead 3-1, but the Cardinals are not going quietly into the night…not with a title on the line.

8:59: Ben Francisco hits a sac fly, scoring Miggy Cabrera and giving the Tigers a 4-1 lead over the Royals.

9:02: The Phils are at it again, putting two on with one out in the seventh against Gonzalez. The lefty strikes out Matt Diaz, then gets Dom Brown to ground out to first. Threat over…the Nats still lead 4-1. They are getting closer to paying back the Phillies for their fans invading their park over the years.

9:07: Helton blasts a two-run bomb, giving the Rockies a 5-0 lead in the second. The underachieving D”Backs seem to be rolling over.

9:18: Miggy Cabrera is 3-for-3 with a homer and 3 RBI. His two-run job gives the Tigers a 7-1 lead over the Royals.

9:12: Pedroia continues to be Captain Clutch. His third hit of the game nets RBIs three and four. Kelly Shoppach and Carl Crawford cross the plate, giving the Red Sox an 8-6 lead in the sixth.

9:28: The Red Sox have loaded the bases with one out. McDonald is at the plate against Boone Logan. This deserves a look-in, so we simply enter the game with a click of a button.

The crafty lefty got the K, only to face Adrian Gonzalez. Fortunately for Yankee fans, Gonzalez ripped it hard…but right at Cano. They go to the stretch at Yankee Stadium…Red Sox 8, Yanks 6.

9:35: And just like that, the Yanks have stormed back to the lead, behind A-Rod”s 29th home run of the year. The three-run jack gives him four RBI for the night, 104 for the year, and hands the Yanks a 9-8 lead. The Zoo is going crazy.

9:36: Daniel Murphy hits a homer. It”s too late to help the Mets, who fall 5-1 to Miami.

9:37: Matt ejphelps Holliday”s two-run homer ties things up in St. Louis.

9:38: The Nats add a run on Rogert Bernadina”s single, giving them a 5-1 edge over the Phils. Meanwhile, the Braves tack on a run, making it 3-1. Fans are closer to a 163rd game to decide the NL East.

9:46: Diaz scores Wigginton on a sac fly. It”s likely too little, too late for the Phils, who are about to become huge Pirate fans. Meanwhile, Justin Masterson was masterful, coming within one out of a three-hitter to get his 16th win as Cleveland wins 5-1 over the White Sox. Alex Cobb of Tampa is trying to grab the top performance of the day; his six innings of three-hit ball have him third on the list, behind Masterson and Anibal Sanchez (7 IP, 3 H, 0 R 6 K, 2 BB).

9:50: Sean Rodriguez” solo homer gives the Rays a 4-0 lead in the sixth.

9:53: The Phils lose in Washington. Now the scoreboard watching begins for the Phils.

9:55: They”re getting nervous in Tampa…a Yanks win ends any drama in the AL. Boston is running out of chances, ending the eighth on Cody Ross” double-play. Shawn Marcum is tossing a three-hitter in Milwaukee, handcuffing the Padres so far.

9:59: Chris Heisley hits a solo shot, putting the Reds back out in front of the Cardinals, 4-3. They continue to threaten with two on and one out. After loading the bases, they pull ace Mat Latos for pinch-hitter Todd Frazier. He promptly grounds into a double play, ending the threat and costing Dusty Baker his ace.

10:05: They go to the ninth in the Bronx…Yanks lead, 9-8. It”s Sweeney-Aviles-Shoppach for the Sox against the timeless Mariano Rivera. He promptly strikes out Sweeney.

10:10: Jarrod Saltalamacchia grounds out. Boston is down to their final out. David Ortiz grabs a bat.

10:10 (cont”d): Rivera throws a fastball, belt-high, on the inside part of the plate. It”s a mistake that he never makes. And Ortiz hits it a long, long way…but not long enough. Granderson catches it at the wall in right-center. The Yanks celebrate around their closer, who notched his 37th save. New York wins the AL Wild Card. The fact that it”s a come-from-behind win over the hated Red Sox…well, that”s a bit sweeter.

10:11: In Tampa, things just got very quiet.

10:12: David Ross walks for a RBI in Pittsburgh. The Braves are threatening to break it open, with the bases loaded and one out, owning a 4-1 lead.

10:13: Jason Grilli worked out of the jam, getting Michael Bourn to pop up before striking out Martin Prado. Still 4-1, Braves.

10:15: First pitch is thrown in Seattle. Thanks to the Yanks, it is a suddenly meaningless game.

10:21: The Giants and Dodgers are scoreless after one. The Giants need to win to avoid what the Phillies are hoping to escape: a one-game playoff. Unfortunately for their fans, the Rockies hold a 5-1 lead in Arizona.

10:25: The Braves are threatening again with two in scoring position and nobody out. Grilli appears to like pitching in tough spots…he just struck out Brian McCann.

10:28: Chipper Jones is walked intentionally, bringing up Sutton (2-3, 2B, 3B, RBI, BB). Sutton walks, giving the Braves a 5-1 lead.

10:33: They”ve played seven in St. Louis. 4-3, Cincinnati leads.

10:35: Milwaukee 2, San Diego 1 (F): Marcum is fantastic, tossing eight innings of four-hit ball, striking out eight.

10:41: Jake Fox lines out to open Accreditation StandardsFactors that raised Defensive what is defensive driving School’s rating include:Length of time business has been operating. the bottom of the ninth in Pittsburgh.

10:42: There are no theatrics in Tampa, online casinos australia but Alex Cobb finishes off a five-hit shutout of the Orioles. He struck out 13 against no walks, taking his place atop the top performers list.

10:45: Garrett Jones doubles, scoring Walker. 5-2, Braves. The Pirates have two on with two out and a pinch-hitter coming up for Chris Resop. Jonny Venters is on the mound for the Braves.

10:47: Miggy Montero walks home with a run for the Diamondbacks. 5-2, Rockies, in the seventh.

10:48: The pinch-hitter for the Pirates is Pedro Alvarez. It doesn”t matter. He strikes out to end the game and keep the Braves” season going for at least another game. Braves win, 5-2, and force a one-game playoff in Philadelphia tomorrow.

10:49: The nation”s eyes now shift to St. Louis, where the Cardinals cannot get any offense going. They trail the Reds 4-3 as they go to the ninth. Remember, the winner of this game wins the NL Central.

10:55: Drew Stubbs triples to open up the casino online top of the ninth for the Reds.

10:56; Brandon Phillips singles Stubbs home, giving the Reds a 5-3 lead. Fernando Salas immediately throws a wild pitch, then walks Votto.

11:00: Carlos Gonzalez homers for the Rockies, giving them a 6-4 lead over the D”Backs, who woke up in the seventh.

11:04: Another Salas wild pitch scores Phillips. He has totally unraveled here in the ninth, and it may cost the Cardinals. 6-3, Reds, as they head to the bottom of the ninth.

11:06: AJ Ellis homers for the Dodgers, giving them a 2-0 lead in the third over San Francisco. Will the Rockies begin to celebrate too early?

11:10: Rafael Furcal grounds out to open the bottom of the ninth in St. Louis.

11:12: Tyler Greene hits a pinch-hit bomb, cutting the Cards” deficit to 6-4. Sean Marshall is trying to finish things off for the Reds.

11:13: Chris Young homers for the D”Backs. 6-5 Rockies in the bottom of the eighth. It needs to be asked again…are they celebrating too early?

11:15: Yadier Molina lines out. Runner on first with two outs for Matt Holliday.

11:16: Holliday flies out to right, ending the game and the Cardinals” season. The Reds win the game, 6-4, as well as the NL Central. Latos picks up the win to go to 22-7 on the year, perhaps taking the Cy Young Award in the process.

11:17: Cole Gillespie”s triple scores Ryan Roberts, tying the game 6-6 in Arizona. The Rockies celebrated too early.

Special Updates During RTS

11:19: They”ve played four-and-a-half in Los Angeles and Chris Capuano has thrown five no-hit innings. The game will let you know of special events going on, such as four hits, three home runs, or, in this case, a no-hitter being tossed. You can find these among the scoring updates.

11:20: It may be a meaningless game now, but don”t tell that to the Seattle faithful. A packed house of over 43,000 are there to cheer on the M”s. So far, their team leads 1-0 over the Angels, who clinched the AL West title two days before in Seattle. A little under an hour ago, they found out they were eliminated from the playoffs altogether. Rough few days for the M”s and their fans, but they aren”t showing it.

11:22: Gerardo Parra singles home Gillespie. Suddenly, things get very tense in the Colorado dugout. D”Backs lead 7-6 in the bottom of the eighth. This was a 5-1 game at the seventh inning stretch.

11:25: They go to the ninth after Montero strikes out looking. 7-6, Arizona. Dexer Fowler, Helton, and Scutaro will bat for the Rockies in the top of the ninth against JJ Putz.

11:28: Fowler doubles on a 1-2 count to open the ninth.

11:29: Helton singles home Fowler. 7-7 game.

11:31: Eric Young Jr., in to pinch-run for Helton, steals second, and moves to third on Scutaro”s ground out. Gonzalez is walked intentionally for Troy Tulowitzki. That”s like bypassing Mike Tyson to fight George Foreman.

11:33: Putz walks Tulo, loading the bases for Jamie Hoffmann (.235-15-36), who entered as a defensive replacement for Cuddyer earlier in the game. Hoffmann has not had as big an at-bat in his professional career.

11:36: Putz works him to 0-2. Hoffman gets him to a full count before striking out swinging.

11:38: Tyler Colvin is the pinch-hitter. He promptly grounds out to end the threat. But the Rockies salvaged their season…for now.

11:40: Capuano: Six no-hit innings. The M”s still lead 1-0, on the strength of one hit, against the Angels after six innings.

11:43: James Darnell”s two-run homer puts the Dodgers up 4-0. A triple and a wild pitch later and it”s 5-0 Dodgers.

11:45: Aaron Hill walks with two outs, bringing up Chris Young. Young, who has homered already, hits a bomb to straight-away center…only to see the ballpark swallow it up. They”ll play free baseball in Arizona.

11:50: AJ Ellis strikes out, ending the sixth in LA. 5-0 Dodgers. Capuano heads back out to the mound.

11:52: Putz goes back out for another inning and is greeted by a Jonathan Herrerra single. Fowler to the plate.

11:54: Fowler triples home Herrera, putting the Rockies up 8-7.

11:55: Freddy Sanchez singles off Capuano, ending 6 1/3 no-hit innings for the Dodger starter. Meanwhile, Jordan Pacheco is hit by a pitch against new pitcher Bryan Shaw. Runners are on the corners with one out for Scutaro.

12:00: As the clock strikes midnight, Scutaro walks to load the bases for Gonzalez. Seattle still leads 1-0 (still with only one hit), while the Dodgers lead 5-0 against the Giants.

12:03: Gonazlez doubles home two runs, giving the Rockies a 10-7 lead. He also sets a regular season record for doubles in a game with his third. He is 4-for-5, 3 2B, HR, BB, 5 RBI on the day. Not bad when your season is on the line.

12:05: Hoffmann grounds out, scoring Scutaro. 11-7, Rockies, as they go to the bottom of the 10th.

11:12: The D”Backs finally lay down. Rockies 11, Arizona 7. If the score holds at Chavez Ravine, there will be another one-game playoff, this one for the NL West title.

12: 16: The Dodgers-Giants game goes to the eighth, LA up 6-0. Seattle still leads 1-0 as Blake Beaven is two outs away from his first-ever complete game shutout.

12:20: Mike Trout, who singled, has moved up to third base on a steal. He is the tying run for the Angels with two outs and Bobby Abreu at the plate. Brandon League has come in to shut things down. The question is…can he?

12:24: Nope. Abreu smacks a two-run homer off League. The Angels finally break through: Abreu”s round-tripper was the team”s tenth hit of the night. Angels lead 2-1 as they go to the bottom of the ninth.

12:35: With two outs in the bottom of the ninth, John Jaso takes Jordan Walden deep, tying the game. It his Walden”s fourth blown save and Jaso”s first home run of the season. In his defense, he spent most of the year in AAA Tacoma while Jesus Montero got the at-bats in Seattle.

12:36: And there will be another one-game playoff. Capuano pitches eight innings of one-hit ball before letting the bullpen finish a 6-0 victory over the Giants. The one-game playoff will be in Colorado tomorrow night.

1:31: Alex Liddi”s double scores Michael Saunders, sending Mariner fans home happy. Seattle wins 3-2 in 12.

The Wrap-Up (AKA “I Need A Cigarette”)

With Real-Time Simulation, you don”t have to let your world zoom by. You can stop to smell the roses and watch the action unfold before your very eyes. On one day, there were several games with severe playoff implications, along with comebacks, no-hit bids, the kind of clutch hitting you would want from your MVP candidates, and the types of moments that make us all baseball fans.

And you get to enjoy it all throughout the year.

OOTP 13 puts a host of new tools, a redesigned and improved user interface and countless functional improvements all under your control so you can mold and shape your mega-million-dollar major league franchise or small market independent start-up to its maximum potential. The game is truly yours for the taking, so come play it your way!

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FIP’d Off – Philly Edition

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FIP’d Off – Philly Edition

Posted on 06 February 2012 by Dennis Lawson

4 Aces

The time has come to peer deeply into the Magic 8 Ball to try and project each team’s fortunes as a function of starting rotations. The Phillies earned the honor of going first by virtue of their 141-win season (or maybe it was 102).  In order to scientifically derive these projections, I have created an algorithm that uses FIP, xFIP, BABip, ERA+, and shoe size to generate non-weighted estimates.  (NOTE: This sounds much better than suggesting that the projections are just wild guesses.)

The Phillies represent a particularly interesting case, because there exists a great deal of curiosity regarding just how far the team’s pitching can carry them this year.  If you begin analyzing the team’s 2011 season by looking at FIP and xFIP for the pitchers who were responsible for the vast majority of the team’s starts in 2011, you will quickly understand how the team reach the 102 win mark.

In some years, the Cy Young award winner has had a FIP higher than the 3.05 posted by Hamels, and that was only good for 3rd best among the starters.

Projections

  • Roy Halladay - Bill James- 2.96 FIP, RotoChamp – 2.57 FIP, Fans – 2.77 FIP, Me – 3.00 FIP (18 wins) => Halladay kept his HR-to-flyball rate at a ridiculously low 5.1% in 2011.  That number represents about half of his career average of 9.8%, and it just seems unlikely that he’ll be able to maintain anything close to that 5.1% rate again in 2012.  Even if he does manage a low BABip (around .300), it would not take a lot of balls leaving play in the “fair” direction to push that FIP up to normal human levels.  Still, a 3.00 FIP is nothing to cry about.
  • Cliff Lee - Bill James – 2.99, RotoChamp – 2.72, Fans – 2.85, Me – 3.05  FIP (15 wins) =>  Maybe a 3.05 FIP is being to “bearish” on Lee, but he could be due for a slightly down year as more NL teams adjust to his pitching style.  That does not mean that he will turn into Dennys Reyes overnight, but it probably does mean a few more scoring opportunities for his opponents.
  • Cole Hamels - Bill James – 3.50 FIP, RotoChamp – 3.31 FIP, Fans – 3.43 FIP, Me – 3.40 FIP (15 wins) => Bullish on Hamels?  Yep.  The reason is not that Hamels has suddenly become an even better pitcher.  Actually, maybe that is the reason.  In 2011 Hamels was better than ever at keeping the ball in the park, and he was significantly better than normal at stranding runners.  Perhaps he just got away with playing with fire too often, but perhaps he just learned to execute in tight situations.  I’m going with the latter and the belief that Hamels can improve on an already solid game.
  • Vance Worley - Bill James – 3.86 FIP, RotoChamp – 3.34 FIP, Fans – 3.73 FIP, Me 3.91 FIP (13 wins) =>  If he is strong enough to pick up essentially where he left off in 2011, the Phillies have one of the best #4 pitchers in the game.  That is either high praise or an indictment of the talent level in the National League starting rotations.  Maybe it is a little of both.
  • Kyle Kendrick - Bill James – 4.60 FIP, RotoChamp – 4.81 FIP, Fans – 4.54 FIP, Me – 4.75 FIP (8 wins) => Just imagine being the 5th man in this rotation.  You almost have to throw a no-hitter to even have a shot at “Employee of the Week”.  That is plain rough.

It would be an obvious oversimplification to suggest that there is a relationship between FIP and win totals.  However, the questions surrounding Ryan Howard‘s health alone are enough to warrant some concerns about the margin of error the team has going into 2012.  There then exists a reasonable expectation that the team will not challenge the franchise win record it set in 2011.  That is bad news for a team that is starting to see its window of opportunity close as this version of “4 Aces” append more years to their baseball card statistics.

SOURCE:  FIP, xFIP, and shoe size information provided courtesy of Fangraphs.com.

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