News

Move Over Joe, Nitto Sets Scoreless Inning Record

Written by - Posted 2013-05-03 22:18 in Blog

In the Summer 2012 awards voting, a rookie right hander who sometimes rocks an almost submarine delivery style did something that shocked most of the wiffleball world…he won the Cy Young Award.

It wasn’t that his numbers didn’t deserve consideration for the award given to the best pitcher in the league, he led in ERA (.31) and OBA (.137) and was fourth in strikeouts (56). It was that he upset the incumbent holder of the award; the four time winner who was the odds on favorite for a fifth Cy, Joe Thaman. Thaman, in addition to winning four Cy Youngs, had also won four MVP’s over the same time span. For his own double dip in the awards, Nitto claimed himself a Rookie of the Year trophy.

Some question the value of the year end awards, citing voter turnout and popularity more than stats as determining factors. After all, Thaman won the World Series that same season, eliminating Nitto’s Gumballers in the DCS. A DCS in which Thaman outpitched Nitto in ERA (0.53/1.06) as well as OBA (.175/.209) and in K’s (40/13), not to mention in the most important “team” category, two game wins to one. (NOTE: Postseason performance doesn’t factor into the awards, they’re voted on before that.)

During the past week the sophomore Nitto did something else to push the veteran out of the way, and this one can’t be attributed to anything other than his performance. He broke a record thought to probably be unbreakable, by throwing 78 consecutive scoreless innings. Thaman, the previous record holder, had set the “unbreakable” mark in the spring of 2011 at 73. The previous high mark before then had been 53, by Tony Ragano.

“The scoreless inning streak is certainly amazing,” Commissioner Gallaway said. “This is a game where we have a home run every 17 at bats. To consider that he has faced 10 times that many batters over this time and not given one up, let alone a run of some other kind, it’s simply remarkable.”

In fact, during the streak, Nitto has only allowed four doubles, and sixteen singles. It’s hard for runs to get scored against you when no one ever reaches scoring position. He’s also blessed with an above average fielder, Don McClintock who keeps a lot of balls in front of him with his speed and range. Through 11 games in Summer 2012, and the first two of this season, McClintock was error free behind Nitto. He did commit two fumbles this past week, a rarity for him, but still only one runner even reached second base in the two games.

Nitto’s mark isn’t without controversy of course. His streak is split over two seasons, with his first 56 innings coming in his rookie year, and 22 carrying over this season. Thaman’s mark was in one season, but streaks carry over. In between those two seasons, Nitto got tagged for eight runs in the postseason, but those games don’t count. This season, he didn’t pitch in games Week 2 against Superman’s Wheelchair (who got to him for those eight postseason) or Scared Hitless, who sometimes can score runs. (Nitto faced Hitless twice last season, giving up three runs in his league debut game, but holding them scoreless early in his streak for the second meeting.)

Don’t let the naysayers get to you though, the four-time Player of Week certainly isn’t going to. When presented with his keychain for winning his fourth award during Week 1 this season, Nitto feigned surprise with a wry smile and said he was sure that Matt Gagnon was going to win.

The question now, is how long can the streak go. Nitto’s Gumballers have two games on the Red field this week against the Canvassers, who are hitting about 60 point below the league average, and Oedipus who by all measures are the worst hitting team in the league. The wind is also supposed to be blowing in, pretty stiff, so a home run might be tough to come up with. Week 5 he draws rookies Porkchop Sandwiches and the light hitting Natty Brohs. It’s not hard to see a possibility that this streak gets to somewhere close to the century mark.

Of course, it’s just as possible that a guest player who’s never had a hit in his life knocks a ball off the foul pole in the first inning to make this next “unbreakable” record capped off, and ready for the next guy to take a run at. That’s why we play the games.

Player of the Week: Week 3 (Sp13)

Written by - Posted 2013-05-03 17:49 in POTW

Dave Lucadamo of Ha’chi Mountaineers won Player of the Week for Week 3.

WEEK 4 PREVIEW: SHORT GRASS (Sp13)

Written by - Posted 2013-05-03 16:05 in News

Week 4 – the official mid-point of the season. It all goes so fast. The Divisions should start flushing themselves out, with much work left to be done in the West and East. While we the Moose Knuckles get a chance to get back on track, Wheelchair and the Barnburners should remain unbeaten again, and Oedipus should remain winless.

Wind expected from the east-northeast, which won’t help much of Blue or Red, but could turn Green, the deepest and biggest field of them all into a launching pad. 0% chance of precipitation, so we should be 4 for 4 on perfectly dry Sundays. With any luck, the National Park Service has also mowed the jungle that existed on the Red field, if not, we might have to take matters into our own hands.

Games of note this week feature Scared Hitless, who’ve climbed back into the picture after a slow start, and getting dropped from the National Wiffleball Rankings for the first time in years. They take on both Suns Out Guns Out, who they are 3-0 against all time, and the Nasty Boys, who they are 0-1 against all time, in games that might make the A-bomb go off.

Don’t forget to vote for the Web Gems. We have our first “double” nominee in the same week. Which one of him will he vote for?

Web Gems: Week 3 (Sp13)

Written by - Posted 2013-05-03 11:48 in Web Gems

VOTING CLOSES AT 10 AM ON SUNDAY

Another week of WebGems! The wind was a lot stronger so we had a lot more diving plays and home runs robbed at the fence.

Alex Cohn Peg at the Page – Alex Cohn of the Besley Bashers has been helping his team in many ways (starting pitcher and batting .500) — oh and he plays defense. Here against the Ha’Chi Mountaineers Alex picks up the pieces from a relay throw and hits Andrew Johnson (who was running to his bench already?) in the leg.

Chris Smyth Robs Greg Hudson of a Home Run (Again) – Chris Smyth was running around everywhere for the Master Batters against the DC Twits. He saved 3 homeruns (1 the wrong call, but wasn’t disputed at the time) — one of those homeruns he saved was robbing Greg Hudson of a homerun and keeping the game in extras.

Alex Cohn Makes One Handed Diving Catch – Two nominations in one week? Yeah, Alex Cohn is back again. If it wasn’t for the catcher blocking the camera, this could well have been the best WebGem of the year. However, you have to let your brain fill in the pieces. Alex lays out and one hands the ball in mid air. *Take note catchers, move out of the way.

Chris Pike Pegs a Moose – It’s what Chris Pike had planned all along. Let Andrew Zarobila run as long as he can, and then peg him just as he’s about to have an inside the park home run. All part of the plan or pure luck? You decide.

Matt Dreyfus Pulls One Back – Another Scared Hitless nominee, this time Matt Dreyfus gets a hand to a ball going over. Basically tipping it back to himself and still managing to come down with it — and not letting it bounce over the fence instead.

Get to voting. Remember, the winners of each week will go up against each other at the end of the season for a best of!


Web Gems: Week 3 (Sp13)
Alex Cohn Peg at the Page
7%
Chris Smyth Robs Greg Hudson of a Home Run (Again)
34%
Alex Cohn Makes One Handed Diving Catch
34%
Chris Pike Pegs a Moose
23%
Matt Dreyfus Pulls One Back
3%
total_votes: 71

About Web Gems: Nominations can be made by anyone, manager, player, fan, rival wiffleball league, and are due by NOON each Thursday. The league office will review all nominees and submit up to five of them to be voted on by the public. Voting will be open from Friday until 10 AM on Sunday. Submissions can be made by sending an email to webgem@potomacwiffleball.org, and MUST include the youtube link to the game, as well as the time (minutes and seconds) where the play occurs.

Player of the Week: Week 3 Nominees (Sp13)

Written by - Posted 2013-05-01 11:19 in POTW

Well in comparison to last week, Week 3 was an offensive explosion. Had some tough decisions to make in regards to player of the week. Even though most of these stats happened on the blue field, where the wind carried a bloop single 200 feet.

  • Dave Lucadamo from Ha’chi Mountaineers is up for his 2nd career nomination. In week 3, he had 5 home runs and 7 RBIs – and had an OPS of 3.091 (!). He’s leading Ha’chi in just about every offensive category (and has only played 2 of the 3 weeks), helping them stay atop the competitive West.
  • Joe Thaman – ol’ faithful it seems every year for Superman’s Wheelchair, tallying his 18th POTW nomination! While he didn’t have his two best pitching performances, he made up for it with his bat, breaking out of his “slump.” With 3 home runs, 6 RBIs, and 2.375 OPS, Thaman helped keep Superman undefeated.
  • Alex Cohn of the rookies Besley Bashers gets his first nomination. In 3 games, Cohn was on fire against Nasty Boys, Ha’Chi, and Superman’s Wheelchair – batting .692. Not only that, he hit 4 home runs and had 5 RBIs.
  • I’m not sure how Superman’s Wheelchair were able to grab free agent Todd Ogg so quietly, but what a pickup. With an OPS of 2.375, Ogg hit just about everything in Week 3. Ogg knocked in 6 RBIs with 3 home runs, which was key for Superman this past week in their offensive battles.
  • This is Jack Rems first year with PWL, and thus his first POTW nomination – proving to be a key addition for the Natty Brohs. In Week 3 he batted .545, 4 home runs, and 6 RBIs. It’s obvious he’s the best player on Natty Brohs, we’ll see how he can help them finish the year strong.

Get your votes in now! Who will take home the keychain this week?!

VOTING CLOSES AT NOON FRIDAY

The public vote counts for 50% of the overall total, and the league managers vote counts for the remaining 50%.


POTW: Week 3 (Sp13)
Dave Lucadamo
58%
Joe Thaman
5%
Alex Cohn
18%
Todd Ogg
9%
Jack Rems
9%
total_votes: 55

About POTW: Each week five nominess will be announced for Player of the Week. The league, fans, and press will vote for the winner. Winners receive a very limited edition wiffleball keychain. For a history of the award, check out Player of the Week History.

Week 3: Wind Assisted (Sp13)

Written by - Posted 2013-04-30 11:32 in News

Lots can be said about Week 3, but mostly it was totally different than the first two weeks of play. The wind picked up a little bit and most importantly, finally changed directions.

There were 18 home runs hit by the league in total during Weeks 1 and 2. There were 78 hit during Week 3. We don’t want to say that guys (and 2 girls) in this league can’t hit a ball 85 feet without a 15 MPH wind and plane landing gusts at their backs, but the stats would support that statement.

It’s been so bad out there that a guy from the Ha’chi Mountaineers, named Dave Lucadamo, is leading the league in Home Runs with 5. All hit in two games Week 3, all on the Blue field.

[This space would normally be something snarky about how quietly and quickly 7th Linnings fall from the standings has been, but to keep it extra quiet, we’re not saying anything.]

We also experienced a weird phenomenon where some type of moisture particles appeared in the air and sometimes touched players and equipment. Fortunately, it didn’t last long, and even more fortunately it never rained, since we can’t play in the rain.

We also had our first forfeit. It was only one game, but one game is one too many. So, boo to Oedipus and the Mama’s Boys for their failure to field a team. They did finally bust out a team logo, and we guess every league needs a team that star players can pad their stats against, but we’d like to not have forfeits. Please take it out on them by running up the score future weeks.

61 games down, 79 to go.

Player of the Week: Week 2 (Sp13)

Written by - Posted 2013-04-26 17:43 in POTW

Zach Carter of Master Batters won Player of the Week for Week 2.

Week 3 Preview: Hit the Ball (Sp13)

Written by - Posted 2013-04-26 00:13 in News

Week 3 will put us just short of the halfway point of the season. New teams should start figuring things out, standings will start to matter, and batters might even figure out what to do with the yellow stick in their hands and the white ball with holes in it.

It’s predicted to be warmer this week, in the high 60’s, but cloudy with a small chance of rain. It also appears we might get some wind blowing out for a change so the Barnburners might be able to finally hit a home run.

The games to watch all come early this week, and include a re-match of last week’s 11 inning grudge match between Moose Knuckles and Suns Out Guns Out which featured two game defining plays at home plate. The Master Batters will also try to remain one of the three unbeaten teams in two tough divisional games.

Don’t forget to participate in the PWL’s version of democracy. Vote for Player of the Week by NOON Friday and for last week’s Web Gem by 10 AM on Sunday.

Web Gems: Week 2 (Sp13)

Written by - Posted 2013-04-25 18:06 in Web Gems

VOTING CLOSES AT 10 AM SUNDAY

1) Crawford Starts the Game with Unassisted Double Play – In an “epic” extra inning game where every hit was key, Stephen Crawford helped himself out by picking up a ground ball and tagging first for the unassisted double play to start the game. Little did he know it’d go 14 innings.

2) Sam Johnson Returns the Favor – It’s only appropriate to have this one after Crawford’s. Doubled up by Crawford, Sam Johnson responded with his own defensive gem to stop a rally by the Twits.

3) Gagnon Gets Greedy…and Gets Pegged – A trademark of the Moose Knuckles has been aggressive base running, this time it cost Gagnon an out as Brett Shegogue picks it up and pegs. Pegged at second only to take his frustration out on a water bottle.

4) Kerby with Unassisted Double Play – The Janitors have been playing decent ball lately, and it certainly helps when your pitcher can get unassisted double plays for you. Kerby Valladares gets the lead and just barely pegs the runner in time for the second out, it’s one way to get some momentum.

5) Gagnon Gunned at Home – Dubbed one of the best throws in PWL history (debatable), Gagnon is again tagged out, this time trying to tag on a routine pop fly (aggressive baserunning). In a bang bang play, Gagnon is gunned at home by great team work, started by a spectacular throw by Michael Burns. That makes three Web Gems against Gagnon in just two weeks.


Web Gems: Week 2 (Sp13)
Crawford Starts the Game with Unassisted Double Play
0%
Sam Johnson Returns the Favor
7%
Gagnon Gets Greedy...and Gets Pegged
18%
Kirby with Unassisted Double Play
11%
Gagnon Gunned at Home
64%
total_votes: 28

About Web Gems: Nominations can be made by anyone, manager, player, fan, rival wiffleball league, and are due by NOON each Thursday. The league office will review all nominees and submit up to five of them to be voted on by the public. Voting will be open from Friday until 10 AM on Sunday. Submissions can be made by sending an email to webgem@potomacwiffleball.org, and MUST include the youtube link to the game, as well as the time (minutes and seconds) where the play occurs.

Player of the Week: Week 2 Nominees (Sp13)

Written by - Posted 2013-04-23 22:54 in POTW

We’re at week two, and as we said before, power numbers are way down. Whether attributed to the lack of wind blowing out or just the pitchers are getting better? Who knows. I do know one thing — it’s Player of the Week Nomination time.

Only one automatic nomination this week as opposed to last week with all 5 — seems like it’s a battle of the batting averages now! Let’s hope the power returns next week.

  • Alex Brown of the Canvassers helped his team on their triple header by batting .455 with an OPS of 1.273. Not to mention he had a homerun, 2 RBIs, and 3 runs.
  • Nicolas West has made 7th Linning Stretch into a team not to be taken lightly at 3-1. Not only has West been pitching well for 7th Linning, but he batted .625 with an OPS of 1.75 — with 2 double and 1 triple.
  • Don McClintock has stepped up big for the Gumballers in the pitching role. Starting both games this past week and only giving up 3 total runs in 2 games. Not only that, he went a perfect 5-5 against Scared Hitless. Batting .600 for the week with an OPS of 1.200, McClintock is becoming a key player for the Gumballers.
  • Zach Carter of the Master Batters wasn’t here for the first week — but I know they’ll want him there for week 3 after his Spring 2013 debut. Zach helped keep the Master Batters undefeated (4-0) by batting .625 with an OPS of 1.625 — hitting 3 doubles.
  • Trevor Fedie is our only automatic bid of the week, hitting for the cycle for the new team Porkchop Sandwiches (1-4). Trevor only batted .250, but his cycle was enough to beat the Canvassers and give the Porkchop Sandwiches their first win of the year!

VOTING CLOSES AT NOON FRIDAY

The public vote counts for 50% of the overall total, and the league managers vote counts for the remaining 50%.


POTW: Week 2 (Sp13)
Alex Brown
15%
Zach Carter
39%
Trevor Fedie
4%
Don McClintock
20%
Nicholas West
22%
total_votes: 54

About POTW: Each week five nominess will be announced for Player of the Week. The league, fans, and press will vote for the winner. Winners receive a very limited edition wiffleball keychain. For a history of the award, check out Player of the Week History.