The Three Most Important Remaining Games in Each Division 

Two weeks into the 2016 season and divisions are starting to take shape.  Let’s take a look at the three games in each group that will have the biggest direct effect on seeding for Rank Play.

Wilt Chamberlain 

Red Legs (2-0) vs. Das Boot (1-1)

  • Week 3 at 7:00

In a division ruled by Happy Shirt the winner of this game is probably in line for the #2 seed.  Red Legs are undefeated, but haven’t lived up to some of the lofty pre-season expectations placed upon them by some (see: me), but for a new team every single game is a learning experience, so they should be ready to compete with Das Boot.  Boot gave Happy Shirt all they could handle in week one, falling 10-7.  If there is such a thing as a statement loss, that’s one. Das Boot is a bona fide contender in 2016.

Red Legs (2-0) vs. Happy Shirt (2-0)

  • Week 5 at 5:00

If Red Legs sneaks by Das Boot in Week 3 then they’ll be on a collision course with the two-time defending champs for the #1 seed in the division.  Happy Shirt is still Happy Shirt, and we all fully expect them to come out on top of the Wilt Chamberlain division unscathed.  If they do, it will bring their division record since 2012 to an astounding 33-0.

AsteroidHEAD (0-2) vs. Jazzhaus (0-2)

  • Week 5 at 7:00

These two teams have been better than expected, and you can see the foundations of a solid unit forming for the Jazzhaus team that is built around a lot of youngsters.  AsteroidHead had their Week 1 game against Where’s My Pitches in hand before they collapsed in the 8th inning and gave it away.  Regardless, whichever team loses in this game will be a prohibitive favorite in the #6 Rank Pool.

Deron Belt 

Free State (2-0) vs Red Lyon (2-0)

  • Week 5 at 5:00

Free State and Red Lyon could both be 4-0 heading into this Week 5 matchup, and it’s a great chance for the Growlers to make a statement and sneak into the #1 pool (for the first time ever?).  Lyon had a puzzling performance against Sacred Sword in Week 2, only winning 6-2, but as we’ve said all along, they turn it on when they need to.  These two teams have played many times over the years, and Lyon holds a commanding head-to-head advantage.

Sacred Sword (0-2) vs Bad News Bagels (1-1)

  • Week 3 at 7:00

Sword showed some dramatic improvement this week, and the Bagels got their legs working against Repetition, so this is a very tough game to call.  If Bagels win they give themselves a punchers chance at the #3 seed in Deron Belt, not bad for what people are saying is essentially a new team.  A win for Sword would put them in a position to sneak into the #4 spot.  A lot riding on this game.

Corksuckers (1-1) vs. Bad News Bagels (1-1)

  • Week 5 at 7:00

If the Bagels do handle Sacred Sword in Week 3 it sets up a big game against the Corksuckers in Week 5 when I project them to both be 2-2.  In that scenario, the winner gets a chance to test their mettle against the top half of the league in the #3 Rank Pool.

Amelia Earhart

Chalmersiz (2-0) vs. Goats (2-0)

  • Week 3 at 5:00

The Goats have taken advantage of a soft opening schedule to get out to a 2-0 start, but they have a couple of tests the next two weeks against Chalmersiz and Muddy Waters.  Chalmersiz looked rock solid at GOTW, giving up just a single run to Muddy Waters and basically controlling the whole game.  They again look primed for a deep run in the tournament.

Homies (0-2) vs. Harpies (1-1)

  • Week 4 at 5:00

The Harpies renaissance began last week with a win over Leeway Franks, only their second Division play victory since 2012 (Record in that time: 2-29).  Now the next step in their evolution comes when they enter a game as the favorite.  The Homies showed tons of progress in Week 1, hanging with Muddy Waters for over half the game, but back-slid this week getting shutout by the Goats.

Goats (2-0) vs. Muddy Waters (1-1)

  • Week 4 at 7:00

If Chalmersiz takes care of the Goats in Week 3 then this game will essentially be for the #2 seed in the Amelia Earhart division. Muddy Waters looks like the favorite in this matchup, but an upset wouldn’t be totally shocking. Expect a defensive battle between these two veteran teams.

Danny Manning 

Rockets (2-0) vs. Los Matadores (1-1)

  • Week 3 at 7:00

The Rockets have dispatched the Leafy Greens and Ghosts to this point, but the schedule is about to bump up a couple of notches with the reigning Less Awesome Champs, Los Mats, in Week 3 followed by Widman in Week 4.  A win over Los Mats puts them in a great spot to claim the #2 seed at worst.

Wildman (2-0) vs. Rockets (2-0)

  • Week 4 at 5:00

Wildman has just been brutalizing people (Combined score through two games: 61-4) and the Rockets are the only team that has even a remote chance against them in Division. This game probably won’t be too close, but it should at least bring Wildman’s Run Per Game average down a bit.  If Wildman does sweep through the Danny Manning division it will bring their division play record since 2012 to an astonishing 32-1.

Los Matadores (1-1) vs. Ghosts (1-1)

  • Week 4 at 5:00

Los Matadores lost a few contributors in the offseason, but Paul still runs a tight ship and has changed his tactics a little bit (I reffed their game this weekend and watched him have four bunt singles) to help compensate for the attrition.  The Ghosts had a thrilling walk-off in Week 1 and hung tough with the Rockets in Week 2, so this should be a competitive matchup for the right to be the #3 seed.

John Brown 

KTC (2-0) vs. Squids (2-0)

  • Week 5 at 9:00 (GOTW)

The best Game of the Week matchup in Division play, both of these teams should be 4-0 heading into this battle. KTC is stacked this year and seems to be one of the favorites for the title, while Squids have gone the addition-by-subtraction route and thus far it has worked for them.  If KTC is on they are one of the elite teams in the league, and they should be gunning for that #1 overall seed in the tournament.

Merchants (0-2) vs. Screamers (1-1)

  • Week 3 at 5:00

Merchants has a chance to get off the schneid this week against the Screamers.  The Screamers are playing well, with a big win Week One against Johnny’s.   Merchants should employ their typical lock down D and pull out this W, and if they don’t I fully expect another meme posted to Facebook from the Screamers.

Pawsh Wash (1-1) vs. Merchants (0-2)

  • Week 4 at 5:00

These two teams matched up in Week 3 last year at South Park, with Pawsh Wash winning a 12-11 thriller on the grass.  Big implications here, as the winner will be favored to come out of John Brown (aka the Group of Death) as a battle tested #3 seed.  Merchants has hung tough against the top-tier of the division, losing by single digits to both KTC and the Squids.  No shame in that.

Clyde Tombaugh 

Woost (2-0) vs. D-Holes (1-1)

  • Week 3 at 9:00 (GOTW)

Another good Game of the Week matchup, Woost seems to be playing their best kickball in a couple of years, while the D-Holes just had a very competitive game against Ch. 6, mounting a furious late inning rally that fell just short.  If Woost can pull this one out they will have the inside track to the #2 seed, while the D-Holes will fall to the #3 pool and lay waste to all comers.

Channel 6 (2-0) vs. Woost (2-0)

  • Week 4 at 7:00

The importance of this hinges on the Woost vs. D-Holes game in Week 3.  If Woost pulls it out they will be going head-to-head with Ch. 6 for a shot at the outright #1 seed in the Pluto division.  Ch. 6 is off to a good start, especially their ladies, who are crossing the plate at a prodigious rate, and should be primed to do some damage in Rank Play and the tournament.

Rats (0-2) vs. Brewballers (1-1)

  • Week 4 at 9:00 (GOTW)

The Rats are a tough luck 0-2, and need to beat both Grandstand in Week 3 and the Brewballers here to keep from falling to the #5 seed. Brewballers pitched a shutout last weekend against the Glasskickers and thus will be looking to win two games in Division play for the first time since 2013.