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2037 MONTREAL BLAZERS INTRODUCTION
With the Sudden Departure of Long Time Montreal GM John Callahan, the Front Office was frantically looking to fill the void with a quality Manager who could take the reins of the 94 Win Blazers and steer the franchise towards a Landis Championship. Fans and the Team alike were extremely excited to hear of the hiring of former Crusader GM, Zach Grant. Mr Grant looks to inherit a team loaded with young talent and a few key quality Veterans. The Blazers have had a extended run of winnings seasons, going twelve years back to 2026.
SP Jubral Troop 12/6/7 16-9 3.65 ERA (2026)
Going into his final possible final arbitration next year with the Blazers, Jubral Troop has been the corner stone of the Starting Rotation going on 5 years since he exploded on the scene in 2033 with 18 wins and the Steve Nebraska Award as a 22 year old. Piling up 200+ innings and averaging almost 15 wins per season, the Blazers will need Jubral to be on top of his game to make another Landis Run this season. Next season will be Jubral’s last Arbitration season at an estimated $10 Million, which is a bargain for a pitcher of his caliber. Look for the Front Office to attempt to sign him to a three year extension to keep him off the Free Agent Market in 2039.
3B Mark Dempsey 7/6/9/9/6 .280 BA, 10 HR's, .852 OPS (2036)
Veteran Mark Dempsey is looking to come back from an injury plagued 2036 where he managed to play just over 1/3 of the season. Dempsey was hurt in the late in first year of the contract (2035) and suffered major setback that kept him out midway through the 2036 season. Then he struggled with back issues after his return. However Dempsey still reached career milestone 400 home runs at only 33 years old last year and appears to have suffered no long term impacts to his form from his time on the DL. Dempsey has a Player Option at the end of 2037, so it’s likely his health will play a huge part in his decision to stay in Montreal next season.
SP Aki Kondo 13/5/9 14 Wins - 8 Losses, 3.73 ERA (2036)
Kondo is preparing for his third season as a full time starter. He’s been a fabulous #2 behind Troop, earning 12 & 14 wins the last two seasons. He’s got amazing stuff, though his fastball can flatten out at times, giving up the long ball too often. Kondo led the league in 2035 by giving up 42 homers and another 34 homers in 2036. He mitigates the damage by allowing few baserunners, keeping his WHIP around 1.10. He also strikes out a ton of hitters, leading the league in K’s per 9 nine innings the last two seasons, (10.7 & 10.8 K/9). His hard work and flamboyant style makes a Fan Favorite among Blazer fans.
1B/DH Ettienne LaFitte 9/6/9/6/6 .297 BA, 46 HR's, .934 OPS (2036)
Louisiana Native, Cajun Ettiene LaFitte is a power beast who hits also hits for average. With a career OPS of .922, He’s also a terror on the base paths, averaging 60+ stolen bases per season. However, his deficiencies in the field keep him from being a 5 tool player and even though he’s listed at First Base, LaFitte hits DH most of the time. However, Montreal fans are drooling at the hope of having LaFitte and Dempsey spend a full season together, providing a fearsome punch in the lineup.
UP & COMING
OF Juan Santana – The 22 year old Santana made himself a nice lead off hitter last season. While not a Home Run hitter, Santana is a great Gap hitter and has enough power to rack up doubles and triples. He’s also able to move himself with his base stealing ability. With a .887 OPS over his first two plus seasons, Santana is the perfect guy at the top of lineup to be in position for the big guns later in the line up.
1B/LF Benjamin Dale – Dale has the tools to be a solid middle of the Lineup contributor. While he has good over-all power, that hasn’t translated to the high Homerun totals one would expect (27 HR’s in 2035/2036). However, Dale did collect a decent number of doubles last season (38). At 25 years old, it’s time for Benjamin to be the power hitter scouts are projecting him to be. Dale’s glove makes him a liability in both the outfield and the infield. However, LaFitte is the DH for this this team so will Dale be offered on the trade block?
SP/RP Vincent Lopez – The future looks bright for Knuckleballer Lopez, but will it be as a Starter or a possible Closer? Lopez has expressed the desire to be in the starting rotation, however he could be lights out as a late inning Stopper. Either way, look for this 2036 rookie to make a solid impact to the Montreal Pitching staff.
SS Luis Gonzalez – Gonzales is a nice top of the lineup guy who gets on base and hits for average. However, he’s played shortstop for the since coming though he’d probably be better suited at second base. Shortstops are a rare commodity and Gonzalez is adequate enough defensively to fill the role for the time being.
SP Matt Hansen / SP Jermaine Clayton / SP Manuel Pena – A nice group of starters to fill out the #3-#5 spots in the rotation. Manuel Pena is probably the best of the trio.
RP Jacob Pilbeam / RP Marcos Marquies / RP Chris Adkins – Adkins filled the closer roles last season, but look to these three relievers to provide the late inning pressure to shut down opposing offenses.
CA Jake Blues /Joaquin Camacho – While neither catcher is All Star material, the duo make a decent platoon. Between the two of them, they’ll get the job done.
SUMMARY & OUTLOOK
Montreal didn’t lose any major pieces in the Off Season, but have not gained any either. Pretty much, they are returning in 2037 with their 2036 roster, which was plenty good at 94 wins. With the hope of a full season of Mark Dempsey in the lineup, the Blazer’s offense looks to improve. While the young pitching staff returns behind former Steve Nebraska Winner, Jubral Troop. The biggest job of returning GM, Zach Grant, should be to position the team to continue its success in the coming seasons.
Preseason Prediction - 85-90 Wins
Excellent preview. Always great to read what others think about your team. Even though I haven't made any moves yet, you pretty much nailed what my initial considerations were with Troop and Dale!
Montreal Blazers GM
2037 - Present
Montreal Blazers GM
2037 - Present
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