The siesta was great for everyone involved, especially those at the BNN offices, who spent the entire time sleeping on a bed of peanut shells and dreams of upgrading to Windows 8.
Firewall awoke in a panic this morning to find that the Power Rankings had not been put together, so here are his groggy, early-morning picks for Season 9, based on projected order of finish, and includes the change in ranking from our Season 8 power rankings.
20. 🌮 Unlimited Tacos [-]
The Tacos shelled their best player, Pitching Machine, and lack the batting upside to overcome what should be a weak season on the mound.
19. 🌴 Hawaii Fridays [-]
York Silk is shelled and Aldon Cashmoney is gone. This team seriously lacks in batting talent, but has enough pitching to finish ahead of the Tacos.
18. ✨ Yellowstone Magic [-]
The last three spots remain the same year over year, because while the Magic do have a solid pitcher in Curry Alciakeyes and a could of great batters in Oscar Dollie and Annie Roland, this team will struggle to perform consistently with a poor all-around pitching staff and weak bats up and down the lineup.
17. 🍗 Mexico City Wild Wings [-7]
Things got wild for the Wings in the offseason, as they shifted divisions twice and now join the Crabs in the Wild High. While the league name might be fitting for Mexico City, the power level of the division is not. This team will struggle to stay off the bottom of the Wild High all season. They’ve taken a big fall from their defending champion status a season ago.
16. 🚤 Miami Dale [-]
Beck Whitney and Cannonball Sports are stars on offense and Qais Dogwalker is an ace in the making, but Miami does not have enough all-around pitching to compete in a suddenly competitive Wild Low. They’ll finish ahead of the Tacos, most likely, but don’t bank on much more with formidable foes like the Sunbeams and Spies ahead in the division.
15. 👐 Breckenridge Jazz Hands [-5]
The Jazz Hands get a slight morale boost by not having to play the Millennials in the division any more, as they went 7-11 against New York a season ago, but overall this team is not much improved from the Breckenridge squad that stumbled to a 42-57 record in Season 8. The Wild league will be dominated by the Crabs once again, and the Jazz Hands haven’t made any moves to change that.
14. 🔥 Chicago Firefighters [-5]
The Fighters finished nine games out of a playoff spot a season ago and face the same uphill battle in Season 9 with largely the same roster. The former champs will need to see a rebound from Rivers Rosa on the mound if they want to climb the rankings this season.
13. 🗣 Canada Moist Talkers [+4]
The Talkers were respectable last season despite our low expectations, and with a similar roster to Season 8, we’re giving them a bit of a bump. Plus, there’s always the chance Polkadot Patterson is removed from their shell, which would boost the MTs into playoff contention if it happens early enough in the season.
12. 🥩 Dallas Steaks [+1]
I think we learned last season that a lineup full of amazing bats can only get you so far. The Steaks made the playoffs but failed to make any noise, and only the Flowers had a worse run differential among playoff teams. Now facing the reality of having the New York Millennials in their division, the Steaks — who allowed 466 runs last season — will need to outslug their opponents to make it back to the postseason. Despite our lack of faith … they probably will.
11. 🍬 Kansas City Breath Mints [+3]
The Mints join the Mild Low this season, which presents them with an easy path to a top-half finish in the Mild league. Finishing ahead of the Magic and Fridays should be no problem for this perennial overachieving squad, but do they have playoff upside? Mooney Doctor II doesn’t provide a massive upgrade to the pitching staff, and that’s why we have the Mints in the middle of the pack.
10. 🌹 Boston Flowers [+5]
The Flowers snuck into the playoffs last season with the worst run differential among all postseason teams, but that’s largely because of how dominant the Crabs were atop the league. This club has good enough pitching to support its solid batting lineup, led by Jacob Haynes. Also, with their new Growth blessing, this team will slowly improve all season, making another playoff run even more exciting with a team full of buffed players.
9. 🥧 Philly Pies [+2]
The recently buffed Jaxon Buckley joins Jessica Telephone in a batting lineup that might be better than the Steaks’ and be best among Mild League teams. Of course, Telephone is back in her shell, which is why this team — which also features some amazing pitching from Elvis Figueroa — isn’t higher in the rankings. But should Telephone return, the Pies might be finals favorites.
8. 🌞 Hellmouth Sunbeams [-]
The Sunbeams gained the Base Instincts buff this offseason, and if that triggers more often than expected, this team could be a real contender. Watch for Nagomi Nava, Igneus Delacruz and Hendricks Richardson to benefit from the buff, which gives players a potential extra base (or two?) on a walk from time to time. This is a solid all-around team, and we expect the pitching to take a step forward in Season 9, but with so much talent ahead of them, they remain eighth.
7. 💋 San Francisco Lovers [-5]
The Lovers had a disappointing campaign in Season 8, but still have some of the best pitching and defense in blaseball. Not having to face the Millennials in the division will be a boost for San Francisco, who will hope for Knight Urlacher and Don Mitchell to spark the lineup to provide enough runs to support Yosh Carpenter and Co. to return this team to the playoffs.
6. 📱 New York Millennials [-3]
A swap of divisions might be just what the Mills need to get back into finals contention, as this team has great hitting and just enough pitching to be more than dangerous in the Mild League. However, a club can only fall short of expectations so many times before we need to move them down in the rankings. They’re likely to make the playoffs, but we’re not sure if they’ll make any noise once they make it.
5. 🎸 Seattle Garages [-1]
Home field advantage will be big for the Garages in Season 9, giving them an extra run in their home games. The pitching staff is deeper, but not better, with Ron Monstera gone and adding a not-so-great rookie in Lori Boston. The bats are good enough to keep this team in contention, but don’t expect a title run unless this team gets an in-season boost.
4. 👟 Charleston Shoe Thieves [+3]
An improved pitching staff led by Fitzgerald Wanderlust and a rejuvenated Snyder Briggs joining old favorites Gunther O’Brian, Beasley Gloom and Cornelius Games will be the star of the show for the Shoe Thieves. No team in the Mild League has as good of a pitching staff, and with more than enough hitting to get by, this team is a favorite to finish atop the Mild Low and make a finals run.
3. 🕵 Houston Spies [+3]
A boosted pitching staff for a club that was already among the best in blaseball? These are some serious title contenders. The Spies had the best pitcher in blaseball last season in Alexandria Rosales, and have a lineup with more than enough power, led by Valentine Games and Comfort Septemberish. We see the Spies as one of three teams with a very, very good shot of winning the finals in Season 9, along with…
2. 🐅 Hades Tigers [+3]
The Tigers were already one of the best teams in blaseball, but adding Aldon Cashmoney to a now STACKED lineup and dropping their rotation to four strong options means this is definitely the team to beat in the Mild League. Add to that the team’s invulnerability to incinerations and they’re poised to avoid at least one form of bad luck that has plagued them in recent seasons. It would take some really, really, really poor fortune to keep this team out of the finals.
1. 🦀 Baltimore Crabs [-]
What did you expect?