an open hand

By: Luc “The Riff” Arpeggio

Season 15 wasn’t particularly good to the Jazz Hands. It wasn’t particularly bad either. It just kind of was. 

While the rest of the League battled Consumer attacks and Redactions, the Jazz Hands were content to cruise along the highway of mediocrity, drinking coffee and eating popcorn. The Jazz Hands didn’t make the Playoffs and didn’t enter PARTYTIME until Day 91. It was an altogether unremarkable season of Blaseball, somehow. 

Season 15 was the polar opposite of Season 13 as far as team-altering events go: there were no Incerations, Blooddrains, Consumer attacks, Reverb shuffles, or Feedback swaps. A few players were swept Elsewhere— most notably Dervin Gorczyca, who spent a total of 63 days away— but that was about it. No Jazz Hands players were targeted for Redaction, or Shelled, or attacked by birds. The team only lost a single Win to Black Hole Weather. Things seemed almost…normal. 

(As I write this, please know I am furiously knocking on every single piece of wood in my immediate vicinity, regardless of size). 

Fans successfully funded the Grind Rail Stadium addition, which objectively rules, and an LCD Soundsystem, which should make any future Feedback swaps slightly less painful. The Pocket is coming together nicely, in this reporter’s opinion. 

While the Jazz Hands eked out three more Wins than last season, it was a pretty down year across the board. The team boasted a collective OPS of just .685 (up slightly from .619 in Season 14) and a team ERA of 4.28 (compared to 3.81 last season). 

Before Lowe Forbes was swept away to Elsewhere on Day 84, they managed to tie the League leader in sacrifice bunts. Collins Melon was third in stolen bases (65) across the ILB, and the always dependable Baby Doyle made the leaderboard for Doubles. 

The top of the Jazz Hands Rotation continued to excel, with Conrad Vaughan and Walton Sports both turning in solid seasons. The team was held back a bit however by poor performances from Kathy Mathews and Edric Tosser. 

Just for fun, this is what a “down” year looks like for Wyatt Pothos: 2.41 ERA, 0.665 WHIP, four shutouts, 161 Ks and a 9.4 SO/9. I’ll take that any time.

While the rebuild initiated in Season 13 might not be over yet, the Jazz Hands are in decent shape going forward thanks to a pair of Season 15 Election moves. 

The team successfully swapped Edric Tosser to the Shadows, replacing him with Howell Rocha, a much better pitcher. Hitters League-wide received a boost in the form of Bats, which may or may not be a temporary buff. Additionally, the Jazz Hands successfully returned Kathy Mathews to the Lineup, plugging a hole in their Rotation and adding a solid hitter in a single move. 

The trio of Collins Melon, Baby Doyle, and Bauer Zimmerman look like a force at the bottom of the Hands Lineup, and Tamara Crankit and Steph Weeks are no slouches. There are still a few holes, but the offense is in a remarkably better spot than it was after Season 13. 

The Jazz Hands Rotation is also in a good spot following a two-season rebuild. With the addition of rookie Howell Rocha, the team will have an above-average pitcher starting every game next season (barring, well, blaseball). 

This Jazz Hands might still struggle to compete with the heavy hitters of the Wild League, but I wouldn’t be surprised if they found themselves competing for a Playoff spot next season. 

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