West St Paul, MN-- There was a spring training game between the Padres and the Red Sox over the weeked. The Padres looked very sharp behind the pitching of reigning Cy Young John Cronin. It's looking like John may have added some pitches to his arsenal over the offseason. The league media also got a first look at 3 rookies, Sam Essen, Seth Nilsen, and Andy Lehman. Here is a quick scouting report on each player:
Sam Essen: He is the manager and presumed best player on the Red Sox, but don't be too quick to say that. He was stellar at the plate, when facing anyone not named John Cronin. Sam struggled on some pitches, but his left handed pull power will be perfect for the short right field fence. He will live up to the hype at the plate. His pitching was a challenge for him. He has a couple quality pitches already, but his accuracy is a big problem. Just look out for his riser!
Seth Nilsen: Seth will be a very important puzzle piece for manager Sam Essen. Seth came in with no wiffleball experience whatsoever, but he looked very good on the mound. He has the accuracy down already, unlike Essen. Seth will mix it up with a knuckleball every once in a while, which will be very entertaining to see. At the plate, he will be a fine hitter. Defense seems to be his biggest struggle right now, but that could easily change with better weather.
Andy Lehman: The Padres slugger still needs some work. He looked good batting, with a couple HR. Pitching will be a problem. Manager John Cronin will need to take a closer look and see if he will fit into the rotation. Cronin said, "We already have 1 of the 3 spots in the rotation full and already are talking with a free agent to take the 2nd spot. That 3rd spot is up for grabs on our team and I am very open as to who will take it. Andy is a candidate, but didn't make a good case today." At this point, Andy looks like a middle-innings/spot starter.
After the mud settled, the Padres won 3 out of the 4 games they played Saturday. Opening Day is coming up fast on April 26th, we'll see you there!
The SFWL welcomes EXCURSIONS Journey to Health to the Shed Field family! They will be supplying us with field equipment and wiffleballs this season. They have the best selection of wiffle ball equipment online from bats to balls to fencing, strike zones, glow in the dark wiffleballs and more! Shop at www.ejourneytohealth.com when purchasing wiffle ball equipment.
West Saint Paul, MN-- Today is the first day of free agency and the league is already a buzz. Every team has made some big moves already, so let's recap the action so far team by team.
Padres: The Padres signed veteran wifflebaler Derek Dust. Derek will bring a lot of experience and knowledge to the team as well as his son, Cameroon who will be sure to light up the basepaths with speed. Manager John Cronin isn't finished with signings yet, but likes the makeup of his team so far.
Blue Jays: Manager Howard Cronin signed Karen Cronin, a workhorse pitcher who fits in with any starting rotation. Howard has hinted at other signings but will likely lay low until the dust has settled.
Red Sox: The Red Sox made the biggest splash today signing Seth Nilsen, David Johnson, and Erik Essen, all rookies. Manager Sam Essen is bringing in a lot of youth. Sam is concerned about the lack of wiffleball experience on his team, but he is hopeful they'll pick up the game quickly in Spring Training.
Team 4: The yet to be named team signed Thomas Randolph and Sarah Cronin (Nelson). If Thomas gets in a full season, we will likely see huge numbers, but he hasn't done so yet. Sarah is a former GIANTS Most Improved Player of the Year winner, who is coming of maternity leave. She played in one game last year and impressed with a HR. Hopefully she'll work hard this offseason.
Notable free agents still out there: Andy Lehman, Pat Cronin, Andrew Cronin, Sarah Cronin (Malone), Rose Cronin
11:37 AM: Padres sign Rose Cronin
1:23 PM: Padres sign Andy Lehman
It was announced today that Rookie Sam Essen will manage a team for the 2015 season. Rumors are already circulating that he will sign several top rated rookies. Sam will look to bring in some youth and speed for his team. Check back here once free agency starts on March 1st, he will be sure to make some splashy moves.
2 time MVP and reigning Cy Young Award winner, John Cronin has been named the first team manager for the upcoming 2015 season. Stay tuned for more manager announcements!
There will be 4 teams in 2015 and each team will have a manager, so here are the top 5 candidates to take those spots. Managers will not be chosen by the commissioner, they will volunteer themselves.
1. John Cronin: There is little doubt that John will not take a manager position. John is the founder of the league and a die-hard wiffleball expert. The only downfall of him taking a spot is that it could interfere with his commissioner duties.
2. Howard Cronin: The crafty ol' veteran is sure to take a manager role. Having been born the year the wiffleball was invented, Howard has been around the game his whole life. He is one of the smartest players in the league and is eager to compile a championship team.
3. Joe Cronin: The fiery slugger who is in his prime is seeking revenge after losing in the championship last season. He has the best scouting skill in the league and has an extensive network of top-tier athletes. If he takes a manager spot, he will be the favorite to win the championship.
4. Pat Cronin: Pat is the father of the best farm system in the SFWL, possibly in all the NWLA. Pat has multiple young prospects who are superstars in the making. It may take a couple years for them to develop, which is what might hold him back from taking a manager spot.
5. Joe Hubly: Joe is hot off a recent wedding and might be looking for a new hobby with his wife. Joe has been a member of the league since its inception, but has drifted away from league activity in recent years. Joe has a powerful family full of terrific athletes he could lure in if he takes a manager role.
Contact the commissioner at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in being a SFWL Team Manager.
The SFWL took home some hardware this December with the announcements of the NWLA National Teams and Wiffys. The national teams were announced on December7th. 3 SFWL players took home national honors.
3rd Team Hitting: John Cronin
3rd Team Pitching: John Cronin
1st Team Fielding: Pat Cronin
2nd Team Fielding: Brian Cronin
3rd Team Fielding: John Cronin
Congratulations to Pat, Brian and John on their awards. Pat, Brian and John combined for 3/5 of Minnesota's national fielder winners, so we have the best defensive wiffleball league in the whole state of MN!
The Wiffys were announced on December 28th, and the SFWL won 2 awards. We won National New League of the Year and National Field of the Year. Both of these awards are tremendous honors and we are very excited to build on them in 2015. The league office is holding a Winter Meeting to discuss the standing of the league and get the new season rolling. Anticipated Opening Day will be May 3rd (as the Minnesota weather allows). Winning National Field of the Year is really a bigger honor though. Shed Field is what started this league and winning this award just brings it full circle. We could not be happier to win this award. Should we cancel offseason improvements to the field? Does "don't mess with success" really apply here? NOPE. Straight from the field manager's desk, here is a list of plans to improve Shed Field this offseason:
Another thank you to all of our fans out there, show us your support by leaving us a comment about what you're looking forward to in 2015!
The new Shed Field Wiffleball League logo is finally unveiled! Here is the breakdown of the new logo:
We pay tribute to the Minnesota Twins with the colors in the logo. The blue, red, and gold are all Twins colors. The gold is new to the Twins this year, and we decided to go with gold as well. After all, we are a MN wiffleball league.
You might have recognized the swing right away. That batter is Harmon Killebrew. We silhouetted an image of the "Killer" himself. The logo designer was searching for ideas and really wanted to incorporate some Minnesota baseball history and nostalgia into the new logo.
The namesake of the league, the Shed, is in the background of the logo. The logo would not be complete without it.
The font of the "SFWL" was also well thought out. We wanted another throwback with a turn-of-the-century font that makes you feel like you are reading headlines from a 1900's newspaper.
We worked hard on this new logo (well, not that hard), and would love to hear your feedback! Leave a comment and let us know what you think!
The new Shed Field Wiffleball League logo is set to be unveiled by December 1st. Here is what the SFWL logo would look like if we copied other popular wiffleball leagues:
Shed Field Wiffleball League: Coming 2015
As some of you may have seen, our league making some big changes for 2015. Most importantly, we renamed our league to the Shed Field Wiffleball League. The new name will establish a new era in our league. We will say goodbye to "pick-per-series" or "pick-up" wiffleball and debut with 4 franchises in 2015. Team managers are yet to be announced. They should be known by March 1, 2015. Each of the 4 teams will play 10 games before August 1st, 2015. The playoffs will follow later in August on a weekend TBD.
Another big announcement will be the opening of the Shed Field Hall of Fame on Opening Day. Several historical artifacts will be displayed. Voting for the inaugural HOF class will begin on Opening Day and the 2015 HOF class will be announced during playoff weekend.
Shed Field will undergo off-season renovations also. Dirt basepaths and a new pitching mound will be installed. A yellow line will be painted a top the fence. A couple other changes are being discussed, including a newly constructed dugout.
Shed Field has been home the ALS Charity Wiffleball Tournament for the past two years, but will not host it in 2015. For more information on the 3rd Annual ALS Charity Wiffleball Tournament visit http://alsmn-wiffleball.weebly.com/.
A new domain name will put in place soon, so make sure you follow the SFWL on Twitter to stay up to date on any website changes. @shedfieldwiffle
Thank you for your interest in our league and we will see you back next season. Stay on your toes for any other big announcements!
Shed Field Wiffleball League
With the Bonfire Wiffleball Association gone and the Shed Field Wiffleball League set to debut in 2015, it is time to go over some of the biggest moments in BWA history and look at the record books.
Top Moments in BWA History (in no particular order):
1. Opening Day 2013: A record for number of players in one week was set. This was the vision of the Bonfire Wiffleball Association but the record was never broken for the rest of the the league's history.
2. John Cronin's No-Hitter, Week 3 2013: John Cronin stepped on the mound that day and didn't give up a single hit while throwing 10 K's (the max number of strikeouts, 5 inning games, 2 outs/inning). This was before the "medium-slow" pitch speed rule was put in effect. Actually, John was so dominant that the rule had to be put in effect.
3. Joe Cronin hits 11 HR in one game: Pretty self-explanatory. This record hasn't even come close to being broken.
4. Andrew Cronin's Perfect Game: Probably the best moment in BWA history. The fact that an 8 year old could throw a perfect game is what makes this league so special. He didn't strike anyone out, but John and Pat Cronin provided stellar defense to help Andrew achieve history.
5. Week 5 2014: The best regular season game of 2014 occurred in Week 5. A back and forth battle with game tying grand slams and double plays. This game would take a full page to explain and go through all the big events. Watch the video below to try to get a feel for it. You just had to be there. The exciting game starts at 2:21.
6. Week 2, 2014: This was the first time games were played outside of Shed Field. Games took place at Trailer Field. The games here helped give a vision of a new league.
7. 2013 and 2014 Playoffs: Of course the playoffs had to be included. 2013 was a mud bath and the field was incredibly torn up. The passion of the players could be seen by looking at their clothes, if they were dirty, they were trying. 2014 was another exciting playoffs. The highlight of the day was Yvonne Cronin hitting a game-winning HR in the 4th inning and Leonard Cronin making the catch of the year to end the game in the 5th.
The Bonfire Wiffleball Association was filled with many good memories, but the Shed Field Wiffleball League will create many more. Stay along for our journey!
During recent practice sessions, John Cronin has been spotted swinging with a wooden bat. This is no wiffleball wood bat, a real baseball wood bat. His timing with the pitches he is swinging at is impeccable, but can he keep up in the playoffs? John is the trend setter in the league. Back in July, he played in some games with a baseball glove in the field. While other players complained, the rule book does allow gloves to be worn in the field. Is John onto something, or on something? Some league analysts say he is practicing with a wood bat so that come playoff time, a plastic bat will feel drastically lighter and his bat speed will be a lot better. Is this an effective strategy? What are your thoughts on John's recent training habits. Leave a comment.
Fall is coming, so here are some throwback 2010 fall wiffleball pictures. Like the "fence"?
With a month to go it is prime-time to be on the lookout for our annual awards. Here are the top 5 contenders for each award:
1. John Cronin
2. Joe Cronin
3. Howard Cronin
4. Pat Cronin
5. Thomas Randolph
1. John Cronin
2. Howard Cronin
3. Joe Cronin
4. Thomas Randolph
5. Andrew Cronin
Defensive Player of the Year
1. Brian Cronin
2. John Cronin
3. Sarah Nels. Cronin
4. Andrew Cronin
5. Joe Cronin
GIANTS Most Improved Player of the Year
1. Andrew Cronin
2. Thomas Randolph
3. Sarah Mal. Cronin
4. Sarah Nels. Cronin
5. Joe Hubly
Rookie of the Year
1. John Tamburino
2. David Bauer
3. Matt Schlichting
4. Robbie Casper
5. Amanda Cook
Other players with notable achievements that could be given some recognition:
Sarah Nels. Cronin: Comeback Player of the Year
Leona Cronin: Fan of the Year
Back when we were the BLBWBA! Comment your favorite 2011 wiffleball memory below!
From the desk of the Commissioner:
After reviewing all sides of the situation and going over the details, I have decided to remove game 2 of week 4 from the record. No statistics from this game will count and it will not be published on the league website.
The game in question was played on June 22nd at Shed Field. After three and a half complete innings, a member of the away team left abruptly. The score at the time of his departure was 8-4 in favor of the away team. This was a 3v2 matchup, meaning the away team was down to 1 player. The game could have been resumed as a 3v1 matchup, but then 2 players from the home team also left, leaving just 2 players. A 1v1 matchup is allowed, but by now the game was dead and it ended.
The only rule in the rulebook that has anything to do with short games says, "In case of severe weather, 3 innings constitutes a complete game". There was no severe weather present. The lack of depth in the rulebook brought me to make a very difficult decision. An important part of our league is that we are flexible and you can come play whenever you want. In this case, it might seem like you can change the rules and count the game at the end of 3 innings. Maybe you don't count the game as a win/loss for the players, but count their stats. I didn't like any of these outcomes and decided terminate the game from the record.
I am using this event as a way to show all league members the importance of the league and that this is no Sunday get-together. This is a wiffleball league that can still be flexible and family-friendly. Along with that is still the same competitive nature of playing any sport. When you come to play, you are here to play and are expected to finish all games you start. I am also using this event as a way to make our league rulebook better. Right now, it is a pretty terrible, unorganized system of rules that could use a makeover. Anybody who wants to help, let me know. I am going to start work immediately and the new system will be live by the All Star Game, July 6th.
Thank you all for the advice on handling the situation. A special thanks to Deputy Commissioner Howard Cronin. I apologize to all the players involved in this event for the misunderstanding and the loss of all earned statistics from the game, myself included (3 HR and a win all down the drain). I also apologize to the fans of the BWA who had to wait an extra day to see all the statistics from week 4. I look forward to more fun times in the future and hope we can avoid situations like this.
Meet Wiffleman. He has many different qualities and skills. He has the head of Howard Cronin, eyes of Ryan Cook, mouth of Rebecca Cronin, heart of Joe Hubly, arm of John Cronin, Muscle of Joe Cronin, hands of Thomas Randolph, and legs of Andrew Cronin.
Head: Howard Cronin is one of the smartest players in the game. He is a crafty veteran who can outsmart his opponents.
Eyes: Ryan Cook played in 2 games and reached base in almost every one of his at bats. He hardly swung the bat and was quickly named "Power Walker".
Mouth: Rebecca Cronin is a talker who uses her her words to distract opponents.
Heart: Joe Hubly may be 0-3, but he has a lot of passion for the game. He always gives 110% and is a positive teammate.
Arm: John Cronin has led the league in strikeouts for the past 3 seasons. He is currently leading the league. He has found his groove this season and has mastered a couple more pitches.
Muscle: Joe Cronin is a HR machine and doesn't show any signs of tiredness. He is running (more like speeding away in a car) away with the HR title.
Hands: Thomas Randolph is a terrific defensive player. He robbed a couple HR last year.
Legs: Andrew Cronin is the fastest player in the game. He is the perfect size for a small wiffleball field. He hustles every play.
Thomas Randolph will make his long awaited season debut this Sunday. He will need to play catch-up if he hopes to be in the running for MVP. Last season he hit 10 HR and struck out 2 with a 4-1 record. His HR/game average was one of the best in the league with 2.00 HR/game. Expect a strong outing for him this Sunday. He will likely finish with around 50 HR and 50 strikeouts.
Turn-back-the-clock day has been rescheduled to Week 4
Turn-Back-the-Clock day will soon be upon us so here are the 6 best bets in honor of the 1960's, which is were we will turn-back-the-clock
1. Howard Cronin will have a multi-HR day
2. Joe Cronin will hit over 5 HR
3. Joe Hubly will win at least 1 game
4. Thomas Randolph will rob a home run
5. Andrew Cronin will hit his first HR of the season
6. Someone will get tired of listening to 60s oldies at least twice
The Bonfire Wiffleball Association is a hotbed for up and coming rookies and other big name prospects. Here are the top 5 rising stars:
1. Leona Cronin- Leona, born this past May has already shown her promise. Throwing out the first pitch on Opening Day showed the potential of this lefty. Her estimated rookie debut is Fall 2023
2. Rebecca Cronin- Rebecca (pictured at right) has already made her debut with a tee-ball handicap, but has since been demoted to go play inside with dolls. With a 1.00 batting average and 3 HR she has already burst onto the wiffleball scene. She adds a 2013 Fan of the Year award to her resume. Rebecca plays with as much passion as anybody else in the league. Her estimated re-debut is Spring 2018.
3. Katie Cronin- Katie is another prospect from Savage, MN (otherwise known as the 'BWA Farm System'). Katie made her debut last season in the playoffs hitting of a tee. With a 1.00 batting average, Katie is ready to take her game to the next level, right after she finishes up coloring another picture. Katie should be ready to play again sometime this summer.
4. Matthew Cronin- Matthew has the most potential out of all the prospects on this list. He is a strong young player who could blossom into the next Pat Cronin. He has the makings of a superstar. He is the youngest of 4, which could be an indication of his future (2-time MVP John Cronin is the youngest of 4).
5. Noah Kim- Noah has the energy of a hummingbird. He is always ready to hit the ball. He has little to none wiffleball experience, but has tremendous potential. He is very fast and will likely develop into the fastest player in the league.
Week 1 was a wild success for Joe Cronin. Coming off a championship season, he wasted no time in putting his name in the MVP race. Going 2-1 with 7 K's and 7 HR, Joe is already the most talked about player in the league. This is looking like the year Joe can walk away with his first MVP. So the question is, how will he do it? Will he get done on the mound, at the plate, or both?
Joe "Fear the Beard" Cronin has a balanced stat sheet this season so far. With 7 K's and 7 HR, it is hard to tell which of these stats will become his strongest quality. Joe has been inconsistent on the mound historically, but this season he seems to be getting better control on his rising fastball. Though, John Cronin hit a grand slam off it, resulting in the first HR ever hit off his riser. It is hard to tell his future on the mound and only time will tell if he is really getting control of his pitches.
Joe's best skill that everybody knows is hitting home runs. A perennial power hitter with consistent power numbers, Joe gets it done at the plate. Averaging about 2.3 HR/Game, Joe is the front-runner for the HR Race. He doesn't hit much for average and usually swings for the fences. The only downside of this approach is choking in clutch situations. He may be clutch in the postseason, but his regular season record from last season was 17-16, one game over .500. Right now, he hits a lot of useless HR that don't help his team win many games. He needs hit more game-changing HR to be considered for MVP. The MVP award is based off of regular season performance.
If Joe Cronin wins MVP, it will because of his bat. He needs to play to his strengths and keep up his batting before he tries to become an ace pitcher. Joe Cronin is a slugger, but that could change if he has a surplus of HR and decides to focus more on his pitching.
Andrew Cronin will hit over 20 HR this season. In a recent spring training game he was flashing his power. It is very likely he can accomplish this feat if he follows these guidelines:
1. Stay small in the strike zone- Andrew is not very tall, and he will benefit from a recent rule change stating all players under the age of 10 have a different strike zone. Pitchers will have to pitch to him in his strike zone resulting in more HR.
2. Be a kid- Adult pitchers have some sympathy for children playing. Andrew has already proven he can play with the "big kids", throwing a perfect game last year. You don't need to lob pitches over into the strike zone with Andrew, but pitchers still will do so, resulting in more HR.
3. Hit from the "right" side of the plate- Andrew is a switch hitter. He has shown more power from the right side of the plate recently, but we don't know for sure which side is his powerful side. He needs to figure our quickly which side he likes best and stick to it if he wants to consistently slug HR.
4. Use a powerful bat- While most batters go with the classic yellow bat at the plate, Andrew should stick with the black or grey bat this season. The black and grey bats have more "pop" to them and help aid the ball over the fence. By the end of the season Andrew will stick to the yellow bat and still hit HR.
5. Have fun- When he is in a good mood and just having a good time, Andrew is one of the best players in the league. Of course, when he is having fun, he is playing with a lot of heart and passion. These qualities are greater than all the power and strength in the world and Andrew sure knows how to use them. His love of the game will help him reach the 20 HR plateau.
Article by John Cronin
The outfield fence was painted green today. It was a group effort. After working through some paint problems, we figured it out and accomplished the task. It will be finished with a second coat tomorrow. We thank Pat, Andrew, Katie, Rebecca, Karen, Leonard, and Yvonne Cronin for the help. We will see you all next Sunday for Opening Day! Check out the 2014 Season Predictions here. You can see some pictures from today in a gallery below.
2014 will an unpredictable year sure to be filled with many surprises, but here are the official 2014 pre-season predictions and ratings.
New this season will be a standing room only deck in the outfield. 2 more sections have been added on after this picture was taken. Each section has 2 wooden boards for standing. There will be plenty of space on each of them. This may just be the year in which you can catch a HR ball. Rule changes may be coming for fan interference.
This has been a work in progress for years and it is about time that it gets done.