Article by: Sam Skibbe
As Spring Training opens in Florida and Arizona for Major League Baseball and Tampa Bay Wiffleball League is in the prime of their season, all of us still in cold weather states, with ice on the ground, long for the days when heat graces our skin yet again.
Here in St. Louis we cheer from a far as we root on our boys in red down in Jupiter, Florida and look forward to Opening Day versus our newly (self-proclaimed) talented rivals, the Chicago Cubs. Chris Meador released an article comparing players to Major League players, but now let’s take our SWBL franchises and compare them to MLB teams in order of Season 12 finish, with the new expansion Expos bringing us home.
SWBL Rays – San Francisco Giants
The MLB Giants have 3 Championships in 5 years. The SWBL Rays have 3 Championships in 3 years. Both teams are dominating the playoffs despite mediocre regular seasons with players that may not be superstars, but win with constant pressure on opponents when it counts.
SWBL Cardinals – New York Yankees
The Yankees and SWBL Cardinals are teams with a rich history of players and many past championships. Like the Yankees, the Cardinals are always a team people love to root against and make fun of when they lose. Yet, they are always a tough matchup, can be dangerous when consistent, and sign older players to supplement their roster needs, sometimes making poor offseason decisions.
SWBL Royals – Los Angeles Dodgers
Gus Skibbe is the Clayton Kershaw of the SWBL and the Royals, like the Dodgers, continue to sign excellent talent to a constantly improving roster. This team has no holes after winning their respective divisions and will continue to be a force to be reckoned with.
SWBL Rockies – St. Louis Cardinals
Despite the media and “experts” giving little to no credit to these franchises, they are always competitive and continue to prove that a steady flow of talent and wins from within will make you a contender every year.
SWBL Yankees – Boston Red Sox
Ironic that the SWBL Yankees are the most like the Red Sox, who are rivals in the MLB. They are both power hitting teams that have off and on success between consecutive seasons. They are both teams that will be competitive and have a lineup with big name players, but supplemented by a very weak pitching rotation which makes them unpredictable in all games.
SWBL Brewers – Washington Nationals
These franchises, on paper, might have the best pitching rotation and batting lineup in their leagues and always are ranked high during preseason rankings. But circumstances happen and these teams can’t seem to win at the highest level of their sports.
SWBL Athletics – Kansas City Royals
A team with a lot of heart, always fun to watch, and is always on the cusp of breaking out. They are the picture perfect, endearing, underdogs that people will root for when success is earned. Will the Royals success in 2014, be a prediction the A’s can possibly live up to in 2015?
SWBL Expos – Chicago Cubs
The “fourth” National League franchise has been cursed for years with 0-10 seasons. This year while the Cubs look to improve with many prospects, the SWBL Expos will be doing the same as Kevin Wiethuchter signs many new prospects to break the curse.
Whether you like or dislike the MLB team your franchise has been compared to, you have to admit the similarities are uncanny. Which SWBL teams will prove their comparison incorrect in Season 13, only time will tell as we continue to inch closer to Memorial Day Weekend.