5/23/20

Leps 2020 Preview



The Lynn Street Leprechauns come into their fifth ORWBL season following a disappointing 2019 record-wise. The additions of veteran standouts Levi Miller and Mikey Smith have given Lynn Street newfound hope for a bounce-back campaign. This season will be especially meaningful for the Leps given fan-favorite Uncle Terry's off-season battle with a pneumococcal disease. Our thoughts and prayers are with Terry and his family as he perseveres through recovery. In 2020, we are all #MulletStrong.



ICYMI

2019 was a season to forget for Lynn Street fans as far as their record is concerned. After reaching the 10 win mark in Bailey Rhed's MVP 2018 season, Lynn Street shipped Rhed to Hudson Lake and their win total fell as a result. Despite sweeping the Sinners on Opening Day, the Leps managed just three wins the rest of the way. In the playoffs, Lynn Street dropped a heart breaker in the Wildcard on a walk-off to Scottsdale. Dylan Kegley was the lone All-Star for the guys in green but manager Nick Brassell quietly had a nice season as well, joining Kegley in batting at least .500 for the season.


THREE STRIKES

1.  Luck of the Landsharks.
Trading 2018 MVP Bailey Rhed at last summer's trade deadline left a big hole in the Lynn Street line-up. Upon the Saugany Lake Landsharks folding this off-season, that hole was filled... and then some. The Leps signed both Levi Miller and Mikey Smith. In doing so, they solidified the two most important positions: left field and pitcher. Levi is coming off another stellar season while Mikey Smith is said to be in the best shape of his life. Playing at Rocko's will be a great boost for their hitting prospects, as well as Lynn Street's win percentage.  

2. Brassell & Kegley's emergence.
While the team's record didn't necessarily show it, Lynn Street's biggest stars took a big step up last season. Both players hit the .500 mark in batting average, notably in different ways. Kegley established himself as the team's go-to HR guy, while Brassell has become notorious for his well-placed base hits. The two have definitely cemented themselves as Lynn Street's backbone but it remains to be seen if they can translate those stats into wins.  

3. Can Mookie hit?
ORWBL's most lovable party animal enters this season with the same question as last: can he hit? In 16 plate appearances last season, Mookie had just 1 base hit. The implementation of the DH rule last season can pretty much be attributed to the contrast in Mookie's game. He is a solid pitcher for Lynn Street, but unless he can figure his swing out expect another DH-filled season for the Mooks.


KEY CONTRIBUTORS 

OF N. Brassell | .500 AVG, 18 HR, 23 RBI
OF Z. Brassell | .433 AVG, 12 HR, 17 RBI
OF Kegley | .518 AVG, 30 HR, 43 RBI
P Ev King | .422 AVG, 10 HR, 11 RBI | 1-1, 3 SO, 7.71 ERA
OF Lev Miller | .440 AVG, 28 HR, 44 RBI
P Mikey Smith | .323 AVG, 7 HR, 14 RBI | 2-3, 2 SO, 10.55 ERA
P Mookie | 4-11, 16 SO, 7.88 ERA
OF Guy Wilson | .447 AVG, 12 HR, 18 RBI


BOTTOM LINE

This is the deepest team Lynn Street has had. The signings of Lev and Mikey are huge for filling out their lineup, especially when you look at Lev's ability in the field. Kegley and Brassell are coming off career years, and Guy Wilson showed flashes of taking a leap himself. That being said, there are still big question marks. Outside of Levi the defense is solid, but not spectacular. On offense the Leps are full of streaky hitters. Someone is going to have to step up and be their go-to-guy, but it remains to be seen who that will be. Nonetheless, 2020 projects to be an improvement over 2019.

2020 PREDICTION

9-15