Last seen as members of the Great Lakes Godfathers, the infamous Granny's Quilt return to ORWBL finally possessing their own squad. Despite playing in the past as members of the now-defunct Cabo Yabos, the tourney stars enter 2020 as the Mishawaka wait for it... MeatSpins. Comments about the team name aside (Mishawaka Matadors would've been badass, just saying), the MeatSpins can play. They have a winner of practically every tournament on their roster, as well as one of the most exciting young prospects in the game in Biscuits! They're Granger's favorite team, and the commissioner's worst nightmare. Meet, the Mishawaka MeatSpins.
WHO ARE THEY?
I'll save the full roster for you to discover when your team plays them (or if the website ever gets updated but I wouldn't hold your breathe on that one). However, what you need to know is that this team is loaded. From top to bottom, the MeatSpins posses talent from across the slow-pitch wiffleball world. Obviously the Granny's Quilt guys are here, but members of the Muffs, Cult West, Homerun or Bust, and the Malorts are all represented on Mishawaka. (Quick sidebar: A friend of mine from school who lives in Chicago busted out a bottle of Malort and conned a group of my friends into taking shots of it... that night did not end well. Don't K against the MeatSpins for your own sake). Their players are heavily decorated, possessing winners of a Hometown Cup, WWBC title, HD Classic belt, and a Cam Snead belt. They've played in the toughest games, battled against the best of the best, and drunk tweeted as much as anyone. #dontsleep
1. Antho's Average.
Their biggest addition from an ORWBL-perspective has to be Anthony Rieff. The former (somehow two-time) Rookie of the Year broke the single-season record for batting average last year by a wide margin. Rieff hit an unfathomable .747... almost .75 more than the previous record. After such a surreal season with the Landsharks, all eyes will be on the Muff/Warrior to have another stellar year. Given his dependability as an every-game guy, expect Rieff to have another big season as a MeatSpin.
As mentioned earlier, the MeatSpins are going to be deep. No matter the position, Mishawaka will have someone able to fill in a spot when needed. But who are we most excited about seeing? How about the HR or Bust guys. Aside from Matt Went, the only HR or Bust member who has ORWBL experience is Shane Forslund (who played two whole games for the Newts in 2012). With Shane, his brother Evan, and their teammate Neal Hickle, HR or Bust has a serious shot to burst onto the ORWBL scene this season. Once again, it remains to be seen who will actually be getting the majority of the innings here. Granny's guys are obviously the expected starters and the Muffs have their share of MeatSpins, too. Nick Thoman is the guy to watch out for awards-wise. He had high odds in The Black Cat's preseason MVP odds so at the very least he's a decent bet for a big statistical season (going out on a limb assuming they're taking stats).
3. Will They Care Enough to Show Up?
The lasting image of Cabo's ORWBL run wasn't their stellar 2017 or Grant Duncan's near MVP season. No, it was being banned from the playoffs in 2018 for not playing all their games. We all know these guys can mash. They've done it at all the tourneys. There may be an argument to be made that the third outfielder in ORWBL throws them off a tad, but I'm not here to make that. When they show up and care, they're good. When they don't, they aren't. Pretty simple. My bet is on them showing up and being good this year, but it wouldn't shock me if they start needing to reschedule games and end up ineligible for the postseason. Hell, its 2020. Nothing would shock me.
OF Nick Thoman
OF Ryan Warmoth | .279 AVG, 11 HR, 13 RBI
OF Erick Wodrich
OF Austin Rieff | .488 AVG, 16 HR, 24 RBI
P Anthony Rieff |.747 AVG, 30 HR, 48 RBI
OF Erick Mentock | .459 AVG, 15 HR, 20 RBI
C Dan The Cat | .367 AVG, 8 HR, 13 RBI
OF Shane Forslund
C Cory Kronewitter
OF Joey Stratton
C Grant Duncan
The MeatSpins are top tier talent-wise. Their team members have an abundance of tournament and league experience alike. However, this was also the case with Cabo. For the MeatSpins to avoid the same fate as the 2018 Yabos (who were inedible to play in the playoffs), they'll need to assemble some sort of consistent lineup who can show up every week. My money is on that being the case. This team is built different than those Cabo teams. After sitting 2019 out, a lot of these guys will be playing some of their first league games in over two years. It may take a few weeks to shake the rust off these old bones, but don't you worry. Once it's shaken, they'll be coming for Al's head. Literally.