The Ultimate (Backyard) Baseball Team

Greetings from Australia mates!

As some of our beloved readers know, I am currently in the middle of my semester studying abroad in Wollongong, Australia. The transition to Aussie life has been quite smooth – there aren’t too many big differences between our cultures. I have submerged myself into their beach lifestyle, have gotten into some Aussie music, and have even picked up on some of their lingo.

But one aspect of Australian life I have had trouble adjusting to goes against the very core of which I stand – sports.

Although I do enjoy me some footie (rugby), I must say that I have a major distaste for cricket. Cricket may be the national sport of Australia, but I just find it to be a more illogical, boring version of baseball.

And seeing how I used to be the manager of the greatest baseball team ever assembled, I think I know a thing or two about baseball.

Back in the day, I was a Backyard Baseball fanatic. I was obsessed. Just as much as America loves Jersey Shore or Tiger Woods loves sexting porn-stars, I loved Backyard Baseball.

And with two weeks left until Opening Day for Major League Baseball, I give you the breakdown of my Backyard Baseball team’s lineup (listed in batting order).

1. Pete Wheeler – CF

“Wheels” is penciled in at the leadoff spot and centerfield due to his swift feet that rivals that of a cheetah. Pete is a bit clumsy and tends to space out every once in a while, but is a serviceable outfielder that also can take the mound if needed. He also packs a punch at the plate, with above-average power for a leadoff man. But his strength is his speed, and Wheeler will always be tops in the league when it comes to stolen bases. Here’s how most games start: Wheeler bunts his way to first. Two pitches later, he’ll already have stolen his way to third.

2. Luanne Lui – LF

When it comes to pure speed, Lui might have a slight edge over Wheeler. Teaming with Wheeler, there is no denying they make the fastest one-two punch in (Backyard) baseball. Lui’s biggest role is that of the team player: she will often need to move Wheeler to scoring position with the power hitters on deck, and she often shifts to center field whenever Wheeler takes the mound. The youngest player in the Backyard Baseball league, Lui will always be seen playing with her cherished teddy bear in hand.

3. Pablo Sanchez – SP

Pablo Sanchez, without a doubt, is the best player in (Backyard) baseball. You might not believe that when you first look at the chubby, short Hispanic kid, but with a versatile offensive game that is only topped by his masterful pitching, Sanchez is a must-have for any baseball team. The perfect No. 3 hitter, Sanchez consistently makes contact with a swing that could blast a 500-foot homerun at any moment. Sanchez’s pitching is unmatched. A scorching fastball, a back-breaking curveball, and a heart-stopping changeup are a few of Sanchez’s weapons, and he owns basically every single pitching record in (backyard) baseball. Sanchez’s gut protrudes out his shirt, and team management has often asked Sanchez to cut down on his nachos and burritos, but Sanchez has yet to show up to Spring Training in shape. But with the numbers that he puts up, I doubt anyone really cares.

4. Achmed Khan – RF

The most powerful bat on the squad belongs to Achmed, who always leads the league in homeruns and RBI. He can struggle when trying to hit to the opposite side of the field, but give him a pitch anywhere on the inside of the plate, and you can expect him to pull it halfway to China. Khan packs a solid arm in right field, and takes over behind the plate when Kenny Kawaguchi comes in to pitch late in games.

5. Amir Khan – 2B

Following Achmed is his little brother Amir. Unlike his older brother, Amir is much more of a line-drive hitter that bases his game on hitting behind the ball to the opposite side of the field. It often looks like his pants are a bit too big for him, but Amir is an underrated fielder and one of the better middle infielders in the league.

6. Kiesha Phillips – 1B

Known as the “neighborhood clown,” Phillips usually makes her opponents tremble, not laugh. An impressive physical specimen, Phillips usually isn’t too far behind Achmed in the homerun rankings. She also has great range in the field. A converted outfielder, Phillips has quick feet and often makes highlight-worthy plays along the first-base line. With her imposing physical frame, Phillips has been the subject of several steroids accusations, which Phillips has vehemently denied.

7. Stephanie Morgan – SS

Simply put, Stephanie Morgan is a baseball player. A solid batter, a great defensive shortstop, and an all-around team player, Morgan is definitely someone you want in your clubhouse. Her game isn’t flashy – most of her hits are singles – but she still puts up above-average numbers while sporting great instincts and awareness.

8. Annie Frazier – 3B

Frazier is the team’s newest addition. Before Frazier took over the hot corner, the position belonged to Jocinda Smith. But after Smith’s batting numbers dropped and a few reported altercations with team management, Smith was dropped for Frazier. A solid third baseman and a doubles machine, Frazier has been a pleasant surprise at the eighth spot. Frazier often sports a shirt with a rainbow on it, and rumors have been swirling that Frazier is a flaming lesbo.

9. Kenny Kawaguchi – C/RP

How’s this for amazing: Kawaguchi is a better baseball player with no legs than most people are with two. He is a below-average hitter, but Kawaguchi handles pitchers exceptionally well, and is the anchor of the team’s bullpen. His calm demeanor and wicked changeup has led one scout to call him “Trevor Hoffman in a wheelchair.”

Was this the greatest baseball team ever assembled? Well, seeing how I haven’t lost a game in 10 years and Pablo Sanchez throws a perfect game 50% of the time, I don’t think there is any doubt.

I look forward to hearing your thoughts. Play ball!


29 Responses to “The Ultimate (Backyard) Baseball Team”

  1. 1 Peter March 20, 2010 at 5:22 pm

    Mikey Thomas NEEDS to catch. He has one of the best bats in the game. Granted, he is an awful fielder, but sticking him at catcher masks his weaknesses. He is also capable of backing up first. All in all, his weaknesses in the field are masked by his powerful bat. Do not be fooled by his short stature, he is capable of hitting with the biggest guys in the league. Trade him for Kenny Kawaguchi.

    Swap Luanne Lui with Tony Delvecchio and Annie Frazier with his sister Angela. Tony play’s left, Angie pitches, Amir plays third, Pete plays second, and Pablo moves to center.

    Here is my line up.

    1. Pete Wheeler 2B
    2. Tony Delvecchio LF
    3. Pablo Sanchez CF
    4. Achmed Kahn RF
    5. Mikey Thomas C
    6. Keisha Phillips 1B
    7. Amir Kahn 3B
    8. Stephanie Morgan SS
    9. Angela Delvecchio SP

    Pete bunts. Tony lines into the right-center gap, Wheeler to third. Pablo triples two runs in. Achmed hits on onto the big screen in straightaway center. Mikey Thomas one bounces the fence, but, due to his lack of speed, only makes it to first. Keisha Phillips, after hitting two long, foul homers finally straightens one out and hits a deep fly ball over the right field wall. Amir Kahn hits an opposite field line drive over the third baseman’s head and ends up with a stand-up double. Stephanie grounds out to second, Kahn to third. Angie attempts to bunt Kahn home on a risky suicide squeeze, but pops the bunt into the air and Kahn is doubled up. Six runs in the first with the top of the lineup coming up in the second.

    • 2 Jay March 21, 2010 at 1:33 am

      There is a reason Pablo Sanchez is pictured pitching on the cover of Backyard Baseball – he has a stud arm. Plus, having him pitch allows you to have another big bat on your team, rather than having the eh Angela. Amir has too weak of an arm to play third, and I think playing Wheeler at 2B is an iffy call. The kid’s got poor coordination, and his speed is his best asset.

      Mikey Thomas can hit the ball ridiculously well, but come on, the kid runs slower than Brad Miller. If he doesn’t hit it over the fence, he’ll get tagged at second (as I see you mentioned). He’s a liability. He’s at first, and then will probably get tagged out on either Kiesha’s long fly to Kahn’s opposite drive. I don’t know if you can tell, but speed is a must-have in my lineup. That’s also why Tony doesn’t sniff my team.

      I know Luanne Lui is an unpopular choice, but a). she might be asian, we don’t know b). she’s the youngest player in the league, definitely worth developing c). she can always get on by bunting.

      I wouldn’t sleep on Annie Frazier. I didn’t think much of her at first, but she’s been a nice addition at third and at the bottom of the lineup.

    • 3 cow1567 August 14, 2014 at 8:25 pm

      Can you please tell me what is the best batting order and fielding order for this team.

      Little Wombats
      1 Pablo Sanchez
      2 Dmitri Petrovich
      3 Ronny Dobbs
      4 Angela Delvecchio
      5 Reese Worthington
      6 Pete Wheeler
      7 Mikey Thomas
      8 Ashley Webber
      9 Sidney Webber

  2. 4 Carro March 20, 2010 at 7:30 pm

    This is a fantastic post. You have some very solid points. Man, that Kawaguchi kid was a stud. And perfect description on Pete Wheeler.

  3. 5 Mike June 23, 2010 at 7:28 pm

    Little Giants (Black):

    1. Pablo Sanchez 3rd/RP
    2. Pete Wheeler CF
    3. Achmed Khan 1st
    4. Stephanie Morgan SS
    5. Ashley Webber 2nd
    6. Amir Khan RF
    7. Sidney Webber LF
    8. Annie Frazier C
    9. Angela Delvecchio SP

  4. 6 Cassidy Higdon June 14, 2011 at 8:19 pm

    Red Rockets:

    1. Amir 2B (solid lead-off)
    2. Achmed 3B
    3. Pete Wheeler CF
    4. Pablo Sanchez RF
    5. Kiesha LF
    6. Jocinda Smith 1B
    7. Maria Luna C (sleeper)
    8. Stephanie Morgan SS
    9. Kenny Kawaguchi P

    I could never stand Kenny at bat so I think I might swap him out for Lui or someone, cause he’s not even that great of a pitcher. I would usually bring in Amir Khan for relief and he had a 0 ERA. I didn’t really think too much about strategy in my lineup so I just loaded up the front 4 and blasted homers all season, with Amir, Achmed, and Pablo having 10 apiece and Petey with 8. Keisha is also a great hitter and had 9 homers, and is a great fit fo the outfield with her speed and fielding. Surprisingly, I had Maria Luna blast off 8 home runs, so I think that coupled with her decent speed makes her a keeper. She did, however, have horrible fielding skills so I moved her from 2nd to catcher. I also had problems with Achmed’s fielding at third, as his “rocking out” often distracted him which pissed me off to no end. Jocinda’s speed is horrendous but she can jack a homer or two and is a wonderful 1st baseman. I had trouble with Stephanie Morgan in the batting average department during the playoffs, but she was higher in the order during the season.

  5. 7 Jordan January 10, 2012 at 5:47 am

    You have a great line-up and some great points. However, Mikey Thomas power goes unmatched, sure he is not a contact hitter or has a good glove but he has an arm. Also Tony Delvecchio is an underated batter and fielder and has a great arm as well. Also Kenny Kawaguchi has more endurance at pitcher than Pablo. Also try Jocinda Smith at 1B better there than 3B. I am 19 and have been playing this game since I was 6. My line-up is as follows:

    1. Pete Wheeler (C)
    2. Kenny Kawaguchi (SP)
    3. Pablo Sanchez (2B)
    4. Mikey Thomas (3B)
    5. Achmed Khan (RF)
    6. Kiesha Phillips (CF)
    7. Jocinda Smith (1B)
    8. Amir Khan (LF)
    9. Tony Delvecchio (SS)

  6. 8 FB June 21, 2012 at 9:45 pm

    Totally agree with your assessment of Amir Khan. Such an underated infielder. Occassionally I go with Dante Robinson instead of Amir at 2nd because of his extra speed, but Amir, especially when paired with Achmed, is a winner.

    Gotta play the great Michael Rex Thomas in the outfield – as he says, he likes playing there because he doesn’t have to pay attention as much. That said, here’s my lineup.

    1. Pete Wheeler CF (perfect for CF and leadoff)
    2. Stephanie Morgan SS (the female Derek Jeter)
    3. Pablo Sanchez 3B (great in the infield, can pitch late in games)
    4. Michael Rex Thomas RF (great RBI man, and even though he’s slow he can walk home when the next two hit bombs)
    5. Kiesha Phillips 1B (the female Willie McCovey)
    6. Achmed Khan C (best walk-up music in the game)
    7. Amir Khan 2B (see above)
    8. Annie Frazier LF (She loves hitting the opposite way… pun intended)
    9. Luanne Lui P (turn the lineup over with speed)

  7. 9 Guest August 9, 2012 at 3:22 am

    My lineup is one that has worked for me, and I’ll share it with you here.

    Pete Wheeler: RF
    Jocinda Smith: 1B (Never makes an error)
    Pablo Sanchez: CF
    Keisha Phillips: LF
    Achmed Khan: 2B
    Mikey Thomas: 3B (C’mon guys, he’s got an amazing arm!)
    Amir Khan: C
    Stephanie Morgan: SS
    Angela Delvecchio: P (Best pitcher in the game)

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  12. 14 Guest June 4, 2013 at 5:23 am

    Mighty Melonheads

    1. Pete Wheeler (CF/1B)
    2. Dimitri Petrovich (2B/1B)
    3. Achmed Khan (C/LF)
    4. Pablo Sanchez (LF/P)
    5. Amir Khan (3B/P)
    6. Sally Dobbs (P/1B)
    7. Kiesha Phillips (1B/C)
    8. Annie Frazier (LF/RF)
    9. Stephanie Morgan (SS/2B/3B)

    I have always liked Dimitri at second despite fielding being weak and his hitting is actually decent. Sally Dobbs is a well rounded pitcher and hitter. Everyone else speaks for themselves.

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  18. 20 Jack August 14, 2013 at 6:58 pm

    Ultimate lineup:

    1. Pete Wheeler (CF)
    2. Amir Khan (SS)
    3. Pablo Sanchez (C) *great player but sucks at fielding*
    4. Achmed Khan (LF)
    5. Kiesha Phillips (2B) *overall better player than Pablo Sanchez*
    6. Mikey Thomas (1B)
    7. Dmitri Petrovich (3B) *incredibly underrated player. I’m surprised that more people didnt have him*
    8. Tony Delvecchio (RF) *kid has a cannon*
    9. Kenny Kawaguchi (P)

  19. 21 Anthony January 2, 2014 at 4:19 pm

    My Lineup has worked for me since i was literally 2 (15 now)
    1. Amir Khan (SP/SS) He’s my favourite character and ironically has an older brother identical to my older brother. He hits contact brilliantly and was one of my leading home run hitters of the season, also pitching 6 shut outs and 2 perfect games.
    2. Achmed Khan (3B) He hits power brilliantly and can hold his own at 3rd. My 3rd highest home run hitter.
    3. Ashley Webber (LF) Great all rounder and actually hit brilliantly, scoring the most doubles in the league.
    4. Pablo Sanchez (CF) It’s pablo. What else do you want me to say. Fun fact: He has the same birthday as me 😀
    5. Luanne Lui (SS/RP) She is a great releif pitcher for Amir because whenever some hits a ground ball she just sprints over to it and doesnt even need to throw to first. She just chases them down.
    6. Mikey Thomas (RF) He’s a great hitter and has a cannon.
    7. Pete Wheeler (1B) He’s on first simply because my logic as a kid was that he was fast enough to get to ground balls and back to first before the other team mates could.
    8. Stephanie Morgan (2B) Great all round.
    9. Keisha Phillips (C) She is a boss hitter and had the most RBIs, but not most homers. She’s in catcher for a technical reason. Being rather large her hitbox is bigger than say, Ronnies or Luannes, so she tends to never miss the ball.

    But I also have this team that I use from time to time:
    Luanne starts the pitching but when she gets tired Vicki pitches. When this happens Vicki goes to pitch, Stephanie covers 1st base. Ashley then covers 3rd (Steph’s base) and Luanne covers her at 2nd.
    1. Ashley Webber (2B/3B) Same as above
    2. Sidney Webber (LF) Just read Ashley’s
    3. Vicki Kawaguch (1B/RP) At first base she moves to the ball quickly when she needs to and she also can pitch great. She’s the best fielder in the game and never drops throws to her.
    4. Keisha Phillips (C) Same as above.
    5. Jocinda Smith (CF) She may be slow but she catches and throws great and can smash the ball too.
    6. Annie Fraiser (RF) She is a perfect all rounder in the areas you need, and can play outfield well.
    7. Stephanie Morgan (3B/1B) Same as above.
    8. Kimmy Eckman (SS) Picked her for the lols but she ended up being my best hitter in the team, with 19 home runs in the season, and hit my 2nd furthest one ever for 854 feet. Pablo holds the record for 912 feet.
    9. Luanne Lui (SP/2B) Same as above. Teddy needs to be a standalone character…

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  22. 24 Andy August 19, 2015 at 5:46 pm

    Where’s Mikey? Where’s Jocinda?

    Mighty Rockets (Red)
    1. Pete Wheeler (CF)
    2. Achmed Khan (3rd base)
    3. Keisha Phillips (RF)
    4. Pablo Sanchez (LF)
    5. Mikey Thomas (C)
    6. Jocinda Smith (1B)
    7. Stephanie Morgen (SS)
    8. Amir Khan (2B)
    9. Angela Delvevecchio (P)

    I think that if you have enough power at the top of the order you can have better defense in the bottom. If you can have Angela go the complete game, her fielding isn’t a problem. This is the perfect team. They did win 29 championships in a row!

  23. 25 Ben August 24, 2015 at 12:40 pm

    Still Playing the 1997 version…
    My favorite line-up (based on ’97 rating):

    1. Pete Wheeler CF/No. 3 P
    plus speed with gap power, a la Brett Gardner. He can also pitch sometime.

    2. Keisha Phillips LF/RF
    Great bat with solid speed. Giancarlo Stanton anyone?

    3. Pablo Sanchez No. 1 P/2B
    GOAT!! Pedroia + young A-Rod. Also No. 1 starter with great stuff and command.

    4. Mikey Thomas C/1B
    Big Pop and ok catcher with great arm…Jorge Posada like

    5. Annie Frazier 3B
    good bat and solid fielding…perhaps the female version of Matt Carpenter.

    6. Achmed Khan 1B/C
    excellent hitter with below average D. Someone like Miguel Cabrera (Although Khan is faster).

    7. Jocinda Smith RF:
    plus bat and plus defense…..The female Jose Bautista.

    8. Stephanie Morgan SS
    Solid all-rounder with little pop. Jose Iglesias is a good comparison.

    9. Tony Kawaguchi 2B/No. 2 P/C
    Worst hitter in the line up with above-average speed and a good finesse pitcher and good fielder. The Martin Prado of my team.

    If there is a DH in the game, it would be Khan…and with Khan moved to DH, I’ll have Thomas at first, Sanchez at second and Kawaguchi at catcher. The new pitcher would be Angela Delvecchio. Another great bat and a good pitcher but is limited defensively.

  24. 26 Seth October 25, 2015 at 1:12 am

    It’s almost impossible to lose at this game. My lineup is as follows
    1.Gretchen H (RF)
    2.Lisa C (Ss)
    3.Dmitri P (C)
    4.Kimmy E (3B)
    5.Billy Jean B (2B)
    6.Ricky J (1B)
    7.Kenny K (P)
    8.Ashley W
    9.Sidney W

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    Ichiro, custom, ken Griffey junior, Pablo Sanchez, Sammy Sosa, Derek jeter, chipper Jones, sean green, frank Thomas

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