The Chelmsford Cougars and the Lowell Chiefs made the first trade of this season last week, swapping pitcher Jeremy Ellis and pitcher Tadd LeRocque. The trade is pretty even as both players possess the same skill set. LeRocque may hold the advantage for power, while Ellis may hold the advantage for fielding.
Though Ellis' numbers have been sub-par this season, a change of scenery may help him regain his old form. He has a championship under his belt, so the Cougars locker room will gain more championship leadership.
As for LeRocque, this is his 2nd trade in four seasons making him a journeyman in search of a home. He had a career year last year, but has started off relatively slow this season with only 1 dinger and a 5.45 ERA. A change of scenery may also help him, as he returns to a former team in the Chiefs.
When asked about the trade, Jeremy Ellis had this to say. "I think having Thompson's golden hands behind me will help my pitching greatly. Also, with Sully and I's trash talking, I look forwarded to turning our team into the most hated and feared in the league. Time for me to lose my rubbers, find a beer and start a championship run in Chelmsford."
LeRocque had a different out look. "At first I was pissed because I felt like Thompson gave up on me too early. However, I really like Jon and in looking forward to having the first pick in the winter, lol (laugh out loud)."
Not much of a big splash and not much is expecting to change for both teams, but there is a lot of upside for both players.
Written by Nick O'Keefe
NEAWL Senior Staff
Say it isn't so, but Mike Houle is turning into one of the premier players of the NEAWL. After an abysmal start to his career playing with the Blaze, Houle was drafted by the Bassholes for a look at redemption. He was an integral part of the Basshole offense which eventually led him to the highly coveted NEAWL championship T-shirt.
One could retire after winning a championship feeling their career fulfilled, but Houle would not rest. He decided to leave Flushing Pond, shacked up in a chicken coop instead, and founded the Los Pollos Blancos of Arlington. Here, he would create his own road in search for another championship. Houle cunningly acquired a franchise with valuable assets he could turn into a promising season. In his first year as GM, he arguably had the best draft out of any team, picking up members from a rival professional league with vast Wiffle ball experience to helm his pitching rotation. His Cinderella season came up just short though, losing in 3 games in the championship to the team he decided to cut ties with.
With the future of the organization looking grim, Houle took it upon himself to undertake another task he was not familiar with...pitching. He spent many days in the fields of Arlington, shirtless, in 100 degree weather perfecting his craft. Blister after blister, his pitching hand became a perfectly tuned weapon, delivering hard, accurate, deep movement. People still laughed at him. People criticized him, berated him, but Houle knew of his greatness and would not deter.
The time came where he had to prove his worth. Opening night. First pitch. His bitter rival, Jon Anderson, at the plate. The crowd watched silently in anticipation of this highly touted match up. He reached back into his arsenal of pitches and delivered his first pitch of the 2015-S season. You could hear the ripples of the air that cut through the holes of the plastic sphere. You could feel the weight of the suspense hanging heavily on your shoulders. You could hear the loud thud of the ball hitting the red plastic and the cheers of the thousands in attendance as the umpire threw back one of his arms to signal the strike out. Jon Anderson was in disbelief as well as those who were lucky to witness the greatness that just happened.
With new tooled Houle on the mound, it's no surprise the Pollos are 3-1 at the top of their division. I should also state that Houle is a top 2 hitter in the league, mounting a gigantic .474 batting average, only behind his team mate, Scotty 'the body' Martell. Many believe this is just a string of luck, but, I for one, am a true believer.
Written by Nick O'Keefe
NEAWL Senior Staff