Richardson City Thundercats
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The Richardson City (RC) Thunder Cats are a Menard's League team in The USBA (sometimes referred to by the locals as "Rock City"), based in Richardson, TX. The franchise was originally known as The Montreal Rivermen and is headed by GM Imran K, who took over just before the start of the 2017 season.

Roster



History

2014-16

Various GM's tried their hand at managing the franchise originally known as The Rivermen, to no success. Since being drafted into the league, the club went 153-171 in that time period and managed to be mediocre or worse every season.

2017

With the team in turmoil, The Rivermen made another change at the helm before the start of the season, installing Imran K as the new GM.

Imran wasted little time making a mark on his new franchise by trading young ace John Kaufman and star hitter Virgil Eberle. Veteran Kevin Howard was also dealt, which was, yet, another salary dump. The club signed two big free-agents in hopes to have some stop-gap offense for a couple of years with all that extra cash laying around, while promoting it's finances towards building a better farm system. Closer Kevin Woods was also dealt in another key deal that netted a couple of nice prospects. In hopes of building a farm, the club spent nearly $22 million in International Amateur Free agency to promote building from within.

With it's young players still learning to play in the show, the club was decimated by two huge injuries to RF Dong-joon Ch'oe and LF Casey Bright in it's most important stretch of the season. The offense had to be solely carried by mid-season acquisition Jose Rodriguez in the latter part of the season and those injuries and anemic offense cost the club the relegation series. There were many bright spots to be had, however, as two of Richardson City's young, uberly talented pitchers in Cordell Wilson and Javier Ramirez almost willed them to victory in the final game of the season. Javier pitched on two day's rest out of the bullpen, after getting the win in Game 1.

The club finished the year 42-66, being relegated to The Menard's League and had the biggest attendance figures in franchise history. With a solid plan in place, the fans were excited for the future as the young prospects and high draft choices from the 2017 draft were coming to fruition.

2017 Off-season

Despite some bright spots, Imran was not happy upon choking away the relegation series and decided to fire the whole coaching staff and the scouting department. With less than $16 million dollars to spend entering the off-season, the club spent nearly $10 million a year on updating it's coaching and scouting staffs and now prides itself on having the best of both categories, in all of USBA.

The club still had holes to fill, with only three reliable starting pitchers, and a fourth being Rookie Dave Reed (who by the latest scouting reports has near Kaufman upside). Luckily, Imran was able to fill those holes without spending much money. Lefty hurler Mathies Pilegaard signed a one year, $1.2 million deal, a bargain considering his career ERA is less than 3. Super utility man and elite contact hitter 2B Julio Morin was also acquired for $2 million dollars and will fill the void at 2B created by the departing 2B Pete Davidson. In hopes of finding more depth the club also signed International Free-agent and SP Yusuke Saito who hopes to continue his success stateside. Saito is even more talented than Pilegaard and will be the club's 6th Starter entering the season.


Notable players

Current Stars and Projections

Future Stars and Projections

Notable Draft Choices

Major Trades and Acquisitions

Franchise Records

Team Records



Single Season Records


Batting

  • Batting Average 1. Ernesto Cruz .318 (2014) 2. Ares Jilavian .316 (2014) 3. Jose Rodriguez .303 (2017)
  • On-Base Percentage: 1. Ares Jilavian .405 (2014) 2. Kevin Howard .390 (2015) 3. Antonio Lopez .389 (2014)
  • Slugging Percentage: 1. Kevin Howard .624 (2015) 2. Jose Rodriguez .620 (2017) 3. Kevin Howard .553 (2014)
  • Home Runs: 1. Kevin Howard 39 (2015) 2. Kevin Howard 33 (2014) 3. Kevin Howard 30 (2016)
  • OPS: 1. Kevin Howard 1.015 (2015) 2. Jose Rodriguez 1.008 (2017) 3. Kevin Howard .920 (2014)
  • Hits: 1. Ernesto Castro 120 (2014) 2. Ares Jilavian 119 (2014) 3. Kevin Howard 118 (2014)
  • RBIS: 1. Kevin Howard 97 (2015) 2. Kevin Howard 86 (2014) 3. Kevin Howard 78 (2016)
  • Stolen Bases: 1. Harold Logan 36 (2014) 2. Rick Harrison 24 (2016) 3. Virgil Eberle 23 (2016)
  • Walks: 1. Pete Davidson 68 (2014) 2. Kevin Howard 64 (2015) 3. Kevin Howard 62 (2014)

Pitching


Stadium

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The Thunder Cats play their home games in a brand new ballpark built to house the 2018 season. The Thunder Dome in Rock City is known for it's state-of-the-art features. It is a retractable roof that seats 50,000 screaming heads.
Local radio shows have taken to also just simply referring to it as "Rock Dome", or "The Rock that Jo-Rod built". Jo-Rod, of course, referring to the team's most popular player in superstar 1B Jose Rodriguez.



Season-by-season records

Year Wins Losses Win % Batting Average ERA Payroll
2014 56 52 .519 .278 4.56 $91.5M
2015 48 60 .444 .260 5.36 $79,5M
2016 49 59 .454 .253 4.52 $57.3M
2017 42 66 .389 .242 4.71 $112.9M
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