Vol. IV, Issue #3 -
Strat-o-matic Baseball League
League Champion -- PART II
"World Baseball League" – Ted Wesley **
(It is time to meet the champion
of the World Baseball League as he was introduced
by the league's commissioner Jeff Chaput. This is our
second time we have
talked to a SOM Baseball League Champion to discover their
from the Wolfman:
The World Baseball League, or WBL, has been around since 1977.
Currently they have two divisions, one known as the American and
the other as the National. They keep their players from year to
year and have an annual draft of the eligible players not owned
by any team. With just 14 teams in the league, there are usually
good pickings. Eligibility is based on a minimum amount of plate
appearances for the positional players and innings pitched for
the starters and relievers. Over half of the current owners have
been involved with the WBL since the 1980s. Most of the
remaining managers arrived in the 1990s, with the exception of
two who came into the league in the last five years including
their current champion, Ted Wesley, who we had this chance to
interview thanks to commissioner Chaput. So this is the second
league champion we have an opportunity to meet through this new
column for our newsletter. Let's listen carefully as Ted talks about
some of his keys for his success ...)
To continue our coverage of the WBL (World Baseball League) as
besides speaking to their commissioner Jeff Chaput,
we also have a chance to speak to their current league champion,
Ted Wesley. As we will continue to ask the leagues we interview,
like we did with NASOMA last month
(February), to speak to their current champs.
Ted, I want to thank you for accepting my invitation to speak to
us. Welcome to the Ultimate Strat Baseball Newsletter.
Thank you for contacting me regarding the World Baseball League.
Commissioner Jeff Chaput and the two assistant commissioners
Matt Chaput & Conner Chaput run a tremendous league that
Ted, I normally ask a few personal questions first to give our members a chance
to meet you and know a little bit about your background before
we talk about Strat. So first, which part of the world do you
live in right now and is this where you grew up?
I grew up in Northern New Jersey (Ramsey). I currently reside
in Pittsfield, Massachusetts.
When you were younger - did you actually play baseball and if so
what was your best position?
(Photo of Ted above taken during the WBL 2016 live draft day
held on March 18th)
My youngest memory of playing was with a whiffle ball at about 4
or 5 years old with my best friend Jeff Friedson who lived
across the street. I played baseball as soon as I was eligible
in the town league and played through the Babe Ruth league or
My best position was second base. I also was the third base
coach for my varsity High School team. I was the first student
to be a third base coach in the league, flashing signs, sending
runners and I was a pinch hitter and runner as well.
What about which MLB team did you root for when you were younger
and are you still a fan of this team? Are there any ball
players you really followed or were your favorites or idols?
I have always been and will always be a Boston Red Sox fan. My
favorite National League team is the New York Mets. My favorite
Red Sox’s were Yaz, Rico Petrocelli and Reggie Smith. Favorite
Met was Tom Seaver.
My favorite player that played before I was born was Ted
Williams, who in my opinion there has never been a better hitter
and he was the first true player to study the art of hitting. I
have read “My Turn at Bat” several times.
My best friend Jeff Friedson was as big a Yankee fan as I was a
Sox fan. We always played baseball and baseball games together,
SOM, and various other baseball table games.
How did you hear about SOM Baseball? When did you first begin to
play the game?
My friend Jeff had the game and I played with him. I was about
12 years old.
What is your history participating in leagues (face-to-face or
As a kid I played face to face. The WBL season is computer
based and playoffs are face to face.
Have you ever played in any tournaments?
How did you become a member of the WBL, how many years have you
played in the league - which team do you manage?
My real live boss is Matt Chaput. We talked about his SOM league all the
time at work. As soon as there was a team opening, he asked if
I’d be interested. I was a rookie team owner/manager last year.
I manage the Atlantic City Surf.
As I indicated, Jeff said you are the current league champion -
can you tell us about this championship team - which players do
Michael Saunders, Freddie Freeman, Jose Altuve, Jake Arrieta,
Zack Greinke, Adrois Chapman, Craig Kimbrel, Koji Uehara and
How did you build your team?
Last year I had to draft a catcher (Norris & Grandal) and
starting pitchers. The team was in very good shape when I
became the manager.
What are the keys to your success with this team?
A balanced approach. Fielding, Hitting and pitching.
Is there special strategies you use to build your team?
I value OBP over the long ball. My special orientation when
I am playing my games is that I like pitchers that strike out a
high percentage of hitters and batters with a low strikeout percentage.
Have you won other seasons before in the WBL (or for that matter
any other leagues you have played in)?
I played in an online league (SymDynasty) a few years ago. I
would take over “orphaned” teams and have a fair amount of
success leading most teams to the playoffs but I never won a
We always ask those we interview if they have any tips or advice
for our members that could help them with success with their
own game playing?
I recommend to draft by results and not by the famous name of
the players. Be fully engaged (in your league) from preparing
for the draft through your daily team management.
What are the keys for a league manager to create and play with a
good and competing team in your opinion?
Do not underestimate the value of a good pitching staff. I
prefer to have a balanced batting order than a couple of home
Have you ever tried to play the on-line baseball leagues that
Strat-o-matic Offers? Ted:
What do you like about the WBL?
The way the league is run, our need to manage our injuries, the
drafts we do, plus not only being able to contend now but also the ability to
draft players for the future. The league is updated every day as
well as if any new trades take place. I like the excellent use of
available statistical information that helps us to build our team.
There is a great history to our league and many good stories I
could talk about of past games and the drafts. Many of our
owners are local and when we meet for our lunches they are
entirely focused upon the league and the games we have played;
who is in first with a bit of friendly trash talking and
discussions about the trades made throughout the year.
What are the members like in this league from your perspective?
The other league members have great knowledge of the game, and a
willingness to make trades, as well as make a great effort into
building their teams. It is truly a good group of engaged team
Have you had any special experiences (certain games that stand
out in your mind that you played or series you played) being a
manager in the WBL that were amazing or very unusual games, or
something you are proud of? Maybe some key trade you made ...
Well denying Matt Chaput (my boss) and the historic Seattle Jets
their 9th World Championship this year was pretty
cool. We made the
biggest deal ever, prior to Opening Day, as Seattle sent us Freddie
Freeman, Mike Minor, plus their 2015 2nd round and
2015 3rd round draft picks for Jonathan Papelbon, Gio
Gonzalez, Joe Mauer and my 2015 1st round pick. The trade
worked out well for both teams as Seattle used the first round pick
for Josh Harrison and with the 2nd pick I chose Jake
Arrieta and the 3rd round pick was used for Phil
Hughes who had the second lowest ERA in the league at 2.67
Why do you personally like playing SOM?
I enjoy the realism and opportunity to play the game as if I was
sitting in the dugout managing. It also keeps me really engaged
in the entire MLB season. I follow the Atlantic City Surf players in
Finally is there anything else you would like to share with our
members that I didn't ask you before that you think is important
to let them know about?
Your SOM game play is truly enhanced when you participate in a
league. I’m very fortunate to be a part of one of the best
leagues around. I encourage all SOM players to be a part of a
So thanks Ted for spending time with us. Good Luck in the next
season of the WBL (do you think you will be their 2016 champ?)
Wolfman, thank you for publishing this fine newsletter (USBN)
and spotlighting the WBL. I’m going to give it my best effort
even though some owners think of The Surf as a AAA team, LOL.
There is tremendous managerial talent with very good teams to
challenge me for the crown.
And if a member of the newsletter wanted to contact you or had
some questions for you, what is the best way to do it?
Please feel free to email me at
TedW344@gmail.com, I’ll be
happy to discuss the WBL or SOM.
Enjoy the MLB and SOM baseball season.
All the best and thank you.
To Read the Interview with the commissioner of the
WBL from this month's issue,
just click on the link here:
WBL Commissioner Interview
Comments from the Wolfman:
It is always nice to see how good friends (I mean your Boss at
work - wow!) have a love for this game. We wish to
acknowledge Ted for the accomplishment to win this highly
competitive league in his second year. I know it took me 7 years
before I won my 1st league during my 3rd time being in the World
Series. Thanks, Wolfman Shapiro :-) )