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05-04-16 08:24 AM
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Mark II Softball Team
Lloyde Nelson
847-256-4234
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., Illinois
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  Welcome  
 

Angie 1961-2015 RIP
Wecome to the Official Angie's Mark II Softball Team Website!

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2015 Angie's Mark II Team

We mourn the loss of Angie, our dear friend, team's namesake and Mark II manager/bartender over our 38 seasons, who passed away 11/18/15, just after her 54th birthday and less than 4 months after her cancer diagnosis.

Angie’s outgoing personality, upbeat attitude and genuine camaraderie will be sorely missed by our players, groupies and fans with whom she cheered at the games and welcomed as friends back at the bar for so many great seasons.

Although the Mark II Lounge may now lack her physical presence, Angie's spiritual presence will fill that place and have its own special place in our hearts forever!

Thanks, Angie...we love you!

Angie's Mark II Softball Team    

This site is the electronic home of the "Original" Mark II Softball Team--playing 12" slow-pitch softball for the Mark II Lounge since 1978!

The 2016 season "Marks" our 39th season of summer softball fun sponsored by the Mark II Lounge!  We are once again playing in the Wednesday Night Mens' League at Evanston's Crown Park.  Playing in the same league in 2015, Angie's Mark II finished the Regular Seaon with a 6-5 record (5th Place among the 12 team league) and went 1-1 in the Playoffs, for an overall record of 7-6. 

See the "Web Update" section below for the latest team news and narrative summaries of this summer's league play, etc.

Please explore all the areas of our site by clicking on one of the links in the pane to the left. Note that the "Handouts-Sheets" folder leads to our 2016 stats, boxscores and administrivia (Team Calendar, League Schedule & Rules and IWBYABs).  Other links in the "Handouts-Sheets" folder will lead to all the Mark II Softball Team historical stats from the 2015 "Stat Pack" as well as all the final stat "Sheets," weekly "Updates," etc for each individual summer league season since 2000.    

For futher info, sign our "Guestbook" or send e-mail to: MarkIISoftball@aol.com

See you out there!
Lloyde Nelson, 5-2-16  

Evanston Rainout Hotline: 847-859-7822 (ext 1199)

Follow Lloyde on Twitter: For timely and important updates, player availabilities, scores, etc, please sign up to be a follower on my Twitter account "@LloydeNelson"



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2015 Angie's Mark II Team & Groupies

Centerfield (Let's Go!)

Handout: Current Administrative--Schedule, Roster, Financials & Rules

Wednesday, May 4
Mark II Current Web Update

Last Updated: Wednesday, 5/4/16:

 

Upcoming Schedule & Player Status:

Tonight, Wednesday, 5/4, (Delayed Opener): 8:00 vs Growlers on Crown's “West” Diamond (formerly #1 and formerly #4—at Main & Dodge). Growlers finished 2-9 & 0-1 last year, their first in the Crown Wednesday League. We beat them in an ugly 15-9 game in late May as the teams combined for 7 errors (4 ours) and 28 hits (15 theirs), and ultimately, the difference was our “Walks’ll Kill ‘Ya” offense (we accepted 9 walks, 7 from their starting pitcher who we knocked out after just 2 innings, while Jonas yielded none in 7). Shawn (arm) is out, but all the other regulars are expected: Jonas, me, Mark, Eric, Larry, Bob B, Ryan, Bob Se, K-Mack, Jeff & Neal.

Recent Results:

Wednesday, 4/27: All games were rained out (and shoulda/coulda been cold-weathered-out even earlier in the day). Thankfully, it started raining around 5:00 PM and that apparently made the final decision easier for Ray and Logan as the Rainout Hotline was updated and the texts and emails went out right around 5:00. Ray was Ray-On-the-Spot and has already published the new schedule which, as expected, moves the entire 4/27 schedule to the end of the regular season (7/13). That means that only one more rainout can be accommodated on the end of the regular season Wednesday schedule before ERD starts scheduling makeups on Fridays (or Tuesdays or Thursdays?).

Administrivia:

It appears that Roe’s replacement has been hired, a guy by the name of Logan. Since we didn’t play last week, I didn’t get a chance to meet him yet.

Heard from a Groupie and an Alum last week…Groupie Cathy Spohnholtz (“Tall Cathy”) and Alum Mark “Luke” Longley both wrote to tell me how much they looked forward to reading these weekly Updates and promised to try to get out and see a game later this summer. Cathy noted: “Glad to see the emails start – It’s always nice to be reminded by your emails that Spring is here (even if the temps are not).” In Luke’s case, he noted that he’s tentatively scheduled to be in town on business late in June and hopes to have the opportunity to catch a game and/or meet the bros. Luke is still at Parata, a “Pharmacy Automation / Medication Management” company in the Durham, NC area that, among other “soft” things, makes machines that count pills for the lazy or numbers-challenged prescription fillers at Walgreen’s, CVS, etc. Amazingly (if you knew him when I did) Luke has ascended to the Executive Vice President of Sales & Business Development position for the company—fancy title, but my guess is that his main job is still to bring the donuts to the Manufacturing Team Meetings (those are the guys who really make the stuff)! Luke also became one of my Twitter Followers (@LloydeNelson—I’m up to 21 now!) although I’m not sure why he’d want to keep track of what out team’s schedules and results are beyond getting the Update.

As yet another way to get people to stop bothering him about rainouts, Ray sent out an email with another way to get rainout status texts (although I think this may result in the same alerts as signing up for texts on the ERD website). Anyway, the procedure is as follows: “You can text COE SOFTBALL to 468311 and you will be automatically subscribed.”

Since his Tuesday (in Elmhurst?) and Sunday morning (at Proesel) leagues were also cancelled due to weather this week, Jeff had enough time on his hands to further research the 52/300 balls. Here’s an interesting article he sent me which pretty much echoes what I wrote last week that it’s all about safety: http://slopitchcentral.ca/about-softballs/ 

  

Money: No Play...no pay!?! Since we didn't play last week, I’m still stuck on having received payment from just 3 other regulars. Based on the Mark II Lounge covering about one-half of our league fees and costs, I will need $50 from each "regular" player this year. I've already paid the $675 in fees, bought a new "Book" and renewed our website subscription, so my bleeding checking account would much appreciate your prompt attention to this matter! I gladly accept cash, checks or electronic fund transfers (via Chase QuickPay to my LN630@aol.comLN630@aol.com email address). As always, regular attendance at the Mark II after our games would go a long way in reciprocating the generosity the Anton Family has shown toward our teams for 39 seasons!

   

See you out there!

LN, 5/2

Old News of (Mostly) High Value (from previous Updates):

Rosters: Please see me to sign the official team rosters/waivers which I must turn into ERD before Game 1 and finalize by Game 6.

Missing a game: If/when you know that you’ll miss game(s) due to a vacation or schedule conflict, please make sure I record those dates on my calendar. The sooner I know, the easier it is for me to plan and get a sub.

ERD Schedule & Rules--Review & Analyses:

  

Schedule: The Wednesday Night League again has a full complement of 12 teams.  That makes for a nice single-round 11 game regular season after which there will be single-elimination all-teams-qualify two-week-long Playoffs, with the #1-#4 seeds getting a first round bye.  We drew a 5 home-6 away schedule with a very odd mix—5 straight home games to open the season followed by 6 away games.  We drew a nice split on the times with 5 games starting at 6:45, 4 at 8:00 and just 2 at 9:15 (weeks 5 & 7).  Our Rivalry Games are week 5 (Slugs at 9:15) and week 10 (Advocates at 6:45).  The new regime has apparently made its “Mark” by dropping the numbers from the diamonds and using the compass for simplicity.  So, we now will play 6 games on the “West” Diamond (formerly #1 or #4—the one on Dodge & Main) and 5 games on the “East” Diamond (formerly #2 and #3--is on Lee).  Not much of a pattern this year: E-W-W-W-E-W-W-E-W-E-E.

    

Teams: Assuming The Chronicles are indeed returning as These Cats, all 11 teams are “retuning teams” (albeit one was last seen in 2014).  That team, Cardinal IP, against whom we were 1-0 in 2014, returns and replaces last year’s last place Dark Knights (1-0 & 1-0).  Unless they pull a WTTW Channel 11 on us (ask Mark), Cardinal IP is likely to replace Dark Knights in the standings, too, as both were 1-10 in their previous Crown League seasons.  (We should know more before our week 7 late game against them).  So, that means the returning teams and our career Crown Park records against them (regular season & playoffs, if applicable) are: Any Given Wednesday (0-1 last year; 0-2 since 2014 as Wednesdays, 4-2 & 1-0 between 2002-2007 as Thursdays and 2-0 & 1-0 in 1998 as Dinosaurs & Enemies); Advocates (1-0 last year; 2-0 since 2014 and 3-2-1 & 1-0 between 2002-2007); The Slugs (0-1 last year; 0-2 since 2014 and 5-0 & 1-0 between 2002-2006); Milford Mudlarks (0-1 & 0-1 last year; 0-2 & 0-1 since 2014 and 2-0 & 0-0 in 2003-2004); Glory Days (1-0 last year; 1-1 since 2014 ); Spiders (1-0 last year; 1-1 since 2014); Growlers (1-0 last year), Batmen (1-0 last year as Team Random), Swingers, who apparently dropped the Smylie Brothers affiliation this year (0-1 last year; 0-2 since 2014) and finally, These Cats (0-1 last year) assuming they played as The Chronicles.

    

Rules:  I did a side-by-side comparison of the 2016 & 2015 ERD Rules.  It appears they are identical EXCEPT that Rule 9, Sec 3 has been eliminated. That’s the rule that allowed the pitcher to pitch from anywhere up to 6’ (straight) behind the rubber.  Jonas, before you go all Mumbles Doomsday about this, let me check with Ray as to whether this omission was intentional and why—hard to believe ERD would take away a rule just put in as a safety improvement.  That aside, it would be a good idea for everyone to review the Evanston Rules (attached) before we start playing.  The most important from a player perspective include: unlimited arc; illegal bats (see the ASA website, a link to which is available on our website); limit of 2 courtesy runners; foul third strike is dead; no "fake" tags; the lightning policy; etc.

    

Communication: 

    

Rain: Evanston's Rainout Hotline is 847-859-7822 x1199.  Evanston also has a Rainout Status on their ERD softball page (http://www.cityofevanston.org/parks-recreation/recreation/softball-leagues/).  And--this is a great convenience(!)--you can sign up to receive an automatic rainout notification text message and/or e-mail message if/when ERD issues an update--sign up for this on the above mentioned softball page (top right).  Note that rainout information is not generally posted/updated until after 4:00 PM and may not be posted until right around game time, so never assume a game is canceled.  These accounts and the Rainout Hotline numbers are listed on the bottom of the Team Calendar and the Team Roster and all are also available on our website Home Page (http://www.eteamz.com/MarkIISoftballTeam/).  The bottom line on rainouts:  If the Hotline is not reporting that the games are postponed and you can’t reach me and I have not sent out an e-mail and/or updated our website and/or my Twitter account is not reporting a rainout or postponement, always assume we are playing & show up!  (Every year we’re amazed and surprised at least once or twice when we’ve played even though it looked like we wouldn’t play right up until game time)!

  

Tweets: Yes, I am a twit who tweets...but only Mark II Softball Team matters, I promise!  So, if you're a twit, please become one of my followers(I’m up to 19!) so you can receive game status changes, field condition updates, etc promptly (and in less than, or equal to, 140 characters)!  My Twitter account is @LloydeNelson (https://twitter.com/LloydeNelson).  As I use this account only to communicate to the team and not as a dialog with me, please do not use the "Reply to:" capability of Twitter as I am very unlikely to promptly review any replies--I still prefer either a phone call or an e-mail/text reply if/when you have new news about your availability, etc.  Finally, our Website also has a link to my Twitter account (in case you've forgotten my name, or--more likely--can't spell it).

A Tribute to Angie from Bob B, 11/18/15:

To the Mark II Softball Team Family,

A little bit of all of us died today.  And it’s hard to imagine the sun will be able to shine as brightly again.

Angie loved life more than anyone we’ve ever known.  She’s the most optimistic person we’ve ever known.

Angie started working at the Mark II before our softball team was even an idea.  Back in the 70’s, Lloyde and the other Shure Brothers gang (OBO, Marty, Russ, Wally, Gary, Schmidtty, etc. etc.) hung out at the Mark after work and after their company softball games, and the Mark II camaraderie was what spawned the Mark II softball team.  Angie was always there.  No one took fewer vacations than Angie.  She acted like working behind the bar was a vacation.  She worked at the Mark six days a week, and during the baseball season, she spent her day off — Saturday — working the mob scene at Mullen’s in Wrigleyville.  She spread joy wherever she went.  And she bragged about our team all the time.  I still remember the night she introduced Lloyde and me to Joe Hudek, shortly after we had won our first championship.  Joe (a former college ballplayer who became one of our best players ever) acted like we had reeled off a dozen titles in a row, and he politely requested a tryout.  He had been listening to Angie.  And in those few years we had losing records, Angie focused on all the championships we had won.  To her, we were champions every time we walked into the Mark.

It’s been difficult to process how suddenly and rapidly Angie fell ill and died, especially since it basically happened in the short time period since our season ended.  Lloyde got word last week that Angie was in Evanston Hospital, and he and Peg and I had a chance to visit her last Thursday.  She was weak, not just due to the cancer but also an infection that had set in, but she was cheerful and optimistic as always, talking about going home the following day.  She enjoyed talking about the great run the Cubs had during the playoffs and their prospects for winning the World Series next season.  A misguided well-wisher had brought her a White Sox pennant, which I dutifully removed Thursday morning, and which Lloyde and Peg replaced with flowers and some Cub paraphernalia Thursday afternoon.  I also advised her that I had obtained a liquor license and was arranging for a juke box to be installed in her room that afternoon, so she’d better be ready to start serving drinks.  Her daughter Steff was at her side, as she had been throughout the illness, so she was designated as bouncer.  Spirits were high.  Death was nowhere in sight.  Right until the end, Angie never changed, a lesson for us all.

I can’t even imagine what it will be like to walk into the Mark and not see Angie.  But I know she’ll be there.  God bless us all.

Bob B, 11/18/15
   

2015 Season Review (from the 8/20/15 Update):        

  
Summary: As it was in the beginning (our 12-5 loss to Mudlarks on Opening Night) so it was in the end (our 11-4 Playoff Elimination loss to them).  In between, we spent the entire summer trying (and failing) to prove that we could generate enough offense to score enough runs to run with the league's Top 4 teams.  Instead, we will have to live with our "Best of the Rest" 5th Place 6-5 (.545) regular season finish and seeding-predicted second round exit from the playoffs (1-1) for an overall record of 7-6 (.538).  In the final analysis of our Jekyll-Hyde season, we lost each of the 5 games we play ed against the Top 4 by an average margin of almost 8 runs (average score of 12.2 - 4.4 them) while we won 7 of our 8 contests against the "Eliminated Eight" by an average margin of over 10 runs (average score of 16.9 - 6.4 us) with our 10-5 “upset” loss to The Slugs the lone "outlier" of our entire season.  It appears our composites failed us too often when we needed them the most, as we never had a “close game” (smallest margin of loss, 5 runs, twice) while our defense & pitching generally kept us in the game (slaughtered only once).  Unfortunately, our final batting and slugging averages for the year of .450 and .543 were both our second-worse in the DeMarini-era since 2000 (behind only 2013)--that's 33 and 83 points, respectively, behind our 15-year averages for batting and slugging.  Yes, our defense and pitching had their horrible moments (eg, 8 errors in that slaughtered-by-the-Swingers game; career-low 4 DPs turned in 13 games; my complete suckage in the field all year; our getting "out-walked" 9-3 in the playoffs; etc), but our .908 team fielding average was actually our best since 2010 and actually 3 points above our 27-year average and our opponents' AVG was just .425, their lowest since 2008 and 1 point below our 24-year average while our pitchers' WHIP of 2.7 was our lowest since 2011,  just 0.1 above our 24-year average.  So, I guess we really can't blame that side of the field.
  
Playoff Results:  With the exception of the #3 vs #2 semi-final game, every playoff game this year went exactly according to that guy Hoyle.  Looking back on the first two rounds (AKA, the Elimination of the Other Eight)...they started on 7/29 when we (#5 with our 6-5 regular season & 1-1 playoff records) beat #12 Dark Knights (1-10 & 0-1) and #6 Advocates (6-5 & 1-1) beat #11 Growlers (2-9 & 0-1).  Also on 7/29, after #8 Glory Days (4-7 & 1-1) defeated #9 The Slugs (4-7 & 0-1), 23-5, #1 Smylie Brothers Swingers (10-1 & 3-0) easily handled Glory Days 11-1.  Meanwhile, after #7 Spiders (4-7 & 1-1) beat #10 Team Random (3-8 & 0-1), 5-1, #2 Any Given Wednesday (9-2 & 1-1) beat Spiders, 16-11.  Then, on 8/5, we were eliminated by #4 Milford Mudlarks (8-3 & 1-1) while The Chronicles (9-2 & 2-1) eliminated #6 Advocates.  Thus, the Top 4 all made it to the Final Four, where #1 Swingers first beat the #4 Mudlarks in one semi-final while #3 Chronicles upset #2 Any Given Wednesday in the other semi-final.  Swingers then won it all by beating Chronicles in the Championship Game.  Note that these are the unofficial results as Roe has yet to publish the final results and scores, but according to David from the Swingers, both of their 8/5 wins were close games (unlike most, if not all, of the games from the first two rounds).  So, congratulations to the Swingers!  I trust that the Swingers players celebrated their Championship heartily back at Smylie Brothers--more than enough to wash away their loss in last year’s Championship Game to The Goodfellas.

  

2015 Regular Season Summary (From the 7/28/15 Update):

Regular Season Wrap Up: As expected Smylie Brothers Swingers won the regular season crown, but, not expected was that their effort to achieve a perfect season fell short as they lost to Glory Days, 11-9 in their final game, a Friday makeup games.  That same night, Any Given Wednesday made a clear statement on who’s #2 by slaughtering The Chronicles, 24-4, to claim the tie-breaker as both finished 9-2, each losing to Swingers (while AGW was upset by Glory Days).  As expected, our final game 23-12 slaughter over Advocates determined 5th and 6th Places.  Meanwhile, Glory Days surprising surge in the last 2 weeks of the season (they beat AGW 6-5 and Swingers 11-9—wonder if they might be “loading up”?!?) boosted them into a 3-way tie of the teams with 4-7 records which was settled tie-breaker fashion among Spiders #7 (they beat both teams), Glory Days #8 (they split) and Slugs #9 (they lost to both).  Finally, Team Random (3-8), Growlers (2-9) and Dark Knights (1-10) brought up the rear with the #10-#12 double-digit spots.  Random had a couple of “upset” wins (Spiders and Glory Days); Growlers upset Random; and Knights were completely Dark, except for their forfeit win over Glory Days.

Handout: 2015 Wednesday League at Crown

   
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