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L.A. Times and San Francisco Chronicle Sports Desks Team Up for ‘Golden Greats’ Baseball Series

Aerial views of Dodger Stadium a day before the Major League season opening game was to be played.
(Robert Gauthier/Los Angeles Times)

The sports desks from the Los Angeles Times and the San Francisco Chronicle have collaborated on a project to help fill the void left by the absence of Major League Baseball.

While the coronavirus pandemic continues to delay the start of the season, fans can turn their attention to “Golden Greats: The I-5 Series,” a fantasy baseball series that pits the best players raised in Southern California against the best players from Northern California.

“It’s something we thought would be an enjoyable way for readers to pass the time while waiting for real baseball to begin again,” said Times Assistant Sports Editor Houston Mitchell, who’s helping to spearhead the project.

The games will be a best-of-seven series unfolding through APBA, an online baseball-simulation game that will commence on May 26, using statistical probability to re-create player-by-player performance.

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Each team’s rosters were determined by readers’ votes, and the starting lineups and pitching rotations were selected by Dodgers manager Dave Roberts and San Francisco Giants manager Gabe Kapler on a Zoom videoconference.

Staffers from the Chronicle and The Times will manage the games, including handling pitching changes, pinch hitters and defensive substitutions.

Early indications are that the series will be a home run with fans. Between the two papers, more than 100,000 votes were cast, an impressive number considering readers were asked for 32 players.

Readers will have to follow the series starting on May 26 to find out who ultimately wins.


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