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Two Out Rally
Online baseball manager game
Two Out Rally is a massively multiplayer online roleplaying game (MMORPG) dealing with the on-field action, off-field drama, and general excitement of a fictional baseball league, the WBL. You play the role of a scout--building a name and reputation throughout the professional baseball world. Manage talent in the form of players that you create, train, and develop for stardom) or become a team owner, controlling the rosters and business decisions to ensure both profit and success. Your goal is to have your players become superstars, your teams to become dynasties, and for all of them to become champions.
A History of the WBL
1900-1919: Barnstorming and Circus Freaks
The World Baseball League was actually founded as the All American Baseball League in March, 1906 in Philadelphia. Like all sports leagues, it was segregated, its structure was loose and based on handshake agreements. In the beginning the WBL was just 6 teams: the Philadelphia Liberty, the Boston Beaners, the Cincinnati Rivercats, the Pittsburgh Stackers, the Portland Lobsters, and the Baltimore Crabs. Most of their games were exhibitions against barnstorming traveling teams from the West against the teams of other, more popular, professional leagues. Only games against the other foundation members counted for record, but it mattered little - the scores were poorly kept and often corrupted by biased scorekeepers and writers, and four of the six teams folded and restarted again, some within the same season. For the first eight years, the championship was won by the Philadelphia Liberty; the Liberty was the most solvent team and had formal agreements with a competitive league of greater stature with whom they frequently traded.
The Philadelphia Liberty was owned by a banker, industrial baron, and eccentric named Francis Scott Greene, a boisterous braggart of a man, perfectly content to lose money on a winning team. He is credited with the development of much of baseball's sideshows, such as a Penny Farthing race between the 7th and 8th innings, a "sausage trebuchet" that fired edible goods into the grandstands, and a "camera nuptials" segment that filmed couples becoming engaged at the ballpark. He believed strongly in sports as entertainment, and would regularly hire circus freaks and traveling entertainers to keep the field action going throughout the innings breaks, a process that continued in Philadelphia until a major concussion was suffered by a performer being struck by a stein in the early 1930s.
Faced with the financial failure of the league, in 1913, Greene purchased the original teams (except for Cincinnati, which was deemed too far west to be feasible) and tried to improve the outlook for the fledgling league by bringing his showbiz-first attitude to all of the games. However, he also decided that to create more stars, his pitchers would do just that--only pitch--and he replaced their place in the order with a "dedicated batsman," often one of the traveling circus strongmen or midgets. The results of that decision are, of course, history. No pitcher has batted in the AABL/WBL since, and even the league's primary competitor would partially adapt that rule in the 1970s.
1920-1939: The Home Run, the Depression, and the Growth of Baseball
Outfield walls began appearing in all AABL stadiums as early as 1925, mostly as a way to hold the increasing crowds ready to enjoy the emerging sport. Of course, players realized that they could try to hit the ball over the wall, and increasingly, large and muscular men tried their hands. Briefly considered a ground-rule double, the rules quickly established that a ball over the wall in play could be run out until the outfielder could retrieve the ball. The home run was quickly born, and baseball began to soar in popularity. Even the Great Depression didn't damper the spirit or growth of the league, mostly because standing room tickets were common and practically free, and there was a sausage trebuchet, after all. The first line of superstars began to appear on television, players like slugger Rocky Reese and "Rapid" Joe Swanson, pitchers "Snag" Carlsbad and Sonny Madison.
1940-1960: International Conflict and International Play
As World War II claimed most of the available baseball talent and the world focused elsewhere, the AABL was mutating. The aging Francis Scott Greene intended to stage an exhibition between the AABL's champion (the Boston Greens) and the emerging Greater Japan Tokyo Baseball Club. Interest was high, but ultimately both the United States Department of War and the Japanese Government declined. Greene continued to house an interest in the idea, and after peace was restored, pursued it again, this time successfully, playing two games (now featuring his own Philadelphia Liberty), one in New York, and one in Hong Kong. The games were massively successful, and a permanent off-season arrangement was reached to continue Japanese vs. American play. In 1950, as Japanese leagues began to form, the AABL made a major, unprecedented move, establishing relationships premium leagues in Japan and Mexico. The league still played regional championships, but the AABL champions would play Mexico, and Japan in a round robin tournament for bragging rights as the World's champion. The World Baseball League (WBL) was born.
1961-1980: Players' Rights and the Diversity of Baseball
As the World Baseball League opened its initial configuration, players were still tied to their original organization with strict and untenable contracts that depreciated the cost of their services. As money and interest grew around the globe, a union agreement, originally begun in the American arm of the WBL, spread across affiliates, establishing the rights of draftees, including the rights of players to move to other organizations and leagues. As free agency grew up, salaries skyrocketed, but so did the profits and talent pool. The game became more lucrative and marketable. Players from all over the world began showing up in different leagues, and for the first time, baseball started to represent not only the face of America, but the rest of the world. The U.N. acknowledged baseball's role in world peace with a special award given to Francis Scott Greene's son Lawrence, who had inherited the league when his father passed away in 1959. A Nobel Peace Prize for the Greene family followed in 1968. There was a growing problem, however: as revenue increased, so did the athletes' feelings that they were not being paid their share of the proceeds. Something was going to have to give.
1981-1994: The End of An Era
As the baseball, and the WBL reached unprecedented popularity and television revenue, salaries skyrocketed, forcing the smaller cities to keep pace, something that they could not do without increasing ticket prices exorbitantly. The situation came to a head, when the entire sum of professional baseball players in the world (who at the time all shared a union) went on strike in the summer of 1994. Federal injunction and Congressional intervention eventually prevailed, and the biggest league in America finally found their way back to the field in late 1995. The WBL, however, with its complex structure and multiple international laws, was never able to work out an agreement. The league went dormant and finally was disbanded in 1997 without ever playing another game.
2009-2010: The Rebirth
The WBL was on the books for around 200 million dollars for player salaries and penalties on which it defaulted from the 1994 season. As the value of the defunct company plummeted, an unexpected source came through with a purchase of the brand in the spring of 2009, a young Russian oil billionaire by the name of Mikhail Abramovich, who paid off the debt with the apparent intention to restart the league as a global entity. The announcement was made in a lavish press conference in Philadelphia in May, 2009. The plan was simple: the league would start signing young players to their first professional contracts, and groom them in a minor league system around the globe, with the plan of having a top professional league to compete in the baseball market by 2015. Scouts from all over the world were given a potentially lucrative call to arms: find the best players in the world, and encourage them to be part of a resurrected legacy of worldwide baseball. Despite the misgivings of having a foreign league owner in the American past-time, those shut out by the establishment now had their chance. What they will do with that chance remains to be seen.
What you will do with YOUR chance remains to be seen.
The game is free, but you can pay for premium content.