Both leagues featured good pennant races once again - and for the second straight year, the contenders were identical as well. As were, ultimately the pennant winners, though the World Championship Series' results were flipped this time around.

In the Federal Association, the New York Gothams and St. Louis Pioneers were the class of the circuit and the Gothams eked out the pennant by a two-game margin (after winning the '34 flag by five games over the same Pioneer club).

The perception around the Gothams has been that they have the best rotation in the Fed (if not FABL as a whole) with multiple Allen-Award-winning arms in the rotation. Rabbit Day, Jim Lonardo, Hardin Bates being the aforementioned men with the hardware joined by (for a limited engagement, another Allen winner in Milt Fritz - he was ultimately traded to the Chicago Cougars), highly touted prospect Curly Jones and Jack Elder. The rotation produced, as expected, and the Gothams allowed the fewest runs in the FA.

The Gothams got strong seasons from perhaps the most underrated receiver in baseball, John Wicklund (.329-23-101) as well as outfielders Moxie Pidgeon (.306-28-120) and Mahlon Strong (.343-24-116) as well as 3B Johnny McDowell (.338-2-67). That added up to the third-best run scoring lineup in the FA.

The #1 team on that list was the St. Louis Pioneers. With former Gotham farmhand 1B Fred McCormick (.369-27-161) and batting champ/Whitney Award winning 2B Freddie Jones (.389-8-89, 145 runs) leading the way, the Pioneers plated 959 runs, the most in either league. And the pitching was good too - with an Allen-Award-winning performance from Sam Sheppard (28-7, 3.13 over 41 starts and 336 innings) and a solid season from David Abalo (17-12, 3.92), the Pioneers were mid-pack in run prevention which meshed nicely with their outstanding lineup to power them to 91 wins, just two shy of the 93-win Gothams.

If there was a theme for the 1934 FABL season it could be summed up in two simple words: All In.

With both circuits featuring multiple contenders, the 1934 season saw a significant uptick in trade activity, much of it driven by contenders attempting to "one up" each other in a back and forth arms race the likes of which had never before been seen.

In the Federal Association, the defending champion Philadelphia Keystones saw no fewer than three serious contenders for replacing them atop the standings table: the Boston Minutemen, New York Gothams and St. Louis Pioneers all mounted a challenge and several of those clubs swung deals with an eye to gaining an edge in the chase for the pennant.

The Continental Association's pennant fever was arguably even more serious. With perennial powerhouse Chicago coming out of the gate slowly (and suffering a significant injury as well), there was no shortage of clubs attempting to climb into the Cougars' catbird seat.Though it ultimately boiled down to a two-way streetfight between the Brooklyn Kings and Cleveland Foresters, several other clubs were in the fight early and many trades were made along the way, right up to the trade deadline.

What made the races so interesting was the fact that the Keystones and Cougars each fell off their perches atop their respective leagues at the same time, with the result being a more wide open feel to the pennant races than had been true in the last several campaigns.

Some of the credit (or blame depending on whose viewpoint you take) can be laid at the feet of the Baltimore Cannons. The former contenders featured a pair of star players who were dealt on the same day, just prior to the opening of the season, which changed the dynamics of both circuits and set off a chain reaction of deals that would last right up to the final day of the trading season.