One Third Of Season Recap
With some teams already playing 54 games which is the exact one third of the season mark it is a good time to check the standings.
The Yankees lead the Red Sox by one game and the Blue Jays by two games. The Yankees were 15-17 on May 12 after losing to Roy Halladay on that date.
They have been 14-4 since then and the Red Sox have been 9-10 in that time span.
The Blue Jays had a disastrous road trip in May when they lost all nine games of the trip and were swept by the Red Sox, Braves and Orioles.
There is no doubt that this is not the same Tigers team that is leading the AL Central that finished last in 2008. They have played .500 or better baseball since April 10. They won seven consecutive games in the middle of May for their longest winning streak.
The Twins have a one percentage point lead over the White Sox. They still haven’t won more than three in a row and have lost three of their last five games.
Sometimes humiliation wakes up a team and after the White Sox lost to the Twins 20-1 on May 21 they have been 8-3. The White Sox bullpen has won three of the last four games won by the White Sox.
Scott Linebrink won on Saturday and Matt Thornton won on Sunday and Monday.
The Rangers have a four and a half game lead over the Angels. The low point of the season for the Rangers was when they were 6-9 after their April 23 game.
They have been 24-12 since then. They are playing well despite Josh Hamilton missing 16 games.
It looked like the Mariners were going to play well this season on May 3 when they had a 15-10 record. However they went into a tailspin and are 10-18 since that date.
The Phillies reached their low point of the season on May 18 when they were 4-6 and have been 26-14 since then. Looking at the stats of their pitching staff they don’t seem to be a first place team.
They got a huge lift last night when Antonio Bastardo won his major league debut last night. Cole Hamels their ace in 2008 has a 3-2 record and a 5.21 ERA.
Their hitters are keeping the Phillies atop the NL East. Raul Ibanez, Chase Utley and Ryan Howard are all on a pace to hit at least 36 homers and drive in 100 runs.
The injury riddled Mets are two and a half games behind the Phillies but still close enough to make a run if they can get their injured players back on the field.
The Braves are four and a half games back but still can’t be counted out with their pitching staff. The offense has been sputtering though and if they can’t acquire an outfielder with power before the trading deadline they may fade out of the picture.
The Brewers are tied for the lead in the NL Central with identical 30-22 records. The surprising Reds are in second place and two and a half games out of first place.
The Reds can only hope they can stay close till Joey Votto returns from the disabled list. Jay Bruce may see less good pitches to hit with Votto out of the lineup.
Most of the prognosticators had picked the Cubs to win the NL Central but they find themselves four games behind the first place Brewers and Cardinals.
The Cubs need to improve on their 9-15 road record. They are 16-10 at Wrigley Field. They were 21-14 on May 16 but have been 4-11 since then.
Carlos Marmol had allowed only two runs in 14 innings in May. He made his first appearance in June last night and gave up a run while walking two and hitting a batter in the eighth inning.
Marmol, Kevin Gregg and Aaron Heilman all gave up runs yesterday with Angel Guzman being the only Cubs reliever not to give up a run.
The Dodgers are nine games ahead of the Giants. The Dodgers have actually gained two and a half games since Manny Ramirez was suspended last month.
The Giants are an even .500 at 25-25 but have won five or their last seven games. They can’t be taken seriously with their anemic offense.