Yankees Best Team at All-Star Break
It is a misnomer to say that the season is half over at the All-Star break with the Angels having played 91 games and have only 71 games left when they return after the midsummer classic. That being said it is time to look at the current division leaders and the teams still contending in those divisions.
The Yankees have the best record in the majors at the break with a 56-32 record and a .636 winning percentage. The Rays also in the AL East have the next best record with a 54-34 mark and a .614 winning percentage.
Both teams lead the majors in run differential with the Yankees scoring 117 more runs than their opponents while the Rays are scoring 105 more. On the other hand the Pirates are the worst team giving up 194 runs more than they have scored in 2010.
The White Sox moved into first place yesterday in the AL Central with a half game lead over the Tigers. On June 8 the White Sox were 24-33 and nine games under .500 but have played 25-5 baseball since then. They will enter the second half with a eight game winning streak and a 9-1 record in their last ten games.
Falling back to third place the Twins have played 6-13 baseball since June 20. They need to address their starting pitching problems before the trading deadline with Carl Pavano and Kevin Slowey having the only winning records among their starters.
Joe Mauer who led the majors in batting with a .365 average in 2009 is hitting .293 this season and is hitting .229 in July. Last season he hit a home run every 18.7 at bats but this season he is homering every 72.5 at bats.
The financially troubled Rangers have not let those problems affect their play on the field with the largest margin in the majors over the second place Angels who were only a half game behind the Rangers on June 12 but now are four and a half games behind the Rangers.
With the addition of Cliff Lee last week the Rangers should be even stronger after the break. No team in the AL West has a current winning record in their last ten games. The Athletics showed they can contend in the AL West by outscoring the Angels 20-3 in their last two games.
It was almost a foregone conclusion that the Phillies would be leading the NL East at the break but instead they are in third place and four and a half games behind the Braves. The Mets are four back and a half game ahead of the Phillies and with the return of Carlos Beltran after the break their offenses should be even better.
On this date a year ago the Reds were in fifth place in the NL Central and trailing the first place Cardinals by five games. A year later the Reds are holding a slim one game lead over the Cardinals but have lost their last four games. The Cardinals are not playing much better as they and the third place Brewers like the Reds are all 4-6 in their last 10 games.
No NL Central team has a winning record in their last 10 games.
The Padres lead the Dodgers and Rockies who are tied for second place in the NL West with both teams trailing the Padres by two games. The Padres lead the majors in team ERA with a 3.21 mark and also are holding opponents to the lowest batting average at .237.
AL Wild Card Standings
The Rays are currently leading the Red Sox by three games, the Tigers by five games and the Twins by eight games in the AL wild card standings.
NL Wild Card Standings
There is a tie for the lead in the NL wild card standings with the Dodgers and Rockies tied for the lead and holding a one game lead over the Mets, a game and a half lead over the Phillies and a two game lead over the Giants and Cardinals.