For years, it seems, the American League Central has had the reputation of being the weakest of the six divisions in baseball. Whether true or not, it would be difficult to put the competition in this particular division on the same scale as its American League East and American League West brothers. With the emergence of the Texas Rangers and Oakland Athletics, combined with the free agent spending of the Los Angeles Angels, the gap only appears to be widening.
This year has been no different, with the winner of the AL Central Division likely to have the worst winning percentage going into the playoffs, even worse than the Wild Card entrants. That record continued to slip over the weekend, as both the Chicago White Sox and the Detroit Tigers lost a pivotal series. In fact, the White Sox, who now lead the division by a mere game over the Tigers, have lost five straight and have won only nine of the twenty-one games they’ve played this month. Detroit has shown a complete unwillingness to take advantage of their competition’s lack of success, going 10-11 through the final month of regular season competition.
This leaves both teams with ten remaining games with which to gain some distance.
Chicago White Sox remaining games:
- Four games vs. the Cleveland Indians;
- Three games vs. the Tampa Bay Rays;
- Three games at the Cleveland Indians.
Detroit Tigers remaining games:
- Four games vs. the Kansas City Royals;
- Three games at the Minnesota Twins;
- Three games at the Kansas City Royals.
I’m not certain which schedule is more preferable, but considering the way that these two teams have been playing, I’d suggest that the prospect of competing against any professional baseball team at all, for which the Cleveland Indians barely qualify, would be disheartening. I do suppose, however, that the Chicago White Sox have already accomplished more this season than anyone would have expected, while the Detroit Tigers, after acquiring Prince Fielder this off season, have been completely disappointing compared to the performance than many anticipated from them.
And The Rest
The San Francisco Giants clinched a division title over the weekend. [McCovey Chronicles]
Why division title flags will literally/figuratively fly forever. [Lefty Malo]
The Baltimore Orioles lost a one-run game! [Camden Chat]
Fortunately for those with souls, the New York Yankees also lost, and so the Yankees maintain a one game lead over the Orioles in the AL East. [River Avenue Blues]
With this weekend’s sweep over the Chicago White Sox, the Los Angeles Angels find themselves only 2.5 games back of the Oakland Athletics for the final Wild Card spot. [Monkey With A Halo]
The Atlanta Braves are pushing for the NL East Division title, while further cementing their position atop the Wild Card Race. [Capitol Avenue Club]
The St. Louis Cardinals are still holding onto the second Wild Card spot. [Viva El Birdos]
The Milwaukee Brewers are only 2.5 games behind the Cardinals. However, with only ten games left, math is not on their side. [Disciples Of Uecker]
The Pittsburgh Pirates have weird ideas about player development. [Old Time Family Baseball]
The Triple Crown watch. [Baseball Musings]
Keith Hernandez will really shave off his moustache. [Newsday]
David Wright gets emo as he closes in on a New York Mets franchise record. [Mets Merized]
Baltimore Orioles prospect Dylan Bundy made his debut. [School Of Roch]
The Miami Marlins are more likely to fire Ozzie Guillen than Larry Beinfest. [Fish Stripes]
Quelle surprise! The Marlins plan on lowering payroll. [MLB Trade Rumors]
Roy Halladay continues to try to trick us into believing that he’s human. [Twitter]
A Tale of two Mayberries. [Crashburn Alley]
How entrance music became a thing in baseball. [Deadspin]
An executed man’s final words were “God bless, and the Texas Rangers, Texas Rangers.” [NBC Dallas - Fort Worth]