On to the AL Central, the most competitive division in baseball though not the most talented.
1. Cleveland Indians
2. Chicago White Sox
3. Detroit Tigers
4. Minnesota Twins
5. Kansas City Royals
Best Hitter: Miguel Cabrera
Best Pitcher: Cliff Lee
The Indians have some question marks in both their lineup and pitching staff, but a solid enough core of players to make them a slight favorite in this competitive division. Cliff Lee leads the rotation and is followed by Fausto Carmona, Carl Pavano, Anthony Reyes, and Aaron Laffey. Lee is a strong pitcher, but the end of that staff is very uncertain as no one really knows what to expect from the 2-5 pitchers. Grady Sizemore leads the lineup, but more questions exist in Travis Hafner and Victor Martinez, both of whom need to bounce back from tough 2008 seasons. Kerry Wood is the closer for Cleveland, but I doubt that he’ll spend the entire year on the active roster. A lot of questions remain for this team, but not more than the other teams in the division.
The White Sox have many questions as well, but also possess a solid rotation and lineup that make them a contender in the AL Central. Ace Mark Buehrle, John Danks, and Gavin Floyd lead the White Sox’s starting staff and though the second two are not stars, they are solid enough starters to keep Chicago in the game. A lineup with Jim Thome, Jermaine Dye, and Paul Konerko won’t be short of power, though their age is certainly a concern. Carlos Quentin and Alexi Ramirez are much younger and offer offensive skills as well. With Bobby Jenks closing out games, the White Sox will be capable of holding leads. Whether or not this team can overtake the Indians will depend upon the health of their lineup and the consistency of their rotation. Continue reading “2009 American League Central Preview”
The Major League Baseball season is coming to an exciting end. With less than two weeks remaining, division races are close and wild cards are up for grabs. The AL East is getting closer by the day as the Red Sox continue to free fall. The Yankees have destroyed Baltimore pitching to close to 2.5 games of the AL East. There are no games remaining between the two teams, but the Yankees recent hot streak combined with the Sox cold streak leaves this division up in the air. The AL Central and West are basically over as the Indians and Angels both have leads over seven games. If the Red Sox can start winning again, they will have to fight with the Indians and Angels for the American League’s best record. All three teams are within half a game of each other, so that competition will likely go down to the final day. Finally is the AL Wild Card, where the Yankees have all, but locked that one up too. Detroit is only behind the Yankees by five games, but the way the Yankees have played lately, the Tigers need to win the rest of their games. That is a quick overview of the American League. My prediction for the first round playoff matchups: Sox vs Indians, Yankees vs Angels Continue reading “October is Approaching”
It’s been two weeks since my last post so I have to catch up on a bunch of stories. Those include MLB playoff races, but let’s start with one that has filled the headlines recently though, Michael Vick:
After pleading guilty to federal conspiracy charges, Michael Vick could face up to five years in prison (though the sentence recommendation is between 12 and 18 months). The legal matter is complicated, so it is easier to look at the football side of things. As everyone waits to find out the length of his jail term, Vick must regain Americans’ trust before he even contemplates a return to the NFL. Vick must rebuild his character and show that he has changed. His apology after pleading guilty sounded sincere and honest, but was it? He lied to the public over and over again during the investigation, so why should fans believe that he is really going to change. Yes, the apology sounded genuine, but how much of it is Vick’s agent and lawyer dictating his speech. Did he write the apology or is he just reading someone else’s work? Even worse, does he even believe what he is saying? Fans can no longer trust Vick, and to regain that trust borders on impossible. Even if he is a perfect prisoner, apologizes again, and gives back to the community, most fans will never support Vick. If it is impossible for Vick to win over most fans, think about how hard it will be for him to win over a franchise. Continue reading “Catching Up…”