|Video: Napoli Beaned, Homers into Fifth Deck in 7-Run 11th Inning for Red Sox||Struggling Season Continues for Xander Bogaerts||Report: Patriots Trade Logan Mankins to Tampa Bay||Red Sox Have Decisions to Make and Money to Spend this Off-Season|
There’s just one week left in the season. One week. The Twins, Rangers, and Phillies have all punched their post-season tickets, and it’s all but a certainty that the Yankees, Rays, and Reds will be joining them. The Padres are just 1.0 game behind the Giants for the division, and half a game behind the Braves for the Wild Card. We could easily see another playoff game this year, or even two. We’re all excited, especially since the Red Sox are technically still alive. With all the exciting action going on now and in the next week, let’s look at what would happen if the playoffs started as of Tuesday, September 28 at 7:30pm:
Philly is now the best team in the majors, and Doc Halladay is firing on all cylinders. The Reds will need their own stellar pitching, and for Joey Votto to come through at all times in order to have a semblance of a chance.
Atlanta has a horrendous road record (35-46), and they don’t have Tim Lincecum. Faced with the Freak’s two potential home starts, Atlanta is in a similar situation to the Reds.
Getting shut out, at home, by Baltimore? Tampa will need to do better than that. And they need to forget about the attitude of their fans, or what’s left of them, and play. Still, I like Tampa’s chances given Cliff Lee’s disappointing Ranger career, and the fact that Lee will be pitching in Tampa.
The Bronx Bombers’ excess talent seems to have left with George Steinbrenner. The Yankees have had Minnesota’s number as of late, but their pitching has been doing poorly. With their new ballpark, this could be Minnesota’s breakout year.