|Connelly’s Top Ten: 1812 Overture Rendition of the Top Ten||Management Forced Its Hand With Rick Porcello, Red Sox Nation Pays||Celtics Sign Amir Johnson to 2-Year, $24 Million Deal||Bruins Trade for Jimmy Hayes, Sign Matt Belesky|
With the Dodgers bankrupt and the All Star break almost upon us, the season is nearly half over, and there’s still plenty of teams in the hunt. Four divisions are led by at most 1.5 games. Philadelphia lost Roy Oswalt for awhile. The top three teams aside from Philly are all in one division. And the Marlins are the home team in Seattle. Boston’s crest turned into another trough against the Pirates. Johnny Depp is pleased. Yep, there’s a lot going on right now with no clear winners yet, so let’s look at what would happen if the playoffs started as of Monday, June 27 at 8:30pm:
These two have the largest division leads in the majors. Milwaukee has won three straight, but Gallardo and Greinke, while very good, aren’t nearly as unbeatable as Halladay and Lee, and Oswalt won’t be on the DL forever. That pitching, combined with some decent bats, will win the day for Philadelphia.
Atlanta is good, but San Francisco has “The Freak” Tim Lincecum, and has powered its way to five straight wins. San Francisco may not have the strongest offense, but their pitching, rotation and bullpen, is good enough to make another deep run.
New York is always a contender, and that’s despite their overall turmoil in the rotation, and lately some of the bullpen. The Rangers are still 1.5 games ahead of Seattle, but they’re having to fight to keep that slim margin. With New York’s incredibly powerful offense, and without Cliff Lee, Texas shouldn’t be able to stop them.
Cleveland finally lost the division lead to Detroit. Boston lost the first two games to Pittsburgh of all teams, but David Ortiz will be back in the lineup in an AL park. Andrew Miller is already proving to be a good addition to a starting rotation that’s had some problems. Boston’s been quite streaky this year, but they are looking up; hopefully Philadelphia (without Halladay or Oswalt going) will bring out the best in them. Detroit may be picking up steam, but Boston still has the muscle to put them back down.