|Connelly’s Top Ten: Holt Magic, Brady is Awesome, Exorcist Wicked Scary||Sox Take Two From SF Giants||Retirement Looms Large For Big Papi||Hey David ! FIGURE IT OUT.|
The Waiver-Wire deals are well underway, and there are plenty of contending teams still looking to tweak their rosters in the event they finds themselves in a late-September race. Neither league is safe at the top, and with the #1 seed meaning a whole lot with a one-game Wildcard playoff, we’re sure to see a massive amount of cutthroat competition from here on out. With so many teams swapping places in the standings, let’s look at what would happen if the playoffs started as of Monday, August 12 at 7:05pm:
Continuing their run, Atlanta has made it to #1 in the NL. And that’s despite being out a couple of pitchers. Add in their bats and one of (if not) the best closers in the game today in Craig Kimbrel. If Atlanta continues at this pace and gets their key DL guys back, they’ll be a tough out.
Pittsburgh may be #2 for now, but from the looks of things, that’s because Los Angeles hasn’t had time to catch up just yet. The Pirates dropped their last three after winning their previous five. It’ll take more consistency to succeed in the playoffs, especially with how great the Dodgers have been playing lately.
The Reds have been trying to make up ground on the Cardinals for awhile now, and as of now have had limited success. The Cardinals aren’t exactly inspiring lately, but they’re still lined up against a Reds squad that’s sub-.500 on the road.
The Tigers have mauled all competition en route to #1 in the AL, having opened up a seven-game divisional lead in the process. As many expected, a combination of pitching and power have carried the Tigers all season. Any potential Achilles Heel will likely reside in the bullpen, so their starters will have to go deep to avoid rough experiences like last season’s World Series.
Boston is still contending, but after losing three of four to the Royals, they’re facing some tough times, especially with Texas winning eight in a row and 13 of 14. If the Red Sox can’t come at the Rangers with as many players healthy as possible, they could be in for a rough series at this rate.
Neither team is at its best right now, but Tampa has lost their last five games. Yeah, it was a West-coast road trip, but still. Aside from getting the Blue Jays, Oakland has had a tough time as well. Even so, with the way the front end of Tampa’s rotation has been throwing and considering that this is a single game, Tampa might have to get the edge.