I’m back and I’m going to continue banging away at this. Today: baseball’s only four-team division!
LOS ANGELES: 37-28 (.569) –
TEXAS: 35-29 (.547) 1.5
SEATTLE: 28-35 (.444) 8
OAKLAND: 27-38 (.415) 10
Here we have a division clearly split into two groups.
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, Orange County, California, Just Off Interstate 5 And A Bit North of Irvine, About a $30 Cab Ride From John Wayne Airport And You Can Like Totally Drive To Vegas In Like 5, 6 Hours: Baseball’s most ridiculously named team is doing it with pitching; the team 3.62 ERA is the third best in the league. Despite Kelvim Escobar missing a few starts the rotation is insanely solid; Paul Byrd is a respectable 6-5, 4.18, and he’s the worst starter in the rotation. I would be concerned about Jarrod Washburn, though, whose K/W numbers suggest a guy who’s getting by on luck. The offense has been just average, and lacks home run power; the “Vlad was hurt” excuse holds little water, as he’s only missed a couple of weeks’ worth of games.
Los Angeles has scored 305 runs and allowed 255, which would normally result in a record of 38-27, so they have essentially the record they deserve.
Texas Rangers: The precise opposite of the Angels; mediocre pitching, great hitting. The offense has scored more runs than any other in the league, though the park helps a little with that. Richard Hidalgo’s been kind of a bust but other than that everyone can do something. The danger is that the pitching consists of two great performers so far, Curt Young and Kenny Rogers, and a bunch of bums; if Rogers or Young get hurt, there will be trouble in the metroplex. What a total bust Pedro Astacio has been.
Texas has scored 358 runs and allowed 304, which would normally result in a record of 37-27, so they may have been a bit unlucky so far.
Seattle: Before the season every Dodger fan in the world, including a few on the Dope, was whining about how Paul DePodesta is such an idiot, a stupid stathead, because he let Saint Adrian go to the Mariners. So far, Adrian Beltre is batting .244 with 5 homers, one stolen base, and nine walks; he’s one of the worst players in the American League. He’s also indicative of the Mariners offense, which is the worst in the AL (again, though, that’s a bit of park effect there.) The pitching has been subpar too, although Eddie Guadardo has been frigging awesome. Aaron Sele is another pitcher whose low K rate suggests imminent disaster.
Seattle has scored 263 runs and allowed 283 runs, which would normally result in a record of 30-33, so they’ve been a bit unlucky.
Oakland: After years of choking, the A’s have decided to let the fans off the hook early. The pitching, usually the team’s strength, has been extra mediocre, with Rich Harden being the only good starter and he’s missed six or seven starts. The team’s offense hasn’t been as bad as the raw numbers suggest (again, park effects) but there’s just not enough coming from the guys they were counting on, like Eric Chavez and Erubiel Durazo. I don’t see a late season surge in 2005.
Oakland has scored 276 runs and allowed 318 runs, which would normally result on a record of 28-37. Close enough.