This is the second part of the two-part series I have wrote this week. Part One came out Wednesday. In case you missed it, it’s here.
As I started Part One- The Royals are in first place. Yes, you read that right. This Royals team is so puzzling. They’eve hit less home runs than anyone in the Major’s. They walk less than anyone. And, Eric Hosmer has been on the DL.
Look at those stats! How are they any good? They don’t score! It’s incredible.
It’s their pitching. They have great relievers and bullpen, unlike their division foe, the Tigers. Starting pitching is also key in their success. I am a Royals fan, and boy, I still can’t figure them out. You need hitting and pitching in baseball. It those two things that make a team. I’ve never seen a team where one side of the ball is so much more dominate than the other. It’s keeps them in games since they can’t score. The also don’t blow games. Greg Holland is one of best closers in the game. He has 39 saves, he put up a 1.82 ERA, and his WHIP is staggering, at 1.01.
As a fan of this team, I hope they make the playoffs, of course. I just don’t know how far they can go. It depends on if they win the AL Central. In the Wild Card Game, you have a 50% of winning, and keeping your hopes alive, no matter who your playing. If you win the division, your chances go up, and you have time off. I’m very worried about their hitting, and hopefully Josh Willingham can boost them a bit. The Royals are definitely defining baseball right now, no matter how bad their hitting is.
The other team that has rose from the ashes are the Seattle Mariners. This team is very balanced, and have one of the best pitchers in the league with Felix Hernandez. They went and signed Robinson Cano this offseason, who is delivering defensively, and who a little down batting wise. The Mariners currently sit tied with the Tigers for the 2nd AL Wild Card spot. The Tigers are definitely the better team, and as documented Wednesday, they are slumping, while Mariners are rising. If the Mariners make the playoffs, they could move their way along, and be very scary. This another team where pitching better than hitting. The only guy on their nine man line-up who is hitting over.300 is Cano. That’s somewhat of a problem, but when a team has dudes who drive in runs, which helps. Three of the guys in their rotation are trusted, durable guys. They also each have 10 wins.
So what’s expected of this team the rest of the season and possibly the playoffs? Well, they have to make the Playoffs. The hardest games on their remaining schedule are their division games. The A’s and Angels are both great, and are much better than Mariners. Their playoffs hopes hang on them having the talent to beat the A’s or Angels in one game, because one of those teams will have a Wild Card spot. It would be a complete upset if the Mariners beat one of these teams. It’s not very complicated here. The remaining factor are Tigers (they come up a lot). The Tigers are better than the Mariners. This team will have to play great baseball to get a Wild Card spot. This truly shows how competitive the AL West is.