Depending on which team you root for, the baseball gods are either giving your team lots of breaks or making you miserable right now. Since last we looked at the standings, nothing has changed in terms of the order of the teams in the AL Central. The only difference is how far each team is separated.
Chicago White Sox
The Sox are still leading the division. For a brief moment, they were tied for first with the Tigers, but as fate and the baseball gods would have it, the Sox would again find themselves back in sole possession of first place. So far this season, they have spent 96 days there, including every day since July 24. The last 10 games for the team have been pretty awful (3-for-7), including a sweep by the Tigers. The next couple of series for the Sox could determine whether the team sees post season action. After concluding their series with the Twins this afternoon, the Sox will host the Royals over the weekend (a team they have not fared well against) before having a four-game showdown with the Tigers.
For more on the Sox, visit South Side Hit Girl
The Tigers are just not catching a break. They win games but so does the team they are chasing. If they lose games, so too does the leading team. And then of course when they finally do catch a break, it all goes away as fast as it came. In the Tigers’ last 10 games, the team is 5-5. This included a three-game sweep of the division-leading White Sox over the past weekend. Unfortunately, they have just dropped a series to the Indians. For the Tigers, the winning the division is objective number one. While they are still in the wild card race, they are currently four games behind the teams leading that race. The good news for Detroit is that their staff aces, Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer, are going very well right now. Despite a recent blip by Justin, both are leading the AL in strikeouts, with both recently crossing the 200 K threshold. In the upcoming days, the Tigers will hope to make up some ground while facing the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim before traveling to Chicago in what could be the series that decides the AL Central.
For more on the Tigers, visit Motown Lowdown
Kansas City Royals
Wreaking havoc. That is what The Royals have been doing of late. Not only are they causing problems for divisional foes, they are also doing it to other teams around the league who are in the playoff chase. While they recently dropped a series against the Twins, they also swept a recent series against the Tigers. Currently, they are involved in making life miserable for the AL West leading Texas Rangers. Given that the team is also looking at its younger players, you might have expected that there would be plenty of guys called up from the minors. However, manager Ned Yost has decided it is better for those guys to stay at Triple-A Omaha and try to win a championship there as opposed to riding the pine in the majors. Needless to say, it has caused a tad bit of talk among Royals faithful.
For more on the Royals, visit Drinking the Royals Blue Aid
Cleveland has decided to get in the act of playing spoiler. Recently, they have been playing against the Detroit Tigers and make life miserable for the Tigers indeed. The past couple of days have seen the Indians take the series from the Tigers. This evening, the Indians will try to go for the sweep of the Tigers. In their last 10 games, the Indians have won only three, and two of those were against the Tigers. The other was against the Rangers. Upcoming for the Indians is a series against the Twins and then they will visit the Rangers and possibly make life miserable for that team.
Just like their divisional rival Indians and Royals, the Twins are also getting into the role of spoiler. While they are 17.5 games out of first place (with an elimination number of 10) they did do a number on the White Sox last night. Right now, they are still playing hard, but there are also a lot of young guys who are trying to make a strong impression on management. Currently, there are not a ton of guys on the current roster who are guaranteed spots on the roster in the future so now is definitely a time for these guys to show what they’ve got.