Back in second place...AAHH...sigh of relief. Just kidding. Second place is no better than last place if you don't make the playoffs.
With that said, what about playoff speculation. After reading this quote from the Globe today, "Beckett has had to endure the challenge of switching from the Triple A National League to the American League"...well, let's just say that the level of writing everywhere in this country is childish...poopie, if I must say.
Of course, if the Mets win the WS it will be because they are the most AL team in the NL. And correct me if I am wrong, but didn't an NL team win within the last 3 years?
I understand that pitchers' ERAs tend to go up in the AL due to the DH, but the AAA National League?
Ok, back to the big picture which I hope will tie in with what I've just written.
In the AL you have Oakland, Minnesota, NY Yankees, and the Tigers. Is there a dominant team out of this bunch? With the Yankees rotation starting to show signs of age as they head to the post-season, you have to wonder as to their chances. The Tigers have nothing more to really thank than their unbelievable start. Essentially, they've held on to make the post-season. But, hey, they're in. Oakland played in a fairly terrible division, and they have great pitching. So, despite the injuries to the Twins pitching, they still have the most dominant starter in the AL, and an excellent closer (not to take away from the other closers, but Nathan is by far the most underrated closer around), I am picking Minnesota to win the AL.
The A's just don't have the sticks. MAYBE they pull a White Sox and pitch their way through, but I just don't see it.
The Yankees are going to have big problems with RJ's back, and Mussina. Wang is very good, but you can't base your post-season hopes on that kid just yet. Of course, their lineup is huge, but they are going to give up 5+ runs per game, and you can't win a championship doing that.
The Tigers, like I said, held on. They are still a very good team, however, and if their pitching performs like they can, they have a shot.
I just like the Twins this year.
In the AAA National League...I like the Mets. Big surprise. Seriously. They have Pedro (who, if you haven't noticed has been resting...they've called it DL'ing, but those of us from Boston know what is going on there). Glavine. Hell, even Trachsel has been good. Their pen is solid, and they have Wagner as a closer. If you haven't noticed, Beltran is an MVP candidate, Delgado and Wright are terrifying, and Reyes is excellent.
Their biggest competition? Houston, if they make it. I can't see any team from the West doing damage (with the possible exception of LA, but they may not make it, either). The Cards? Nope. The Phillies? Possibly. They give the Mets problems, but I say it is NY.
So my WS is Minnesota/NY. I would be very happy with any outcome of that series. But just to punish all the stupid writers...Go NL!!!