Friday, July 31, 2009

The Home Stretch - National League

The Minnesota Mighty Men have a 17-game lead in the A.L. North led by Dicky Gibson's 14 wins and Bill Hewson 132 RBIs. The rest of the division will by vying for draft position as it appears no one else in the division is in the hunt for a wild card spot.

In one of the tightest races, the Syracuse Sluggers hold a 3-game advantage over the Kansas City Monarchs. Kansas City is also just 2 games out of the 2nd wild card spot. 24-year old Dennys Franco is a strong Cy Young candidate for the Sluggers with his 14-4 record and 2.65 ERA. Erick Hatcher is having another stellar season for the Monarchs, hitting .347 with a 1.027 OPS.

In the closest division race, the Louisville Beaners have a 2-game lead over the Florida Lockdown while the Texas Long Horns have slipped a little bit and are now 8 games off the pace. However, both Florida and Texas currently hold the wild card spots. Even, the 4th place Oklahoma City Power Failure are still in the wild card hunt, just 4 games out of the last spot. At 14-4, Matt Post is the only Beaners pitcher with double-digit wins. Carlos Gonzalez leads the Lockdown with 52 HRs and 147 RBIs. Carlos Aguilera has already posted his 6th straight season with 110+ runs, 110+ RBIs and 45+ HRs.

In the N.L. West, the Vancouver Fighting Skeletons are the only team with playoff aspirations and they currently sit just 1-game behind the Sluggers for the 3rd seed. Vancouver has 3 pitchers with 10 plus wins and ERA's under 4.00 with Al Ramirez leading the trio at 13-5 with a 3.91 ERA.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

The Home Stretch - American League

With about 35 games to go, we take a look at the playoff picture around the leagues.

In the A.L. North, the Scranton Apollos have regained the lead in the division after briefly falling behind the Wichita Wranglers. Jesus Abreu sits at 14-3 for Scranton despite a 4.86 ERA. Wichita is 4 games up on division rival the Detroit Bad Seeds in the Wild Card race as the division attempts to return 3 teams to the playoffs like they've done multiple times in the league's history.

The Norfolk Tobacco Farmers are cruising to a 2nd straight division title in the A.L. East. Mark Parker leads the T-Farmers with 13 wins and a 3.01 ERA. The Buffalo Blizzard postseason hopes are fading having won just 5 of their last 15. The Blizzard are now 4 games out of the 2nd wild card spot.

The Jacksonville Seminoles have pretty much sewn up the A.L. South and are destined to be the #4 seed in the A.L Playoffs as they are well behind the other 3 division leaders in the playoff race. While Vance Collier is getting all the accolades for his 15-3 record, Ahmed Sanford has been virtually untouchable at 10-2 with a .89 WHIP and 2.43 ERA.

In the A.L. West, the Colorado Springs Mile High Marines have a comfortable division lead, leaving both the Portland Poltergeists and Salem Oles to battle for a wild card spot. Portland is just 1 game out and Salem is only 3 back of the last wild card spot. Colorado Springs is getting another monster season out of reigning A.L. MVP Alfredo Valentin.