Fantasy Baseball Final: July 7, 2016
It is the weekend before the all-star break. It seemed just like yesterday that the season began. With NBA fans focused on free agency it is a good opportunity for baseball fans to focus on the key differences between the NBA and MLB. As it stands today, maybe three or four teams have a chance to win the championship. Eleven teams in the American League are within 4.5 games of the wild card or better. Eight teams in the National League are 3.5 games away from the wild card or better.
Almost every team in the NFL can imagine a scenario where their team can make it to the Super Bowl. Sure, most of those scenarios are not particularly realistic, but at least they are there. For two thirds of the teams in the NBA, there is no path to the NBA Finals. Competitive balance may seem like a minor thing, but it is the one thing that separates professional sports from professional wrestling (sorry wrestling fans). We don’t want to know the outcome before the event. That’s what makes sports fun. When we know who the winner will be before any game is played, it’s not fun anymore.
If you read one thing
The hottest team in baseball is now officially the Toronto Blue Jays. They’ve won six games in a row and have gone 8-2 in their last ten games. The hottest player on their team is now Troy Tulowitzki. He had two more hits on Thursday night to go along with three RBI. It gives him a .239 average and 43 RBI on the season. That may not seem like much, but he did miss time on the disabled list and got off to a horrible start. Throw in his 15 home runs on the season and he is fairly close to where people expected when you remove batting average.
We kind of expected
The battle between the Nationals and the Mets was circled at the beginning of the season as a key series before the all-star break. The Mets won the opener 9-7 after four home runs (including the first of the year for Jose Reyes). The usual suspects played well for the Nationals, but it wasn’t enough to overcome the power surge by the Mets. The home series will be huge for the Mets as they could potentially even up the standings if they sweep the Nationals.
We didn’t expect
I’ve said in this space numerous times before that direct betting on individual games is a fool’s errand. The best team and the worst team in the American League began a four game series today in Texas. Of course, the Twins won 10-1. The hero over the past few weeks for the Twins has been Max Kepler. He is hitting .250, but slugged his seventh home run and now has 29 RBI. All of his home runs have come in the last month.
- Jeurys Familia (31)
- Aroldis Chapman (17)
- Roberto Osuna (18)
- Ryan Madson (17)
- Matt Harvey is on the disabled list and is fielding medical opinions on his arm. He has been diagnosed with thoracic outlet syndrome. He either will get non-surgical injection or season ending surgery.
- Matt Carpenter was placed on the 15 day disabled list. Aledmys Diaz will replace him on the all-star roster for the National League.