Where I overreact and overthink a couple of topics…
Maggs the spray hitter?
Not that I’m complaining about a guy who is leading the all the Majors in hitting, but do you think that Ordonez is focusing on going for the batting title? His last 8 hits have all been singles, and it seems the majority are to right field. He hasn’t hit a homer since June 2nd. In his last 13 games he only has 4 extra base hits. Let me emphasize again I’m not complaining, over those same 13 games he’s batting .438 and has an OBP of .518 which is quite awesome. I just wonder if he’s looking for singles, a la Placido Polanco, instead of looking to turn on the ball. Then again, it could just be he’s taking what the opposition is giving as well.
Andrew Miller’s Inning Limit
I heard back from the Tigers, and Andrew Miller doesn’t have an innings limit this year. Jim Leyland said it’s too early in the season to get into a discussion about an innings limit, but they’ll continue to monitor him as they do with all pitchers.
I know that there is mixed opinion about pitcher’s workload and corresponding injury risk so I won’t even take the discussion that way. I’ll just remind everyone about Justin Verlander fatiguing down the stretch last year. And Verlander had a full year of professional ball as a starter under his belt.
When I thought about how the Central might shake out this year, I didn’t really know which of the 4 teams would end up on top, but I was sure that the division wouldn’t have 3 90 game winners in it. I also thought that the division winner would be right around 90 wins. I thought this because a)there wouldn’t be as many wins against the Indians this year by divisional foes and b)it would be a tougher run through the NL.
Well, the White Sox look to be supplanting the Indians as the 2nd team to beat up on so point A may be a wash. However, the Tigers went out and beat up on the NL 14-4 which was just a shade under the 16-2 mark they posted last year. So maybe they can get back to 95 wins.
I really think all the talk about the AL Central being the toughest division is highly misplaced. The AL Central boasts only the 3rd and 4th best teams in the league. The White Sox are closer to last than 3rd and the Twins are flirting with .500.
I’m thinking if you look west, and to the NL, that’s where things are the most interesting. Sure, their division leading Diamondbacks have only outscored their opponents by 1 run so there is some luck involved. But the division has 4 teams that are .500 or better, and their 5th team has only been outscored by 16 runs on the season. If it’s not the strongest, it’s certainly the most complete.
All Star Voting
Tigers fans have certainly been stuffing the ballot boxes and it’s been great. Magglio Ordonez finally jumped into the top 3 (but the lead is slim so don’t think the work is done) and Gary Sheffield is at 5. Placido Polanco probably isn’t the most deserving second baseman, which is probably Brian Roberts, but he’s a respectable choice. But come on Tigers fans, Sean Casey 3rd? Craig Monroe 15th? I’m all about supporting the hometown guys, and giving the preference among some tough choices to your guy is fine. But I’m not a big fan of blatant blind voting.