Friday, May 6, 2016

What's happening in the Central

This MLB season is roughly 17% completed, which represents to me a large enough sample size to get a rough idea of where teams and players stand. I have previously taken a look at storylines to watch in the AL Central, and at this point in the season it seems that the White Sox are last year’s Twins, the Tigers are playing much better than last year, the Indians are yet again underachieving, and the Twins are really bad. The Royals fall somewhere in the middle of division, mostly because they have completely forgotten how to hit. To get a better idea of how each team ranks in the division, I took a look at some of the numbers, which are shown below (clicking on the table makes it larger):
From the table, you can see that the White Sox are the best team in the AL Central overall, and are winning games with pitching and hitting. In contrast, the Tigers appear to be made up of mostly good offense, the Indians are mediocre at everything, and the Twins are terrible at everything. The Royals are good at what they normally are: not striking out (although they seem to be striking out more this season) and playing good defense. In addition, the Royals’ pitching has been surprisingly good overall (with the exception of Chris Young, Kris Medlen, and Joakim Soria at times). If KC could only pick up their offense, they would likely be competing head-to-head with the White Sox. The Royals and Indians enter a big series in Cleveland this weekend, with the winner likely taking control of 2nd place in the AL Central (assuming the Rangers take care of the Tigers).

Today also represents the day that Eric Hosmer began his MLB career 5 years ago. An iconic day for the Royals, since in some ways it represents the beginning of the current core of players that helped lead KC to 2 consecutive World Series appearances. Hosmer typically crushes the Indians, so here is hoping we see more of that this weekend, along with his teammates helping him out for once...