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Play-By-Playmate: The Beasts From The East
  • June 05, 2012 : 14:06
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Well, we’ve got ourselves a horse race and I’m not talking about the Belmont Stakes.

I’m talking about the beasts from the AL and NL East. They’re all within 4.0 games of each other, they all have winning records and they’re all chock-full of talent.

This is the first time this has ever happened. Never before in divisional baseball history has every AL and NL East team been above .500. In fact, this is the first time any two divisions have been above .500 after May. It just never happens. We’re talking about unprecedented talent here, people.

No one is really surprised to see that kind of baseball being played in AL East. Well, maybe Orioles fans are, but they’re the only ones. It’s a division that’s got historic franchises full of stars, young franchises full of up-and-comers and the Orioles, full of…something. I’m not really sure what it is that they’re full of, but they’re one game out of first place in what has become known as baseball’s toughest division so they must be full of something. (Note: that hot start might be coming to a close. The O’s are 2-8 in their last 10 so…you know, welcome back to reality, Baltimore).

The real surprise is in the NL East, where everything’s upside down. The Phils are in last, the Nationals are in first and the Mets have won seven of their last ten. Their AL counterparts might have had to go through the toughest game-for-game schedule thus far, and they might have all the big hitters, but the NL has got the pitching. You have to scroll through four NL East pitchers (Brandon Beachy, Gio Gonzalez, Stephen Strasburg and Johan Santana) on the leagues’ ERA leaderboard before you find an AL East pitcher (David Price). 

So one division has got the hitting, the other’s got the pitching, and it leads a girl to wonder which is better? What would happen if these two divisions went head-to-head?

Well, thanks to interleague play we don’t have to wonder: these two divisions match up more than any other during the month of June. While the Marlins and Mets get two series against their crosstown (or state) rivals, the Nats get to take on all five teams from the AL East. The Red Sox storyline revolves around a return to Fenway for two former prospects turned pro, Hanley Ramirez and Anibal Sanchez, and the O’s will get a chance to prove they really belong when everyone but the Marlins come to town.

So move over, I’ll Have Another: the MLB is where the real horse race is. June is going to be a month to separate the boys from the men, the contenders from the pretenders. By the time the calendar turns I have a feeling we’ll know who the real beasts from the East are.

 

read more: sports, play-by-playmate, baseball

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