In our quest to prove that there are no more original ideas, we blatantly borrow this feature from The Shutdown Corner, and one of our two or three favorite writers, The Mighty MJD. If you are a football fan and are not reading The Shutdown Corner, we must ask why you hate freedom.
The team in each league with the best record will face the Wild Card winner (shaded) in the first round unless both teams are from the same division. In that case, the Wild Card team will face the division champ with the second best record.
AL Divisional Champs: Yankees, White Sox, Mariners
AL Wild Card: Rays
NL Divisional Champs: Cubs, Phillies, Dodgers
NL Wild Card: Marlins
Notes on the premature playoffication picture…
- AL East…Nobody is playing well outside of the Blue Jays in what is supposed to be the best division in baseball. The Sox don’t have Manny. They don’t have Papi and now they don’t have Dice-K. Too much to overcome. The Rays are playing worse than anybody but everybody on the team is slumping except for Jason Bartlett, so they should be fine. And the Yankees will miss Chien Ming Wang, but they will probably just go out and sign Pedro Martinez. Considering Alex rodriguez will be back soon, the Yankees look like the class of the division.
- AL Central…The Royals look close, but not yet. And we refuse to believe in the Tigers and Edwin Jackson. That leaves the White Sox, who looked pretty darned good at The Trop.
- AL West…We were skeptical of the Angels before they lost Vlad the Impaler for at least a month. The Mariners underachieved last year and now are playing to their potential. They just might have this division wrapped up by August.
- NL East…No way the Marlins can keep playing at this rate, right? They have the pitching and lots of good hitters. But we still think the Phillies will blow past the Mets and Marlins in the final week. The Marlins will hold on for the Wild Card for the reasons stated before.
- NL Central…Cubs and Cardinals. Cardinals and Cubs. Take your pick. We like the Cubs pitching this week. Next week?
- NL West…The Dodgers are the class of a classless division. Unless they suffer two or three injuries to their pitching staff, they should win the West by 10+.