MLB Preview; Trout, Angels In, Champs Out

Zach Piatt
Sports Editor

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The Angels, Orioles, Royals, Tigers and A’s should make the playoffs from the American League. The Cardinals, Dodgers, Giants, Nationals and Pirates will make up the National League playoffs. Graphic by NB. Images property of MLB.

The hunt for October is in full swing, and the defending World Series champion Boston Red Sox are out of the equation.

There will be no beards in Boston this year as the Red Sox were one of the first teams eliminated from the playoffs earlier this season. They are looking to rebuild as they traded away many players including outfielder Jonny Gomes and pitchers Jon Lester and John Lackey.

Last year’s runner up St. Louis Cardinals should be on their way to the playoffs once again as they have a slim lead over Pittsburgh in the NL Central. St. Louis has gotten a huge lift from starting pitcher Adam Wainwright. He’s contributed 19 wins with a 2.45 ERA.

One of the biggest stories in baseball this season has been the awaited success of the Los Angeles Angels. Not only are they making the playoffs, but they’re also sporting the best record in baseball.

This will be the Angels’ first playoff appearance in the Mike Trout era. Trout is having another MVP caliber season with 35 HR, 109 RBI, and a 8.1 WAR.

In the AL East, a division traditionally dominated by New York and Boston, the Baltimore Orioles have come out on top. The O’s have overcome all odds behind the power of Nelson Cruz and his Major League leading 39 HR.

The Tigers are poised to make another run in the playoffs as they are atop the AL Central for the fourth consecutive year. Detroit will have to work for it because the Cinderella story Kansas City Royals are right on their tail. The loser of this race will likely claim a wild card spot.

Clayton Kershaw has been the driving force in the Dodgers’ playoff run this year. Kershaw is leading the Majors in wins (20), ERA (1.80), and WHIP (0.86).

The Washington Nationals are also champions of their division, getting huge contributions up and down the lineup.

The Athletics and Royals are in position to take the American League wild card spots with Seattle right behind. The Giants and Pirates are the wild card favorites in the National League.

As for all you Cubs fans out there…there’s always next year.

*All numbers and statistics are as of Sunday, September 21.

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