8-4-10: 2010 Peek at the Picks, Vol. 3

Hello again everybody...

Welcome to a Wednesday!

Let me get this out of the way...

I'm not doing a whole column on Favre. I know I've talked about him in the past, and there's every possibility that I'll discuss him in the future.

But today, I'm just going to say this: we don't know anything more today than we knew 24 hours ago, or 48 hours ago, or 48 days ago for that matter.

Somebody told somebody something that may or may not be true.

The bottom line is that Favre's no closer or further away from returning today than he ever has been. We've seen this movie too many times before to believe anything else. When the Vikings begin the season against the Saints, and Favre is either in or out of a Vikings uniform, then we'll know for sure - and not before.

Until then, whatever happen is merely fodder to fill the 24/7 sports-talk cycle. And frankly, I'm not interested in perpetuating it.

I am however interested in checking in on how my MLB picks are doing!

If you're not, I suggest tuning back in on Friday, because that's all that's left in today's column...

Other than the quote.

”The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it.”
- George Bernard Shaw (1856 - 1950), Irish playwright

Get it? Got it? Good...

2010 Peek at the Picks, Vol. 3

Before each baseball season, I pick the final standings for each of the six divisions. Periodically throughout the year, I compare the current MLB standings to my picks. I've even sought the help of one of my mathematically-inclined friends to create the Kelley Formula to measure how well I'm doing.

So let's break down the divisions and see how I'm doing, shall we?!

AL East:

Current Standings: Tampa Bay Rays, New York Yankees -1, Boston Red Sox (whom I hate) -6.5, Toronto Blue Jays -11.5, Baltimore Orioles -34

Dan's Picks: New York, Boston (whom I hate), Tampa Bay, Baltimore, Toronto

Kelley Formula Results: 14 of a possible 20 points

Analysis: A four-point drop from the last time we checked in. Tampa has gotten hot (sadly, some of that has come at the expense of the Twins). The Yankees are still right there. And the Red Sox (whom I hate) are threatening to fall completely out of contention.

I'm not going to lie. I'll gladly accept a four-point hit to watch the Sox (whom I hate) falter. Does that make me a biased blogger? Perhaps. Somehow, I really don't seem to mind!

The Yankees seem to be distracted by A-Roid's pursuit of 600 home runs. How do I know this? Because they're all declaring that they're not distracted. When players have to take the time to proclaim to the media that something's not distracting them, then clearly it is. I don't expect that to last terribly long. Alex will hit his dinger. The Yankees will keep winning. And it should be a fun race between New York and Tampa for the AL East crown.

(Ed.'s Note: Earlier this afternoon, A-Roid hit #600. Prepare for the Yankees to take off again. Dammit.)

Baltimore has hired Buck Showalter as their new manager. At 34 games out of the division lead, and 22.5 games out of fourth place, I doubt that's going to make much of a difference this season. They've tried veteran skippers in Baltimore, they've tried young skippers. Nothing seems to work. Maybe Buck can figure something out. I'm just not going to be holding my breath waiting for it to happen.

AL Central:

Current Standings: Chicago White Sox, Minnesota Twins -1.5, Detroit Tigers -7, Kansas City Royals -14.5, Cleveland Indians -15.5

Dan's Picks: Minnesota, Chicago, Detroit, Kansas City, Cleveland

Kelley Formula Results: 18 of a possible 20 points

Analysis: The same score as last time around. Also far and away the best score I got in any division.

The Twins and the White Sox have been on hot-streaks. The Twins have won 8 of 10, the White Sox 7 of 10. The Twins have run smack-dab into one of the two best teams in baseball. Meanwhile the White Sox are playing the floundering Tigers. So far neither team has been able to seriously separate itself from the other.

All of which is going to make for one heck of a fun three-game series next week. Are you rubbing your hands in excited anticipation Twins fans? You should be!

After a red-hot start to the second half, Cleveland has cooled off to the tune of a 11-8 record since the All Star break. Apparently, they remembered they were Cleveland. And given the mini-Fire Sale they conducted at the trade deadline, I expect they'll keep heading in the wrong direction. Kansas City would like to send along their sincere thanks.

Speaking of the Royals... oh my are they lousy. I mean, I'm not shocked the Twins swept them in a recent three-game series. But I couldn't help but pity Kansas City baseball fans as I watched it happen. I can't fathom what it must be like to be a baseball fan in a town with a rich baseball history, and have to watch that dreck for 162 games per year. It's just sad. Really, truly sad.

AL West:

Current Standings: Texas Rangers, Los Angeles Angels -8, Oakland Athletics -8, Seattle Mariners -22.5

Dan's Picks: Los Angeles, Seattle, Texas, Oakland

Kelley Formula Results: 10 of a possible 16 points

Analysis: Holding steady here, if just barely. Texas has all but salted this thing away. I don't want to give up on LA just yet, but when you're closer to Oakland than Texas (in the standings, not geographically, of course), it's just not good.

Congratulations on picking up Cliff Lee, Rangers fans. I hope he doesn't wilt in the summer Texas heat! Actually, that's not even sarcasm. I feel a certain affinity for the Rangers since they spend each Spring in the Arizona town where my folks live. That might seem like a flimsy reason, but when you've seen a team play each Spring as much as I have the Rangers, you can't help but pull for them a bit.

Of course, by that rationale, I should pull for Kansas City a bit too since they share the same facility as Texas. Seriously... don't be ridiculous. The Royals suck! I can't root for them!

(Silly readers...)

NL East:

Current Standings: Atlanta Braves, Philadelphia Phillies -2, New York Mets -6.5, Florida Marlins -7, Washington Nationals -13

Dan's Picks: Philadelphia, Florida, Atlanta, New York, Washington

Kelley Formula Results: 14 of a possible 20 points

Analysis: Picked up two points here. The Phillies finally seemed to have developed a pulse. Although Ryan Howard had to go and get hurt just as it happened. Still, with the addition of Oswalt, and the potential of their offense, I have to believe the Phillies have more than a fair shot at overtaking Atlanta for the division title.

The Marlins have been a huge disappointment for me this season. How's that managerial change working for you Marlin brass? Meanwhile, Fredi Gonzalez is going to take over for Bobby Cox (a theory I've heard several times) in Atlanta next season and spend 19 games per season sticking it to you. Well played!

Fortunately for me, the Mets can't seem to get out of their own way, and may lose their way into picking me up a point or two yet! Thanks for sucking Metropolitans!

NL Central:

Current Standings: Cincinnati Reds, St. Louis Cardinals -0.5, Milwaukee Brewers -10, Houston Astros -12, Chicago Cubs -13.5, Pittsburgh Pirates -22

Dan's Picks: St. Louis, Milwaukee, Chicago, Cincinnati, Houston, Pittsburgh

Kelley Formula Results: 16 of a possible 24 points

Analysis: Another four-point drop. I haven't actually done the final totals on this thing yet, but it's not looking good, is it?!

Count me amongst the floored to see the Reds hanging in there with the Cardinals. I would've thought that St. Louis would've put some distance between them and Cincy at this point. Not so much, however!

The Reds have scored more runs than any team in the National League, and their pitching has been just good enough to make them seriously dangerous. St. Louis just can't seem to get on a roll - which is actually a dangerous thing for Cincinnati. The Cardinals are far too talented to stay this inconsistent. If they get hot down the stretch (like I expect them too) they could still walk away with this thing yet.

As for the Brewers? I'm sorry to say it Milwaukee fans, but it's time to focus on 2011. My first bit of advice? Fire Ken Macha. Fire him now. Just do it. I don't care if you don't have a replacement in mind. Give him a pink slip, thank him for his service, and wish him well in his future endeavors. You'll be better for it. Trust me. And that $13 million per year extension you just signed Corey Hart to? Find a legal loophole and tear that sucker up pronto!

Just my two cents!

That brings us to the Cubs. Carlos Zambrano is back on the big league roster, Carlos Silva is on the disabled list with an irregular heartbeat, and Lou Pinella's “farewell tour” has turned into a funeral march. Welcome back to irrelevance Chicago! You may pick up your billy goat at the door!

NL West:

Current Standings: San Diego Padres, San Francisco -1, Colorado -7.5, Los Angeles Dodgers -8, Arizona Diamondbacks -23

Dan's Picks: Colorado, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Arizona, San Diego

Kelley Formula Results: 10 of a possible 20 points

Analysis: Only a two-point drop this time! Oof...

I take it back. Florida hasn't been the most disappointing club for me this year, Colorado has. I figured there'd be a new champ out West this year, I just had no idea it would be the Padres.

As inconsistent as the Cards have been, Colorado has matched them stumble-for-stumble. How can you have an ace who's 16-2 and be 7.5 games out?! At least when Kansas City had a Cy Young winner on an extraordinarily mediocre team, he only had 15 wins! Apparently Rockies ownership doesn't have much more faith in them than I do at this point, since they were conspicuously quiet at the trade deadline.

I still have no idea how San Diego is pulling this off. I know they have better-than-advertised young pitching. I know that as a result they have a better run-differential (+95) than any other team in the National League. Still, it seems like they should be stumbling at any moment, only they're not.

That being said, San Francisco's right on their heels. I'm shocked that the Giants weren't able to add a bat at the trade deadline. There's still a chance they find something off the waiver-wire (Adam Dunn, anyone?) I suppose. Either way, they're still right there with the Padres. And you can bet that the rest of the NL is praying that the Pads find a way to hold them off. Would you want to face a club that can throw Lincecum, Cain and Zito at you in a 5-game series? Or hell, even in a 7-game series?! I sure wouldn't.


Combined Kelley Formula Results: 82 of a possible 120 points (68.3%)

2009 Kelley Formula Results: 87 of a possible 120 points (72.5%)

Analysis: An 8-point drop in just over a month... yikes.

Last month I had three division winners correct. This month? None. Not a one. Zero. Zilch. Nada.

But as I pointed out last time around, it's just a snap-shot. Things can - and obviously have - change quickly. Just because July didn't go my way, doesn't mean August can't be to my benefit!

What? Me? An optimist?! Take that George Bernard Shaw! (That's how you bring a column full-circle boys and girls!)

That's going to wrap things up for today. I'm back on Friday with some Updating to do!

Until then, thanks for reading!

1 comment:

  1. Ahah, now I know why I have a reputation as a cynic.