MLB 2018: Only 60 Feet Left To Become a Kardashian
Oh what a crazy, heady, goofy time the first two weeks of the season were. By the middle of April, Major League Baseball looked like a reality show gone horribly wrong…or as the Kardashians put it, “Wednesday.”
The New York Yankees were five out and Giancarlo Stanton had twice as many strikeouts as the Kardashians had selfish posts on social media. That’s supposed to say ‘selfie posts’ you say? Maybe.
Speaking of selfish, the Arizona Diamondbacks, Los Angeles Angels and New York Mets looked like world – beaters in taking almost every game in dominating fashion. Every team that played Cincinnati took all the towels and the silverware home after beating the Reds about the head and shoulders with unclaimed Joey Votto bobble heads.
On the flip side, the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Francisco Giants sent a small delegation to the disabled list and the Indians gave every lousy team in the AL Central Division hope by giving away wins like candy off the back of the fire truck at the local Fourth of July parade. How bad was it? The Minnesota Twins were in first…the Twins!
Top that off with the Chicago Cubs in fourth in the National League Central –most entertaining division in the majors– and the Washington Nationals getting their teeth kicked in by the upstart Atlanta Braves and the Philadelphia Phillies which made one particularly idiotic prognostication look…well…idiotic. If you’re Philly, how do you have the second-worst defense in the NL? Try having the third-best pitching staff. Amazing.
That was just the first two weeks. So hit just the one fast forward button on the 2018 DVR and let’s see if this episode of a Jenner Family Oktoberfest stays true to form. So, one of the Kardashians develops a gambling problem because sports betting’s legal everywhere and the Milwaukee Brewers have the third-best record in baseball.
Sounds pretty norm….wait. What?
That’s right, Aguilar, Yelich, Cain and Villar are hammering the ball and the Brew Crew are looking fly in the NL Central, which could be the best in baseball.
Four teams within two games at one point. The Pittsburgh Pirates, St. Louis Cardinals, Cubs have played some really solid baseball. Can’t say I expected the Cubs to be clutching the four spot for most of the season, but a little swing through the NL West won’t hurt ’em. The Pirates impressed the hell out of me with their recent west coast swing. They pitch, they hit when they need to. Nothing great, just everything well enough to be in games at the end.
In the NL West, the Giants can’t keep a full squad as half the team is rehabbing or praying for the day they hear the word “rehab.” Justin Turner’s back for the Dodgers and they’re sniffing .500 for the first time since Corey Seager went down with Tommy John surgery. Speaking of going, how about the spiraling disaster that’s the Diamondbacks? Paul Goldschmidt has to be hurt. There is no way that guy is healthy and goes for six home runs and a .207 average the first 54 games of the season. And how about those pesky Rockies? Humidor balls and three starters with an earned run average under 4.2? Better believe it and Nolan Arenado wins games at the plate and with his glove. This guy really is amazing to watch. The Padres were wretched to start, but they’ve creeped over .400 lately and this might be the year we say, “I remember when the Padres stopped sucking so damn much.”
Staying out west, I didn’t see Seattle coming, but they’re here. They’ve maintained contact with the Houston Astros for the whole year. The Angels slid, but will likely battle for a Wild Card berth and the Oakland A’s are hanging around .500…actually over .500 for the first time since one of the Obama terms. Jared Lowrie’s been carrying the team. You can’t rely on that. But, they have 3/5 of a pitching staff so .500 doesn’t look unreasonable. Texas sucks. There’s rebuilding and then there’s this. What is this exactly?
Hopping back across the country, the NL East was way better than I expected, but it’s still early and Philadelphia’s ripe for a big slide as Washington has started to win some series. Atlanta led by Nick Markakis? Good for him. One of the poll questions was from the season previews was, “Will Miami win 60 games?” One-third of the way through, they have 20. You do the math. I’m headed to Vegas to start making odds. Wait, betting’s legal everywhere now? Okay. Fresno, here I come.
Too early to call AL and NL Championship Series matchups? Nope.
In the AL, Boston over Houston.
In the NL, wow, okay, let’s pull over somewhere near Modesto. That’s a whole lotta .535 clubs wandering around there. If the Dodgers can get Clayton Kershaw back and figure out what’s up with Chris Taylor, they have a shot. But, I might be starting to like Milwaukee. Call me crazy.
Or the fifth Kardashian. Fourth? Sixth? Hell, I don’t know. Who watches that show? And what picture can I use for this column without getting sued?