On big or small things, this blog is simply never wrong. You will remember that this blog told you that the early success of the St. Louis Cardinals was suspect, because they had played all of their early games (almost every game for more than the first month) within the weak Central Division. I said that the Central Divisioni was porobably the worst division in baseball. Chalk up another one for this blog. The S. Louis Cardianl PITCHING is being exposed as not nearly as good as it appeared to be. The previous bog article had indicated this possibility, as Wainwright has still not come back to effectivelness from his "Tommy John" surgery. And Westbrook, Lohse and Garcia have been exposed as JUST NOT THAT GOOD (especiallly agaisnt good temams). But it is this blog's assertion that the Central Division is probably the worst division in baseball that was essentially PROVEN right yesterday.
The Central Division of the National League was involved in 6 games yesterday. The Central Division team LOST all six games. IF the odds in each game were 50% (ot quite true, of course, but which should not be that far from the turth, IF the Central Division were eqaual to other divisions in baseball), what were the odds of this happening (as a matter of chance alone)? The odds would be 1 in 64 (2 to the 6th power--1/2 times itself 6 times).
The Central Division is now, in the aggregate, 18 games UNDER .500. The Cardinals are the only team over .500, and they are only 5 games over .500. This repeats the pattern of recent years, where the Cardinals start off strong and FADE quickly. In fact, since 2006, the Cardinals have only had ONE sustained period of excellence: that "run' in September and Octorber of last year. Yes, the Cradinals won the division in 2009, but they were not that good (having ONE strong month, after Matt Holiday joined the club, that won a typically WEAK Central Division). In general, the Cardinals have been little better than a .500 cub, in a divison filled with teams not that good. The Cardinals have some potentila, especaily on the HITTING side (if they can stay healthy), but their pitching remains suspect (unless Wainwright rights himself, and Carpenter somehow makes it back one last time). Their defense remains nto that good--no matter what the fielding percentage may appear to show. Thus, the Cardinals have to IMPROVE, to become a bonafide GOOD team. However, the Central Divison is so WEAK that the Cardinals SHULD be there at the end, just beccause there are NO really good teams ni the division (a divisoioni that just lost 6 ut of 6 games, and is 18 games under .500 as a group).
This blog can notw make another CALL (a network-type PROJECTION based on sample games, preseason lpolls, and expert analysis): Milwaukee and Houston FAIL to make the playoffs. This blgo has already MADE THE CALL on the Cubs ("Cubs Lose"l). No. Milwaukee and Houston are not "mathematically eliminated", and even are not that far out of first place (as the actual vote count is often not large when "journalists" make one of those "calls"). But the "experts" of The Maverick Conserative are CONFIDENT, when all of the games are played, Milwaukee, Houston and the hapless Cubs will NOT make the playoffs. Yu will note that the 'wild cared" will almost surely NOT coe from the Central Divisoin, as it would not havve done last year--except for the utter collapse of the Atlanta Braves. Pittsburgh is the next candidate for a "call", but our experts still see a chance for that team. The odds are that it will come down to Cincinatti or St. Louis, but the Pirates cannot yet be eliminated. However, like the networks talk about the "winer" before the votes are counted, this blog will--for the rest of the season--refer to Chicago, Houston and Milkwaukee as NON-PLAYOFF teams. The CALL has been hade. It is OVER for those teams. They now can onl "wait for next year".
No. This blog would NOT have made this call as to, say, the Philadelphia Phillies, because the TALENT is there (especially in pitching, and injured players MAY come back). But the sample games alrady on record, and expert evaluation, shows that the TALENT is just not there for Chicago, Houston and Milwaukee (despite Braun). Thus, our experts can make "the call" here, when such a "call" would not bbe made with other teams with a similar record.
P.S. No proofreading or spell checkng (bad eyesight).