Sunday, February 17, 2008

'08 RAPs: AL Central

The general consensus is that this was the best division in baseball in 2007. Throughout 2007, the Tigers and Indians battled it out for the division, as well as the Wild Card. While they were at the top of the pack the whole year, the White Sox and Twins significantly underachieved. The Royals were the same as they've been for a long time; out of the race completely. Here's a rundown based on certain checkpoints throughout the season:

On May first, the Indians were in first place 1.5 games ahead of Detroit and Minnesota, who were tied for second. The White Sox were 3.5 back, and the Royals were already 9 games out.
By June first, the Indians had secured themselves some breathing room. They had a 4.5 game lead over second place Detroit. The Twins were 6 back and the Sox were 7.5 back. The Royals were out of the race, 15 behind Cleveland.
On July first, Detroit had moved back within 1.5 games of the Tribe. Chicago joined the Royals in the "out of the race" group. Minnesota was still hanging in there, 6.5 out.
At the All-Star break, Detroit had moved into first place, a game ahead of the Indians. The Twins were pretty much dead at 8 games back, but refused to start selling because of their tendency to go on a strong second half run.
Come August first, the Tigers were still 1 game up on second place Cleveland.
However, August was a rough month for the Detroit Tigers. They lost 6.5 games in the standings, and were 5,5 back on September first.
The Indians clinched the division on September 23, as the Tigers went on to lose the Wild Card to the New York Yankees.

Stay tuned: Tomorrow I will be covering the 2008 Kansas City Royals.
Here are the final Standings for the 2007 AL Central Division:
1. Indians: 96-66, 0 GB
2. Tigers: 88-74, 8 GB
3. Twins: 79-83, 17 GB
4. Chi-Sox: 72-90, 24 GB
5. Royals: 69-93, 27 GB

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