The following is from my buddy Mike
Who are these guys?
The AL West….living in a Rangers paradise? Texas has taken control of the AL West after a week of dominating their divisional opponents(Seattle and L.A., AKA Anaheim, California, Angels) with the thing that most analysists said they didn’t have a lot of…pitching.
Sure, the lineup is potent with Ian Kinsler, Michael Young, Nelson Cruz, Hank Blalock, and Marlon Byrd playing well and it will get even better once Josh Hamilton gets back to his 2008 self and Jarrod Saltilamacchia gets over an eye infection that could still be bothering him. But who would have thought that Brandon McCarthey, Scott Feldman, Kevin Millwood and Co. would be pitching this good?
As long as their pitching continues to produce and their lineup stays healthy, then the Rangers are the team to beat in the AL West.
As for another division leader, the Milwaukee Brewers are 1 1/2 games up on the Cubs and 2 games up on the Cardinals as they finish their three game series against St. Louis at Busch tonight. Braden Looper will look for the sweep against his former mates against Friday’s scheduled starter Kyle Lohse(hopefully he can pitch deep into the game). The Brewers have been playing great ball because of a few hitters getting back to their selves. Rickie Weeks and Bill Hall have found their stroke and Prince Fielder has had a good series(hit a home run to bust open the game yesterday with a 3 run HR in the 7th).
But as is the case with the Rangers, the Brewers pitching has been a pleasent surprise. Yolani Gallardo, Manny Parra, and Dave Bush have been pitching well lately and if I were the Brewers, I’d find a way to throw Jeff Suppan every series against the Cardinals. He has been dominate against the Cards(he hasn’t lost against them since he joined the Brewers) and he has been the veteran presence that the Brewers needed to settle down the team. I wrote off the Brewers because I thought the loss of Sabathia and Sheets was too much to overcome, but they have 3 things they didn’t have last season: A healthy Gallardo, Bill Hall hitting, and Rickie Weeks getting on base in the leadoff spot.