July 27, 2009 [LINK / comment]

Pennant races are shaping up

Whatver happened to all those upstart teams that surged into first place during the early weeks of the 2009 season -- the Orioles, Mariners, Royals, Padres, and Marlins? (The Blue Jays were also in first place for a while, you may recall.) As of mid-April (scroll down), each of those teams were leading their respective divisions, against all odds, but now they are all at or close to the bottom. The only team in first place now that was also in first place back then is the Detroit Tigers, who shared the spot with the Kansas City Royals. Here are the current division leaders, and the leaders as of mid-April:

It's been almost a complete reversal, and the division leaders are now pretty much what you would have expected. After a dismal first couple months, the Yankees have finally gotten their act together, winning nine of their last ten, and the Angels, Cubs, and Phillies have been almost as hot. Other teams that are licking their chops: the Rockies, the Rangers, and both the Red and White Sox. Who knows, maybe the Braves or the Marlins will make a late-season surge and make it back to the post-season. On the other hand, the Mets have almost collpased, now in fourth place, ranked just ahead of the Washington Nationals. The indignity! smile As of next month, I will officially start paying attention to the wild card races. The Orioles are not a bad team at all, and like the Washington Nationals, they are missing a few critical pieces, or else they might be a contending team as well.

Camden Yards update

Speaking of the Orioles, the Camden Yards page has been updated with several corrections and additional detail, such as the profile, lights, and trees in the plaza on the northeast side. The most significant change is that the angle of the diagonal bend in the grandstand near the left field corner is oriented more toward the diamond than I had thought before.

Well, that takes care of Maryland, at least. Now, back to our regularly-scheduled sequence in Missouri...

Don't worry, I am still working on Kauffman Stadium, and expect to have it done this week...