Let’s take a look at how last week went for the AL Central teams, and what this coming week is going to bring.
Cleveland Indians 57-47
The Indians ended the week with two split series under their belts. First they squared off against the Pittsburgh Pirates and were only able to win a single game: a 4-0 shut out on Wednesday. They then moved onto the good old reliable Tigers where they took two of three against the struggling Detroit club.
Their luck should hold going into this week as they head to Minnesota for a three-game series against the Twins, then return to Cleveland for a three-game series against the Angels. Both teams have had some success but are mostly split for wins in their last 10 games, so it’s anyone’s guess how the week will shake out.
Up Next: @ Twins (3 games); vs Angels (3 games)
Minnesota Twins 48-56 (9 GB)
The week started out fantastically for the Twins with a three-game sweep against the Toronto Blue Jays, which they segued into a first game win against the nearly unstoppable Boston Red Sox. The Sox got their feet back under them, however, and won the remaining three games of the series, including a 3-0 shut out on Sunday.
With the Indians up next, the Twins will just be hoping to end the run of losses that started in Boston. Things ease up a little with three games against the Royals wrapping the week, so if the Minnesota club can manage to keep from being swept by the Indians they’ll be in good shape to maintain their place in second.
Up Next: vs Indians (3 games); vs Royals (3 games)
Detroit Tigers 45-62 (13.5 GB)
If the Twins was a positive outlook about that Royals series, they can turn to the Tigers experience from last week. The Tigers met up against the Royals for three games and came out winners in two of them (though two of the three contests came down to one-run differences). The Tigers then invited the Indians to town, and as we learned above that went really well for... the Indians, who took two of three in the series.
Next week there will be two series that sound easy on the surface but certainly won’t be. The Cincinnati Reds come to town, and in spite of their position at the bottom of the NL Central, they’ve been doing impressively well, including winning three of four games against the red-hot Phillies last week. The A’s likewise won’t go down easy as they continue to vie for a Wild Card spot that looks more and more possible every day.
Up Next: vs Reds (2 games); @ A’s (3 games)
Chicago White Sox 37-68 (20.5 GB)
A split series against the Angels started the week for the White Sox, who were wrapping up a west coast road trip. The Sox took the first two games, then the Angels won the last with high-scoring final numbers. The White Sox then headed east to see the Blue Jays, where the Jays took two of three in the series. Still, winning three of seven for the week isn’t terrible.
This week sees them take on the Royals for three games before heading to Florida to play the Rays. The Rays series may depend largely on the health of the bullpen and whether or not the team deals Chris Archer at the deadline. The Rays got shelled by the Orioles recently, so it’s hard to get a read on them.
Up Next: vs Royals (3 games); @ Rays (3 games)
Kansas City Royals 32-73 (25.5 GB)
We already mentioned that the Royals were able to win only a single game against the Tigers, and the song remains the same when we move on to their four-game series against the New York Yankees. With the exception of a 10-5 win in the first game of the Saturday double-header, the Royals were trampled by the Yanks.
They’ll have an all-division rival week this week, facing off against the White Sox before seeing the Twins in Minnesota for three games. It’s hard to say what’ll happen here but the Royals can probably manage to get at least one apiece in each of those series.
Up Next: @ White Sox (3 games); @ Twins (3 games)