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Central Intelligence: August 20

Those pesky Cleveland Indians aren’t going anywhere

Baltimore Orioles v Cleveland Indians Photo by Jason Miller/Getty Images

I think at this point we can safely accept that no Central team is going to challenge the Indians for a postseason spot. The Twins are putting up a mighty fine fight lately, but at 12 games back, it’s simply not going to be enough this late in the game.

Ah, to have that early season sluggish start back.

Here’s how things in the AL Central shaped up over the last week.

Cleveland Indians 71-52

Another solid week for the Indians, certainly helped by the teams they faced, but good enough to help them further distance themselves from the rest of the Central. First they swept the Cincinnati Reds in a three-game series, then they took on the Baltimore Orioles, and took two-of-three of those games, including an 8-0 shut out.

This coming week will see a split of the challenging and the easy, with a four-game series against the Red Sox, followed by a three-game weekend series against the Royals. The Red Sox are nigh on unbeatable these days, but the Royals should certainly offer little resistance.

Up Next: @ Red Sox (4 games); @ Royals (3 games)

Minnesota Twins 59-64 (12 GB)

The Twins had a monster of a week, and any question as to whether or not they would stay above the Tigers in the standings has been well and truly answered at this point. The week started with a two-game sweep of the Pittsburgh Pirates, before the Twins absolutely trampled the Tigers, winning three-of-four over the weekend series, including a pretty brutal 15-8 victory.

This week they’ll see the White Sox for three games, then play host to the A’s for a four-game weekend series. While the White Sox likely won’t slow down the Twins winning run, the A’s will offer a fair bit more in the way of competition, especially as they vie for a Wild Card spot (or perhaps even an AL West win?)

Up Next: vs White Sox (1 game); @ White Sox (2 games); vs A’s (4 games)

Detroit Tigers 51-74 (21 GB)

Let’s not dwell too much on that four-game Twins series. It was bad. Losing two-of-three to the White Sox wasn’t much better. I’m not really sure where the positives are for the Tigers this past week, so let’s see what lies ahead.

First up, a two-game set at home against the Cubs. Then continuing an all-Chicago week, the Tigers will play host to the White Sox over the weekend. Considering how well their last meet-up went, let’s just hope for a split series.

Up Next: vs Cubs (2 games); vs White Sox (4 games)

Chicago White Sox 46-77 (25 GB)

The Sox had themselves a nice enough run this week, taking two-of-three games against the Tigers before hosting the Royals at home and taking two-of-three in that series as well. They haven’t gained much ground in the standings and are unlikely to surpass the Tigers, but at least they’re playing some good rebuild baseball for their fans.

This coming week they’ll see the Twins in a weird three-game series. The first game will be played in Minneapolis as a makeup for an early spring snow-out, and the latter two games will be played in Chicago. If the Minneapolis game tonight isn’t rained out, that is. After that they’ll head to Detroit for a four-game rematch series.

Up Next: @ Twins (1 game); vs Twins (2 games); @ Tigers (4 games)

Kansas City Royals 38-86 (33.5 GB)

Up Next: @ Rays (4 games); vs Indians (3 games)