The 2010 Major League Baseball season is winding down. Teams are jockeying for positions for the playoffs. There are surprises in both the National and American Leagues this season. The Cincinnati Reds came out of nowhere to take over first place in the National League’s central division. The Tampa Bay Rays and New York Yankees are fighting for first place in the American League’s Eastern division. The Boston Red Sox are sitting on the outside and looking for a miracle. The San Diego Padres and San Francisco Giants are fighting for the National League West after the Padres held a huge lead halfway through the season.
These are the teams who will most likely make the 2010 Major League Baseball playoffs:
New York Yankees-The Yankees are going to make the playoffs. They have spent more money than any other Major League Baseball team to assure them a spot in the playoffs. The Yankees have a great team. They should, they bought every one of the players at the highest costs. I used to love the Yankees in the past, but I am tired of them. You have A-Rod who admitted to cheating by using steroids. You also have a team and organization who believe they deserve to win the World Series every year because they spend the most money. The Yankees have a great team. They have one of the best lineups in baseball. They do have a few weaknesses. The Yankees are slowly aging. Their closer (Mariano Riviera) has blown two saves in the past two weeks. Lance Berkman (who the Yankees bought near the trade deadline) has done nothing to help the team. The Yankees are an aging team. A-Rod is 35, Mariano Riviera is 40, Jeter is 36 and Pettitte is 38. On the other hand the Yankees have a few stars that are in their prime. Mark Teixeira is 30 and is still a great star. Robinson Cano is a new star for the Yankees and he is 27. 2010 was the breakout year for Cano. The Yankees have a great team. They have a chance to buy themselves to another World Series victory in 2010.
The Tampa Bay Rays-The Tampa Bay Rays are one half-game behind the New York Yankees. Both teams should make the playoffs. The Rays and the Yankees have a four game series (against each other) beginning tonight in New York. The winner of this series may likely win the American League Eastern division for 2010. The Rays have a great young team with a much smaller budget than the New York Yankees. The Rays have a bunch of talented rookies starting on their 2010 roster. Joe Maddon (The Rays manager) has a unique way of getting all the players into the game. Evan Longoria and Carl Crawford lead the Rays. Both players are having great years. Crawford is in a contract year and the Rays may not be able to afford to pay him next year. One of the younger players on the team may have to take over his spot in 2011. The Rays have weaknesses coming into the 2010 Major League Baseball playoffs. One weakness is their youth. In 2008, the Rays made it all the way to the World Series with a young team. It can be done. The other weakness on the team is the Rays hitting. The team batting average is around .250. Carlos Pena has had a horrible year. He has spent the whole 2010 season around the Mendoza line. Jason Bartlett has had a horrible year, batting only .249 for the season. Bartlett batted .320 in 2009. Ben Zobrist is batting .243 with 10 homers in 2010. He batted .297 with 27 homers last year. If the Rays do not hit in the 2010 Major League Baseball playoffs, they will not win.
There is a good side to the Rays this year. Their pitching and their defense have been incredible. David Price has had a great year. He is 17-7 and has pitched great games. The Rays picked up Joaquin Benoit and Rafael Soriano in the offseason and they have been a great one-two punch in the bullpen. Soriano has 43 saves this year. The Rays do have a few weaknesses in their pitching with (long ball) Dan Wheeler and Jeff Niemann. Dan Wheeler has been giving up too many homeruns lately in relief and Jeff Niemann has not been the same pitcher since coming off the disabled list a month ago. Niemann should not be on the Playoff roster for the 2010 Major League Baseball playoffs. To make the World Series, the Rays will have to get timely hitting, play great defense and pitch like they have pitched all year.
The Boston Red Sox-The Boston Red Sox do not have a chance to make the 2010 Major League Baseball Playoffs. They have had too many old players hurt this season. Their young guys gave it a shot, but it was not enough to compete with the Yankees and Rays. The Boston Red Sox will sit home this playoff year and mend up. See them making a bunch of off-season deals to make the team better for 2011. The Red Sox are not statistically out of the playoffs, but they are finished.
The power comes from the American League East in 2010. You have two great teams fighting it out for the division. Don’t count out the hot Minnesota Twins or the Texas Rangers. Both teams will have a say in the 2010 Major League Baseball playoffs.