Loyal Fans Only
When you really think about it, the Kansas City Royals used to toil near the bottom of the American League. So it’s easy for Royals fans to have empathy for those teams that are practically limping to the finish line this season.
Hopefully those same Royals fans are just as understanding when their own team is likely back in this spot next year.
Chicago White Sox
Overall record (through Sunday): 56-86
Last week: 2-5
This week: Vs. Kansas City Royals (Mon.-Wed.); at Detroit Tigers (Thu.-Sun.)
The White Sox have a lot of young talent that will see them challenge for the playoffs at some point in the coming years. 2017 is not that year, though.
Chicago ran into a buzzsaw to start the week, getting swept by Cleveland in four games. To be fair, the White Sox only got blown out once in the series. They followed that up with a pair of weekend wins over the lowly Giants.
This week presents a chance for the team to pick up some wins. First are three games against the Kansas City Royals, who are as unpredictable as they come, and then there are four games versus the Tigers.
The only problem for Chicago? All seven games are outside of the Windy City.
Overall record (through Sunday): 60-82
Last week: 2-4
This week: At Cleveland (Mon.-Wed.); vs. Chicago White Sox (Thu.-Sun.)
Detroit has the unenviable task of trying to end Cleveland’s insane 18-game winning streak. They also have to try to end the streak at Progressive Field. Good luck with that. (Oh, wait.)
After what could easily be a sweep, the Tigers host the White Sox in a four-game set between the teams with the two worst records in the AL.
If nobody shows up to a baseball game, does it still count? We might find out the answer this coming weekend.
Overall record (through Sunday): 63-80
Last week: 5-2
This week: Off Monday; at Boston Red Sox (Tue.-Thu.); at Philadelphia Phillies (Fri.-Sun.)
The Oakland Athletics were incredibly close to pulling off a perfect week. Instead the team will have to settle for five wins against two of the teams currently in the top six in the AL’s overall standings.
Oakland lost a pair of close games to Los Angeles to open the week before a Wednesday win over the Angels. The A’s carried that momentum into a weekend set with the Astros, as Oakland won all four games.
The most impressive aspect is how thorough the beating was. Oakland scored nine-plus runs in every game, while Houston put up just 15 total runs—over half of which came in the series-opener.
If this team can find some pitching next season, Oakland could make some noise in the crowded West Division.
Toronto Blue Jays
Overall record (through Sunday): 66-77
Last week: 3-3
This week: Vs. Baltimore Orioles (Mon.-Wed.); at Minnesota Twins (Thu.-Sun.)
Toronto has nothing really left to play for this season as a group. Sure there are several players who have something to prove over these last few weeks of the season, but the Blue Jays, collectively, have been reduced to spoilers.
It’s a role they have a chance to play in a prominent way this week: Toronto hosts Baltimore for three games and travels to Minnesota for four. With some of the top Wild Card contenders on the docket, plus three games against the Kansas City Royals next week, the Blue Jays can at least influence the postseason.
Even without being there.