What is your opinion of the A.J. Pierzynski signing?
MJH on accountability
ProfarMVP, how is reliance on BP's projections ignoring "NEXTGEN"? If you have a problem with BP's projections, describe specifically the flaw that you think that you've identified and then maybe we can engage in a discussion.
Frankly, I think the whole "Team of Destiny" thing is a bunch of BS. Last year, it was supposed to be the Rays, after their hot September and miraculous finish to the season. We all know how that turned out.
Putting everything else aside, though, the Rangers have one HUGE advantage, and that is the 4 game tilt they play against the A's in the friendly confines of RBiA next week. Assume for the sake of argument that the division lead will remain 3 games next Monday. That seems like a fairly likely scenario, as I just don't see the A's going better than 3-3 or maybe 4-2 against the Tigers and Yankees in Detroit and New York. The Rangers can then effectively end the division race by winning 3 of 4. Why? Because that means a 5 game lead with 6 games remaining, pretty much requiring the A's to win out and the Rangers to lose out from that point forward. That's a highly unlikely scenario.
So, while I think it's still too early to panic, I have maintained for a while now that the A's scare me the most in a 7 game series. They strike me as a clone of the 2010 Giants - mediocre offense and good pitching, and some annoying stiff like Josh Donaldson or Brandon Moss will hit 8 home runs in 12 games or something. Bottom line, the Rangers need to take care of their upcoming opportunity and put this Team of Destiny nonsense to an end.
When the Phillies signed Cliff Lee, they were a lock for multiple World Series rings. And then, it was gone. It's easy to predict looming greatness, but then the games happen, and reality sets in.
As long as the Rangers do what they know how to do, the A's will be doing nothing more than keep breathing Ranger farts and desperately trying to keep a wild card slot over LA, TB and Baltimore.
Let's keep this on a rational level. There are two truths:
1 Oakland sucks.
2 LA Angels suck also.
That is all.
Malisyn nailed it.
While BP's projections may be informed, it's still just a statistical projection. The games and their outcomes are what matters.
Yes, I'd rather be in the Ranger's situation than in the A's....but I also admit I'm a bit worried.
And while I never thought the Rangers would run away with the division, never in my wildest dreams did I think the team that would be causing all this consternation at this late date in the season would be the Oakland frickin' A's!
Alright. Have digested all the posts on this thread including RFan's passionate (and clever) defense of BP, and it has merit! The momentum quotient I mentioned earlier deals with a team "feeling the groove", while statistically not as talented. Two great examples from recent history involve last year's Cardinals who played exceptional in Sept, carrying their momentum past the Phillies in the post season. Quite frankly, the Phillies scared me the most last year as a possible WS opponent with their stellar pitching. History shows otherwise. The other example would be the NFL's Giants who squeaked into the playoffs as a wildcard at 9-7 by finishing Dec. strong. Once again, momentum carried them past the Packers and 49er's to the SB. Were the Giants the best team, statistically, in the NFC last year? Probably not, but it didn't matter since they were playing the best football when it counted.
Predictions: Texas finishes their Angel./ Mariner road trip at 2-4 going perhaps 1-2 at both parks. The A's complete their Tigers/ Yankees series at 3-3, losing their series at NY but winning at Detroit. That brings the A's to Arlington 2 game down. There's a good chance the good guys split their series with Oakland, but Oakland returns home and takes 2 or 3 games from the M's. I deeply fear the final three games in Oakland, with Perez pitching one of those games. We haven't played well in Oakland this year, or Seattle for that matter. In the end, Oak could well squeak past the Rangers by one or two games and that's with Texas winning from 92 to 94 games. The Angel series in Texas will be key as we need to be up at least three when traveling to Oakland. Am dubious! Don't discount the A's yet, but yeah, I'd rather be three up vs three down with 16 to play!! May it continue and may my possible scenario become scorched earth policy.
From a statistical and scientific view, the impact of momentum is debatable. What is isn't debatable is that the A's and Rangers are both playing very well. I guess that could be called momentum. Both teams playing well has made the race fun. Regardless of whether it is momentum, luck, talent, execution, or any combination thereof, I like our chances. Go Rangers!
Let's rehash this discussion in a week when Oakland comes to Texas after 3 game sets in Detroit and NY. If it's still a 3 game lead after that (and our series' agains LAA and SEA), then we can get worked up over it all.
I still think this road trip will beat OAK up quite a bit - then again, we could get beat up on our west coast trip as well. Just think a few things might be sorted out a little bit in a week's time.
The A's would have to gain a game on us every 5 games to catch up. That's more then 1 game a week given we have 6 games this week and 7 next week, and 3 after that. I think that in order to beat us they have to be no more then 3 games back of us going into our 4 game series and no more then 1 game back of us in the final series. This is just a gut feeling, and I am admittedly a little uneasy with only a 3 game lead, but I feel we have it in us. Our bullpens back to damn near 100% and Beltre is a Colorado forest fire ripping through the mountains. Hamilton will get to at least 45 homers and the Napster is back. Darvish, Holland, and Dempster are getting into postseason for with Harrison hanging around his normal regular season consistency. The thing that will decide it are Perez's starts at the end of the season.
Crow--you have to wait until the A's go through Detroit and New York before you get concerned? I am concerned right now...we have three tough games in Anaheim and conceivably could either lose two out of three or God forbid get swept. If the A's win two out of three from Detroit, the Tigers aren't all that impressive right now....the A's are either two or one game back and we have a real tight race.
I think the division is likely going to come down to those head to head matches....if the A's are three or less going into the final series, man oh man is things going to get interesting around here!
It's the pull-away portion of the schedule. Playoff baseball begins tomorrow night in Anaheim. The Rangers will win the division by at least 6 games.
The A's are very much legitimate conteneders, but it's the Rangers division to lose. They control their own destiny and have been playing solid baseball of late, and I am not worried about the Rangers performance. If the Ramgers win, all else will fall into place. I am confident that the Rangers will finish strong, therefore, am not "worried" so to speak about the A's catching us.
I do think the A's will make the playoffs, just don't think they'll take the west. Very confident in this team right now.
I'm sick and tired of the "Team of Destiny"s...first San Fran...then St. Louis...It's our freaking time.
Last year, everyone thought the Rays were the team of destiny and we disposed of them in 4 games. Time to die, Oakland. Time to die.
Can we please stop talking about "momentum" in sports? There is no predictive value to "momentum" as we use it in sports. Momentum = mass x velocity and that's it. Oakland is a good team and Rangers tend to struggle against novel pitchers (eg Matt Moore last year ALDS game 1). Conversely, I like the idea of using Perez a lot in the coming weeks.
Half of you Ranger fans sound like whiney little girls. You are suppossed to be a fan of the 2x AL champs. I hope the players don't have this same knee knocking, teeth chattering approach in the next two weeks.
Thank you, BBTiA guest, for your insightful post. Though, your free movement between the use of singular and plural made reading difficult for me- that regrettably due only to my lack of command when reading troll. Kindly check back on our humble blog after the next two series following the Rangers taking it to the Los Angles Angels of Anaheim of California of The United States of America as well as the Mariners while the Athletics will be dealing with Detroit and the Yankee's- both teams who do not go gentle into that good night.
As Ranger fans, we most certainly would like to lock the Division up pronto....but the baseball fan deep inside of you has to love this competitive baseball, when the games really matter.
Will the dormant A's rise to the challenge? Will the 2X defending AL Champs show their championship mettle? Will the Angels go on a late hot streak and sneak into the wild card?
This is baseball at its fines, and i am getting used to the idea of the two team wild card, even though if that team beats my team in the ALDS or Championship series I am going to be very upset....but one thing is for sure: MUST SEE TV!!
Well...well...off to Oakland we go and what happens there will determine who wins the West, just as I predicted. The plus is if we somehow gets swept we still are in....but that is completely unacceptable and not very likely IMO....BUT the way this team has played for the last two weeks and the A's are STILL HOT I am not counting anything out right now.
The good thing about beating the Angels tonight means we just help put one of the final nails in the coffin of the Halos....surely we don't sweep the A's and let the Angels sneak in the back door?
At this point one win by Oakland means that the Angels are done. Basically only one at large playoff spot is left open. When we beat the Angels today we clinched the playoffs for us, the Yankees and the orioles. One more win by us clinches the division. The Rays and the Angels are mathematically alive. One win by Oakland or one loss by either of the other two knocks them out of the race.
As bad as the Mariners are I fully expect an Angels sweep....meaning the A's gotta get one which I fully expect to happen because if the Rangers clinch tomorrow the pressure is off. Unless the Rangers wanna play for the best record....??
If we win the one game needed to get the AL west title, the Yanks would have to sweep to take the best record. I think that's right, but they might hold the tie breaker on us, and in that case they would need to lose one game, and us win one for us to clinch the best record.
The Yankees won the season series 4 games to 3 against us....I assume that means they own the tie breaker and would have the number one seed if we end up tied with them.
You got to give the A's credit tonight....put us away to secure a spot in the playoffs. Surely we can win one of the next two with Harry and Dempster going to secure the division. Tonight belongs to the A's though...congrats.
Closing out the season 4-9 is pathetic, Losing the division and homefield is even worse. Fucking chokers
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