Wooden's World of Baseball

Saturday, May 24, 2008

A Pennant Race In Potomac?

It's an odd headline to write, even though they gave us an incredible run last August because the past two seasons have largely been about mediocrity. Thirty-five wins were enough to take the first half in 2006, thirty-two in 2007. This year, it may take 40.

With Kinston struggling for the first time in three years I've been watching, the balance of power has shifted to the northern division. Actually, it's clustered to three teams: Potomac, Frederick and Myrtle Beach. The fourth-best team is two games under .500.

There are 22 games left, four against second-place Frederick, but 16 at home, where the team is 16-6 already. But what worries me is that for a team built on pitching (2.89 team ERA is the league's best) the loss of another (Novoa to Harrisburg) might be enough for them to fall short. More concerning: The all-or-nothing nature of their hitting, which has them leading the league in HRs but only fourth in runs scored and 7th in both average and on-base percentage.

If Frederick has proven anything, it's that getting in early is what really matters. Winners of the first half the past two seasons with .500 or worse records, somehow they managed to knock off the class of the league in the uber-short playoffs (is there any justice in having a league champion declared in eight games?).

Looking forward to tonight's cheeseball promotion: Internet Safety with Erik Estrada. Pictures possibly tomorrow?


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