This has been quite a week. Given the tragic events in Boston, the flooding in the Midwest and the start of the NBA playoffs, baseball has been all but lost from the public's interest.

Which is a shame since there has been some good baseball.

Back before the season started, most baseball writers made their guesses who would be in the play-offs and subsequent World Series come this fall.  As I usually do, holding to the axiom that even a broker clock is right twice a day, I picked the Giants in the NL West to at least make the play-offs if not all the way to the championship series. At two and a half games back on the Rockies, I am reminded there is still a lot of baseball to be played and the Rockies traditionally start to chock sometime in August.

In the NL Central, I assumed the Cardinals would be the odds on favorite and so far their half game lead of the Reds seems to put them on track. The Reds were the ???fun' pick from the Central as they have not had shades of brilliance since the Clinton administration. While the Cubs are only four and a half games out of first place, it might as well be 30 as they have virtually no chance of getting anywhere.

In the NL East, things are going down pretty much as we thought they would with the Braves just three games up on the Nationals. The Mets and the Phillies are too strong to rule out just yet but the Marlins, who are lucky to get 100 people to the ballpark, might as well join the farm system.

Over in the junior circuit, the A's, the surprise of the all of baseball, are holding a half game lead over the much favored Rangers. If the A's can hold out, and that's a big if, they could be in for a nice run.  The Angels and the Mariners are separated by only a half a game but still five back and the Astros are still trying to figure out where they parked their cars.  Players on the Indians thought they were still playing and inter-league game.

AL Central is the tightest division in all of baseball with only two and a half games separating the first place from last, which I suspect will change quite a bit over the next four months. My pick was Detroit, which admittedly was the safe pick, but the Royals, who lead the Tigers by four percentage points, could make things interesting. The Twins, Sox and afore mentioned Indians all have a chance and are playing pretty good baseball.

Since the beginning of time, the AL East is the most watched division in baseball and again this season may be the most talked about as well. The Yankees, with notable injuries, are still only two games back from the Red Sox, who got a real morale booster this week with the excellent performance of the Boston PD. Well done guys. Baltimore is holding on at a half game behind the Yankees and the Rays are taking their usual approach of sneaking up behind everyone and staying true at only three and a half games out the lead. Toronto is six and a half games back but you can count on one hand the number of people that give a crap about the Blue Jays.  Sorry guys, Canada should not have a baseball team.

Key games to watch this week could be the Pirates at the Phillies, Kansas City at Detroit and the Angels at the Mariners.  Grab some coffee, the sports section and we'll meet back here next week. I don't know about you, but not sure I can take another week like the we just finished.

Play ball.


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