MLB fans, it is Memorial Day! It's Memorial Day, MLB fans!.
Baseball fans believe that it is best to not check the standings until Memorial Day. That would be two months into the season. This allows teams to play enough games to give meaning to what's happening in every division.
Although where your team ranks in the standings may not guarantee where it will finish the year, there is some truth in this concept. According to Elias Sports Bureau data 58% of teams (87) that were in sole possession at the beginning of June 1st, have gone on to win their divisions in the wild-card era (except 2020).
We kept that in mind and asked ESPN MLB experts Alden Gonzales, Joon Lee, Jeff Passan, and Jesse Rogers for a look at the standings. This will help us understand where the season in 2022 MLB is so far.
What is the first thing you see when you look at the standings.
Gonzalez: TheWhat it says about their dominance and how fast they have flipped the script. Many questions were raised about Brian Cashman's roster and his decision to fire Aaron Boone, his manager, before the season began. As many questions as there were about whether the team had been improved enough before the season began. The Yankees are now the force that they are supposed to be. Their offense has been explosive and their starting lineup — the most uncertain piece of this team heading into 2022 — have helped propel them to the top in baseball's most competitive division. It's a good sign.
Lee: This could be the moment we finally have the opportunity to see.Together, in the playoffs. The history of the I was not expecting the team to make it to the playoffs. I was happy to see them flourish and challenge the norm. It was unexpected that the West division title would be awarded to me. I had also expected a stronger beginning from the I didn't expect to see it. Their division was leading through May. There's still a lot of season left, but this is bad news for the American League East teams that all want to win the championship.
Passan: The five-game lead that the Twins hold on the White Sox is not surprising. It's also the fact that it's smaller. The Twins' run differential stands at plus-30. The White Sox are at minus 46. That measure indicates that the White Sox have a much closer peer to the woebegoneChicago is closer to the Twins than they are the Twins — Chicago is fortunate to be within striking range, especially with They are ready to make a comeback. The Twins gambled on a return, punctuated in their late March signing of Over the first third,, was justified.
Rogers: Some observers believed that the National League East would be a monster not too long ago. The National League East is one team.— is doing its part right now, but there are still things to do. , And even the All are below.500, which is a disappointing result. Miami is actually a plus-12 team in run differential, but it's just 6-14 for one-run games when they enter play on Sunday. The Phillies spent huge amounts of money. Both teams have an OPS+ that hovers around the league average. The Braves are feeling a bit of a hangover. one. They rank 12h in OPS and 17th at ERA. This doesn't mean they should be repeated. Right now, the NL East is more important than the NL Least.
Which six NL teams are currently in the playoffs?
Gonzalez: I am certain that all three current leaders of division —, Mets, you will make it to the playoffs in some way. But, I have confidence in only one current wild-card team: the . My main concern was whether their thin offense would be able to withstand the prolonged absence. That has been proven to be true thanks to a large portion of ‘s MVP-caliber play. Their starting-pitching depth, which is impressive, is real. They'll be a frightening team once Tatis is back. The The They have talent of playoff caliber, especially in an expanded postseason field. However, I expect the Braves will be a part of this. They are really, really good but haven't yet shown it.
Lee: Although I expect the Giants and the Padres to make it to the playoffs via the wild card, I believe the Giants will be up against some stiff competition to get that last spot in the playoffs. However, I do not expect to see them in the playoffs.In the mix at the end of the season but Atlanta and Philadelphia should be competing with St. Louis to secure that last slot.
Passan: An alternative version of this question is: How much do the Braves cost? I'm still in. I'm still in., , , They will be adding a pair of outfielders. . Their infield still gets the job done. Their catching depth makes them a formidable prospect. Now the question is: Who will they replace? All of the leaders in their divisions are not replaced. San Diego has failed, but this team is different. Which team will win between San Francisco and St. Louis? The schedule doesn't allow for much flexibility, but the Giants have only 30 games remaining vs. Dodgers/Padres and the Cardinals has 48 against the Cubs/Reds and Pirates. With San Francisco as the odd team, that's five out of six.
Rogers: Five of them. The Giants will be overtaken by one of the NL East teams for a wild card berth. Three teams will not be able to reach the postseason this year because of how good the West is. They're going be fighting each other. Philadelphia has a plus-run differential so I chose them to be the best team. Each division will be sending two teams to the playoffs. Symmetry is good – and it works for me.
How many of the six AL teams in the playoff field are there in October?
Gonzalez: It is difficult to predict the AL because of the surprise performances by the Twins and Angels, while the White Sox andThey have been underperforming. Although the Twins' starting pitching has been a pleasant surprise, I do not trust it. And I believe the White Sox's talent will eventually propel them to the top in the division. The Angels were my pick to make the playoffs this season. However, it's difficult for me to trust them due to one simple reason: Anything can be destroyed by an injury. I believe that only three of the AL playoff teams currently in play will be there, the Astros, Yankees and the Cardinals. They are still not at their full potential.
Lee: Part of me expects that the Angels will move back to where they are currently in the standings. But, the other part of my expectations is for them to improve.Toronto and Toronto to remain in the wild-card mix – especially when the Blue Jays' offense picks it up. . ?. Take a offensive approach to things. Although I chose the Red Sox to win the wild-card slot prior to the season, that was before Minnesota's hot start. This puts Chicago alongside the Angels.
Passan: Five. The Yankees, Astros, and three wildcards — Los Angeles Bay, Tampa Bay, and Toronto — remain the same. The White Sox are finally able to make it work and win the series against the Twins. They host Minnesota from October 3-5.
Rogers: Three teams are allowed: the Yankees, Rays, and Blue Jays. Houston is also a good choice. Then it becomes difficult. Is the White Sox going on a run or not? Although odds are that they will, it's a flawed team. Minnesota has already shown its staying power and weaknesses. The playoffs are only one division away, and the Twins seem like they will win the game. That leaves five. This leaves the Angels. All six of the current postseason teams will be able to make it if they remain healthy. If not, my sleeper would be the. The is a deeper sleeper than me. — The youngest roster member of the game. If not this season, then next.
Which team's surprise is most positive?
Lee: The Twins. Although I was somewhat puzzled by the decision to sign Correa in this offseason, Minnesota is making strong starts., , , The results are evident in the division standings. Minnesota could be a model for other teams to follow, showing that they can build back quickly without having to give up and abandon the season in order to land a few top draft picks.
Gonzalez: To me, it's also the Twins. The Mets are also worthy of attention, but they're always a mess. I thought the Mets were the most interesting.Injury would be too severe at the beginning of the season. Their rotation currently does not include deGrom. He came from nowhere and won his first six starts. But , , They have been a step up and their offense is as good as it sounds. It was my honest belief that the Braves would take the division. Evidently, that will not be the case.
Passan: I am so tired of ESPN's Midwest bias. The obvious answer to this is the Angels. Even though they lost four games this week, they are still second in the AL West and sixth in the playoffs. They own the second-best run differential in the American League, have the two best-per-plate-appearance hitters in the AL this season (Trout and), boast a rotation that's pitching well beyond expectations and feature a serviceable enough bullpen to make a long-held baseball dream a reality: Trout and Ohtani in the playoffs.
Rogers: While I'd love for me to name the Diamondbacks, it would be a disservice and a disservice of the Twins. They won the series 4-8 and never looked back. It's almost as easy as it gets.The Twins are very likely to win if they have the best pitching staff. The Twins are also getting some amazing pitching from unexpected places. The starting team — headed by — is fourth in ERA. They aren't the only ones doing it. The Twins have reached eight depths to start games in the first two-months, and nearly all of them have been spectacular. This is what gives the Twins their staying power. They are able to draw unexpected depth from the most critical places — on the mound.
Which team's disappointment is the worst?
Gonzalez: The White Sox may be the most talented and deep team in the league, but they started Memorial Day weekend with a minus 42 run differential. Part of it is due to health.Not being able to work for a long time It was necessary to undergo season-ending Tommy John operation. However, the White Sox aren't hitting enough, they aren't pitching effectively and have been among the worst defensive teams in baseball. They have been awful in all aspects. They are not supposed to be.
Lee: Although the Red Sox are showing signs of improvement lately, it is difficult to see how they will surpass the.500 mark. This team will be going for gold this season, especially after signingThis leads to uncertain future Boston beyond 2022 The team was severely hurt by the injury to ” early in the season. However, the lineup has had to deal with a lot of struggles from expected contributors , .
PassanAlmost all of the American League? Both the Royals and the Tigers wanted to make the leap but instead found themselves in the draft lottery. TheThey wanted to repeat their amazing second half from last year. They are close to the AL West cellar. You already know a lot about the Red Sox and White Sox. An honorable mention goes to Phillies, who are third in the league and it's not a surprise but a necessity.
Rogers: This is an easy choice. DETROIT TIGERS ARE TERRIBLE. Yes, caps are required for this one. They were expected to make noise in an AL Central that was weak, but they have done nothing — coming in near the bottom.Regularly. Detroit's biggest problem lies at the plate. With an OPS of.600, they are last in the league. High-priced free agents His batting average dropped below.200 this weekend, and he has only three home runs. Four regulars, FOUR, are now hitting below the Mendoza line. The promising youngster for 2021 is also there. he was sent to the minors. It was not intended for this to happen for the AJ Hinch Tigers. They've created a huge hole for their own good.
Which team should enter unload mode between now, and the trade deadline
Gonzalez: Even though it's not in their nature, the Diamondbacks. They have turned the corner and won't be losing another 100+ games, which is a great thing. But they need to ask themselves if they really believe they can compete in the division with the Giants, Padres, and Dodgers. They won't. However, they can get a good return for starting pitchers such a, . Although I like the idea of keeping those guys and building around them, Kelly was extended last month. But quality starting pitching is very unlikely to be available in July. And the D-backs have it in one year when they likely won't contend.
Lee: The. There will be several teams that are interested in purchasing. , . There has been As well. Washington should not think about trading the star outfielder unless it can sign him to a contract immediately. He is only 23 years old and could be the center of any rebuild in Washington.
Passan: The Nationals Royals and Tigers, , The obvious ones are those that are obvious. One that's not so obvious is the White Sox. It's unlikely that it will happen. Tony La Russa wasn't hired by Jerry Reinsdorf as a manager for a seller. If the White Sox are still hovering around.500 and don’t expect enough of an turnaround between now, and the deadline, , , These are the players teams want to target. They will not bring in a large bounty, but they need every help they can get to improve their White Sox system.
Rogers: The Reds are the obvious choice. They are the fourth-oldest team in the league, and they won't be falling in the standings. (The three older rosters all have playoff potential. Cincinnati should consider unloading, , , Anything else that's not bolted down in our clubhouse. Perhaps someone will accept the challenge. If he approves, the contract of. Ok, maybe not. But you get the idea.
Which team will win the most games in MLB?
Gonzalez: Although the Yankees, Dodgers and Astros are the best teams, they also play within highly competitive divisions. I'm going to support the Brewers. They'll win 98 — a franchise-record.
Lee: With 101 wins, the Yankees.
Passan: Am I really the only one picking the Dodgers'? Give me 102.
Rogers: The Yankees will be just too good this season as long as they stay healthy. They'll win the most baseball games with 103 wins.