Who's For Real?

Photo Credit: Elsa, Getty Images

by: Ryan Cameron @RyanCameron22

As we approach the halfway point to the season its time for us to look at the teams in the playoff hunt. 

The Contenders

New York Yankees (52-25) Any lineup that has Giancarlo Stanton and Aaron Judge in it is going to be good. The surprise for me is the pitching staff. Led by Cy Young candidate Luis Severino, the pinstripes appear to be in very good shape this season.

Boston Red Sox (53-27) Boston has a lot of talent on their roster and they are flexing their muscles to start the season. Mookie Betts and J.D. Martinez are anchoring the Red Sox offense and the dominant Chris Sale is doing what he does best. Boston should once again be fighting for a shot at the Fall Classic.

Houston Astros (53-28) The defending World Series Champions are again a premier team in the Majors. The pitching staff is led by Justin Verlander who is the best starter in the MLB. Jose Altuve and company are hitting the ball well. This team is a serious threat to repeat this year.

Seattle Mariners (49-31) It may be hard to believe but the Seattle Mariners are contenders to this point in the season. How? I couldn't tell you besides the fact this team plays hard for each other. They are doing just enough to win games. Make no mistake about it, this roster is talented enough to keep it up.

Above Average

Cleveland Indians (43-35) The Indians started off the season very slow and have had a lot of trouble with their bullpen. However, a lineup which includes Jose Ramirez, Francisco Lindor, and Michael Brantley is starting to wake up and with a pitching staff like Cleveland have, the Tribe should run away with the AL Central.

Atlanta Braves (45-33) The Atlanta Braves are without a doubt the biggest surprise of the 2018 season. This young talent team has exceeded everyone's expectations and the veterans, such as MVP candidate Freddie Freeman, are having career seasons. The Braves are for real but are they good enough to stay this way all year? We will have to wait and see!

Milwaukee Brewers (46-32) The Brew Crew have stayed in first in the NL Central for most of the year. Will they let the Cardinals or Cubs overtake them? I think so. They are talented and they have some experience on their side but it would be a surprise to see them win this division. As for now, they are playing some quality baseball.

Chicago Cubs (43-34) The Cubs have not played great baseball this year. Kris Bryant going to the DL today doesn't help. I still believe in the Cubs and their talent. Although if they don't start picking up soon, the Brewers or Cardinals could take the NL Central crown this year.

Arizona Diamondbacks (45-34) Oh, the wacky NL West. The Diamondbacks are leading the division at the moment but the Dodgers are coming on strong. I believe Arizona is talented enough to win the division over LA, and have proved so far this year.

Los Angeles Dodgers (42-36) Here come the Dodgers! After a very slow start to the season and a lot of injuries, the Dodgers are healthy and right back in the thick of it. In a division that is underperforming look for Los Angeles to make a run at the NL West crown once again this year.

Still in the Hunt

All of these teams still have a shot at the Postseason. They will need to play to their potential or better the rest of the season to do so though.

Los Angeles Angels
Washington Nationals
Oakland A's
Philadelphia Phillies
St. Louis Cardinals
Colorado Rockies
San Francisco Giants
Tampa Bay Rays
Toronto Blue Jays

Not Going to Happen

These are the teams I believe are out of the playoff race this year. Some because of talent and a few because of the divisions they are in. Better luck next year!

San Diego Padres
Minnesota Twins
Detroit Tigers
Cincinnati Reds
Pittsburg Pirates
Miami Marlins
New York Mets
Texas Rangers
Kansas City Royals
Chicago White Sox
Baltimore Orioles

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