By Khalid Mohamed
The Major League Baseball All-Star game has come and gone once again, it was a pretty rocking party with celebrity sightings and media coverage that documented all of it’s magnificent details. That said, it’s time to for teams to get resettled and begin their push for the postseason.
This current season has unearthed quite a few interesting story-lines that’ll be front and center during the second-half of, here’s a look at some of the most pressing stories:
Will the New York Yankees be dumping players at the trade deadline?
Perennial World Series favorites, the Yankees find themselves in unfamiliar territory. With a record of 44-44 at at the All-Star break, the Yankees were 7 ½ games behind the American League East leading Baltimore Orioles with both the Toronto Blue Jays and Boston Red Sox in contention for the top spot, the Yankees may realize now is the time to throw in the towel and begin planning for next season.
If ownership and management can get on the same page, General Manager Brian Cashman will be unloading hefty contracts from the teams payroll, sending a message to fans that the team is ready to rebuild and a quick fire-sale will help to speed up the process.
Can the Baltimore Orioles hold onto top spot in the American League East?
Fans may think so, but it seems as if the team is finally feeling the effects of having an empty bullpen with no help insight. At the behest of players, manager Buck Showalter is making a priority to recruit pitchers, how he’ll go about it is another issue entirely.
Lacking the assets to go out and make deal, the Orioles may have to weaken their heralded offense if they hope to make any progress in the trade market.
As of now, it seems as the Boston Red Sox are the front-runners for the division. The Toronto Blue Jays may make a push but that all depends on their ability to shore up their pitching and the continued excellence of Josh Donaldson.
Will the real Chicago Cubs Please stand up?
The Cubs were great to watch during the first half and fans were inspired to dream about the unattainable, unfortunately, their recent form has led to worry and confusion. The Cubs still have work to do if they want to claim top spot in the National League Central Division, thankfully, their position at the top is safe, for now.
The mood around the organization is far from somber. Cubs manager Joe Maddon has deemed their record before the All-Star break, a dismal 5-16, the result of complacency. Players have echoed this sentiment and it truly seems within the clubhouse that Cubs see this as a bump in the road on the way to ta historic season for the franchise.
Is Yasiel Puig’s time as a Los Angeles Dodger coming to an end?
In one word: probably. The Dodgers have conceded that they’re listening to offers for Puig, but that in no way is an indication that Dodgers are looking to part with any of their big names. Yes, a costly payroll does have ownership feeling the financial burden, the highest in the major leagues, but as of now, it seems that Dodgers will stay the course and hope their luck changes, quickly.
It’ll be interesting to see what’ll happen between now and October, but at the very least, the second-half will prove to be thrilling and may end with a bit of history for a deserving fan base.