Indians in Worst Division a True Catch-22

Win.

It’s the goal of every baseball game and the Indians are doing a lot of it, seven0-straight to be exact. But here’s the problem. These wins are coming against teams in our horrible division, including two straight sweeps of the White Sox and Tigers.

Let’s compare it to the AL East.

The Indians would have gone from first-place to third-place and of course, there would be various scheduling differences, but the point remains the same. The competition level the Indians are facing is poor.

Of course, you can only play against the guys in front of you. It’s not like the Indians chose to be in a bad division. But is this winning streak an indication of how good the Indians are or just how bad the rest of the teams in our division are?

While I certainly believe that the AL Central may make the Indians look better than they really are, here’s why I’m not worried. In baseball, unlike other sports, all you gotta do is make the playoffs and you have a chance. It’s really whichever team gets hot at the right time that will win the World Series. Last year, the Tribe won over 100 games but peaked too soon and lost t0 New York in the ALDS.

But even if New York, Boston and other teams such as Houston finish the year with a better record, they still have to beat the Indians in a best-of-five or best-of-seven series. Moreover, in baseball, I believe the home field advantage, while still a key factor, is not as strong as the Cavs playing at Oracle, per se, in the NBA Finals.

Thus, we will truly never see how good these Indians are until the playoffs. And in reality, the best team doesn’t always win the World Series and that’s what makes things interesting. The Indians need to just close out this division and catch fire in the playoffs, similar to the 2016┬áseason, minus the last three games of the World Series.

I believe the offense and starting pitching is there for the Tribe and even the bullpen is coming around, too. But, again, it’s against some pretty poor competition. A few trades at the deadline will have this team ready for October.

The Tribe does face a test with an upcoming nine-game road trip and looks to improve their record of 16-20 away from Progressive Field. Let’s see how the team does in St. Louis and Oakland and if they can continue the success they’ve had against the bottom-feeders of the league.

Hey, at least the Tribe is staying focused and beating the bad teams. Regardless of all the aforementioned analysis, they are taking care of business and it’s a better issue to be beating bad competition than losing focus against those that aren’t as talented.

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