As Father's Day approaches, the 2014 Major League Baseball season is officially 11 weeks old, careening toward the All-Star break and never-ending questions surrounding contenders, pretenders and the state of the pennant races.
During a campaign of immense excitement, day-to-day and week-to-week results can get lost in the shuffle, replaced by season-long narratives and fans looking ahead to the months of great baseball still to come. If you need a dose of perspective on the season thus far, you've come to the right place.
Since the second week of play, Bleacher Report has been providing weekly analysis, with a combination of short-term reaction and long-term outlook.
When this column series began nine weeks ago, rises from the Milwaukee Brewers, Masahiro Tanaka and Jose Abreu dominated the early-season takeaways. Before long, pitching dominance in Atlanta and Albert Pujols' return to form headlined the week.
Seven weeks ago, Pujols' 500th homer, Troy Tulowitzki's special talent and Cliff Lee's path to Cooperstown took center stage. Six weeks ago, it was time for an appreciation of the Oakland Athletics' AL West dominance, Francisco Rodriguez's revival and Jayson Werth's value.
The last month highlighted the Detroit Tigers' road to October, the red-hot San Francisco Giants, Jose Bautista's talent and the parity evident around the sport.
Most recently, this column series has covered Edwin Encarnacion's power surge, a comprehensive take on two months of action and a reflection on Don Zimmer's ultimate baseball life.
Here are the biggest takeaways from the first 11 weeks of the 2014 MLB season.