I hate the American League for so many reasons. I hate the DH. I hate how much more attention the Red Sox and Yankees get compared to everyone else. I hate all the American League teams that have beaten the Braves in the World Series. But most of all I hate how much better they are than the National League. Oh and I hate that everyone always talks about how much better they are than the National League.
People talk about how the teams are better, about how the overall talent pool is better, about how the races are better, and about how play is better. Well I disagree with at least the last two. I always shudder when more fuel can be thrown onto the "American League is better" fire. But it looks like someone is about throw an oil tanker on that fire.
For the last few weeks everyone in the baseball world has been ejaculating over the amazing play of Manny Ramirez and C.C. Sabathia since their trades to the Dodgers and Brewers respectively. This ejaculation is warranted so far as to say that they have been nothing short of awesome since coming over. Here's what they've done.
9-1, 1.82 ERA, 107 K's, 8.82 K/9 in 14 games started........basically he's been making hitters look retarted.
.401 Avg, .481 OBP, .745 SLG, 1.227 OPS, 14 HR, 44 RBI in 43 games.........awesome.
However the praise should end at "OMG Manny and C.C. are awesome what good pick ups by the Brewers and Dodgers!!!!" Unfortunately there has been some decently serious talk of Sabathia winning the Cy Young and Ramirez winning the MVP. That would be terrible. As awesome as they've been neither of them deserve it. They've only played in the league for 1/3 of the season.
Can you imagine the cries of superiority from AL supporters if these two even finish in the top 3 of voting in either of these awards?
"Oh look, we loaned the NL two career AL players and they almost won the MVP and Cy Young only playing a third of the season there, how bad is the NL?"
Ugh that would be terrible. I don't even want to think about it. I especially don't want to see the Sox fans laughing about how their reject Ramirez came to the NL and was immediately the most dominant hitter in the league. AL fans would never look at how NL lifer Josh Beckett came over to Boston and won the Sox a World Series in the same way Sabathia switched leagues . Nor I'm sure would they equate Ramirez's dominance of his new league to Jason Bay's great play in the AL since coming to the Sox from the Pirates.
Here's what Jason Bay has done since switching leagues.
.300 Avg, .358 SLG, .544 OBP, .901 OPS, 8 HR, 34 RBI in 40 games
Clearly not as eye popping as Ramirez, still very good however. The Red Sox have sustained a few potentially devastating injuries in the second half and Bay has helped keep that team together. The guy went from playing in the NL Central to the AL East. Pretty big change of pace pitching wise. Also, and this really isn't affected by league but still worth mentioning, Bay is a massive defensive improvement over Manny Ramirez.
I don't think either one will win the Cy Young or MVP. Brandon Webb and Tim Lincecum will block out Sabathia for the Cy Young. Meanwhile Albert Pujols has been playing on a different level than the rest of baseball (as usual) with one arm. Also Berkman and Astros are suddenly competing for the Wild Card. Still even a top 3 finish, as I said earlier, could warrant more claims of AL superiority. And I really really don't want to hear any more of it. Really there's only one way to quell those annoying claims.
GO CUBS!!!! WORLD SERIES CHAMPS '08!!!!!!!!!
***I realize that the Mets, Phillies, Astros, or D-Backs could also win the World Series and help keep the AL quiet for a little while but I hate the Mets and Phils, meanwhile the Astros and D-Backs might not even make the playoffs. Also the Brewers or Dodgers winning the WS would still allow AL supporters to claim that those teams wouldn't have won the WS without AL players.***
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