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Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Injuries affecting playoff races

Glen Perkins had a huge game Monday throwing eight shutout innings against the Yankees. The win coupled with a White Sox loss to the hand of Boston's Josh Beckett, puts the Twins back into first place. The Twins are playing the Yankees at a perfect time right now as they are spiraling downward. We must take two of the three from the Bronx Bombers and a sweep would be wonderful. With Seattle coming to town this weekend a huge homestand could be helpful as the Twins prepare for their mega-roadtrip due to the looming Republican National Convention in St. Paul.

I was thinking about the playoff races yesterday and realizing how recent injuries are currently playing their role on many contending clubs:

In the American League...

The Twins have missed Alexi Casilla and just when they were ready to add their big right handed bat, Michael Cuddyer goes down with a freak injury.
The Yankees have been missing their starting pitching, but Joba Chamberlain is set to begin throwing this Friday.
The Rays have been hit the hardest as rookie phenom Evan Longoria just joined Carl Crawford on the DL with a broken wrist.

In the National League...

The Cardinals just got Rick Ankiel back on the field and then lost former Cy Young winner Chris Carpenter after just his third start back from the DL.
The Phillies' Brad Lidge has been complaining of a sore shoulder which could be deadly for Philadelphia.
The Mets are already realizing the pain of an injured closer losing another late inning game with the absence of Billy Wagner.
The Diamondbacks put Orlando Hudson down for the season to join his fallen teammate Eric Brynes. However, the D-Backs did make noise yesterday in a surprise move acquiring Adam Dunn from the Cincinnati Reds. The move counters the Dodgers trade for Manny Ramirez and in my opinion makes Arizona the favorite in the NL West thanks to their pitching.

With only seven weeks left in the season, injuries can play a huge role in shaping the outlook of October baseball. Little time remains for key players to rehab and come back and contribute, but there is always September callups looking to make a name for themselves. Get ready folks, it's going to get interesting!

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