Hey…anything’s possible! (No, really!)

So here we are, at the halfway point of the baseball season. As of this writing, (June 30), the Guardians sat a half-game out of first place, having played one less game than the front-running Twins.

Sure, the Guards were smoked by the Cubbies, but the Cubs are the hottest team in baseball now (and we ain’t).

But that’s the point: the Central Division is there for the taking, and history says this team will crank it up a notch or two and be in the driver’s seat by Labor Day.

No question, the Guardians have not been the happy-happy joy-joy day at the beach they were a year ago, and as has been mentioned in this column on several occasions, that’s the way things usually go in sports – especially with young teams.

So, relax, take a chill pill (preferably a gummy-bear vitamin out of the fridge), and reassess just how close we are to where we want to be.

Jeez, I had a guy tell me the other day that he was so disappointed in the Guardians that he was “ready to get back into the Browns.” Wait. The Cleveland Browns? Those Browns? Really?

Tell me, Browns fan, that if the midway point of the Browns season rolls in with the Browns a half-game out of the lead but playing sub-.500 ball, folks will be dancing in the streets and talking Super Bowl. And you know as well as I do that would be exactly what would be happening.

To show you how close the Guards are to turning this around, ponder this: Last year Cleveland ruled the division, having a winning record against every team in the division and finishing at 47-29, a .618 winning percentage.

This year, Cleveland is 10-12 within the division, with 2-4 records against the Tigers and the White Sox, a pair of teams clearly inferior to Cleveland. There’s little question that Cleveland will start knocking these teams around and finish with an intra-division record similar to last year’s.

And for those of you writing off the Guardians based on the argument that “even if they win the weak division, they’ll get clobbered in the playoffs anyway,” consider this:

The 2006 St. Louis won the World Series after posting a regular season record of 83-78, the worst regular season record for a World Series champ ever! And it happens in all sports, gang:

The 1978 Washington Bullets won it all in the NBA with a regular season record of 44-38.

In 2011, the New York Giants won it all in the NFL with a regular season record of 9-7.

The Guardians have the pitching to dominate a short series (or several of them) so don’t give up the ship just yet.

Oh, and by the way, at the season’s mid-point a year ago, the Guards were a ho-hum 40-41 … a mere game and a half ahead of this year’s group.

Need more? How about after 100 games last year, the Guards were 51-49, a mere 2 games over .500. And they still finished 92-70.

We’ve got the rest of MLB right where we want ‘em.

Jeff Bing

Lifelong Westlake resident who dabbles in writing whenever the real world permits. My forte is humor and horror...What a combo!

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Volume 15, Issue 12, Posted 9:18 AM, 07.05.2023