Week 1 of the 2017 MLB Season is in the books. When a league’s teams play 162 games each during the regular season, sports fans can brush off Week 1 results, right? Not so fast. In baseball, it’s all about chemistry.
Teams that start out hot, can remain hot unless there’s a reason, like a major injury, for them to go cold. That could be the case this season where a couple of surprises already have formed. Check out our 2017 MLB Week 1 Recap!
2017 MLB Week 1 Recap
** All records as of April 10
AL East: Baltimore Orioles on Fire
The O’s are on fire. Baltimore, has started the season going a ridiculous 4 and 1 straight up. What’s a bit concerning is that Maryland’s AL Team has only 1 starting pitcher with a “W” on his resume. Baltimore’s relief pitchers have bailed the team out in every game so far this season.
But, there’s hope that the Orioles could keep it going. The starting pitcher with a “W”, Dylan Bundy, was fantastic in Baltimore’s 3 to 1 win over the Blue Jays on April 5. Bundy gave up 1 earned run from 4 hits. He pitched over 7 innings and struck out 8. Chris Tillman, the O’s ace, should be back in a week or two.
The Tampa Bay Rays are 5 and 3, while World Series second choice Boston are at 3 and 3. The New York Yankees are at 3 and 4 and the Blue Jays are at 1 and 4.
Once David Price gets back to the rotation, the Red Sox could be tough to beat. Last year’s AL Cy Young Award Winner, Rick Porcello, has been decent. He’s given up 6 earned runs and 17 hits in 12 innings of work. Sale has been lock down city, 6 hits and 2 earned runs in 14.2 innings of work, while the rest of the rotation has struggled.
Once Price gets back, the Red Sox might start rolling. The rest of the teams in the AL East should remain around the .500 mark for the time being.
AL Central: Minnesota Twins, Detroit Tigers Start Strong. What’s Up with Cleveland?
This could be the deepest division in Major League Baseball this season. Minnesota might be as good as their 5 and 1 record indicates. Sure, it’s early, but the Twins’ bullpen has been unbelievable. Minnesota went 4 and 0 to start the season. They outscored their opponents 24 to 6. The Twins’ team ERA is a ridiculous 2.04.
Starting on April 11, the Twins battle Detroit, the team in the AL Central that has been almost as good as they’ve been. The Tigers beat Boston 3 to 1 in a 4-game series last week. One of their wins was versus the terrific Chris Sale. Detroit manager Brad Ausmus was perfect when keeping Red Sox batters off their game. Ausmus pulled the great Justin Verlander after the 6th inning knowing that his ace had pitched Sale to a 1 to 1 tie.
It might be too early to worry about the Cleveland Indians. I don’t know. The Indians are at full strength, but the rotation has the worst team ERA in all of baseball at 5.82. Danny Salazar has a 6.35 ERA while Corey Kluber’s ERA is at 5.25. One bright note is Carlos Carrasco who posted a .88 WHIP in 5.2 innings of work in a 4 to 3 win over Texas on April 4.
Cleveland could have a say in the outcome of the AL Central before it’s all said and done. The Kansas City Royals? Not so much.
The Royals biggest issue is that manager Ned Yost still believes he’s got the best bullpen in MLB. Like clockwork, Yost takes his starter out after the 6th inning. So far, the strategy has led to a 2 and 5 KC record.
AL West: L.A. Angels Lead After Week 1
Anything can happen in the AL West. Isn’t that what MLB fans are used to seeing? So far, 2017 hasn’t proved any different than any other year for AL West teams. The Angels are in charge after Week 1 although writing in charge may not be the best way to describe it.
L.A. is at 5 and 2 while the Oakland Athletics and Houston Astros are at 4 and 4. The Seattle Mariners at 2 and 6 as well as the Texas Rangers at 2 and 4 are in the hunt.
No team in the AL West figures to play away from its competition this season. The AL West should be a fun division to watch.
** All records as of April 10
NL East: 2 Way Tie Above NL East After Week 1
After Week 1, the NL East could have the best teams in the National League. Washington is at 4 and 3. They are tied with the New York Mets at 4 and 3 while the Miami Marlins are at 3 and 3.
Of the 3 teams, Washington and New York could separate from the pack The Nationals have two terrific starters in Stephen Strasburg, who has a 3.21 ERA and 1.00 WHIP in 14 innings pitched, and Max Scherzer, who has a 2.70 ERA in 7.2 innings pitched.
The Mets’ rotation has a 3.27 team ERA. That puts NYM in the Top 10 in Team ERA. Don’t sleep on the Mets providing a bounce back season after slightly underperforming in 2016. Noah Syndergaard has been ridiculous in 2 starts. He’s posted a .69 ERA to go along with a .77 WHIP. Thor’s got his hammer working early this season!
I don’t think the Miami Marlins keep pace at 3 and 3. The Philadelphia Phillies at 3 and 4, and the Atlanta Braves at 1 and 5, both appear to be in rebuild mode on this 2017 MLB Week 1 Recap.
NL Central: Cubs in First, but Surprise Team Tied with Chicago
At 5 and 2 and in the lead in the NL Central Division, it’s all well in Cubbie Land. The Chicago team that plays at Wrigley Field is ranked in the Top 10 in runs per game, batting average, team ERA, team WHIP and team strikeouts. The team ERA of 2.81 after 7 games is nice.
What’s nicer, if you’re a Cubs’ fan, is that the rival St. Louis Cardinals are 2 and 5 and tied with the Milwaukee Brewers in last place. The surprise team in the NL Central so far are the Cincinnati Reds who are in first place along with the Cubs.
Say what? Cincinnati? The Reds? Marge Schott’s old team? Yep. The Reds beat Pittsburgh, who is at 3 and 3 in 6 games this season, 7 to 1 on April 10. How is Cincinnati doing it? Manager Bryan Price is using his bullpen.
Price used 4 pitchers to dominate Pitt on April 10. It was only the Pirates’ sixth game of the season. Price pulled starter Brian Finnegan after 2.1 innings. If Price continues with this strategy, can we say that Pittsburgh has starters in the rotation? Or, are the Pirates just a team of relief pitchers?
NL West: Arizona and Colorado Get the Jump
The L.A. Dodgers’ team era is 2.97. But, LAD is at 4 and 4 after Week 1 while the Arizona Diamondbacks are at 6 and 2. Arizona bats .292 as a team. From a betting point-of-view, nobody has been as solid as the D’Backs who are 6 and 1 at home and 6 and 2 overall.
Colorado is 5 and 3. The Rockies’ team ERA of 4.31 isn’t terrible. But, eventually, it’s going to cost the Rockies in a division where the Dodgers are set to dominate. The big disappointment so far in the NL West are the San Francisco Giants who are only at 3 and 5.
San Francisco hasn’t even played L.A. yet. That’s a bad sign for the Giants. We’ll see what happens this week.