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Top Money Teams
by Matt Fargo - 05/01/2007
The season is still very early but teams are starting to get into runs of what we might expect throughout the rest of the season. Itâ€™s never too early to see which teams are bringing home profits and the main reasons behind those. Only six teams are showing profits of more than three units on the season which is a small number showing that there has been a lot of parity thus far.
Milwaukee Brewers 16-9 +8 Units
The Brewers were picked by many to be a surprise in baseball and to contend in the weak National League Central. They have not disappointed as they lead the division by 3.5 games over the Pirates of all teams, showing just how weak that division really is. Milwaukee has been doing it both at home and on the road and for any team to become a contender, it must win away from home. Chris Capuano, Claudio Vargas and Jeff Suppan are a combined 9-2 on the season and if Ben Sheets can come around, the staff will be very dangerous from top to bottom.
Boston Red Sox 16-8 +7 Units
This isnâ€™t really much of a surprise as Boston was expected to rebound from last seasonâ€™s disappointing year. The Red Sox have benefitted from excellent pitching and timely hitting to take the early lead in the American League East. Josh Beckett and Curt Schilling lead the way with a combined 8-1 record and if Daisuke Matsuzaka can come around like he is supposed to, this will be the most dangerous staff in the league. Already with a 6.5-game lead over the Yankees, Boston cannot let off the pedal.
Cleveland Indians 14-8 +6.1 Units
The American League Central was up for grabs when the season started and likely will be a dogfight the whole year but Cleveland is showing early signs of the favorite. The Indians are 19th in baseball in ERA and 22nd in hitting so it is a surprise they are leading the division. The offense and the pitching have both been timely and have stepped up at the right times. Cleveland is 6-2 in one-run games after going 40-62 over the last two years combined. The question is can they keep it up and only time will tell on that.
Atlanta Braves 16-9 +4.8 Units
The Braves are trying to prove that last year was a fluke after not winning the division for the first time in 12 years. They are not doing anything special with their pitching with the exception of the surprising start of Tim Hudson, but the offense is getting it done. Atlanta leads the Majors on OPS at .811 and is third in runs, averaging 5.4 rpg. One thing to keep an eye on is the fact that the Braves are 10-2 against right-handed starters but just 6-7 against lefty starters so those are the spots to play on or against in the near future.
Arizona Diamondbacks 16-11 +3.8 Units
The Diamondbacks are the other early surprise in the National League as their current six-game winning streak has given them the lead in the National League West. They have been the streakiest team in baseball, going 9-4 to start the year before dropping seven of eight prior to this current run. The pitching is leading the way led by Cy Young winner Brandon Webb. It was encouraging to see Randy Johnson looking sharp in his second start back from back surgery. If he can stay healthy, Arizona will be around all season long.
San Francisco Giants 13-11 +3.4 Units
The Giants are probably the one team in this list that wonâ€™t stay here for too long. They are extremely old on offense and with the exception of Barry Bonds, no other everyday player is hitting above .300. Pitching has kept San Francisco in the mix but Matt Morris and Russ Ortiz have been the catalysts and who knows how long they can hold up. However, Barry Zito, Matt Cain and Noah Lowry are also pitching well and all three could be even better. With their next nine games at home, San Francisco could keep it going for a while.
I will be taking a look at the bottom teams tomorrow.