August Recap: Central

The American League Central is essentially wrapped up, while the National League Central has turned into quite a race.

Don’t forget, if you missed the AL and NL West, you can always find them here.

National League

  1. Chicago Cubs (73-60)

The Cubs cooled off in August after a red-hot July, but managed to maintain the NL Central lead. Middle infielder Javier Baez had a stellar month with seven homers, 25 RBIs, five stolen bases and a .290 batting average.

  1. Milwaukee Brewers (70-64)

After a sub-.500 July, the Brewers bounced back and finished August at 15-12, which was good enough to keep them in both the division and Wild Card races.

  1. St. Louis Cardinals (67-66)

It looked like the Cardinals were dead and buried in every playoff race, but an eight-game winning streak in the beginning of August covered significant ground in all playoff races. A 162-run outburst over the course of the month helped as well.

  1. Pittsburgh Pirates (63-71)

The Pirates looked like they might a legitimate run after July, but a 12-17 August put an end to those dreams. Also, no Pirate is batting .300 or has an ERA below 4.00. That’s not going to win you games.

  1. Cincinnati Reds (57-77)

First baseman Joey Votto was a one-man wrecking crew in August with seven home runs, 20 RBIs and a .340 batting average. As a result, the Reds finished with their first winning month of the season at 15-14.

American League

  1. Cleveland Indians (76-56)

At 19-9 in August, the Indians gave the LA Dodgers a run for their money for the best record in a month this season. Cleveland never lost three games in a row and had two winning streaks of six-plus games in August.

  1. Minnesota Twins (70-63)

After he missed most of July, center fielder Byron Buxton had a stellar August with eight home runs, 22 RBIs, eight stolen bases and a .327 batting average. Behind Buxton, the Twins finished the month 20-10 with command of the second Wild Card slot.

  1. Kansas City Royals (65-67)

August was the Royals’ worst month since April at 10-18. The month can be summed up by a five-game losing streak where Kansas City was outscored 35-2.

  1. Detroit Tigers (58-74)

The Tigers showed they were done with this season (for good reason) and were committed to a rebuild when they traded away pitcher Justin Verlander to the Houston Astros. Sitting 11.5 games back in the Wild Card was probably a good indicator September was too late to get things moving, even with Verlander. Here’s to 2020 in Detroit.

  1. Chicago White Sox (52-80)

When it comes to baseball, you want to be consistent. The problem here is being consistently bad, as the White Sox finished with three of their last four months’ loss totals tallying at 18.

Photo by Brigham Berthold

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