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Submitted by Kelso Sturgeon on Friday, June 15, 2012 at 1:19 PM

I think the biggest theme so far this year in Interleague play is that good teams are going to find a way to win. That’s not always the case when the American League battles the National League. For a couple of seasons there, even the good NL teams couldn’t win when stepping up in class. In fact, last place teams in the AL had a better composite record than first place teams in the NL back when the AL was most dominant!

But, right now, the leagues look to be closer to even than they’ve been in a while…and the contenders in BOTH leagues have been posting good results so far.

 

IL Records of Best American League Teams

NY Yankees 7-2

Baltimore 7-2

Texas 6-3

LA Angeles 6-3

Chicago White Sox 5-4

Tampa Bay 4-5

That’s a full listing of all AL teams who are at least four games over .500 for the full season. Only Tampa Bay has a losing IL record…and that came after a 4-2 start dissolved with their home sweep at the hands of the NY Mets. The five teams who make the AL playoffs this year in the newly expanded format will probably come from those six teams listed (unless Detroit or Boston catches fire and plays to their preseason expectations).

 

IL Records of Best National League Teams

Washington 7-2

Cincinnati 6-3

LA Dodgers 3-3

San Francisco 3-3

NY Mets 4-5

Those are the five best teams in the NL at the moment, and only the Mets have a losing record. And, the Dodgers, Giants, and Mets would all have better records if they hadn’t drawn tough opponents to this point in the proceedings. San Francisco had to play two time defending AL champion Texas, while the Dodgers drew the red hot LA Angels. That’s not quite as good as what we saw above. But, Washington and Cincinnati are obviously getting the job done…and the Dodgers and Giants did that when not playing LAA and Texas.

It’s important to remember that the AL still has a slight edge overall this year. Heck Colorado of the National League is 0-9 vs. the AL! But, you can find value by taking the best NL teams at good prices. And, you can find some dominating spots with the AL powers when they line up with anyone who’s struggling in the NL. The evidence to this point suggests that we’re no longer dealing with a Major League facing a glorified Triple A. Yes, the best AL teams are still dominating. But, half the American League is under .500 in IL play entering this weekend’s action.

Interleague play can be tricky for Advanced Handicappers because you don’t often have a perfect match talent-wise. The stats you trust will lose value in the inferior league because they were accomplished against a softer schedule. Mediocre stats in the superior league may be enough to win easily when stepping down against weaklings from the lesser league. I’ve seen too many Vegas handicappers over the years just stubbornly stick to their old methods while whining that “Interleague play is impossible to pick.” It might be for stubborn handicappers. It’s not for Advanced Handicappers who know the true fundamentals of what causes teams to win or lose in all sports, and are able to recognize when adjustments need to be made because of periodic imbalances.

I’ve had a great run of late on my 50-Unit baseball plays because I’ve mastered those fundamentals. Easy winners are just jumping off the schedule every night because the principals pay off as long as you follow them. You can purchase my top baseball plays here at the website every day. I also have a discounted package for the rest of baseball that offers incredible savings off the day-to-day prices.

My next class in the College of Advanced Handicapping will go up Tuesday in time for Game Four of the NBA Finals. We’ll have a lot to talk about at that time. Oklahoma City drew first blood this past Tuesday. Miami counterpunched in a dramatic bounce back win on Thursday. Game Three Sunday should tell us a lot about how things are going to settle in from this point forward. We’ll focus on THAT theme in that Tuesday presentation.

I greatly appreciate your constant attendance for these classes, and the work you’re putting into your own process as a result. Best of luck to you this weekend. I look forward to our next get-together on Tuesday!

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