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Interleague play still fits AL baseball teams

Jun 17, 2008 6:54 PM

Between the Lines by Kevin Stott | Interleague play resumed Friday and like past seasons, the AL (47-36) has an early advantage over the NL.

The Red Sox, White Sox, Reds and Mets all swept their opening Interleague series in mid-May and although the AL still seems to have the edge in overall talent, both leagues still just have three teams 10 games over .500 in the Red Sox, Angels and Rays in the AL and the Cubs, Cardinals and Phillies in the NL. Let’s not dawdle.

Starts Tuesday, June 17

Pirates at White Sox (Tue-Thu): Whether it’s fear of Ozzie, the darling Cubs or their AL Central rivals, the Go Go Sox have been playing good ball of late, winning 12 of their last 16 at US Cellular Field including eight straight. In Interleague, Chicago is 106-93, including a 4-2 start this year. The Bucs, on the other hand, are 58-96 and went 5-10 vs. the Senior Circuit in 2007. Embrace logic. WHITE SOX.

Royals at Cardinals (Tue-Thu): The I-70 Series returns with St. Louis (86-77 Int. since 1979) having more momentum and motivation now while KC (90-109) has lost 20 of 27 at press time and is the second-worst AL team vs. the NL. CARDINALS.

BONUS: TWINS over Nationals, LETTERMAN over Leno.

Starts Friday, June 20

Cardinals at Red Sox (Fri-Sun): The last time these two met the Bosox swept the Redbirds in the 2007 World Series. The best club last season (12-6) in Interleague play, the Not-So Pale Hose are 5-1 this year and are now 110-89 overall. Toss in their home record (28-7, best in the Bigs), their status (champs) and a race with TB and the home team should be wicked good at Fenway Park. RED SOX.

Orioles at Brewers (Fri-Sun): Baltimore is the worst Interleague team, going 83-116 (6-12 LY) despite its’ AL pedigree. Milwaukee (73-87) once played in the AL but that was when gasoline was $1.03 a gallon (1998) and the BrewCrew has been hot lately, winning 13 of 18. BREWERS.

Mariners at Braves (Fri-Sun): Atlanta rules at home (25-11) and has a healing Jones (quad tear) ripping again. The Braves were 4-11 last year and are 99-88 in Interleague while Seattle (109-91) has but an AL-worst 10-23 road record and a growing reputation as the worst team in MLB. BRAVES.

BONUS: A’s over Marlins, SUMMER over Spring.