Tag Archives: AL East

Plus-.500 July Gives Jays Something to Celebrate

It’s been a long season for the second-year Toronto Blue Jays, who’ve struggled for wins after opening the SP78 campaign with a promising 4-1 won-lost record. Currently, however, they’re a woeful 43-60, the second-worst record in the American League, and good for last place in the AL East. And with no hope of capturing a division crown, the Jays of ’78 can only play out the string, acting as possible spoilers to the Tigers, Brewers, and Yankees and looking ahead to 1979. With nothing to boast overall but Bob Bailor’s current .308 average and John Mayberry’s 16 home runs, the Blue Jays can at least be proud of their hard work in July, which netted them not only their first winning month of the season, at 15-13, but the first of their short existence as well.

Leading the way in July was third baseman Roy Howell, who batted .355 with 38 hits, outfielder Bailor, who went 36-for-107 and hit .336, and utility player Doug Ault, who banged four home runs in just 13 games, good for 11 RBI. And though starting pitchers Tom Underwood and Jim Clancy both went 1-4 for the month, Jesse Jefferson surprised everyone with a 4-1 mark and a 2.87 earned run average, while spot starter Jerry Garvin finished the month with three wins, three complete games, and a 2.48 ERA. In the bullpen, closer Victor Cruz continues to impress, saving four games and leading the team with a 1.13 ERA; middle reliever Joe Coleman was also a surprise, going 2-0 with an ERA of 1.59 in seven games. And kudos should also go to Rick Bosetti, who with a base stealing rating of D stole Toronto’s only base of the month, and just the fifth for the team this season.

To take a look at the Blue Jays team page for results and statistics through July, click here. The boxes for league leaders, team rankings, and award totals have been left blank; these numbers will now be added to each AL team throughout the coming weeks, and award winners for July will be posted soon.

Yankees Finish July at 64-39 to Lead AL East

With a league-leading record of 64-39, a whopping 99 of 113 days of the season spent in first place, and two 5-game winning streaks to compliment an 18-win July, the defending World Series champion New York Yankees continue to dominate the American League, and with just two months remaining in the SP78 campaign, have a solid chance of capturing their second consecutive AL pennant, as well as back-to-back Series championships. And though they ended July in first place in the AL East, the second place Brewers are just five games back, and the Tigers just eight, so the Yanks still have their work cut out for them.

And to make matters more competitive, New York will face some stiff competition in early August, with games against the Rangers, the red-hot Bosox, the Brewers, and the Orioles. But the second half of the month will pit NY against a trio of second-division teams—the A’s, Angels, and Mariners—from the AL West, where the Yankees have dominated all season. And with Thurman Munson among the season leaders in batting average at .339, the bat of Reggie Jackson finally coming to life (10 home runs, 32 RBI, and a .337 average for the month), and starters Ron Guidry and Ed Figueroa currently sporting season ERAs of 1.27 and 1.89 respectively, this could be the perfect time for Bob Lemon’s squad to put the division away for good.

To check out the Yankees team page for results and numbers through July, click here. The boxes for league leaders, team rankings, and award totals have been left blank; these numbers will be added after all AL team statistics have been finalized, and July award winners have been picked.

13-14 July Keeps Brewers From Gaining Ground

The Milwaukee Brewers ended the month of June in second place in the AL East, just one game behind the first-place Yankees; one month later, they were still in second, but had dropped to five games back, after a disappointing 13-14 July. With the Yanks still going strong in July, the Brewers really needed to keep pace, but instead they now find themselves not only in danger of slipping further away from first, but also losing their hold on second place to the resurgent Tigers, now nipping at their heels in third place, just 3½ games back.

Helping to keep the Brewers afloat was the stellar pitching of starting ace Mike Caldwell, playing in his first full season with Milwaukee, who went 4-0 for the month with a 0.68 earned run average and four complete games in five starts. His season record stands at 16-4, and with two full months left to play, he should be a shoo-in for his first career 20-win season, and possibly his first Cy Young Award. Also making an impact was reliever Ed Farmer, called up from AAA in early July, who finished the month with a 1-0 record, three saves, and an ERA of 1.29. At the plate, utility player Don Money led struggling Milwaukee batters with a .329 average, while starting in nearly every game at either first, third, or DH. Paul Molitor had 33 hits to add to his team-leading total of 111, and Gorman Thomas powered eight HRs to boost his season tally to 19.

To check out the Brewers’ team page for statistics and results through July, click here. The boxes for league leaders, team rankings, and award totals have been left blank; these numbers will be added after all AL team statistics have been finalized, and July award winners have been picked.

July W-L Record Best for O’s This Season

With a season best 16-13 won-lost mark for July, the Baltimore Orioles have remained on the edge of contention in their division, with two months left to close the 12-game gap between fourth place and the top spot in the AL East. And with nine games scheduled in August against the first-place Yankees, that gap could be shortened to a few games very quickly.

And with Ken Singleton, Eddie Murray, and Pat Kelly all hitting over .350 for the month, and starters Mike Flanagan and Scott McGregor posting identical 4-1 records (and closer Don Stanhouse contributing with a 4-0 mark and five saves), the O’s seem poised and ready for a high-flying August. But to do so, they’ll have to improve their overall mound numbers: as a team, their ERA was a shocking 5.11, and seven pitchers went winless in July (Dennis Martinez was 0-4 with an embarrassing 10.20 earned run average). McGregor and Stanhouse have been the lone bright spots through the SP78 campaign; at 16-4, McGregor is well on his way to his first 20-win season, while Stanhouse has already equaled his career-best year for saves, with ten.

To check out the Orioles stat page for the season through July, click here. The boxes for league leaders, team rankings, and award totals have been left blank; these numbers will be added after all AL team statistics have been finalized, and July award winners have been chosen.