This is Casey Mitchell guest blogging for ST today. We are just a couple of weeks removed from the All Star break, and division races are beginning to heat up. Let's start with the AL East. Hands down the best division in baseball has all five teams above the .500 mark. After Boston's terrible start, they have managed to work their way up to 40-35 and 6.5 behind the Yankees. New York has been playing some great ball lately. Fresh off of a double-digit win streak, they are the hottest team in the league and I don't see them fading at all. One team that I do see fading is the Baltimore Orioles. The O's started out very strong but have been hanging on by a thread in the East. They sit at 5 games behind but I think their only hope for the playoffs will be that second Wild Card spot. I see potentially 3 teams from the East making the postseason this year, and you can never rule out the Rays or even the Blue Jays for that matter.
Another tight race is in the NL West between the hated rivals Giants and the Dodgers. Los Angeles got out to the best start in baseball but with the loss of Matt Kemp, they have came back down to Earth. LA started the series with the Giants 3 games up, but after being shutout 3 straight games by Barry Zito, Ryan Vogelsong and Tim Lincecum, the two teams are tied atop the division. It was nice to see Lincecum get his stride back after 6 straight losses. He now sits at 3-8 on the season with an ERA just under 6. On a side note, it is completely ridiculous that Melky Cabrera is behind Matt Kemp in the All-Star voting. The Melk Man is on pace for over 240 hits this season and Matt Kemp hasn't played since early April. If Melky doesn't make the All Star game, I will have lost all faith in fans voting for the "best players" to play in the All-Star game.