A Week in the Standings

"Oooh, I done it it again!"

At 8-5, the Yankees sit discontentedly atop the AL East.

Great starts by CC Sabathia have been wasted, Phil Hughes is on the DL, Ivan Nova has yet to make it 3 times through a lineup, and Derek Jeter is still not hitting.

On one hand, the Yankees are lucky to lead the division. The Rays have won 5 in a row and are still 2 games below .500. The Red Sox (3-10) could win every game they play this week and still be below .500 next Sunday. It's still only April; if the postseason started today, the Yankees, Indians, Royals and Rangers would represent the AL. I don't know any serious people who think that's likely.

On the other hand, a game in April counts just as much as a game in September. As Dizzy Dean famously said, ""If Satch and I were pitching on the same team, we would cinch the pennant by July fourth and go fishing until World Series time." A pennant can be won by winning early and then just staying ahead of the competition, and it can be lost by falling too far behind, too soon.

8-5 is a .615 winning percentage, on pace for 100 games.

6 months of 8-5 gets you a chance at the pennant, even if it leaves you many unhappy days.

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