It's about time that Walkoff Walk talked about baseball games on the East Coast, y'all. Enough of the constant Kansas City and Arizona coverage, that's what I say! Two big weekend series get underway tonight on the East Coast. Well, one game is on the left bank of the Delaware River while the other takes place on the North Shore of Lake Ontario, but geography was never a strong suit for the folks who make up baseball divisions. How else would you explain the Atlanta Braves playing in the N.L. West for so long?
I digress. The new pouty and perennial rivalry that is the Mets and Phillies rears its ugly head tonight at Citizens Bank Park with the Phillies treading water above the .500 mark and the Metropolitans tearing themselves apart at 9-12, four and a half games behind the first place Marlins. Things have gotten so bad for the Mets that their best bloggers are taking on Geoff Baker-like emo posts. The Mets are already driving their fans crazy with insane bullpen performance and questionable managerial moves and it's only May 1st.
Not like things are much better for the Phillies, despite their winning April record. Their pitching staff has allowed an amazing 40 tater tots over the first 20 games, with a league-worst 5.72 ERA. Their starters are stinkeroo, posting FIPs in the high fives and low sixes. Even Cole Hamels and his very good K/BB ratio of 3.75 can't catch a break, allowing too many homers and enduring too many ouchies. Expect another tater-fest at CBP tonight when Mike Pelfrey and Chan Ho Park assume their respective positions.
Meanwhile, things certainly have changed in the A.L. East since that heady preseason day when I opined that the Blue Jays and Orioles should merge their best parts and create a Voltron-esque superpower that could battle the Rays-Red Sox-Yankees triumvirate. First, the Blue Jays have played good baseball! They've beat up on every single A.L. team except the Mariners (who they didn't play) and the Royals (who they lost three of four games to) and, of course, the four other Easterly teams who they've yet to lock horns with. Yes, tonight's game against the Orioles is the first intra-division matchup for our northern friends. Not that tonight's game looks bleak for Toronto: Baltimore's run prevention is questionable at best, and they've got Roy Halladay going up against Mark Hendrickson, whose most famous sports moment was being on this poster.