To those of you who consider this a highlight of your week, I apologize for getting it to you a tad late. The AL West teams are almost done playing each other until the end of the season, meaning the A's and Angels will have to make up ground on the Rangers against common opponents, rather than head-to-head, for the last couple of weeks to matter.
To prepare you, I've got you some information on each squad in the division, as written by the brightest baseball minds the internet has to offer. Read on!
Texas Rangers (62-45)
Cliff Lee set a career high against the A's with 13 strikeouts (and had no walks and also no decision). After the game, Joey Matschulat had the break down of how great the performance was.
The Rangers had a busy July in the way of deals, including the acquisition of Jorge Cantu. I put up a quick reaction for SB Nation DFW to how he'll fit in for Texas.
In yet another move, the Rangers grabbed Cristian Guzman to fill in at second base and then provide utility depth once Ian Kinsler returns from the DL. Pat Andriola discusses what Guzman brings to Arlington.
The biggest news of the Rangers' week, however, came in the wee hours of morning, today, when their arduous sale process seemed to finally reach its end. Nolan Ryan and Chuck Greenberg could be owners by the 12th.
Oakland Athletics (54-53)
The A's risky signing of Ben Sheets has apparently met its end, as he's suffered a torn flexor tendon. Will Carroll says it may be career ending.
Danmerqury looks at how much money will be coming off the books for the A's this off-season and starts a discussion about interesting veteran free agent targets for the off season.
Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim (54-55)
Perhaps giving some credence to his mediocre defensive metrics in center, the Angels have moved Torii Hunter to right field in order to make room for upcoming Peter Bourjos. Dave Cameron discusses the thought process.
It must be nice when your team is down but not completely out to make a move that helps both your present and future at the deadline. Nate Proctor is sure excited about Dan Haren. I don't blame him.
As mentioned, the Angels have called up Bourjos. Carson Cistulli and Erik Manning talk about the move. There's some interesting data in there on just how good his defense has been in the minors.
Seattle Mariners (40-68)
Marc W briefly hits on how historically bad Ryan Rowland-Smith has been this season, and talks about why and what it means when a fan favorite struggles.
Since being traded for Cliff Lee. Justin Smoak has gone from unlucky to bad. It's still a small sample, of course, and Cameron guests for the blog of a local radio show's blog to point out other players who also struggled early on.
I think Jeff has a good lesson here, pointing out the issues that can make judging how well someone pitched in a game by his stat line just about impossible at times.
Lookout Landing has the first part of their July report cards for the team up. In the entirety of July, just two Mariners were above average offensively. Two! And one of them by less than a run.