*FiveThirtyEight: Think the 1927 Yankees were great? Check the 2017 Astros and Dodgers. Neil Paine:
...The Dodgers and Astros have crossed into territory where their only real competition lies in the dusty annals of history. Never before have two teams played at such a high level this deep into the same season.
*Before 2017, nine teams won 60+ games before the All-Star Break. Two of them won the World Series. Here are are the nine, with their season result in parentheses:
1969 Orioles (lost WS in five to the Miracle Mets)
1969 Cubs (missed playoffs)
1970 Reds (lost WS in five to Baltimore)
1973 Dodgers (missed playoffs)
1974 Dodgers (lost WS in five to Baltimore)
1975 Reds (Won World Series)
1998 Yankees (Won World Series)
2001 Mariners (lost ALCS in five to New York)
2003 Braves (lost NLDS in five to Chicago)
*Mike Petriello did a positional tale of the tape between the Astros and Dodgers.
*Remember that overall record determines home-field advantage in the World Series.
*According to Jim Duquette, the Astros are connected to pretty much every top pitcher who might be available. The Trade Deadline is 18 days away.
*Jon Paul Morosi has a position-by-position Trade Deadline Buyer's Guide.
*This Astros-trading-for-Jacob-deGrom thing is getting a little more play.
*Jeff Luhnow talked to Jonah Keri and it is good.
*I took a look at the Astros and pitching efficiency. I even set up a spreadsheet to make sure my math was right, so click the link.
*Tommy Stokke's Ten 2nd-Half Questions include "who starts the 2017 ALDS G3 for the Astros?"
*The Pacific Coast League won last night's Triple-A All-Star Game (managed by Tony DeFrancesco) 6-4. Colin Moran was 2x4 with a solo homer off former Astros minor-leaguer Tom Eshelman. Max Stassi was 1x2, Derek Fisher was 0x3.
Moran is having a career season, hitting .310/.368/.556 with 18 home runs. Moran hit 19 home runs between 2015-2016 combined.
*Trei Cruz is following in his family's footsteps.
*Want to read all about Alex Bregman deleting his Twitter account? (Sigh). Fine:
New York Daily News, USA Today, Deadspin
*Fox Sports dot com has officially gone all video and they're stupid.
*Check out this great story from Jessica Luther on GTB
*Joel Sherman has a great series on How To Fix Baseball. Anytime a baseball writer opens with Proust, I'll sit up and read.
*Craig Calcaterra's ...And That Happened: July 13, 1903 edition.
*Can't quite put my finger on what's different about Sammy Sosa.
*Congrats to Hall of Famer Craig Biggio for never giving up on the game he loves:
That's a good looking lineup! When the weather cooperates, we'll have baseball in Tampa. pic.twitter.com/hFEfa8KCd6— Dunedin Blue Jays (@DunedinBlueJays) July 12, 2017