The thing is, we all know this month is coming.
Every year, the calendar turns to August, and one of the hardest months for sports fans begins. Baseball fatigue is slowly setting in, football is coming, but it’s only training camp at this point, and the NBA and NHL provide very minimal offseason news at this point (although the Kevin Love rumors have been interesting to follow in the NBA).
So, how do you attack these “dog days” of August? Fortunately, I’m here to help all of you, my fantastic readers.
First, let’s assess how your favorite baseball team is doing. If you’re a fan of any team in California right now except San Diego, you should be dedicating as much time as you can to your baseball teams. The Dodgers, A’s, Angels, and Giants hold four of the top eight records currently in the MLB, as we could potentially see an all-California World Series for the first time since 2002, when the Angels beat the Giants (Troy Glaus was the series MVP, fun fact). Now, it may be hard to get into baseball right now. You’ve been watching your team all summer, seeing them play really good baseball, and you just want it to be the postseason. You have to watch, though, because your football options are limited in the state of California, outside of the 49ers. The Raiders? Yikes. The Chargers are a solid team, but still are missing a piece or two from being serious contenders. The only people focused on football, though, are Padres fans, so the other four baseball teams should be getting full attention.
Detroit, Baltimore, and Washington also fall into that above category to me as well. Yes, the Lions, Ravens, and Redskins seem to be better then last year, but all three baseball teams are playing at a high level right now. The Tigers, Orioles, and Nationals all lead their divisions by over three games, and their closest teams, Kansas City, Toronto, and Atlanta, respectively, all seem to be going through tough stretches right now. So if you’re in Detroit, Baltimore, or Washington, hold on to your baseball team as long as you can.
As for the rest of the country, well, it’s hit or miss. I think St. Louis forgets sometimes they have a football team, so they’re still all-in on the Cardinals. Milwaukee is too far away from Green Bay to start worrying about the Packers, so Brewers fans should be paying more attention to baseball at the moment as well. Cincinnati and Pittsburgh are tossups, though. Both baseball teams are in close races, but both football teams can be really good this year too. Keep an eye on both of your teams if you live in those cities.
And then there’s Cleveland. Honestly, I have no idea what to think for the city of Cleveland. The Indians are close, but still kind of out of it. The Browns seem to be in a mess, but they still have Johnny Manziel there making things interesting. Cleveland should really just wait till the NBA season starts, because the potential of LeBron James, Kyrie Irving, and a trade for Kevin Love makes the Cavs the favorite in the East and probably the entire NBA. Unless Manziel gets to start, ignore all sports until October, then gear yourselves up for a great NBA season.
Now, there are some cities that it’s going to be hard to watch sports in, specifically Miami. The Marlins have played better this year, but are still under .500. The Dolphins are also in a similar boat, as they went .500 last season as well. However, the uncertainty of Ryan Tannehill and the roster around him leave serious doubt for the upcoming season. As for the Heat? Well, since LeBron is no longer there, I’m pretty sure the fans think the franchise moved to Cleveland as well, so nobody will be attending their games. And do the Panthers even exist anymore?
Minnesota also falls into the same category as Miami. The Twins are out of the race, the Vikings are still very young, and the Timberwolves are about to trade their best player to go younger as well. For the first time in this whole post, one city should actually be looking forward to their hockey team over anything, as the Wild are a young, talented team that can be a threat in the Western Conference next year. The Wild don’t start until October 9th, though, so it’s going to be a long couple of months for fans in the land of 10,000 lakes.
Finally, it’s time to focus on football if you live in Chicago, Houston, Dallas, Denver, Phoenix, Philadelphia, Tampa, or Boston. All these cities currently have sub-500 baseball clubs and football teams that show a lot of promise. Sure, you can catch a couple innings here or there of your team, but, for the most part, you’re counting down the days until NFL kickoff.
This can be a difficult time for all sports fans. There’s a long break here where it seems nothing “big” is happening. But don’t worry, people. Baseball will be in the playoff stretch, the NFL will be back, and all will seem right in the sports world. So just hold on tight, relax, and power through these tough couple of weeks before the good stuff begins once again.
Thanks for reading. Make sure to check out the other blogs I’ve posted, and stay tuned as I go more in-depth on all the things going on in the sports world. This is Game of Sports.