The cool evenings of spring have evolved into the warm nights of summer, and baseball fans across the country are enjoying an outstanding season of Major League Baseball. So far this year, it appears as if the pundits were correct in their predictions, but with another two and a half months of games still to play, almost anything could still happen. The July 1st standings for each league are below.
The American League has been a three team race for the first half of the season, and while two of the teams were expected to succeed, the third team has certainly been a surprise.
The Boston Americans have raced to the top of the American League, thanks largely to the strength of their pitching staff. George Winter and Win Kellum have won ten games a piece, while Cy Young has eight wins. Young's eight victories have put his career win total at 294, and the baseball world is waiting with baited breath to see when Young will become the 7th pitcher to win 300 games.
The Philadelphia Athletics have done well this season, with two of their new additions at the plate rising to the top of the offensive leaderboards. Nap Lajoie has had an outstanding first half to his 1901 season. He currently leads the American League in batting average (.394), home runs (six) and runs batted in (47). While his offensive output was to be expected, Lave Cross's has come as more of a surprise. Cross jumped to the Athletics from Brooklyn, and he is second to his Lajoie in batting average (.370) and is tied for the American League lead with 47 runs batted in. On top of the offensive production from Lajoie and Cross, pitcher Eddie Plank currently leads the American League with 11 wins.
At the start of the season, the Baltimore Orioles were predicted by most experts to finish last in the American League. They have proven their doubters wrong with a solid start to the 1901 season. At the plate, John McGraw and Jimmy Williams are leading the way for Baltimore, while pitcher Jerry Nops leads the team with ten wins. Whether or not the Orioles can maintain their surprising momentum through the second half of the season remains to be seen, but fans are excited to see what happens as the year winds down.
|George Winter, whose ten wins lead the first place Boston Americans.|
|Cy Young has eight wins for Boston, and is just six wins away from 300 for his career.|
In the National League, the other six teams of the Senior Circuit have been looking up at the two members from the Keystone State for most of the regular season. Both the Pittsburgh Pirates and Philadelphia Phillies have had outstanding starts to the 1901 season, and it appears as if the race to the National League pennant will be contested between these two powerful clubs.
The Pirates are the most well balanced team in the National League. Rube Waddell leads the National League with 14 wins and a sparkling 1.13 ERA, while Jesse Tannehill has played double duty for Pittsburgh. The 26 year old is second on the team with 12 wins, but has also played, and is currently the starter, in right field. Tannehill's offensive prowess has not gone unnoticed, as he is batting .298 with a home run and nine runs batted in. Center fielder Ginger Beaumont has established himself as an offensive force this season, and he leads the National League with six home runs, and Honus Wagner has driven in 41 runs to help the Pirates to the top of the standings through two and a half months.
In Philadelphia, the Phillies have been led by a dynamic duo both at the plate and on the pitcher's mound. Youngster Doc White has lived up to his billing as the top prospect in baseball, as he has won 10 games and is second in the National League with 103 strikeouts. Teammate Al Orth is performing very well on the mound also. He leads the Phillies with a 1.95 ERA and 11 wins. At the plate, Ed Delahanty and Elmer Flick are head and shoulders ahead of the other Philadelphia batters. Surprisingly, it is Flick that leads the team in batting average and runs batted in, while Delahanty is second on the team in those categories, and first in home runs, with four.
Fans in both Pittsburgh and Philadelphia are very excited with how the season has played out so far, and while only one team can claim the National League pennant, both fan bases are confident that their team will be the one to bring home the title this year.
|Ginger Beaumont leads the Pirates, as well as the National League, with six home runs.|
|Rube Waddell leads all of baseball in wins, ERA and strikeouts, and looks every bit like the best pitcher in the game.|