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Surprising Teams Dominating Baseball this Season

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It’s been a recent trend in Major League Baseball, and it’s simply continued into the 2016 season; small market teams have been successful. Last season it was the Kansas City Royals who dominated their way to a World Series trophy. Now it’s a new cast of “little guys” who have defied the odds and are vying for playoff spots this coming October. So who are these teams?

First on my list of upstarts is the Cleveland Indians. At 52-36, they are in 2nd place in the American League. They’ve done it with patience and a couple young players who’ve taken major steps forward. Francisco Lindor has emerged as a star at shortstop and pitchers Danny Salazar and Corey Kluber have given the club viable options on the mound.

Next are the Washington Nationals, who are looking smarter and smarter each day for their acquisition of Max Scherzer in 2015. Between him, Stephen Strasburg, and Tanner Roark, the club has the best pitching staff in baseball. They’re 6 games ahead of the National League champion New York Mets so far and seem well placed to contend for a pennant themselves this year.

Another team to watch out for is the Baltimore Orioles, led by the bats of Manny Machado and Mark Trumbo. They currently lead in the AL East over the Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees, though their postseason prospects are slightly more contained given their slender two-game lead over both the Sox and the Toronto Blue Jays.

Ultimately, having teams like the Indians, Nationals, and Orioles finding success makes the sport of baseball far more fun. While usual contenders like the St. Louis Cardinals, Yankees, and the Atlanta Braves have struggled in 2016, it’s refreshing to see if another small team can claim a title like the Royals did last year. Who knows though, with baseball just passing the All-Star break, there’s still a lot of baseball left to play, and with the San Francisco Giants looking dominant yet again, we could be in for a now-predictable run by the recent 3-time champs. However, it’s all shaping up for a tremendous run-in to the 2016 MLB season!

World Series Prediction – Chicago Cubs vs. Baltimore Orioles