No value to second-half surge
Don't think a strong finish predicts '14 success for Nats, Royals and Angels
Managers will motivate their players to continue working hard by talking about ending the season on a high note. That way, when everyone reports to spring training the next year, they feel good about how they finished strong the season before.
This year, there are three teams that are going to miss the playoffs but are certainly ending on a high note: the Los Angeles Angels, Kansas City Royals, and Washington Nationals. Each came into the season with postseason aspirations but has fallen short of the mark because of a poor first-half performance. Since the trade deadline, though, all three have taken off (see table to the right).
If these teams had played all season like they have the past two months, the Nationals would have won the NL East and the Royals and Angels would be in serious wild-card contention. For the final 60 games of the season, these teams have played as if they belong in the postseason. But will it help them in 2014? Probably not.
To read Dave Cameron's entire story on why a second-half surge is not predictive, become an Insider today.