definitely - i think the real question is if someone can win with it 79.
OT: Detroit Tigers Press Conference at 3:30.
"I'm going to go with worst. Does less than 90 wins take the division this year? "
IIRC the year the Cards beat us in the Series they won their division with 87.
Although I think that was the case of the NL Central being highly competitive.
They actually went 83-78.
No - that Cards team had two above-average players.
The Cardinals had an 83-78 record. Apparently they didn't make up a rain out along the way. Their division also had two of the four worst teams in baseball in Pittsburgh and Chicago. The Brewers would have finished in last place in two of the other five divisions in baseball. (The AL & NL West) I would not call that competitive, but baseball's crazy in September / October...
Try 83 wins. And the NL Central was pretty bad that year. The two worst teams in the NL and 3 of the 4 worst records in the NL were all in that division. That division got absolutely pimp-slapped in interleague that year too. It was competitive in that three mediocre teams were in a close race for the division, but none of them really were any good.
A highly competitive division looks like the AL Central in 2006 (3 teams winning 90+ games, and a 4th just below .500) or the AL East this season.
The Cards won the World Series because a few hitters hit way better in the postseason than they did in the regular season (Yadier Molina in particular), everyone was finally healthy, and they got amazing pitching from such future Hall of Famers as Jeff Weaver and Jeff Suppan. Sometimes a mediocre team gets hot. Sometimes it happens in the playoffs. And of course, the Tigers pitchers playing "let's see how badly I can throw this to the guy at the base" didn't help matters.
Starting pitching doesn't have to be as deep either in the playoffs, something that should comfort tigers fans if they manage to win the AL Central Pillow fight.
Seeing as though every other team in the Central is having trouble reaching .500, I think 81 wins is enough this year
You might want to consider that the Twins are also in the division, a team that is generally better in the second half and has exploded during interleague play the past several seasons (a trend that they are in the process of repeating). I'd contend that the NL East, with two very mediocre teams in the Phillies, who have no pitching, and the Mets, who have a weak bottom of the order and a weak bottom four of the rotation, two weak teams in Florida and Atlanta, and one abysmal team in Washington is a worse division than the AL Central. Also, look at the run differential when evaluating a team in addition to their record. Every year, there is one or two statistical anomalies where a team loses a bunch of close games and wins a bunch of blowouts or vice versa.
To win 90 games, the Twins would have to play .600 baseball for the remainder of the year. I don't think they have the team for it. The twins will need to play .540 baseball (what they finished last year) to take them to 85 wins.
The Tigers can regress slightly and hit that number about .520 baseball.
(but I don't think they'll even manage that without adding a bat)