Who Sprints or Stumbles In the National League to Start the Second Half?

Los Angeles Dodgers

Wednesday, July 12, 2017 4:03 PM GMT

There are only five NL teams over .500 at the moment, which means there is a great deal of mediocrity. What clubs could move ahead or fall back in the latter stages of July, learn more right here.

Milwaukee Brewers - Take Advantage of Pennsylvania

When looking at all the division leaders in baseball, there is no bigger shocker than Milwaukee. Thought to be in complete rebuilding mode, the Brewers hold a 5.5 game lead over St. Louis and the Cubs and are on a 9-2 sprint. This could continue for awhile for the Brew Crew, having a home and home series with fumbling Philadelphia and at least splitting a four-game set at Pittsburgh. Milwaukee has not been a fluke versus the MLB odds with a 24-18 (+14.2 units) road record and impressive 21-13 mark in games determined by four or more runs.

 

L.A. Dodgers - The Train Keeps a Rollin'

I know, I get it, not exactly unsafe territory, recommending Los Angeles for MLB picks since they have won 26 of 30. However, it is not hard to imagine them keeping their winning ways in high gear with road wins at Miami and at the Chicago White Sox. Then the Dodgers are back home to play Atlanta, Minnesota and rival San Francisco in a 10-game homestand. At Dodger Stadium, L.A. feels almost unbeatable with 39-11 (+20.2) record and while the defeats are difficult to swallow, one cannot ignore Dodger Blue as -200 or larger favorites, with superlative 24-6 mark (+11.4).

 

St. Louis Cardinals - No Sanctity on the Road

It has been a frustrating season for St. Louis fans and players, resting at 43-45 (-9.6), playing sloppy baseball and making the kind of mistakes not associated with this organization. The Cardinals do have age at various spots and those players do not have upsides and some of the younger players have not been as productive as their predecessors. With this backdrop, the rest of July is daunting, with a three-city road trip to Pittsburgh, the Mets and the Cubs to get the second half started, before returning home to face to likely playoff teams, Arizona and Colorado next.

 

Atlanta Braves - Braves Could be Chopped Well Below .500

At the beginning of the season if you had asked Atlanta if they would be pleased to be in second place in the NL East at the All-Star break, they would have said "yes". This is where Atlanta currently resides, but it might be difficult to stay there and here is why. The Braves will open at home and face a sizzling Arizona outfit and what has to be an extremely frustrated Cubs crew, looking to lay waste of a few opponents. That challenging homestand is followed by four games at Dodger Stadium and three in the desert versus the Diamondbacks. Those seven away tilts are against clubs that are a combined 72-26 at home.