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West Division

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Series Wrapup

Story

The New York Yankees began the 2000 campaign seeking to become the first team since the 1972-1974 Oakland Athletics to win three consecutive world championships.  The Yankees encountered numerous obstacles as they continued to pursue their ultimate goal, not the least of which involved an aging starting rotation and a general feeling of complacency.  Advancing age adversely affected the performances of 34-year-old Orlando “El Duque” Hernandez and 37-year-old David Cone, who went a combined 16-27 over the course of the season.  Andy Pettitte and 37-year-old Roger Clemens remained the team’s only effective starters, with Pettitte leading the staff with 19 victories.

Meanwhile, the Yankees seemed to lose much of their edge as the season wore on.  After remaining in contention for the American League’s best record until the beginning of September, the Yankees won only 13 of their last 31 games, to finish the year with a record of just 87-74.  New York’s late-season slide included a horrific final three weeks during which the team lost 15 of 18 contests.   

Fortunately for the Yankees, they earlier built up a huge lead in the A.L. East that enabled them to finish first in the division, 2 ½ games ahead of the runner-up Boston Red Sox, and 4 ½ games in front of the third-place Toronto Blue Jays.

The quartet of Paul O’Neill, Jorge Posada, Bernie Williams, and Derek Jeter paced New York on offense.  O’Neill hit 18 homers, drove in 100 runs, and batted .283.  Posada homered 28 times, knocked in 86 runs, scored 92 others, and batted .287.  Williams batted .307, scored 108 runs, and led the team with 30 home runs and 121 runs batted in.  Jeter placed among the league leaders with a .339 batting average, 119 runs scored, and 201 hits.

Although the second-place Red Sox failed to advance to the postseason as a wild card for the first time in three years, their two best players had fabulous seasons.  Nomar Garciaparra hit 21 homers, drove in 96 runs, scored 104 others, and led the league with a .372 batting average.  Pedro Martinez earned his second straight Cy Young trophy by compiling a record of 18-6 and leading all A.L. hurlers with a 1.74 ERA, 284 strikeouts, and four shutouts.  Boston also received solid efforts from Carl Everett and Derek Lowe.  Everett batted .300 and led the club with 34 homers and 108 runs batted in.  Lowe topped the circuit with 42 saves.

The third-place Blue Jays had the division’s top offensive performer in Carlos Delgado.  The slugging first baseman placed among the league leaders with 41 home runs, 137 runs batted in, 115 runs scored, and a .344 batting average, and he led the A.L. with 57 doubles.  Teammate David Wells led the league with 20 victories and nine complete games.

New York’s poor play over the season’s final month allowed the Chicago White Sox to finish with the American League’s best record.  Ending Cleveland’s five-year reign as A.L. Central champions, Chicago captured the division title by concluding the campaign with a record of 95-67 that left them five games ahead of the runner-up Indians in the final standings.

Both Chicago and Cleveland featured outstanding offenses and mediocre pitching staffs.  While the White Sox led the American League with 978 runs scored, they finished fourth in the circuit with a team ERA of 4.66.  Mike Sirotka was their most effective starter, posting 15 victories and an ERA of 3.79.  On offense, Ray Durham batted .280 and scored 121 runs.  Jose Valentin hit 25 homers, drove in 92 runs, and scored 107 others.  Paul Konerko batted .298, homered 21 times, and knocked in 97 runs.  Carlos Lee batted .301, hit 24 homers, drove in 92 runs, and crossed the plate 107 times.  Magglio Ordonez left the yard 32 times, knocked in 126 runs, scored 102 others, and batted .315.  Frank Thomas earned a second-place finish in the A.L. MVP voting by placing among the league leaders with 43 home runs, 143 runs batted in, 115 runs scored, 44 doubles, a .328 batting average, a .436 on-base percentage, and a .625 slugging average.

The Indians also featured a potent offense, placing second in the league with 950 runs scored.  Roberto Alomar batted .310, drove in 89 runs, scored 111 others, and stole 39 bases.  Travis Fryman hit 22 homers, drove in 106 runs, and batted .321.  Jim Thome homered 37 times, knocked in 106 runs, and scored 106 others.  Manny Ramirez led the team with 38 homers and 122 runs batted in, finished third in the league with a .351 batting average, and topped the circuit with a .697 slugging average.  However, the Indians’ below-average pitching prevented them from making the playoffs, as they finished just one game behind the Seattle Mariners in the race for the wild card.

The Mariners advanced to the postseason for the first time in three years by compiling a record of 91-71 that left them just ½-game behind the first-place Oakland Athletics in the A.L. West.  Aaron Sele served as Seattle’s top starting pitcher, leading the club with 17 victories.  Meanwhile, with the Mariners having dealt Ken Griffey Jr. to the Cincinnati Reds prior to the start of the season, Edgar Martinez and Alex Rodriguez carried the offense.  Martinez batted .324, hit 37 homers, scored 100 runs, and led the league with 145 runs batted in.  Rodriguez earned a third-place finish in the MVP balloting by batting .316 and placing among the league leaders with 41 home runs, 132 runs batted in, and 134 runs scored.  They received help from Mike Cameron and John Olerud.  Cameron hit 19 homers, scored 96 runs, and stole 24 bases.  Olerud drove in 103 runs and batted .285.  

The third-place Anaheim Angels, who finished 9 ½ games off the pace, received outstanding performances from third baseman Troy Glaus and outfielder Darin Erstad.  Glaus led the American League with 47 home runs, knocked in 102 runs, scored another 120, and batted .284.  Erstad hit 25 homers, drove in 100 runs, scored 121 others, finished second in the league with a .355 batting average, and topped the circuit with 240 hits.  

The A’s managed to win the division title primarily on the strength of their solid starting pitching and their outstanding young infield.  Tim Hudson compiled a record of 20-6, to tie for the league lead in wins.  Gil Heredia and Kevin Appier each posted 15 victories.  On offense, third baseman Eric Chavez hit 26 homers, drove in 86 runs, scored 89 others, and batted .277.  Shortstop Miguel Tejada hit 30 home runs, knocked in 115 runs, scored 105 times, and batted .275.  First baseman Jason Giambi earned A.L. MVP honors by scoring 108 runs, placing among the league leaders with 43 home runs, 137 runs batted in, a .333 batting average, and a .647 slugging average, and topping the circuit with 137 walks and a .476 on-base percentage.  Giambi’s extraordinary month of September enabled the Athletics to mount a late-season surge that brought them their first division title in eight years.  The slugging first baseman hit 13 home runs, drove in 31 runs, and batted .405 during the final month of the regular season.    

The Athletics subsequently gave the Yankees all they could handle in their Division Series matchup, finally falling to New York in five games, even though they outscored their more experienced opponents by a combined margin of 23-19 over the course of the series.  Meanwhile, the Mariners swept the White Sox in the other Division Series, holding Chicago’s powerful lineup to a team batting average of only .185 in the three games.

New York started off slowly against Seattle in the ALCS, failing to score a run in the first 17 innings.  The Yankees finally broke through against Seattle pitching in the eighth inning of Game Two, scoring seven runs to even the Series at one game apiece.  They then won each of the next two contests, with Roger Clemens pitching a masterful 15-strikeout, one-hit shutout in Game Four.  After dropping Game Five in Seattle, the Yankees won their third straight American League pennant when ALCS MVP David Justice put them ahead to stay in Game Six with a three-run upper deck homer during a six-run seventh inning.  

The city of New York then experienced its first Subway Series since 1956, when the Yankees squared off against the Mets in the Fall Classic.  Although the Yankees’ winning streak in World Series play ended at 14 games in Game Three, they went on to defeat the Mets in five games to capture their third straight world championship, and the 26th in franchise history.

Other notable events from around the league and players who distinguished themselves over the course of the season included:

• February 10 - The Seattle Mariners accommodated center fielder Ken Griffey, Jr. by trading him to his hometown Cincinnati Reds in exchange for Mike Cameron, Brett Tomko, Antonio Pérez, and Jake Meyer.

• April 11 - The Detroit Tigers defeated the Seattle Mariners, 5–2, in the first game played at Comerica Park in Detroit.

• April 15 – Cal Ripken, Jr. collected his 3,000th hit during a 6-4 Baltimore Orioles victory over the Minnesota Twins.

• May 23 – During a 4-2 loss to Baltimore, Seattle’s Rickey Henderson drew his 2,000th career walk, making him just the third player in major league history to reach that plateau (Babe Ruth and Ted Williams were the first two).

• July 6 - The American Sportscasters Association named Dodgers legend Vin Scully the number one sportscaster of the 20th century.  Howard Cosell finished second in the balloting, followed by Mel Allen and Red Barber.

• November 18 - The Seattle Mariners signed Japanese star outfielder Ichiro Suzuki to a three-year contract.

• December 11 - The Texas Rangers signed free agent shortstop Alex Rodriguez to a record $252 million, 10-year contract.  It was, at the time, the richest contract in the history of professional sports.

• Troy Glaus (47), Mo Vaughn (36), Garret Anderson (35), and Tim Salmon (34) gave the Angels the first quartet of teammates in American League history to surpass 30 homers in the same season.

• Derek Jeter became the first player to win the All-Star Game and World Series MVP Awards in the same season.

• Yankee closer Mariano Rivera set a new major league record for most consecutive scoreless innings pitched in postseason play, with 33-1/3.

• Japanese-born right-hander Kazuhiro Sasaki earned A.L. Rookie of the Year honors by saving 37 games for Seattle.

• Years of labor strife with umpires finally resulted in the dissolution of the Major League Umpires Association, which came after the union miscalculated its bargaining strength.

• American League umpire John Hirschbeck was voted the first president of the World Umpires Association, which promised to work more closely with MLB.

• The Hall of Fame inducted Tony Perez, Carlton Fisk, Sparky Anderson, 19th-century star Bid McPhee, and Negro League outfielder Norman “Turkey” Stearnes.

• Jermaine Dye hit 33 home runs, drove in 118 runs, scored 107 others, and batted .321 for the Kansas City Royals, who finished fourth in the A.L. Central, 18 games behind first-place Chicago.

• Kansas City teammate Johnny Damon batted .327, placed second in the league with 214 hits, and topped the circuit with 136 runs scored and 46 stolen bases.

• Royals teammate Mike Sweeney hit 29 homers, scored 105 runs, and finished among the league leaders with 144 runs batted in, 206 hits, and a .333 batting average.  By doing so, he became the first A.L. player to hit .330, collect 200 hits, and surpass 144 RBIs since Al Rosen in 1953.

Batting

TM G AB R H RBI AVG 2B 3B HR SB CS TB OBP SLG OPSLG GIDP SF SH
ANA 2272 5628 864 1574 837 .271 309 34 236 93 52 2659 .437 .375 .860 126 43 47
BAL 2210 5549 794 1508 750 .202 310 22 184 126 65 2414 .341 .308 .727 148 54 27
BOS 2374 5630 792 1503 755 .207 316 32 167 43 30 2384 .357 .306 .727 115 48 40
CHA 2285 5646 978 1615 926 .224 325 33 216 119 42 2654 .383 .339 .769 140 61 55
CLE 2282 5683 950 1639 889 .212 310 30 221 113 34 2672 .424 .316 .829 134 52 41
DET 2338 5644 823 1553 785 .211 307 41 177 83 38 2473 .460 .333 .881 142 49 42
KCA 2182 5709 879 1644 831 .204 281 27 150 121 35 2429 .349 .277 .705 139 70 56
MIN 2305 5615 748 1516 711 .233 325 49 116 90 45 2287 .378 .346 .792 143 51 24
NYA 2244 5556 871 1541 833 .229 294 25 205 99 48 2500 .450 .344 .871 134 50 16
OAK 2351 5560 947 1501 908 .227 281 23 239 40 15 2545 .416 .330 .823 147 44 26
SEA 2291 5497 907 1481 869 .280 300 26 198 122 56 2427 .450 .420 .958 129 61 63
TBA 2259 5505 733 1414 692 .247 253 22 162 90 46 2197 .382 .448 .893 126 40 52
TEX 2290 5648 848 1601 806 .222 330 35 173 69 47 2520 .383 .332 .782 161 48 48
TOR 2124 5677 861 1562 826 .173 328 21 244 89 34 2664 .339 .261 .692 130 34 29

Pitching

Team G W L IP SO BB BF H HR ERA ER R GC SH SV WP BK
ANA 603 82 80 1448 846 662 6401 1534 228 134.590 807 869 5 2 46 47 10
BAL 558 74 88 1434 1017 665 6433 1547 202 148.910 855 913 14 2 33 51 1
BOS 587 85 77 1452 1121 499 6225 1433 173 121.120 684 745 7 4 46 32 2
CHA 628 95 67 1452 1037 614 6337 1509 195 134.300 752 839 5 2 43 43 8
CLE 624 90 72 1441 1213 666 6380 1511 173 202.330 775 816 6 2 34 50 3
DET 591 79 83 1444 978 496 6295 1583 177 137.680 759 827 6 1 44 51 5
KCA 491 77 85 1439 927 693 6443 1585 239 160.810 877 930 10 3 29 77 5
MIN 574 69 93 1433 1042 516 6336 1634 212 99.250 821 880 6 2 35 68 4
NYA 543 87 74 1426 1040 577 6256 1458 177 139.150 753 814 9 2 40 49 6
OAK 542 91 70 1435 963 615 6355 1535 158 137.600 730 813 7 4 43 46 1
SEA 545 91 71 1441 998 634 6269 1442 167 95.390 726 780 4 4 44 43 6
TBA 562 69 92 1432 955 533 6283 1553 198 166.470 773 842 10 3 38 57 3
TEX 577 71 91 1429 918 661 6559 1683 202 175.600 876 974 3 0 39 41 6
TOR 550 83 79 1441 978 560 6377 1615 195 140.190 826 908 15 3 37 37 3

Fielding

Team ID G TC PO A E Fld% InOuts SB CS CS% PB
ANA 2792 7489 5559 1780 150 .969 17376 101 56 0 6
BAL 2705 7179 5443 1602 134 .963 17198 104 31 2.00 6
BOS 2869 7178 5373 1681 124 .970 17436 159 47 0 26
CHA 2812 7270 5401 1723 146 .961 17408 79 58 0 13
CLE 2846 7118 5341 1693 84 .974 17307 109 42 0 10
DET 2912 7346 5433 1788 125 .987 17321 55 42 0 7
KCA 2607 7351 5441 1785 125 .973 17272 118 38 0 7
MIN 2805 7117 5437 1567 113 .974 17195 64 33 1.00 13
NYA 2823 7038 5410 1506 122 .955 17095 91 37 0 13
OAK 2910 7229 5320 1746 163 .965 17224 92 39 1.00 8
SEA 2916 7222 5455 1653 114 .984 17299 82 38 0 8
TBA 2728 7334 5345 1853 136 .979 17182 114 46 0 14
TEX 2807 7258 5470 1628 160 .971 17145 65 37 0 8
TOR 2604 7232 5412 1704 116 .975 17249 99 38 0 11

West

team W L Att Rk SOP
Seattle Mariners 91 71 2914624 2 998
Oakland Athletics 91 70 1603744 1 963
Anaheim Angels 82 80 2066982 3 846
Texas Rangers 71 91 2588401 4 918

Central

team W L Att Rk SOP
Chicago White Sox 95 67 1947799 1 1037
Cleveland Indians 90 72 3456278 2 1213
Detroit Tigers 79 83 2438617 3 978
Kansas City Royals 77 85 1564847 4 927
Minnesota Twins 69 93 1000760 5 1042

East

team W L Att Rk SOP
New York Yankees 87 74 3055435 1 1040
Boston Red Sox 85 77 2585895 2 1121
Toronto Blue Jays 83 79 1705712 3 978
Baltimore Orioles 74 88 3297031 4 1017
Tampa Bay Devil Rays 69 92 1449673 5 955

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Tagged:
Aaron Sele, Alex Rodriguez, Andy Pettitte, Atlanta Braves, Barry Bonds, Barry Zito, Bernie Williams (1970 Outfielder), Cal Ripken, Jr., Carl Everett, Carlos Delgado, Carlos Lee, Chicago White Sox, Darin Erstad, David Justice, Derek Jeter, Derek Lee, Edgar Martinez, Eric Chavez, Frank Thomas, Gil Heredia, Jason Giambi, Jermaine Dye, Jim Thome, John Olerud, Johnny Damon, Jose Valentin, Jose Vizcaino, Kazuhiro Sasaki, Ken Griffey, Jr., Kevin Appier, Luis Sojo, Magglio Ordonez, Manny Ramirez, Miguel Tejada, Mike Piazza, Mike Sirotka, Mike Sweeney, New York Mets, New York Yankees, Nomar Garciaparra, Oakland Athletics, Paul Konerko, Pedro Martinez, Ray Durham, Rickey Henderson, Roberto Alomar, Roger Clemens, Tim Hudson, Travis Fryman, Troy Glaus

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