At the beginning of the season, I predicted a 90-72 record for the Cubs and a first-place finish for the third year in the row. At 43-43, it's hard to imagine them going 47-29 the rest of the way, especially with ongoing injuries being an issue. Still, I'm not completely ready to give up on them winning the Central Division or at least getting the Wild Card with a lesser record.
It could be one of those years, like 2007, when an 85-77 record or something worse could win the division. The Cubs still face stiff competition from the Cardinals and Brewers, though I think the Brewers may fade unless they pull off another trade for a big-time starter like Cliff Lee or Roy Halladay.
I'm going to revise my prediction to 84-78. Whether or not that's good enough to take them any farther I don't want to say. I just want to hope.
Meanwhile, I had the White Sox finishing in second place with an 86-76 record--behind Cleveland. Wow. Safe to say the Cleveland won't be a threat, and happy to say that the Sox, with a first-half record of 45-43, are in a great position to go on a run and finish in first place.
Is 41-33 too much to ask in the second half? I don't think so, and with Detroit relying on young starters and an iffy bullpen, I like the Sox' chances to win the division. What about the Twins? Let's not talk about the Twins...