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Hee: Catch the fever, baseball

The summer heat is on and I am not talking about the outside temperature, I am talking about baseball. What a season it has been for fans.

It’s about this time where the summer winds down and the baseball standings start to get interesting. Yes, I did say interesting.

This is the time where fans from all over the U.S. start to pay attention, CLOSE attention — to their favorite team. All the baseball fans are poring over their team’s stats to see if their team truly has what it takes to go all the way.

I am one of those fans. I scoured the Dodger stats to see if my team has it. I am not sure, but last week was a good week for them. Anytime your team can start the week six games out of first and then take four games from two top teams in major league baseball, they are doing something good. The Dodgers are starting Tuesday just 2.5 games out of first, having won two from the Nationals, a first-place team and then two from the Cardinals, a second-place team. Now that’s about as exciting as it gets.

Boiling over

The American League is packed with excitement. The three teams in the lead, the Orioles, the Rangers and the Indians, are all ahead of their divisions, but the races are close, meaning within five games. The Indians have the biggest lead over the Tigers in the Central Division (5.5 games), but the Dodgers just proved that a lead like that can dissolve in a week’s time. The Orioles have just a 2.5 game lead over the Red Sox and then the Rangers have a 3.5 game lead over the Astros.

The power of the trade

Now the real fun comes, with the trade deadline coming up. The 2016 non-waiver trade deadline is on August 1 this year. Already we saw the fastest pitcher to ever pitch a fastball go from the Yankees to the Cubs. What makes these trades interesting is that some of them could make or break a team. Aroldis Chapman could be what the Cubs need to get out of their rut. The Cubs are now seven games in front of the Cardinals. Will the Cubs get rid of the “billy-goat curse” because of this trade? It remains to be seen.

Going back to the Dodgers, they need help in shoring up a weak offense and could use some help in the outfield. But LA is now more concerned with their starting pitching rotation with the recent injury of ace pitcher Clayton Kershaw. Rumors have it they are talking to the White Sox for a trade that will give Chicago some young talent for a proven pitcher, Chris Sale. Sale has a 14-3 record this year with a 3.18 ERA. A move like this could shore up the Dodger pitching. Will it be enough to win the pennant for the Dodgers?

Questions like that make this fun.

A great announcer

It truly has been awhile since I have paid so close attention to a team like the Dodgers. I do have my doubts that they will make it to the playoffs.

So why pay attention now? I mean this team has no great pitching, other than Kershaw and their hitting is below par and he is injured.

I think it’s because of Vin Sculley. He is the Dodger anouncer who has been with the team since they moved over from Brooklyn in 1958. It’s his last year of announcing. What a career he has had. The man is 88 years old and still working the announcing booth and he is an encyclopedia of baseball trivia.

It’s just mind-boggling when I think of all the great baseball players this man has met. My entire childhood was spent listening to this guy announce a baseball game.

Thanks Vin, for all those great seasons and I wish you well.

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