We are three games out of First despite a .429 Winning Percentage.
In other divisions this would mean:
6.0 GB - AL East (Tied with 4th Place Perlozzo)
9.0 GB - AL Central (0.5 Behind 4th Place Gardenhire)
8.0 GB - NL East (Tied with 3rd Place Bobby Cox)
7.5 GB - NL Central (0.5 Behind 5th Place Dusty Baker)
5.0 GB - NL West (It would be last place, 1.5 Games behind Barry and Felipe)
So it could be worse.
Oakland is no longer in the elite of the league with its starting pitching and has already faced Tampa Bay 3 times and Kansas City twice. The Texas illusion may be evaporating early as the Rangers went 1-6 at home against the Yankees and Twins.
Heading into the final game of a tough 9-Game road trip, facing teams well above .500, we have only played a series with a team currently below .500 three times this season - Minnesota, Baltimore and Seattle - all on the road. Each of those three teams currently has a record within a half game of our .429 winning percentage.
So we've played an inordinate number of games with teams that are among the best (when we weren't, we were playing teams who are evenly matched with us - and in their parks), catching them all at their hottest, and had some tough travel - nothing horrible, just not balanced with what the competition has been enduring to be sure. We do have a ten game, eleven day trip at the end of July and a nine game, eleven day trip in September. But things get easier, schedule-wise and opponent-wise, soon. I hope.