The US South China Sea policy is designed to deny power transition in the Asia-Pacific. Strategic rebalancing has become America's Asia-Pacific Strategy for reassuring hegemonic stability and supporting its South China Sea policy. Practically, strategic rebalancing depends heavily upon naval diplomacy. As a result of us naval diplomacy, the DOC (Declaration on the Conduct of Parties in the South China Sea)-symbolized ”ASEAN+China” mechanism is being eroded by the looming US-dominated neo-realistic framework, an indication that Washington's strategic rebalancing has secured preliminary success. Yet, the creditability of US naval diplomacy in the South China Sea ultimately rests upon the progress of the Navy's maritime strategy in the Asia-Pacific. Michael Mullen's idea of ”landward push” of sea control resides at the core of the 2007 Maritime Strategy, of which the core operational mechanism is the Navy Expeditionary Combat Command (NECC). NECC is key to the AirSea Battle concept and naval diplomacy. The 2012 and 2013 Balikatan exercises have showcased the utilities of NECC and provided much edification: with the use of versatile naval diplomacy, the US Navy has insinuated Mullen's idea into the South China Sea, advanced AirSea Battle, facilitated strategic rebalancing, and reassured its South China Sea policy. If China fails to fully comprehend the progress of America's maritime strategy, it may end up wrestling with a far superior balancing coalition that is being created by the US.