April 05, 2015

2015 MLB Predictions

Crystal ball time. I've done so well in the past, why stop now.  Below is my projected number of wins for each team, and a quick note or two about each one. Feel free to bookmark this so you can make fun of me in October.

AL East
Boston (88) -          Jackie Bradley Jr. will play a much bigger role for this team than anyone is currently anticipating. Mookie Betts and "future first ballot Hall of Famer" will be said in the same sentence a lot less than the Fenway Faithful are expecting, but that phrase will start to be heard about Xander Bogaerts again.
Baltimore (86) -      They lost many key players, but they won 96 games without Machado and Wieters last season. They could drop 10 games in the standings and still be in the division chase the last weekend of the year.
Toronto (80) –        Exciting team with lots of young future stars. Canadian fans should get excited about the team that AA is building up here. But not this year. A rocky summer will lead to John Gibbons being dismissed.
New York (80) –     What will they do without the season long Jeter ball-washing tour? Not to worry, there will be enough controversy in the Bronx to keep them on the front pages of the tabloids.
Tampa Bay (75) –   They still have some very good arms. Among the best rotations in the AL, but they’ll have difficulty scoring enough runs.

AL Central
Kansas City (88) –  Everyone is picking the Tigers, Indians or White Sox to win this division.  The Royals were a hit away from being World Series Champions last year. They can still win this division.
Cleveland (86) –      They won’t win the World Series, but don’t blame the SI cover jinx. You not only need to be able to pitch the ball and hit the ball, you also need to catch the ball. This defense is frighteningly poor.
Detroit (84) –          Disappointing season in Motown. They’ll make some mid-season acquisitions to bolster the team, but it will be too little too late.
Chicago (75) –        They improved by 10 wins last season. They won’t improve by that much more again, which is what it would take to contend.
Minnesota (73) –     Picking them for last in this division is the easiest prediction that can be made outside of DC.

AL West
Seattle (88) –          Everyone is on the Mariners bandwagon, but they’re not winning the World Series this year. Not with Austin Jackson, Dustin Ackley and Seth Smith as their starting outfielders.
Los Angeles (86) – This team will have the biggest drop in wins from last season out of any team in the majors. And still contend.
Oakland (85) –        Everyone is writing them off, but Billy Beane will find a way. He always does.
Texas (78) –            Major steps in rebounding back to respectability. Prince Fielder will deliver the promise they were expecting when they acquired him. If Yu wasn’t hurt, they might have ended over .500
Houston (75) –        More steps in the right direction, not enough to avoid the cellar.

NL East
Washington (95) –  Looks like the best team in baseball. But this usually means more in April (more magazine covers!) than it ends up meaning in October.  Regardless they will easily win this division in spite of Max Scherzer’s disappointing season
Miami (84) –           They improved by 15 games last season. They can improve by a few more games this year and will be in the wildcard hunt all season.
New York (80) –     Does this team have a shortstop? Can they score runs? Their starting pitching is the only thing which will help them finish with a respectable record.
Philadelphia (70) – The surprise here is that they might not be the absolute worst team in the league.
Atlanta (67) –         Fans in the Peach state were wishing the comment I made about the Phillies applied to them. It doesn’t.

NL Central
Pittsburgh (88) –     Lost the wildcard game last year. Won’t have to worry about the play-in game this season.
St. Louis (87) –       Good rotation, good lineup. But no bench and no depth to the pitching rotation. If there are no injuries, would easily win 90+ and the division, but Murphy always raises its ugly head when you least expect it.
Cincinnati (81) –     With Cueto, Chapman and others on their last year of their contract and the Reds not likely to be able to afford to resign them, I see a lot of long seasons ahead. This may be the last year of respectability for a while. If they are near contention mid-season, they may make some moves to GFIN. But I doubt it will be enough.
Chicago (77) –        Will Lester lead them to the 2015 World Series Championship as depicted in Back tothe Future? About as likely as a DeLorean being transformed to a time machine.
Milwaukee (77) –    Acquiring Adam Lind will help the offensive black hole they had at 1st base last year.  But they have little pitching depth and will struggle to be a mediocre team.

NL West
Los Angeles (89) –    Lots of changes with departure of Matt Kemp, Hanley Ramirez and others. But their rotation still includes Greinke, Ryu, and some guy named Kershaw. That should be more than enough to win this division.
San Francisco (83) –  2015 is not evenly divisible by 2. What else do I have to say? They’ll miss the playoffs.
San Diego (81) –       Another team that won the offseason. If they gave out trophies for that the Blue Jays and Angels would have some recent championships. They’ll improve over last season, but not enough to seriously contend.
Colorado (75) –       They’ll improve over last year. They can still hit but pitching is always an issue at Coors Field.
Arizona (69) –         Dave Stewart. #smh.  New school always wins these old school vs new school battles. I think Ruben Amaro Jr. has some competition for worst GM in league.



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