Wednesday, March 30, 2005

 

Preseason Standings Prediction: Updated

I made predictions for the regular season standings of all the teams in the team preview, but with the end of spring training creeping up on us (of course, not nearly fast enough) and some roster changes/injuries and the like occuring, I want to put all of the predictions in one, neat and tidy post so I can look back on it and pretend it never happened come October.

AL East
1) Red Sox
2) Yankees
3) Orioles
4) Blue Jays
5) Devil Rays

AL Central
1) Indians (why is Juan "Should be Gone" Gonzalez starting in RF over Grady Sizemore?)
2) Twins
3) Tigers (not a very strong third place though)
4) White Sox (might take third place, but that isn't the point of the makeover they went under)
5) Royals

AL West
1) Athletics
2) Angels
3) Rangers
4) Mariners

NL East
1) Braves (I'd rather look dumb for picking them than not picking them at this point)
2) Phillies
3) Marlins
4) Mets
5) Nationals
Those 2-4 spots are all going to be reaaaaaally close I think.

NL Central
1) Cardinals
2) Cubs
3) Brewers
4) Astros
5) Reds
6) Pirates

NL West
1) Dodgers
2) Padres
3) Giants
4) D'Backs
5) Rockies
Rockies and D'Backs could go either way, but the bigger disapointment lies with Arizona, who fancies themselves at present to be a contender.

AL Wild Card: Yankees
NL Wild Card: Cubs (that NL East might beat itself up to the point of losing out, and the Pads have to beat the Dodgers to gain a playoff berth)

I assume the first round matchups, which are regular season record based, would go like so:

Red Sox vs. Indians
Yankees vs. Athletics
Cubs vs. Braves
Cardinals vs. Dodgers

I do not want to start going around saying who will win what in the playoffs, because then I'll do something insane like say Oakland comes out in the World Series facing the Cubs, and Red Sox fans will yell at me and then I'll just realize I'm being hopeful for Billy Beane's sake. Also, its too early to tell (ya think?) what condition these teams will be in injury wise at that point (Entire Cubs rotation except Greg Maddux goes down in September?). So that is where I draw the line...but let me just say that if Boston can't win it, I'm rooting for Oakland. Is that any different than normal though? Wouldn't an Athletics/Dodgers World Series make some people just vomit? You know, like anti-performance analysis people? Maybe its worth it to make the Sox wait another year to win just to see that.

Comments:
I need to remember to do a quick predictions post like this before the season starts. That way I can look like a genius when I pick everything right! (or not)

How about awards picks? MVP's, ROY's, and Cy Youngs?
 
I thought about how I left those out after I posted, so I'll give it a go now, thanks for reminding me.

AL MVP: Eric Chavez. When Oakland wins the West, MVP voters will decide Chavez is the reason. That doesn't mean he won't be deserving, cause Chavez is capable of MVP seasons.
NL MVP: Albert Pujols will finally get one, only because Bonds misses a month plus.

AL Cy Young: I'm going to go with Johan Santana as repeat winner, and it isn't a copout. Let me explain myself...I looked at the rosters, and noticed that the only frontline starters in the AL right now (serious out of the gate Cy Young contenders) would be Randy Johnson, Curt Schilling, and Johan Santana. Schilling is going to miss some time (not much, but he will have to adjust when he returns) and I'm not so sure Johnson is going to duplicate last year exactly, which would probably net him a Cy Young. Santana on the other hand, had an awful April and May, so even if he comes down from last years historical stretch of pitching, he should be able to come close to his Cy Young Campaign.

NL Cy Young: This one is going to come down between Pedro Martinez and Jake Peavy...at that point whichever team has a better record should have the Cy Young pitcher, and I'll go with the Pads for now.

AL ROY: Nick Swisher
NL ROY: If the Braves get Andy Marte to the majors early enough, it could be him.

Here are the Least Valuable Players, for free agents signed to big deals on new teams.
AL LVP: Richie Sexson (For Delgado's salary, he's not going to be valuable.)
NL LVP: Russ Ortiz. Just thinking about this makes me laugh. Thank you Diamondbacks management, for giving me something to chuckle about for the next few seasons. I'm probably piling on at this point, but its deserved.

And here are some rebound players for you:

AL Rebound: The Royals. I don't see them being a force or anything, but the year 2004 is over for them, so that is something.
NL Rebound: Austin Kearns. A healthy year will finally come...I hope.
 
As to the Indians' Gonzo comment ... let me say, he isn't playing.

The Hammy already has him day-to-day. Hmm...isn't this what the Royals saw last year??
 
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