First of all, let me go on record staying that the National League is awful. They let the pitchers hit for crying out loud. When was the last time they won the World Series? Correction, I was just informed that the St. Louis Cardinals won the World Series last year. How the hell did that happen? Was that part of the Anheuser-Busch sale to InBev? Anyways, here we go they are obviously late but as the god's honest truth I haven't even looked at the NL standings yet and may not before the season is over. I'm not even sure that I will get every team listed. Are the Las Vegas 51's in the NL West? Correction, I was just informed that the 51's play in the Pacific Coast League, but what is the difference really?
Philadelphia- Their pitching staff is impressive (Halladay, Lee, Hamels, Pap). They have some good hitters when they are all healthy. Mostly, I'll pick them as a shoutout to my college roommate Jason Winchenbach as being a PA transplant this is his team, and I really want to beat them in the World Series so that I can win some Yuengling from him.
Washington- Solid young pitching with Zimmerman (Jordan), Detwiller, and that Strasburg cat. Good young line-up too, expected to get better with the arrival of Bryce Harper. Davey Johnson can live like it's 1986 all over again. Too soon?
New York- Everyone else is picking them to finish last and perhaps be the worst team in baseball, which is a mortal lock that I will pick them to go places...and be laughed it when they suck. Like the Twins in my AL predictions, resurgence from Jason Bay, Johan Santana, and John Franco, he's still their closer right?
Atlanta- They have some nice hitters (Heyward, Freeman, McCann) as well as some good arms (Hanson, Jurrjens, Kimbrel, etc.). However, I can see the arms in the bullpen breaking down after last year and Fredo Gonzalez is no Bobby Cox.
Miami- This is a team that has all the makings of dysfunction. Ozzie Guillen, a gazillion $ worth of free agents, Ozzie, Hanley Ramirez upset at being moved to 3B, Ozzie, their best power hitter is now named Giancarlo, Ozzie, that hideous new ballpark and uniforms, did I mention Ozzie?
St. Louis- These guys win the division every year it seems so why not take the sure thing? They have a good pitching staff and some good young hitters.
Milwaukee- They are named after makers of beer, their park is named after a beer company, and they race sausages. If there are 2 things better with baseball than beer and sausages I have yet to find them.
Pittsburgh- At some point don't the laws of average have to help out the Pirates? They have some good young hitters (McCutcheon, Alvarez, Walker) and a decent pitching staff by NL standards. In the wild card hunt until the end. Plus isn't PNC Park one of the best hidden treasures in all of baseball? I've never been but it looks nice on TV.
Cincinnati- Joey Votto is outstanding but other than that nothing about this team really excites me. Maybe they should cover the whole team in Skyline Chili, then I would be excited. I also think that their pitchers are poor and Dusty Baker as always will find a way to screw this up.
Chicago- It will be a bit of a rebuilding process for Theo and Co. Thank god, they have Millsie and 'Stros in this division.
Houston- Poor Brad Mills, he thought he was getting a major league managerial job only to be given a mediocre American Association team. This my friends might be the worst team in baseball.
Los Angeles- The Dodgers have all the pieces, great hitter (Matt Kemp, check), great pitcher (Clayton Kershaw, check), great announcer (Vin Scully, check), tradition, and new ownership. The excitement from the Magic Johnson ownership group will bring Showtime to Chavez Ravine as the Dodgers make a lengthy post-season run.
Colorado- They will go on a great August/September run to get back into contention on the backs of their hitters (Gonzalez, Tulowitzki) even the new guys like Michael Cuddyer and Marco Scutaro will play big down the stretch. Jamie Moyer gives them 100+ innings and by default wins the NL Cy Young. His arm will then promptly fall off as the post-season begins.
San Francisco- They have good pitching (Lincecum, Baumgardner, Cain) and decent hitters (Kung Fu Panda, Posey). Bruce Bochy is as good of a manager as there is in baseball, something about catchers in the managerial role works. Can't wait for the Sox to fire Valentine and hire Tek.
Arizona- Kirk Gibson, gimps around first in mid-July to try and revive his guys, but it only lasts for a couple of weeks and then they turn into the mediocre bunch that they are.
Las Vegas 51's- The Blue Jays AAA talent finishes next to last in the NL West, with their gaudy hitting numbers put up thanks to their ballpark.
San Diego- The Padres are apparently all off on a mission for the year, but Casey Kelly impresses in his 2nd half call-up.
NL MVP Matt Kemp
NL Cy Young Clayton Kershaw
NL ROY Drew Pomeranz
NL Manager Davey Johnson
Wild Cards- Jordan Zimmerman pitches the Nationals over the Rockies at RFK, Natinals Park, or whatever they call it. DC is delirious with baseball fever, the festive atmosphere draws the largest crowd in history to the National Mall, which is short-lived because in January the inauguration of Mitt Romney...I couldn't even write that line without laughing...overtakes it. But seriously, the Nationals win and Barack Obama will remain the POTUS.
NLDS- Dodgers over Nationals in 5, despite Strasburg gems in games 1 and 4, Phillies over Cardinals in 5
NLCS- Phillies over Dodgers in 7, in an epic NLCS
World Series- Sox over Phillies in 7 as Pap implodes in the 9th of the last game at Fenway. The Dropkick Murphy's ship him back to Philadelphia to the tune of Tessie and whatever there 2012 anthem will be. And more importantly I get my case of delicious Yuengling Lager from Mr. Winchenbach, who contemplates jumping onto the Nationals bandwagon in 2013...or the 51's.