Thursday, March 31, 2016

MLB predictions 2016

Here's the first round of predictions from the Maineiacs for 2016:

It's MLB prediction time for the Maineiacs! Opening day is nearly upon us and so is the excitement of a new season, not just another baseball season, but the season of warm weather, barbecue and the Red Sox on the radio. I for one can't wait, so let's get started!!

AL East

Toronto Blue Jays- Their starting pitching is very suspect, but they have the best lineup and are the most balanced team in the division

Boston Red Sox- John Farrell gets fired by Memorial Day, but Torey Lovullo leads them to the 2nd wild card spot with a hot second half

New York Yankees- Bullpen, bullpen, bullpen. The Yankees are also fairly balanced, but their lineup could be their achilles heal

Baltimore Orioles- If their lineup isn't the best in the division it's the second best, but their starting pitching is so bad that it can't be overcome by good coaching and an above average bullpen

Tampa Bay Rays- They may have the best starting pitching in the division but it's not good enough to keep them out of the basement

AL Central

Minnesota Twins- The Twins overachieved last year and some people expect a regression but they have good young talent and good coaching. Their pitching is underrated

Kansas City Royals- The core of their team returns and they know how to win.

Detroit Tigers- They'll get off to a fast start, but fade down the stretch

Cleveland Indians- Another year out of the playoffs for Tito.

Chicago White Sox- Let the Chris Sale trade rumors heat up!

AL West

Houston Astros- The young core continues to get better despite the starting pitching regressing. But the bullpen should be improved.

Texas Rangers- The Rangers seem to be healthy and they'll be in the hunt all year

Seattle Mariners- Robinson Cano has a bounce back year to prove the critics wrong

LA Angels- Mike Scioscia finally gets canned in LA

Oakland Athletics- They're a year away from being in contention

Playoffs:

AL East- Toronto
AL Central- Minnesota Twins
AL West- Houston Astros
1st Wildcard- Kansas City Royals
2nd Wildcard- Boston Red Sox

AL MVP- Carlos Correa
AL Rookie of the Year- AJ Reed
AL Manager of the Year- Paul Molitor

Wildcard round:
Kansas City over Boston

Division Round:
Houston over Kansas City
Minnesota over Toronto

ALCS
Houston over Minnesota

NL East

Washington Nationals- Take their WWE show to the playoffs this year under Dusty Baker

NY Mets- The starting pitching is outstanding, but the offense and the bullpen could come back to the mean

Florida Marlins- If Jose Fernandez and Giancarlo Stanton are healthy they'll stay competitive all season
Atlanta Braves- They're a potential surprise team, but I still think they're one year away in what has become a pretty good division

Philadelphia Phillies- Many, many, many years away

NL Central

St. Louis Cardinals- Just when you think they're out! They pull you back in...

Pittsburgh Pirates- Will they finally win a playoff series???

Chicago Cubs- Fall victim to believing their own hype...I hate Joe Maddon

Cincinnati Reds- I wish they were better so I could pick them ahead of the Cubs

Milwaukee Brewers- I really wanted to put the Cubs last in this division but the Brewers and Reds are so bad I couldn't do it

NL West

San Francisco Giants- Even year.

LA Dodgers- Will Dave Roberts be winking uncontrollably at every runner that reaches first base? He will use Tito Francona's steal sign right?

Arizona Diamondbacks- I like the offseason moves but by the time they come together as a team it will be too late. Watch out for a hot second half though

San Diego Padres- Everybody's soup du jour last season has already torn a part the team, but I think they'll be better this year

Colorado Rockies- They're shitty

Awards:
NL MVP- Bryce Harper
NL Cy Young- Gerrit Cole
NL ROY- Trea Turner
NL Manager of the Year- Dusty Baker

Winners:
NL East- Washington Nationals
NL Central- St. Louis Cardinals
NL West- San Francisco Giants
1st Wildcard- Pittsburgh Pirates
2nd Wildcard- LA Dodgers

Wildcard Round:
Pittsburgh over LA Dodgers
Division Round:
Pittsburgh over Washington
San Francisco over St. Louis

NLCS:
San Francisco over Pittsburgh

World Series:
San Francisco over Houston in 6 games


Red Sox thoughts:

Pablo Sandoval, Rusney Castillo and Rick Porcello will have better seasons than Travis Shaw, Brock Holt and Joe Kelly.

Say it ain't so Big Papi...One more year! One more year! One more year!

Clay Buchholz is the lynchpin. If he has another bad/injury filled season the Red Sox have no shot.

Health seems to be working against the Red Sox already. The loss of Carson Smith can not be overstated.

There's no way this team gets off to the hot start that John Farrell needs. Talking about a fast start is not the way to get off to a fast start. We are watching the car crash that is the end of John Farrell's run as manager.

The Dave Dombrowski bullpen jinx continues.

Mookie Betts, Xander Bogaerts, Blake Swihart and Eduardo Rodriquez become and in some cases continue to be the cornerstones of the organization. They will win more than one division title during their time, but it just won't be this year.

The ability to have David Price to Koji to Kimbrel once every five days will increase the win total from a year ago.
Remember the Red Sox only finished 15 games out of first place last year. Yes they finished last but they weren't 30 something games worse than the first place team like they were two years ago.

A ten game jump in the win column from last year to this year would be enough to put them in playoff contention.

Will the curse of Don Orsillo become a thing?

I think that Dave O'Brien is a very good announcer, and I haven't seen a lot of spring training games on NESN with him this year, but when I have I had one thought: He's trying too hard. Too hard to be funny, too hard to be Jerry's best buddy, too hard to prove he was worth getting rid of Orsillo. It's early, but count me unimpressed so far.

Other Nuggets:
Are you willing to bet against San Francisco winning it all this year? I'm not.

I think this will be the season that the young talent across the MLB really takes over the league. For example, Carlos Correa will take the mantle of best hitter in the AL from Miguel Cabrera.

The National League will win the All Star game this year.

I think we'll see more managers get fired in season this year than any other time in recent memory. Over/Under is 3.5 and I'll take the over.

89 wins will be enough to win the AL East

85 wins will be enough to get you into the postseason in either league.

Baseball season is back baby!! Can't wait for Red Sox opening day on Monday!!!

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