Friday, March 29, 2013

MLB Predictions: Part I (AL East)

With the start of the MLB season almost upon us (finally), it's time for me to take a look at the six divisions and make my predictions.  To begin the series, let's turn our attention to the American League East.

The AL East seems to have the reputation of being the most difficult division to predict in 2013.  While I understand why some people believe that to be true, I didn't find the division nearly as difficult to predict.

AL East Predictions - 2013:
1.  Blue Jays
2.  Rays
3.  Orioles
4.  Yankees
5.  Red Sox

Can you imagine the panic if my predictions actually come true for the AL East?  Whatever would ESPN show us on Sunday Night Baseball - a last place and second-to-last place match up? (Ok, yes, they probably would still show Yankees/Red Sox).  No matter, this is how I see the division shaking out when all is said and done.

Let's begin at the top.

The Blue Jays and the Dodgers (arguably) made the biggest splashes over the past year or so in terms of signings and deals.  I'd be willing to bet that one of those two teams manages to miss out on the playoffs in 2013...and given that I put the Blue Jays first in the AL East you can probably figure out who I think might miss out on the playoffs.

Simply put, the Blue Jays are a stacked team - and although Romero apparently can't throw strikes (except those that end up as 450 ft. home runs), I still think Toronto has what it takes to win the division.

Following the Jays, the Rays and Orioles will probably spend most of 2013 battling for one of the AL Wild Card spots.  I don't see Baltimore being able to match how great they were last year in one-run/extra inning games, so I'm giving the nod to the Rays (a team that has proven over and over that they can win despite having one of the lowest payrolls in the majors).

The last two spots in the division are going to the two "heavyweights."  This year's Red Sox team seems destined to be but a shell of what the team was a few years ago...and the Yankees are aging (and breaking down) more and more.  Jeter won't be starting on Opening Day - and if you think signing Vernon Wells is the secret to NY's success then...well...there's not much I can say but "good luck with that."

As usual with my rankings, I'm curious to see what you think.  Am I totally nuts to have both NY and Boston at the bottom of the division?  Will Baltimore crumple like a wet cardboard box and end up with 100 losses?  Will the Jays talent end up fighting with themselves and knock Toronto out of the playoff picture?  Will the Rays finally not have the answer within and be forced to spend money or shut up?  Let me know!

1 comments:

hiflew said...

ESPN will have their "What's wrong with the Yankees and Red Sox" type stories that will run throughout the spring. Followed up with the "What the Yankees and Red Sox can do to get back into contention" type stories in the summer. Finally they will focus on the "How much will the Yankees and Red Sox farm teams improve them in 2014" type stories in the fall.

BTW, I think you are spot on with your predictions, although I would have switched Boston and NY.

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