Originally posted by redsoxnation NL Central Astros: Maybe this will be the year they realize the season starts before August. Cardinals Cubs Brewers Reds Pirates
World Series Red Sox in 6 over Astros
Um, the Astros may actually finish last this year.
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1 Red Sox 2 Yankees (Wild Card) 3 Blue Jays 4 Rays 5 Orioles
Time for the carriage to turn back into a pumpkin and the natural order of things to be restored. Yankees stop this whole not making the playoffs silliness having added Tex and CC.
1 White Sox 2 Twins 3 Indians 4 Royals 5 Tigers
This division is just a freaking mess. I said the Sox just because I hope that's what happens, but really any of the top three teams could take this division, and whomever wins will be cannon fodder in the playoffs.
1 Angels 2 Rangers 3 A's 4 Mariners
This division is also pretty awful. Angels usually win, so I think they'll keep winning.
1 Phillies 2 Braves 3 Mets 4 Marlins 5 Nats
I admit to knowing little about this division. Phillies seem solid though. Braves added Javier Vazquez, and that never helps anyone.
The Cubs are pretty much just sort of sleepwalking until October. They'll win 95 games, and no one will really care. Their year is all about October. Cardinals get a healthy Carpenter back, and should improve to a WC spot.
1 Dodgers 2 Rockies 3 D-Backs 4 Padres 5 Giants
Manny is still one of the best hitters in the game and provides the difference in the division.
Playoffs Red Sox over White Sox Yankees over Angels Yankees over Red Sox
Cubs over Dodgers Phillies over Cardinals Cubs over Cardinals
World Series: Cubs in six over New York. So much pitching! Cubs just have too much of it for the Yanks.
Awards: AL Cy Young - Sabathia NL Cy Young - Harden AL MVP - Teixiera NL MVP - Pujols
AL East 1 New York 2 Tampa (WC) 3 Boston 4 Toronto 5 Orioles
AL Central 1 Minnesota 2 Chicago 3 Detroit 4 Kansas City 5 Cleveland
AL West 1 Anaheim 2 Oakland 3 Texas 4 Seattle
NL East 1 Philadelphia 2 New York (WC) 3 Atlanta 4 Florida 5 Washington
NL Central 1 Chicago 2 St. Louis 3 Milwaukee 4 Houston 5 Cincinatti 6 Pittsburgh
NL West 1 Los Angeles 2 Colorado 3 Arizona 4 San Diego 5 San Francisco
New York over Minnesota New York over Anaheim
Los Angeles over New York Los Angeles over Chicago
World Series: Yanks in 5. I pick the Yanks every season, no stopping now. CC, The Wanger, AJ, Pettitte, and Joba, with a few others in the wings (Hughes, Kennedy, Aceves), a strong, healthy pen, better defense than last year, an ok bench, and power. It all depends on health - just like it does in every season for every team.
I didn't really think much about any of these picks, to be honest.
AL East 1. New York Yankees 2. Boston Red Sox 3. Tampa Bay Rays 4. Baltimore Orioles 5. Toronto Blue Jays
I'm not convinced that lightning will strike twice for the Rays. No, this is the year that order is restored. Wonderful...boring...repetitive order.
AL CENTRAL 1. Minnesota Twins 2. Chicago White Sox 3. Kansas City Royals 4. Cleveland Indians 5. Detroit Tigers
The Twins somehow keep managing to compete, when the losses of Hunter and Santana last year should have logically taken them out of it. I'm sold on the Twins and I think they play with a huge chip on their shoulder after narrowly losing out last year. The Royals will shockingly keep everyone on their toes.
AL WEST 1. Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim 2. Seattle Mariners 3. Oakland A's 4. Texas Rangers
Speaking of wonderful...boring...repetitive order, here's the AL West. The Angels have no one who can compete with them, though the A's will try until their lineup falls to injury. Angels win the division running away...and lose in the first round to the Red Sox, like they do every year. Sigh...
NL EAST 1. Philadelphia Phillies 2. New York Mets 3. Florida Marlins 4. Atlanta Braves 5. Washington Nationals
The Mets start off the first two months under-.500 before firing Jerry Manuel, showing they learned NOTHING from the year before. The only difference will be that the starters will collapse, and not that much-improved bullpen. There's no reason to believe Philly will drop off, as they still have all the pieces for success. Ryan Howard goes off for another 50 HR's and steroids will inevitably be brought up as a possibility.
NL CENTRAL 1. St. Louis Cardinals 2. Chicago Cubs 3. Milwaukee Brewers 4. Pittsburgh Pirates 5. Houston Astros 6. Cincinnati Reds
If Cris Carpenter is healthy, this will be all Cardinals. Either way, I think the Cubs are so shell-shocked by their first-round exit last year that they'll fall to a close Wild Card win over the Brewers.
NL WEST 1. Arizona Diamondbacks 2. Los Angeles Dodgers 3. Colorado Rockies 4. San Francisco Giants 5. San Diego Padres
Hooray for the Dodgers for finally signing Manny. Of course, they didn't bother to sign PITCHING, so that'll come back to bite them when Haren and Webb carry Arizona to a first place finish.
New York Yankees d. Minnesota Twins Boston Red Sox d. Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
Boston Red Sox d. New York Yankees
Philadelphia Phillies d. Chicago Cubs St. Louis Cardinals d. Arizona Diamondbacks
Philadelphia Phillies d. St. Louis Cardinals
WORLD SERIES: Boston Red Sox d. Philadelphia Phillies
"It's worth remembering that sometimes popular things are popular for a reason. Because they're GOOD or because Will Smith is in it."
AL East: Boston, New York, Tampa Bay, Toronto, Baltimore AL Central: Cleveland, Chicago, Minnesota, Detroit, Kansas City AL West: Anaheim, Oakland, Seattle, Texas
NL East: Philadelphia, New York, Atlanta, Florida, Washington NL Central: Chicago, St. Louis, Milwaukee, Cincinnati, Houston, Pittsburgh NL West: Arizona, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Colorado, San Diego
Wild cards: Yankees, Dodgers
World Series: Arizona over Cleveland
AL MVP: Evan Longoria AL Cy Young: Roy Halladay AL ROY: Matt Wieters NL MVP: Manny Ramirez NL Cy Young: Johan Santana NL ROY: Dexter Fowler
Kirk, crackers are a family food. Happy families. Maybe single people eat crackers, we don't know. Frankly, we don't want to know. It's a market we can do without.
I've never been right, but I've been damn close a few times. Last year could not have gone worse however, with my handing out the bulk of the AL Awards to the Tigers, who I predicted would win roughly 161 games or more.
Let's see how 2009 goes.
1) Atlanta 2) Philadelphia (Wild Card) 3) Florida 4) New York 109) Washington
NOTES: Love Atlanta's retooled staffed, royally pissed about letting John Smoltz walk. Appears to be chemistry issues in New York, Minaya has not fixed them. Florida coming together nicely, despite the dumping of anyone about to make any kind of money in the offseason. If Washington performs as I expect them to, they should lose their place in the majors to the top AAA team next year. Defending champs win Wild Card, and then strut stuff in playoffs.
1) Chicago 2) St. Louis 3) Cincinnati 4) Milwaukee 5) Houston 6) Pittsburgh
NOTES: Don't discount the power of veterans leaving a ballclub potentially improving it. Dunn and Griffey overshadowed the rest of the Cincy boys so dramatically, now it's a world where the new stars are here, and they'll have something to prove without anyone to hide behind. Pittsburgh blows.
1) Los Angeles 2) Arizona 3) Colorado 4) San Francisco 5) San Diego
NOTES: Maybe hardest division in baseball to pick? Los Angeles about to take The Leap behind Kemp, Ethier, and the rest of those kids who've been up for a couple years. Kershaw and Billingsley are the wild cards. San Diego toiles in mediocrity after letting franchise player leave angry. Well deserved karma.
1) Boston 2) New York (Wild Card) 3) Tampa Bay 4) Baltimore 5) Toronto
NOTES: Toronto's offseason was horrendous and an embarrassment to the city. Baltimore will be better, but will never stop being The Orioles. Boston reminds us why they're the team of the decade. New York continues to dominate headlines and irritate everyone not living in New York. Poor TB.
1) Cleveland 2) Kansas City 3) Chicago 4) Minnesota 5) Detroit
NOTES: Ozzie Guillen is fired after watching American History X and curb stomping a player mirred in an 0-18 slump. Kansas City shocks us all, like they did whenever the hell that last time was they improved (5 years ago?). Detroit destined to finish last after making me believe they were awesome last year. Indians win division with ease.
1) Los Angeles of Anaheim 2) Oakland 3) Texas 4) Seattle
NOTES: Griffey Jr. does nothing to improve Seattle outside of jersey sales. Anaheim sends Gary Matthews Jr. packing as soon as payroll alerts management he's on the hook for $11 mil per season for like 3 more years. Oakland plays Moneyball and continues to not win World Series titles. Texas sells team to GW Bush. Following a bench clearing brawl with the Yankees, Bush declares war on the Royals.
NL MVP: Albert Pooholes NL CY: Jake Peavy AL MVP: Grady Sizemore AL CY: Felix Hernandez
Kansas City shocks us all, like they did whenever the hell that last time was they improved (5 years ago?).
Yeah, but this time they might actually be improved, unlike in 2003 when it was smoke and mirrors and rabbits feet and four-leaf clovers and...you get the point. Then again, for some reason they sent former #1 pick Luke Hochever, who had a decent spring, down so they could have the immortal Sir Sidney Ponson in the rotation. While I don't expect that to last very long, it's kinda sad that he'll be starting in the freaking home opener against the Yankees! But then watch him pitch decent for a start or two and fool the Royals management into thinking he might be good again. And then he'll proceed to stink up the joint while Hochevar pitches well in AAA and we'll have a Livan Hernandez/Francisco Liriano with the Twins situation.
American League East 1. Red Sox 2. Yankees (WC) 3. Rays 4. Orioles 5. Blue Jays Red Sox win out because of A-Rod's absence. Those thinking the Yankees will manage because there won't be A-Rod distractions are crazy, the offense is very unimpressive without A-Rod's bat. Their pitching does look great on paper, but we know how that works.
American League Central 1. Twins 2. Indians 3. Royals 4. White Sox 5. Tigers I'll take the Twins just because everybody else in the division goes from bad to good so fast it's impossible to tell which one they'll be this year. Also I don't think there is anything shocking about the Royals competing since there have been more votes for them to finish 2nd or 3rd in the division than 4th or 5th. Almost everybody is picking them as a sleeper, which means they aren't a sleeper.
American League West 1. Rangers 2. A's 3. Angels 4. Mariners Not likely, but I think the Angels could fall apart at any minute and usual the Rangers have a good looking offense.
National League East 1. Mets 2. Phillies 3. Marlins 4. Braves 5. Nationals There's about a dozen ways the Mets can easily improve this season. The Phillies on the other hand hit their ceiling last season and will come down, that's easily the three game difference in the division. I also don't get the love for the Braves. The only two sure things is that 1) Brian McCann and Chipper Jones will be good and 2) Brian McCann and Chipper Jones will miss 50 - 60 games combined.
National League Central 1. Reds 2. Cardinals 3. Cubs 4. Pirates 5. Astros 6. Brewers That's probably expecting too much from Votto, Bruce, Volquez but oh well, I'm not picking the Cubs and yes I did pick the Pirates to finish above last.
National League West 1. Rockies 2. Diamondbacks (WC) 3. Giants 4. Dodgers 5. Padres If Iannetta, Stewart and Dexter Fowler are for real then that's an awfully good lineup in Coors Field. I know the question mark is always pitching but it's almost the exact same pitching staff that won two years ago except they have Street instead of Fuentes.
AL MVP - Josh Hamilton AL Cy Young - Scott Kazmir AL Rookie of the Year - not Matt Wieters or David Price NL MVP - David Wright NL Cy Young - Dan Haren NL Rookie of the Year - Dexter Fowler
Ed, your point about other sports and their dynasties, attempting to disparage the idea that revenue sharing is somehow helping them has some flaws in it: -NBA, the problem with this sport is that because of the small team size (5 on the floor)