Yes, it’s that time of year again: time for me to make some predictions that will almost inevitably look stupid come October. Enjoy.
1. Yankees will come in third in the AL East … but will make the ALCS
Danny Cooper and I agree that the Yankees will come in third. An aging team, a shaky bullpen, and one of the worst infields in the majors? No thanks. That being said, the Yankees have enough juuuust enough talent to make the playoffs. Once there, the emotion brought on by the end of Derek Jeter’s career should carry them to at least the ALCS, and perhaps even further. Now, about that other New York team …
2. The Mets will come in last in the NL East
This one won’t make Tim and Danny happy. The Mets are nowhere close to the Braves or the Nationals; they’ll be locked with the Marlins and Phillies in a race for third. The Phillies are aging, but there’s still some talent left. The Marlins feature a few electrifying youngsters. Any rotation with Daisuke worries me, and while I’m as big an Ike Davis fan as you’ll ever see, I don’t think he’ll rebound this year. It appears that the Metropolitans and their fans will be in for another long year.
3. The Dodgers will lose in the NLDS
The Trolley Dodgers should have an easy time in the NL West. The Padres and Rockies are both cellar-dwellers, while the D-Backs and Giants are both flawed. However, this is a team that has choke written all over it. I think the pressure placed by the media on the high-spending Dodgers will prove to be too much for them.
4. The Mariners will finish fourth in the AL West
Robinson Cano is one of the best in the game. Same with Felix Hernandez. Everyone else? Not so much. The pitching is highly questionable, and the lineup looks weak as well. The Mariners will need full seasons from the oft-injured Corey Hart and Logan Morrison, and youngsters like Justin Smoak will need to make the jump. Even if everyone plays to their potential, it still might not be enough to finish atop the A’s, Angels, and Rangers. While this offseason marked a step in the right direction for the Mariners, they’re still a few pieces away from competing.
5. My fantasy team will be better than Tim and Danny’s
This isn’t really that bold, considering that they traded Manny Machado, Hanley Ramirez, and Tim Lincecum for David Wright. As always, being a Mets fan proves to be a negative.