Thursday, April 02, 2009

Pre-season projections

Real baseball games start Sunday with the Phillies and Braves facing off, and the rest of the teams opening on Monday. I’m very excited, and have taken off opening day (Monday) as a personal holiday. Ryan gave his predictions earlier this week, but I think it’s time I give mine. Ryan put a lot more effort into his, looking at the teams, the players, the divisions. Me? I looked at predictions by others, and completely disregarded them to make the worst possible guesses. Think of it this way: last year, I might have gotten it right, with the Tampa Bay [Devil] Rays coming seemingly from no where to win the American League!



The Nationals might not have the pitching or the defense or the offense, but they will overcome these odds to take over the NL-East. The Mets are determined not to choke in September, and instead will make sure they start off choking in April. The Phillies will depend too much on their World Series victory to remember that it’s a new year and they need to start playing baseball.



On Talk Like a Pirate Day (September 19th), the Pirates will come as a surprise to the NL Central and win the division. The Cubs, still hungover from celebrating 100 years without a World Series win, will forfeit many games in April and May, causing them to be in a hole too big to dig out of, despite their run of 26-1 in September.


The Diamondbacks starting rotation will run into trouble in April. Psychologists will discover that on April 8th Jon Garland realized that the mascot was a snake and tells his fellow pitchers. It is then discovered that all five men have a deep phobia of snakes and spend much of April and May cowering in fear before the mascot is changed to a flowering cactus. In a huge post-season scandal, it’s discovered that the baseballs used by the Rockies pitchers are dripping in water from the humidor, while the humidor for the baseballs used by the opponents’ pitchers hasn’t worked since 2006. The big question is why the Rockies didn’t play better in 2007 and 2008.


Blue Jays
Devil Rays
Red Sox

In what becomes a "Battle of the Birds", the Orioles and Blue Jays come as a surprise to all the teams in the American League, ending the year with identical 110-52 records. The one-game playoff will be played at the new Yankee Stadium, and the Orioles will defeat the Blue Jays by a final score of 8-6, with no earned runs for either team. Records are set with 22 total errors by fielders in the game.


White Sox

The Royals started off April slowly, but after re-signing LHP Jimmy Gobble on May 3rd, their season took off, and their 98-64 record tied with the Twins. The one-game playoff game was held at US Cellular Field in Chicago. For the second year, the Twins lost a 1-0 playoff game. The Twins out-hit the Royals 15-2, but a hit into a record nine double-plays, and a David DeJesus home run in the ninth inning off of Twins starter Scott Baker (who had a perfect game up to that point) is the difference in the game.



The Rangers were thrown a blow in April when slugger Josh Hamilton decided to go for the Batting Champ title rather than home runs. While his .355 average was second in the league to Indians outfielder Grady Sizemore (.356), his 3 home runs were only 32 behind Mariners second baseman Jose Lopez’s 35, for the American League lead. Despite this set-back, career years by Kris Benson and Kevin Millwood (both with 21 wins) make it easy for the Rangers to take the division. The Angels have a slow start to their season when all three starting outfielders miss significant time to fill out their social security paperwork.

The Orioles and Pirates will face off in the World Series, with the Pirates winning in five games.

You read it here first. And probably last.

(Of course, if you go by the Spring 2009 catalog, based on number of item appearances per team, they predict the following: NL-East: Mets; NL-Central: Cardinals, but only because of the All-Star game (otherwise, Cubs); NL-West: Dodgers, decisively; AL-East: Yankees, helped by new stadium; AL-Central: White Sox; AL-West: Angels). Wild Cards will be Phillies and the Red Sox.)

Timberwolves update: 21-54 (1-2 since last time, 17-39 since McHale).

Marian Gaborik Injury Status: He’s playing hockey regularly!

Mikko Koivu Injury Status: He played 22 minutes his last game, so suffice to say, he looks like he’ll stick out the season.

Joe Mauer Injury Status: He’s not playing opening day, but at least he’s sorta started some baseball activities.

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Anonymous Mike said...

I definitely love the inherent comedy in picking the dregs of the baseball world, but I feel like you're being kind of tough on the '07 Rockies: "The big question is why the Rockies didn’t play better in 2007 and 2008." That 2007 World Series appearance wasn't enough?

1:38 PM  

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