Sunday, March 30, 2008

2008 MLB Storylines & Predictions

The transition from Spring to Summer is my favorite time of year, and it's no coincidence that I also welcome the start to the Major League season right about now. I love to participate in different fantasy leagues and predict how the season will play out, but what better way to do the latter than through my newest personal medium. 

Below I have included my biggest storylines for the 2008 season: 

1) Adding MVP candidate Miguel Cabrera  to an already potent lineup makes the Tigers my odds on favorite to win it all. They possess the best lineup in the game to go along with a top 5 staff. 

2) Watch out for the Devil Rays. If not this year, they will surely be a force to reckon with in the years to come. Their young talent featuring the likes of James Shields, Scott Kazmir and Carl Crawford is undeniable. Staying in the AL East, I think the definicies in the Yankee rotation will lead to an early exit before the playoffs. 

3) The Mariners will benefit from the injuries to the Angels' Lackey and Escobar, and they will ride the best 1-2 punch in baseball, Bedard and Felix, to the AL West crown.

4) The NL West is the best division in baseball with 4 teams capable of winning the title. As much as I discredit a manager's impact in baseball, I believe the mere prescence of Joe Torre coupled with a bounce-back season for Andruw Jones and breakout candidates James Loney & Andre Ethiera will vault the Dodgers to the top.

5) The Braves have quietly built up a young and powerful lineup to go together with a veteran and proven rotation. They will reclaim the NL East crown in a heated battle with the Mets.

6) Lastly, I expect the Cubs to finally make it back to the Biggest Stage with no Bartman interference. Yet, they will fall just short of the World Series crown in 6 games to the Tigers.

As for the actual finishes, I have posted my predictions (records included) for each team:

American League
Red Sox (96-66)
Yanks (92-70)
D-Rays (82-80)
B-Jays (80-82)
Orioles (68-94)

Tigers (101-61)
*Indians (94-68)
White Sox (81-81)
Twins (80-82)
Royals (74-88)

Mariners (91-71)
Angels (88-74)
Rangers (71-91)
Athletics (66-96)

Wild Card: Indians

ALCS: Tigers over Red Sox

National League
Braves (94-68)
*Mets (93-69)
Phillies (89-73)
Nationals (70-92)
Marlins (65-97)

Cubs (96-66)
Brewers (87-75)
Reds (83-79)
Astros (77-85)
Pirates (71-91)
Cardinals (70-92)

Dodgers (94-68)
Rockies (91-71)
Diamondbacks (91-71)
Padres (87-75)
Giants (68-94)

Wild Card: Mets

NLCS: Cubs over Braves

Worlds Series: Tigers over Cubs (in 6)

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