Baseball’s here! Yay! * for wildcard.
1) Yankees – The champs until they’re not the champs.
2) Red Sox* – The wildcard until they’re not the wildcard. Got better with pitching and on D, and the offense is still fine.
3) Rays – A close third, but organization with an eye on the future may trade FA to be Carl Crawford even if they’re in the hunt.
4) Orioles – Apparently got better over the summer. Just not enough to challenge the big boys yet.
5) Blue Jays – Should be spunky at times (THAT’S WHAT SHE SAID), but will ultimately lose a bunch more than they win.
1) Twins – I’m historically awful at picking this division, But these guys are always there, right?
2) White Sox- Strong starting staff (they got Peavy, remember?), but weird pickups on offense. Just the best of a weak bunch.
3) Indians – Can’t possibly be as bad as they were last year.
4) Tigers – Lost a bit in the offseason- won’t be that far off the pace.
5) Royals – THESE guys, however…
1) Angels – Like the Yankees, they’re the best here until someone proves otherwise.
2) Mariners – Everyone’s darkhorse pick, which worries me. That offense is still horrendous.
3) Rangers – Troubling early signs with the injury to Kinsler, high expectations, and a manager under fire. Should be close.
4) A’s – Is Billy Beane still a genius if his teams are awful?
1) Phillies – Here’s hoping Doc wins it all this year.
2) Braves* – Do they take Bobby Cox out in style? Well, they’ll get to the postseason.
3) Mets – Much like the Indians, can’t be that snakebitten two years in a row, can they?
4) Marlins – They seem to always surprise me, but this is a tough division.
5) Nationals – Counting down until Strasburg arrives at this point.
1) Cardinals – Re-signing Holliday for that much money was a surprise- how much do they pay Pujols, then?
2) Brewers – Young and powerful, but questions about their pitching exist.
3) Cubs – More relaxed without Milton Bradley, though that just means Soriano’s awful contract stays in the crosshairs.
4) Reds – Could move up if all the pieces fall into place.
5) Astros – Berkman’s hurt, and Oswalt is aging. This’ll be a painful year.
6) Pirates – The barest flicker of hope with young talent arriving.
1) Rockies – A perpetual contender in Coors- nice work by the management.
2) D’backs – Another bounce back team, though Webb’s continuing shoulder trouble is cause for concern.
3) Dodgers – Some young talent, but lost too much in the offseason to stay near the top. Ramirez starting to wear out his welcome.
4) Giants – Lots of pitching. No hitting.
5) Padres – Once they trade Adrian Gonzalez, there will be no reason to watch them.