Time again to revisit my preseason predictions. Sorry to say.
AL EAST PREDICTED:
New York Yankees (98-64) 96-100 win range
Boston Red Sox *WC* (94-68) 92-96 win range
Tampa Bay Rays (88-74) 86-90 win range
Baltimore Orioles (74-88) 72-76 win range
Toronto Blue Jays (66-96) 64-68 win range
And here’s what actually happened …
AL EAST ACTUAL:
Tampa Bay Rays (96-66) +8 wins
New York Yankees *WC* (95-67) –3 wins
Boston Red Sox (89-73) –5 wins
Toronto Blue Jays (85-77) +19 wins
Baltimore Orioles (66-96) –8 wins
It seemed to me that the Orioles, with their strong base of young talent, would take a step forward this year. I was very wrong. I also badly underestimated the Blue Jays, who did just fine without Roy Halladay. I didn’t think the Rays had the high-end talent to match Boston and New York and, there again, I was wrong. But who could have predicted the wave of injuries that hit Boston?
AL CENTRAL PREDICTED:
Minnesota Twins (86-76) 84-88 win range
Chicago White Sox (82-80) 80-84 win range
Detroit Tigers (79-83) 77-81 win range
Kansas City Royals (72-90) 70-74 win range
Cleveland Indians (67-95) 65-69 win range
AL CENTRAL ACTUAL:
Minnesota Twins (94-68) +8 wins
Chicago White Sox (88-74) +6 wins
Detroit Tigers (81-81) +2 wins
Cleveland Indians (69-93) +2 wins
Kansas City Royals (67-95) –5 wins
I didn’t miss big on anybody here, except the Twins. I thought they’d be good, but I failed to account for their high-end offense or the return of Francisco Liriano. I’m still not sure how the White Sox won 88 games with that roster.
AL WEST PREDICTED:
Los Angeles Angels (89-73) 87-91 win range
Seattle Mariners (86-76) 84-88 win range
Texas Rangers (84-78), 82-86 win range
Oakland Athletics (74-88), 72-76 win range
AL WEST ACTUAL:
Texas Rangers (90-72) +6 wins
Oakland Athletics (81-81) +7 wins
Los Angeles Angels (80-82) –9 wins
Seattle Mariners (61-101) –25 wins
Yeah, so I missed on the Mariners, but so did most people. As for the Rangers, I didn’t think they had the pitching to win 90. But C.J. Wilson and Colby Lewis were great, and they traded for Cliff Lee.
I’ve been predicting the imminent decline of the Angels for a few years now. I just never thought their talent level matched their win output. Well, this time I just took the safe route and picked the Angels to repeat their magic. Bad timing on my part.
NL EAST PREDICTED:
Philadelphia Phillies (96-76) 94-98 win range
Atlanta Braves *WC* (92-70) 90-94 win range
Florida Marlins (85-77) 83-87 win range
New York Mets (80-82) 78-82 win range
Washington Nationals (69-93) 67-71 win range
NL EAST ACTUAL:
Philadelphia Phillies (97-65) +1 win
Atlanta Braves (91-71) –1 win
Florida Marlins (80-82) –5 wins
New York Mets (79-83) –1 win
Washington Nationals (69-93) Exactly Right!
I didn’t take any big risks here, and it paid off. I expected a little too much out of Florida, but I also saw that the Mets were due for something of a rebound.
NL CENTRAL PREDICTED:
St. Louis Cardinals (92-70) 90-94 win range
Chicago Cubs (83-79) 81-85 win range
Milwaukee Brewers (81-81) 79-83 win range
Cincinnati Reds (77-85) 75-79 win range
Houston Astros (71-91) 69-73 win range
Pittsburgh Pirates (64-98) 62-66 win range
NL CENTRAL ACTUAL:
Cincinnati Reds (91-71) +14 wins
St. Louis Cardinals (86-76) –6 wins
Milwaukee Brewers (77-85) –4 wins
Houston Astros (76-86) +5 wins
Chicago Cubs (75-87) –8 wins
Pittsburgh Pirates (57-105) –7 wins
I thought last year was the Reds’ year to break through. My timing sucks. I also thought that 83 wins was a bearish prediction for the Cubs. Not bearish enough it would seem. Ditto the Pirates.
NL WEST PREDICTED:
Los Angeles Dodgers (93-69) 91-95 win range
Colorado Rockies (89-73) 87-91 win range
Arizona Diamondbacks (83-79) 81-85 win range
San Francisco Giants (78-84) 76-80 win range
San Diego Padres (67-95) 65-69 win range
NL WEST ACTUAL:
San Francisco Giants (92-70) +14 wins
San Diego Padres (90-72) +23 wins
Colorado Rockies (83-79) –6 wins
Los Angeles Dodgers (80-82) –13 wins
Arizona Diamondbacks (65-97) –18 wins
Except for the Rockies, I screwed the proverbial pooch here.
NLCS: Phillies over Braves (Nearly happened).
ALCS: Red Sox over Yankees (Or one of those “R” teams).
WS: Red Sox over Phillies
AL MVP: Joe Mauer, Twins (Mauer had a good year, but nothing like his ‘09 campaign).
NL MVP: Chase Utley, Phillies (Injuries again.)
AL Cy Young: Felix Hernandez, Mariners (You’re welcome.)
NL Cy Young: Clayton Kershaw, Dodgers (I’m probably 2-3 years ahead of the curve here. But he did have a fine year.)
AL Rookie of the Year: Neftali Feliz, Rangers (a-HEM.)
NL Rookie of the Year: Jason Heyward, Braves (He wuz Robbed.)