I didn’t want to start the season without completely ruining any credibility I have, so once again I will make some bold predictions that can be used against me later in the year. I’m going to start today with the AL predictions, but before we get to that, here are some of my feelings on the teams.
Angels: To me they just had losses this offseason. They still have some stuff there, and it’s hard to bet against Scioscia, but I can’t say I’m fond of their pitching staff or more than half of their lineup.
Athletics: I really like them this year. They need another hitter but I think they’ll be buyers for that later in the year. That pitching staff in that park I think bodes very well for them. They are a team that I could see surprising people and making the playoffs, especially if Ben Sheets stays healthy.
Indians: It wasn’t pretty last year, it’ll be slightly better this year. At least the top of their lineup looks nice with Cabrera, Sizemore, and Choo.
Mariners: They’re a popular pick, and for good reason. But if Lee isn’t great, they just aren’t deep enough. Then again, if he and Bedard pitch 300 innings total, they could win the whole AL.
Orioles: Not good yet, people are expected them to rise up, but I’m expecting a rough year. Maybe the last one for a while, though.
Rangers: People like these guys in the West, although I’m afraid injuries to start the season will put them behind. The flap with their manager may hurt them, too.
Rays: I think they’re better than anyone realizes, and alot of people think they’re going to be good. Their lineup is great, and their pitching staff is as deep as it gets.
Red Sox: I’m not buying it. I think their lineup is weaker than people want to admit, and I’m not sure if Lackey will thrive pitching in Boston. He’s had his share of problems there. They’ll be good, but I am just not sure if they’re good enough.
Royals: What can you say? You can’t pray for rain for 4/5 games.
Tigers: Some people are completely writing them off, and I’m not doing that. But I still think they’ll finish third in their division.
Toronto: Not much going on here, unfortunately. Shaun Marcum is probably their best starter this year.
Twins: No longer a small market team, they have the best team in the Central. That lineup is incredible, and if Liriano comes back strong, this team could be incredible.
White Sox: Good pitching staff with lots of better than average guys. Not much hitting and if one or two guys don’t deliver, they won’t score at all. They are a bit like the A’s, only with bigger names, and tougher division competition. Could also get in to the playoffs then end up shutting everyone down.
Yankees: The defending World Champs are going to get old, but I am not sure if it’s going to happen this year. The additions made in the offseason make them an even better team. Nick Johnson could have fun DH-ing and hitting in that park.
Here are my final predictions for the AL:
AL East: Yankees
AL Central: Twins
AL West: A’s
AL Wild Card: Rays
ALCS: Yankees vs. Twins
AL Champs: Twins
AL MVP: Alex Rodriguez, Yankees
AL Cy Young: Brett Anderson, A’s
AL Rookie: Brian Matusz, Orioles
AL Manager: Bob Geren, A’s