Tuesday, June 23, 2009
Season 13 Division Predictions: N.L. East
Season 12: 1st Place (91-61)
Season 13 Prediction: 1st Place
I'm so boring - I always pick Neilcor and his band of Merrie Monarchs to win this division. I'm tired of it, but I see no reason for that to change this season. Kansas City did sign a couple new arms in Kevin Ma and Willis Anderson, however, it's the same cast of characters for the most part. Erick Hatcher should surpass 400 HRs this season and his young sidekick Geoffery Blair is off to a good start as well. 19-game winner Jim Aurilia would've had a Cy Young Award on his mantle last season if it weren't for Ned "Will you please just retire already" McInerney. Carmine Holmes hopes to find whatever it was he lost between seasons 11 & 12.
Breakout Performer: C/DH Juan Sosa (the only guy under the age of 60 on the ML roster).
Season 12: 2nd Place (85-77)
Season 13 Prediction: 2nd Place
jmaese and the Metros headed upstate to Syracuse in the offseason and picked up a new nickname on the way. While the city and team name are new, the offensive firepower is familiar. Philip Ray and Russ Feller are back to lead this offense, but we definitely see the potential in 21-year old 2nd year man, Omar Flores. One of the best young arms in the league, Dennys Franco leads the pitching staff. Franco's strung a couple good seasons together and is starting to come into his own (3-0 this season). If Scott Everett can perform as he did last season, this team should be in the hunt for a wild card spot.
Breakout Performer: SP Jack Farrell
Season 12: 3rd Place (66-96)
Season 13 Prediction: 3rd Place
Having not reached the 70-win plateau since season 8, the Old Style have accumulated some high draft picks and those players are starting to crack the starting lineup at the major league level. Rookies Ricardo Garces, Napoleon Conti and Jose Morlan are all off to pretty good starts and they've got the Chicago fans chirping. The pitching is lagging behind the hitting, but Darren Evert and Chico Rodriguez are both promising prospects and should win their share of ballgames.
Breakout Performer: 3B Ricardo Garces
Season 12: 4th Place (38-124)
Season 13 Prediction: 4th Place
38 wins, the number of games Washington DC/Rochester won last season is not easy to swallow. It's also not difficult to surpass. This team's better than last season and may even be good enough to climb out of the cellar. 22-year old rookie Christian Hardy will join a couple elder statesman we all know and love in 38-year olds J.R. Barkley and J.P. McEnroe, in the starting rotation. Offensively, the North Stars are not quite at the level of the other teams in this division. They'll need big seasons out of free agent signees Andy Battle and Howie Curtis. Still, it looks like the team is headed in the right direction and they're now just 25 wins away from passing last season's total.
Breakout Performer: SP Christian Hardy