Pitchers and catchers report to some organizations exactly two weeks from today. I think that means it's safe to start guessing at who we think is going to come out on top at the end of the season. So, I guess I'll be the first to throw out my prognostications. Be gentle...
National League West - San Francisco
Central - St. Louis (but it will be a lot closer than the last two years) East - New York (or anyone except the Braves... please) Wild Card - Braves (Okay, I can't leave them off. I mean, what's the playoffs without the Braves?)
American League West - Angels
Central - White Sox
East - Yankees
Wild Card - Blue Jays
Anyone who is picking the Rangers to make the playoffs want to give some reasoning behind it? Millwood, Eaton, Padilla, Loe, Dominguez as a rotation doesn't really seem like much of an improvement over Rogers, Young, Park, Astacio, Dreese. The staff should be better but I just don't see it as a big enough of an improvement to close the gap.
Maybe I'm just skeptical after being burned by picking them to win the Wild Card last season, but this is a team that finished 16 games back of the Divison Winning Angels and Wild Card Red Sox last season and I'm curious if people are picking them expecting dramatic improvement or a serious falling off from the other contenders.
ZIPS projections are terrible year after year, not sure why people put so much value in them, they are PECOTA with half the variables included... anyway here are my predictions.
AL East - Yankees
AL Central - Indians
AL West - Oakland
WC - Red Sox
NL East - Braves (sorry mets don't have the pitching)
NL Central - Cardinals
NL West - Giants
WC - 2nd best team in central, its really up for grabs between Astros, Brewers, Cubs... I'm going to take my Homer pick and go with Brewers.