Opening Day for the 2011 Major League Baseball season is upon us.
With all the movement in the off-season, this should be a great season.
Here is how I see everything shaking out…
- Boston Red Sox
- Tampa Bay Rays*
- New York Yankees
- Baltimore Orioles
- Toronto Blue Jays
ANAL-ysis: The Red Sox has enough pitching and hitting to win the division. Sure Josh Beckett has been inconsistent, but Dice-K and Jon Lester should pick up the slack. Plus they have the best bullpen in the division. Tampa leaps ahead of New York based on pitching alone. After my Yankees failed to land Cliff Lee, they essentially forfeited a potential playoff spot. The Blue Jays and Orioles would contend if they were in weaker divisions.
- Minnesota Twins
- Chicago White Sox
- Detroit Tigers
- Cleveland Indians
- Kansas City Royals
ANAL-ysis: This should be the Twins’ division to lose. While the White Sox made some strides in signing Adam Dunn to be their DH, they do not have the pitching to challenge the Twins. As talented as the Tigers are, I do not think they will overcome the Miguel Cabrera mess. Meanwhile, the Royals are still serving as the minor league system for the high-revenue teams.
- L.A. Angels of Anaheim in Orange County
- Texas Rangers
- Oakland Athletics
- Seattle Mariners
ANAL-ysis: The Angels should benefit with the departure of Lee from the division (Rangers). They have the talent and pitching to take back the division from the Rangers. Meanwhile, Ichiro Suzuki is still sleepless in Seattle…
American League winner: Minnesota Twins
- Philadelphia Phillies
- Atlanta Braves*
- Florida Marlins
- Washington Nationals
- New York Mets (METS = My Entire Team Sucks)
ANAL-ysis: The acquisition of Cliff Lee in the off-season should be good enough to win this division going away, provided everyone stays healthy. The Braves should challenge at least for a wild card spot. They have the pitching (led by Derrick Lowe) and hitting (led by Jason Heyward) to do so. The Marlins have the talent to make some noise, but the division is too tough. While the Nats are on the rise, the Mets are a mess. If Wilpon does not sell the team in the midst of the Bernie Madoff mess, then God help Mets fans everywhere.
- Cincinnati Reds
- Milwaukee Brewers
- St. Louis Cardinals
- Chicago Cubs
- Houston Astros
- Pittsburgh Pirates
ANAL-ysis: The Reds were young and dumb in winning the Central title last season. They are now a seasoned group with young stars (Joey Votto, Brandon Phillips, Jay Bruce and Aroldis Chapman) to go with their veterans (Scott Rolen and Bronson Arroyo). Chapman should be lethal as a closer with his 100 mph stuff. I did like the Brewers landing Zack Greinke from the Royals in the off-season. The Brew Crew has the bats to challenge the Reds. The Adam Wainwright injury REALLY hurt the Cardinals. Chris Carpenter cannot do it alone in their starting rotation. Meanwhile, the Cubs are still in-fighting, the Astros are the Astros, and the Pirates should either fire its ownership or refund their season ticket sales.
- San Francisco Giants
- Colorado Rockies
- Arizona Diamondbacks
- Los Angeles Dodgers
- San Diego Padres
ANAL-ysis: The Giants have the second-best pitching staff in the game (behind the Phillies), led by Tim Lincecum, Matt Cain and Jonathan Sanchez. Their hitting is the only thing that will prevent them from repeating as World Champions. Aside from the Rockies, who always have a mid to late-season run in them, the rest of the division is so weak that the Giants should win by default.
National League Champion: Philadelphia Phillies
World Series Champion: Philadelphia Philles
*-denotes wild card team
Categories: MLB, sports story
Agree whole heartedly with your MLB pick!! Phillies all the way!!!