Beanball: My 2010 MLB Predictions Review

Time to review my MLB Predictions from this season and preview the playoffs that start tomorrow.

Music to listen to: Pass the Mic by the Beastie Boys

Here were my AL predictions:

AL East: Yankees

AL Central: Minnesota

AL West: Seattle (third year in a row picking them to win division, has to happen one day)

AL Wild Card: Texas

AL Champs: Yankees

AL MVP: 1) Joe Mauer, Minnesota 2) Evan Longoria, Tampa 3) Mark Teixeira, Yankees

Sleeper MVP: Josh Hamilton, Texas

AL Cy Young: 1) Felix Hernandez, Seattle 2) Jon Lester, Boston 3) CC Sabathia, Yankees

Sleeper Cy Young: Justin Verlander, Detroit

AL Best team: Yankees

AL Worst team: Kansas City

Overrated: Boston

Underrated: Texas

AL Thoughts: Three out of four teams isn’t bad but the error was a major one. I liked Tampa going into the season but thought that the AL East would be too much for them. Seattle disappointed me for the third consecutive year so they’re dead to me now.

I made Hamilton my MVP sleeper because of his potential injury odds were high and we’ve seen that this year. However, I would still take Hamilton as my MVP in the league this year. I know some are saying Robinson Cano but I don’t believe that.

For Cy Young, I would go with Felix Hernandez now. He’s had the best statistical year, wins be damned. Lester and Sabathia will probably be in the top six in voting so I was on point with that.

I hit on my overrated and underrated picks so overall, my predictions weren’t terrible, outside of Seattle of course.

Here were my NL predictions:

NL East: Philadelphia

NL Central: Cincinnati (going with them for a third year in a row as well)

NL West: Colorado

NL Wild Card: Atlanta

NL Champs: Philly

NL MVP (not named Albert Pujols): 1) Hanley Ramirez, Florida 2) Justin Upton, Arizona 3) Chase Utley, Philadelphia

Sleeper MVP: Brian McCann, Atlanta & Roy Halladay, Philadelphia

NL Cy Young: 1) Roy Halladay, Philadelphia (if Brad Lidge doesn’t implode, he can win 25 games this year, seriously) 2) Tim Lincecum, San Francisco 3) Johan Santana, Mets

Sleeper Cy Young: Tommy Hanson, Atlanta

NL Best team: Philadelphia

NL Worst team: Pittsburgh

Overrated: Los Angeles

Underrated: Cincinnati

Thoughts: Not terrible on this one as well. I had the Reds since day one so I can take some pride in that one. Colorado was in it until the last few weeks. Atlanta got the wild card as well.

I didn’t do too well on the MVP, but if I had a choice now, I would go with Joey Votto. The Cy Young award may still go to Halliday so there’s hope in that one as well. I was also correct with my overrated and underrated teams.

Overall, I had an excellent set of predictions before the season started, accept for frickin Seattle.

Here were my World Series predictions and this is a perfect transition to these playoffs:

If I was betting money World Series: New York over Philly, again (sorry for the easy prediction, but it is what it is)

Second-safest bet: Minnesota vs. St Louis

Taking a chance World Series: Seattle vs. Atlanta

Thoughts: I think that these playoffs are very intriguing. It would be easy to pick New York against Philly for the World Series again and that’s understandable. They are probably the two best teams in their leagues but there are cases that can be made for each team in the playoffs, accept for maybe Atlanta and Cincinnati.

The Yankees have an excellent offense but outside of Sabathia, the starting rotation is weak.

The Rays have a nice set of arms and an excellent bullpen, but the offense can be pitched around.

The Twins are a great home team and play as a unit but also have an offense that can underwhelm.

Texas has the offense but outside of Cliff Lee, the pitching has concerns.

Philadelphia has the best overall unit but I have two words for you, Brad Lidge.

San Francisco has the pitching but can’t score worth a lick.

Cincinnati and Atlanta are nice stories but the Reds haven’t been consistently good against good competition and the Braves lack an offense to even be considered to make a run.

So in the end, I’m going to take Philadelphia and Minnesota.

Those are my thoughts, what about yours?

Beanball: Reviewing the AL East in August

Yesterday’s results in the American League East represents exactly what each team has been doing the entire season.

Music to listen to: Big Business/I Zimbra by Talking Heads

Get used to seeing a lot of Talking Heads and Mars Volta on this Blog, just fair warning.

First, the standings as of today with streaks in parenthesis:

New York: 69-41 — (Won 2)

Tampa: 67-44 2.5 GB (Lost 5)

Boston: 63-49 7 GB (Lost 2)

Toronto: 59-52 10.5 GB (Won 3)

Baltimore: 37-74 32.5 GB (Won 1)

New York Yankees: This has been a mundane season for the Yankees. Mark Teixeira is hitting .259 yet still second on the team in RBI’s with 84. Alex Rodriguez may have the quietest 88 RBI’s on a division leader. Their best overall hitter, Robinson Cano, is in the top-five in batting average at .332 but once again its done in a quiet way. Do you realize that Andy Pettitte’s ERA this year is 2.88? For a dude approaching 40 in that ballpark, that’s impressive. Must be on that stuff…just kidding I promised myself no PED jokes but with Rodriguez and Pettitte on the same team, its hard. The point of this is that they just took two out of three from Boston at home pending a game in progress at this moment and we’ve tuned it out.

I was going to talk about the rest of the teams in the division but want to discuss something further. Quicker rundowns for the rest of the squads.

Tampa: When you have been involved in so many potential no-hitters, I can’t trust your team in the postseason. They may win the wild card, shoot, they may even overtake the Yankees and win the division. However, those bats have to be a concern. The counter argument is that when your top-three in the rotation for the playoffs will be David Price, Matt Garza and Jeff Niemann. But their offense will be the downfall, which shouldn’t happen when you have Evan Longoria, Carl Crawford, Ben Zobrist, B.J. Upton and Carlos Pena. They may win their division yet underachieve at the same time.

Boston: While they have been a M.A.S.H unit with major injuries but when your most reliable bat for the majority of the season has been Adrian Beltre with that roster, major problems. Their fans may be complaining about this being a boring season (the level of hubris in that shows the annoying side of that fan base.. Seriously, you‘re in the middle of the playoff race and this is boring) but considering the personalities that the Red Sox have had in the past, I can almost see that angle. But than as a Mets fan I see my squad loses consecutive series to Atlanta and Philadelphia without a care, so my view my be different.

Toronto: The Blue Jays are probably going to finish over .500 for another season and place fourth in their own division. If they were a college football team, I would tell them to implement a spread or option offense, maybe run a 4-4-3 defense, something to shake things up. But in that division, what can you do.

Baltimore: Buck Showalter has them playing hard, still more than 30 games back in early August.

Brandon Morrow of the Blue Jays struck out 17 batters and had a one-hitter against Tampa yesterday. Now, I follow a lot of sports but this barely made my top-five of the weekend. In some order, UFC 117, Tiger Woods, NFL preseason and college football prep. 20 years go, it would have been first but I would have also been nine years old.

The point is that while that says more about the lack of care in baseball in early August, I’ve had to talk myself into watching baseball this season for the first time in a long time and its not because my favorite team is struggling. I think I’ll delve more into this tomorrow, the issue of lack of baseball interest. But for now, what are your thoughts on the AL East so far this season?