Saturday, April 3, 2010

2010 MLB predictions: Division and wild card winners

With the 2010 Major League Baseball season set to begin Sunday night, I'll once again gaze into my crystal ball and attempt to predict the division and wild card winners from each league. All teams marked with an asterisk are playoff teams.

AL East
1. New York Yankees*
2. Boston Red Sox*
3. Tampa Bay Rays
4. Baltimore Orioles
5. Toronto Blue Jays

AL Central
1. Minnesota Twins*
2. Detroit Tigers
3. Chicago White Sox
4. Kansas City Royals
5. Cleveland Indians

AL West
1. Seattle Mariners*
2. Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim
3. Texas Rangers
4. Oakland A's

I'm not one of the people sold on the Rays. It seems like they're the trendy team to pick to win the American League but I'm not seeing it. Yes, they have a good offense and decent pitching, but they had that last year and didn't make the playoffs. I understand they tightened up their bullpen, but that wasn't the only problem the Rays had in 2009... While I have the Red Sox as the wild card winners, I could see the Angels, Rangers or Tigers all grabbing that spot.

NL East
1. Philadelphia Phillies*
2. Atlanta Braves
3. New York Mets
4. Florida Marlins
5. Washington Nationals

NL Central
1. St. Louis Cardinals*
2. Milwaukee Brewers
3. Cincinnati Reds
4. Chicago Cubs
5. Pittsburgh Pirates
6. Houston Astros

NL West
1. Colorado Rockies*
2. Los Angeles Dodgers*
3. San Francisco Giants
4. Arizona Diamondbacks
5. San Diego Padres

The Phillies are the odds-on favorite to win the National League and return to the World Series. The Cardinals will challenge, but they don't have the complete package that Philadelphia does. I have the Dodgers grabbing the wild card, but could see the Giants sneaking ahead of them in the division. Los Angeles really did nothing in the offseason, thanks to an ugly front office divorce, but likely still have the talent to make the playoffs.

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