Thursday, March 28, 2013


Every year in late March I remind you guys about the cut-throat competition my family participates in regarding baseball. It started out with just my dad and I for over half a decade, but more and more people started showing up to knock me off my pedestal when I kept destroying him every year. In 2012, I finally lost bad, so this time, I was ready. I spent weeks pouring over ESPN, fantasy predictions and the internet so it wouldn't happen again and I would claim victory. We don't care about money; just dignity, pride and bragging rights, and I need to salvage what little of that I have left.

As usual, I've posted my forecasts for you guys to marvel over and compare/contrast to your own. I'm probably way off base with most of these, but take a gander anyway.




I'm tempted to go Tampa here but they broke my heart when I picked them to go all the way in 2012 and they failed me by not even making the playoffs. It is true that they have last year's AL Cy Young winner, and also Fernando Rodney, but they have shitty defense and plus, no. I'm still mad at them.

The moves that Toronto's manager John Gibbons made in the off-season could prove to be legendary. The Jays have a dangerous roster that now includes Melky Cabrera, Jose Bautista, Jose Reyes, Mark Buehrle and former Mets ace R.A. Dickey.

Toronto Blue Jays Official 40-Man Roster

I've heard from a lot of analysts that the Jays are their World Series picks- not just for this season, but 2014 as well. 

The Jays are a blockbuster right now, and I would love to see Dickey in the playoffs, because as soon as he won the NL Cy Young, the Mets were the Mets and got rid of him. Of course this happened, because much like Meg Griffin, the Mets are the MLB's "practice team." My dad actually referred to them once as the "New York Megs," and won the Internet for life.

Shut up, Meg.



Again. No one else in the division even comes close.



Their pitching is a little suspect, and pitching trumps hitting, but check out Josh Hamilton, Albert Pujols, Mike Trout and Mark Trumbo on the same team. With that kind of run support, Anaheim is scary and their shifty mound doesn't matter as much. Also don't forget that the one guy they do have as an ace is Jered Weaver, who throws six different pitches, including two kinds of fastballs.





Definitely the Rays, who will fall just short of beating Toronto for the number one spot in the AL East. The second Wild Card position will most likely be go to a team in the West, either Oakland or Texas. In the end I have to say the A's; they made a surprising run last season (the one year I didn't pick them for Most Improved- naturally) and I think they're on a roll.

MOST IMPROVED ODOR (+5 for whoever gets that reference)



Don't get greedy, Toronto- the Leafs may finally be winning again and the Jays may be scary for a long time coming, but keep in mind that the Raptors are still embarrassing and probably plan on staying that way.

Also, remember that "Leafs" is terrible grammar.



I've literally been waiting my entire baseball-watching existence to write that. Not just because I detest them, but because the Yankees also have a ton of injuries and they're old. They might not even make the playoffs (one can dream); however, they're still the Yankees so they may slide their way (see what I did there?) into one of the Wild Card slots. Either way, they'll definitely have less wins than last season.



Despite starting this season in Triple-A, Wil Myers is on a lot of people's tongues (oh haaaai) as a prime candidate for ROTY. The Rays are going to come in just second to the Jays and battle for first in the AL East all season, and a lot of analysts are saying that it's only a matter of time before Myers is called up to the majors and blows us all away.

I should really stop with these metaphors.



Even if the Tigers don't make the World Series again this year (which is possible), they'll definitely run away with the AL Central. This will more than likely earn last year's Triple Crown winner Cabrera his second consecutive AL MVP. 



Justin Verlander is insane. Last year he was beaten out by a margin for the Cy Young by David Price, but in 2011, he won both that and the AL MVP. Justin Verlander scares the crap out of me, and I don't even play baseball. 




As a Mets fan, you'd think I would be relieved that the Phillies finally suck balls and that we only have the Braves to worry about, but it looks like the Nationals are actually shaping up to be true playoff contenders. A few analysts even have them pegged as probable World Series winners. 

While some would argue that the Braves are slightly better, what this will come down to is pitching, and Strasburg's masterful starts will make more of a difference than Kimbrel's closing, however lights out that may prove to be. 

That collective dripping sound you just heard was the tears of every single Mets fan. 



Every year, the NL Central always proves to be the most difficult division for me. Consisting of the Reds, the Cardinals, and the Brewers, this is often a close race and all of these teams are usually at least in contention for the postseason. The Pirates are in there, too, and although I see a more promising future for them starting in April, they're never really in the race.

I do like the Brewers- I actually picked them to go pretty far last year- but unfortunately, it seems like they're slipping and may get worse with each passing season. This left it tight between the Cards and the Reds, and in the end, I went with Cincinnati slightly over St. Louis. Last year's NL Central winners should be able to take this again, largely in part to Joey Votto, 2010's MVP, and RP Aroldis Chapman, who throws a fastball at 105 mph. 

The only team I was totally sure had absolutely had no shot in this was the Cubs. AHAHAHAHA. NO.



Most baseball experts are looking to 2012 World Series winners San Francisco, but LA's new ridiculous payroll allowed for some major acquisitions in the off-season. The results of those included the addition of Zack Greinke (my One Guy in Fantasy Baseball!) and Josh Beckett to a starting rotation that already boasts Clayton Kershaw; plus a lineup that brags Carl CrawfordAdrian Gonzalez and Hanley Ramirez, who's hasn't been as stellar lately but is still Hanley Ramirez. Not to mention that I can't be the only one that's already getting tired of the Giants. Let's get someone else in there (that's what she said). 

One may point out that Zack Greinke is starting off the 2013 season with an injured elbow; however, it's been reported that he's "feeling better"and has been pitching sporadically in the preseason. His elbow has been downgraded to an inflammation, and also, it's Zack Greinke, so bite me. He's aa badass.

The Dodgers have always been my second team- they are from Brooklyn, after all. If I can't brag about the Mets (and I really, really can't) I'll gladly take this instead.




This one was difficult. I want to go Atlanta, but the Central is really close also. If I pick those two, that's also saying that San Francisco won't make it. So frustrating.

So, Giants and Braves.

The Giants will be behind the Dodgers by thismuch in the West. With 2012 NL's MVP Buster Posey as their catcher and Pablo Sandoval, Angel Pagan and Marco Scutaro on the field, their line-up is one to pay attention to. As for pitching, their roster includes Tim Lincecum, Madison Bumgarner, Ryan Vogelsong and Matt Cain. 

Yeah, good luck with that.

As for choosing between the Cards and the Braves, that was a bit more of an arduous task. The Cards' pitching is a bit dicey, with Adam Wainwright on the way down and Chris Carpenter coming back from shoulder surgery. However, they still have a lot of exceptional guys on the field- Allen Craig, Carlos Beltran, and Matt Holliday

The fact does remain that St. Louis has a lot of injuries, and if Carpenter does pitch, he's almost 40. The Braves not only have Craig Kimbrel as a closer, but Jason Heyward and both Uptons. As much as I enjoy seeing them fail, I have to go with Atlanta. 




It's going to be their first winning season in a while thanks to Andrew McCutchen, and then this may never happen again: 

They may even be on their way to Manager of the Year. 



I would say the Mets, but it's probably not even conceivable for them to suck even more. Also, we have Wheeler and D'Arnaud, who may save us from being a complete embarrassment if they're actually called up from the minors. I'm going to say the Marlins, based solely on number of wins.

One may think that the Marlins couldn't possibly be even worse than they already are, but this is entirely untrue. The only player who isn't horrible is Giancarlo Stanton, and he'll probably leave soon, too, because he's too amazing to be on that team. They could win 50 games this year, and that might be out of charity.



Can I legitimately say someone from the Mets? I really think Zack Wheeler may take this. Maybe I'm getting ahead of myself, but I am truly excited about them having an amazing pitcher and just let me have this, goddammit.

If the Mets are smart enough to call him up to the majors, (probably not), I sincerely believe that Wheeler could actually be ROTY. Please? 

FYI- his Wikipedia page states that Wheeler was originally drafted by the Giants in 2009; then brought over to the Mets organization in 2011. So close, Zack. So close. 

PS- I am not the only one that thinks this could happen. Check these out:



This kid seemingly came out of nowhere, and he's giving new hope to his entire team. They still have a ways to go (especially sharing a division with the Reds), but it looks like he'll be a large part of their improvement. 



It's tight between Strasburg and and Clayton Kershaw. This actually took me about half an hour to decide between the two of them, and I'm still not totally sure. I think I'm going to have to pick Strasburg, if he can keep his injuries in check. 

And one more nail in the Mets coffin...




I've seen a bunch of predictions that the Jays are going to win the World Series. I do believe that they're going to be killer, but I also think people are getting overly excited. It would be awesome if they did go all the way, just because it would be cool to see someone totally new win everything, but let's not forget that they have zero playoff experience and that could hurt them in the postseason.

We should also all realize that no one thinks it's natural that anything from Canada should have a shot at the AMERICAN PASTTIME- the one time Montreal came close to taking everything home we all freaked out and canceled baseball. Now they're the Nationals, and everyone's forgotten they ever existed.

That's why I'm predicting an all Los Angeles World Series. 

It will be an extremely close race between Detroit and LA, but the Angels will trump the Tigers due to a slightly more agile lineup. The Dodgers will make it in as well thanks to the knockout punch of Greinke and Kershaw. The series itself will come down to the Angels' lineup vs. the Dodgers' heavy rotation, and the Angels' power hitting is just more impressive. This will most likely go to six games, though.

Also, to make things more interesting for the three of you that give a shit about sports, I've included my fantasy baseball roster for this season. A couple of years ago I won my league while having the distinction of being the only girl (BURN!); this year that most likely won't be the case. In a league of 12 players, my number came up last, while Iron Man came up 5th (we're in the same league this year, which could lead to horrible fights since we're both super competitive). I'm certainly psyched about a few of my starting pitchers, although most of my closers aren't exactly winning any awards. I decided to be nice and give Stephen Strasburg to my stupid boyfriend because he's in love with him; then he went and stole my catcher. Ass. Also I got stuck with Brian Wilson as a bench player- he's not even active this year- although I do have some solid men on the field, including a few Rookie of the Year possibilities, although IM's got a ton of current and former All-Stars that basically give him bragging rights through 2017. 

I also got Starling Marte, the OF for the Pirates that my brother is really into. I took him in honor of my brother, so I hope the Pirates do well this year.

I'm not about to go too mental over this, though; as in every fantasy league, there are trades, and I've already had one proposed to me that I just might take. I also got my boy Tulo as SS- I draft him first every year. If I don't wind up with him, I throw a horrible tantrum, then I do everything in my power to be sure he makes it onto my roster. 

Check out our teams below. Mine are in red; his dick moves are in blue.

C Salvador Perez (KC)                                 Brian McCann (Atl)
1B Allen Craig (StL)                                     Ryan Howard (Phi)
2B Marco Scutaro (SF)                                 Chase Utley (Phi)
3B Aramis Ramirez (Mil)                             David Wright (NYM)
SS Troy Tulowitzki (Col) (!!!!!!!!)               Hanley Ramirez (LAD)
IF Adam Dunn (CWS)                                Mark Teixeira (NYY)
OF Giancarlo Stanton (Mia)                       Ryan Braun (Mil)
OF Jayson Heyward (Atl)                           Matt Holliday (StL)
OF Wil Myers (TB)                                      Nelson Cruz (Tex)
Util Adam Eaton (Ari)                                 Ben Revere (Phi)
Util Starling Marte (Pit)                               Alfonso Soriano (ChC)
BN Torii Hunter (Det)                                 Alexei Ramirez (CWS)
BN Manny Machado (Bal)                          Lance Berkman (Tex)
BN Jhonny Peralta (Det)                             Russell Martin (Pit)
BN Jurickson Profar (Tex)                         Andy Pettitte (NYY)
BN Brian Wilson (formerly of SF)             Edinson Volquez (SD)

SP Zack Greinke (RHP, LAD)                  Stephen Strasburg (RHP, WAS)
SP Matt Harvey (RHP, NYM)                   Yu Darvish (RHP, Tex)
SP C.J. Wilson (LHP, LAA)                      Roy Halladay (RHP, Phi)
SP Josh Beckett ( RHP, LAD)                   Jaime Garcia (LHP, StL)
SP Tyler Skaggs (LHP, Ari)                      Tommy Hanson (RHP, LAA)
RP Fernando Rodney (RHP, TB)             J.J. Putz (RHP, Ari)
RP Grant Balfour (RHP, Oak)                  John Axford (RHP, Mil)
RP Joel Hanrahan (RHP, Bos)                  Greg Holland (RHP, KC)
RP Addison Reed (RHP,CWS)                  Tyler Clippard (RHP, WAS)

The first game of the regular 2013 MLB season is at 8:05 pm, this Sunday, March 31st. The Rangers play the Astros. I'm also aware that it's Easter, but I'm a Jew and my holiday was last week. More importantly, the 31st is also the 3rd season finale of The Walking Dead and the 3rd season premiere of Game of Thrones. What to tune into that night is probably the most difficult decision I've ever had to make, and I would appreciate any advice you guys are willing to give.

1 comment:

Allison said...

Woo Toronto! I may actually try to see a game this season. Oh, but they'll never be the same as the 92-93 Blue Jays and their back-to-back world series wins.

The Leafs still suck, even if they won tonight. And I hate basketball, so I'm not offended by your Raps diss.

In BETTER sports news - the Iginla trade to the Pens is pretty crazy!

Let's Go Blue Jays!

p.s. did I ever tell you that when I was in grade 5 my school's choir sang the anthems at a Jays game?