I just finished publishing my predictions for the American League in 2011:
http://hubpages.com/hub/2011-MLB-Predic … can-League
Boston Red Sox
AL CY YOUNG:
What are your predictions for the American League in the 2011 MLB Season?
I'm going with Boston, Chicago, Anaheim (great 3 team race here), NY wild card.
MVP - Longoria
CY Young - Lester
ROY - Jeremy Hellickson
Do you think Longoria will win MVP on the 2011 Rays? I think that's probably unlikely.
With Manny protecting and Damon in front of him. I think so. Manny is only making $2M. He's going after a bigger contract. I'm thinking .290 25HR & 90 RBI's Don't forget Zobrist. I think Longoria is due for a breakout. Will be fun to watch.
I can't argue with that. My guess is the Boston Red Sox vs. Minnesota Twins and New York Yankees vs. Texas Rangers in the NLDS. Then the Red Sox vs. Rangers in the NLCS.
On paper right now, that would be a great series with an edge in pitching to Boston.
i like hillickson for roy, he pitched pretty good in his few starts last year. Adrian gonzolez as mvp is kind of a reach tho, it depends on how well he adjusts to al pitchers. cy young cj wilson (longshot but hes a good starter) I think mark reynolds will finish top 3 in homers, top 5 in walks and or course top 2 in k's.
AL East: Yankees
AL Central: Twins
AL West: Rangers
Wild Card: Red Sox
I would like to start off by stating that I am not a Yankee fan. Here's what I do know: the Yankees had the best run differential in baseball last season at +166. The Red Sox were at +74. The Red Sox have had a better offseason than the Yankees, but I question whether it was +92 runs better. Yankees starting pitching might be worse this year, but I think their offense will be better. I don't expect Jeter to play at peak levels, but he should improve on last seasons numbers. Several players, including Curtis Granderson, seemed to really figure things out at the plate at the end of last season. Granderson hit 10 home runs from September 1 until the Yankees were eliminated. Robinson Cano is developing into a perennial MVP candidate. The Yankees bullpen is set up to shut teams down in the 8th and 9th inning. Overall, I think that means 95-100 wins.
I'm assuming the Rays will not be the same team this year. They moved around a lot of players this offseason, and I think that could create problems for them. If Manny is motivated that deal could be a steal for them. Even when he's "lost it at the plate" he still has an on-base percentage over .400. Overall though, I think the Rays struggle to win 85 games.
The Red Sox run differential is misleading as they were plagued by injuries last year. With Crawford, Gonzalez and more depth in the bullpen I think their chances of having a better run differential in 2011 than the Yankees are very good.
I would say it was close to a historic plague of injuries, but I still see some major problems with this team. Youkilis' injury was a freak incident (unless it has something to do with the way he holds the bat), but at age 31 injuries are probably going to become more common for him. Adrian Beltre is gone this year, which I think offsets at least 80% of the offensive production that Gonzalez will add (Beltre had 79 extra-base hits last year). I know people think he fits perfectly with Fenway Park, but I've heard that oh-so-many times before. Jose Canseco was supposed to mash 65 home runs over the Green Monster in 1995 -- it never happened. Crawfod is a very good pickup, but I count 9 guys who were more valuable last season in terms of Wins Above Replacement in the American League, including one the Red Sox lost in the offseason (Beltre).
The Yankees are a mix of promising guys in their prime and aging has-beens. If the has-beens like Posada, Jeter, and A-Rod can get back into a groove, the Yankees will be the dominant team in the division. Brett Gardner is basically Carl Crawford Lite and he's getting better every year. Robinson Cano will likely be in the MVP hunt again. Nick Swisher remains very underrated because he looks about as athletic as the guys in the right field bleachers. The big question is going to be the back end of the starting rotation. They've got a few guys in the mix right now for the final couple spots, and none of them really impress me. If they do figure that out, their lights out bullpen scares the hell out of me.
I think Ellsbury, even though he's younger, is more of a concern for injuries than Youk. He' s just not that durable. The advantage Gonzalez has over Beltre is a left handed bat which is favorable in Fenway (going to face mostly right handed pitchers) and Yankee Stadium (short porch in right field). It may take some time for him to adjust to the AL however, he's is going to have good hitters in front and back so teams are going to have to choose their poison. The X factor will be the Sox speed.
Cano is impressive;Jeter is hanging on for 3000 hits and Arod can still hit the long ball...they will miss Pettitte.
People gave Ellsbury a lot of shit about that injury and 'durability' and such, but it's not like he has had a history of injuries before. People just assume that he's frail because he's slight of build. You wanna worry about 'injuries' worry about Drew. He thinks up a new 'injury' every few weeks.
Based on one season, Bruce? I have to agree with SS. Ellsbury has had to carry around a lot of labels for one injured season.
I think the way he plays the game plus his body type will put him at risk for long term injury problems. He came back from the rib injury,stole 4 bases and went back on the DL as the result of a minor collision at first. He's built for speed, not durability.
For what it's worth, he was really crushing the ball today.
Another Brady Anderson? I hope he stays healthy.
NY may be able to shut teams down in the 8/9th but who's going to get them there? Some say back of the rotation is a concern but even Phil Hughes to me is a concern. After CC, I don't see anyone who's done it for a couple years. I just see too many holes in that rotation. The Yankees are going to win some games with their offense but I just don't see enough pitching. Who knows which AJ is going to show up?
With the Red Sox Rotation, Beckett was injured for much of the year. Lackey ate innings but was not impressive. Dice K was his usual up and down self so if even one of those guys improve they are better off.
BTW I think the AL central and AL west races could each be won by 1 of 3 teams. Gonna be a fun season.
As often seems to be the case, I agree with almost everything you say, I Am DB Cooper. We only differ on Gardner. I just don't think you can refer to him as a Lite Crawford. Furthermore, I don't think he's going to get a whole lot better, either.
AL East: Red Sox
AL Central: Twins
AL West: Rangers
Wild Card: Yankees
I agree with previous post that Gonzalez is a reach for MVP. I think he'll have a great year, but Josh Hamilton and Joe Mauer will be front runners for MVP.
The AL East, Al Champs and World Series kings will be the...
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I think the Yankees will top the A'L. East and think the Texas Rangers will also be in play off contention too.
I want to add, as a Red Sox fan, that I think people are overhyping the Boston rotation. Beckett, Lackey, and Dice-K are all real question marks (one more real than the others!). It makes me uncomfortable that so many fans seem to consider our starting pitching a lock.
Why is everyone picking the Twins, my boys(White Sox) are about to kill them. Have you seen our pitching staff? Have you seen our line up?
We took Crain from them..... That is huge.
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