Today I'm going over a, more than likely, never before discussed topic. Which last place 2008 MLB team has the best chance of winning their division in 2009? We'll start with the AL East. Now, keep in mind, I am NO baseball expert, whatsoever. But, I'm gonna give it a shot, so don't ridicule me when none of my predictions go right. LOL Thanks!
The Orioles have a couple really good players on their team. Nick Markakis had a pretty solid 2008, which kept this team from going even farther below .500. He really was the only bright spot I saw on this team in 2008.
However, a relatively good off-season may prove to be just what the Orioles need to get back to their winning ways once again.
The closest team to Baltimore in 2008 in the standings was Toronto, however, I still do not see them overcoming the Blue Jays. With AJ Burnett going to the Yankees and Shaun Marcum being out for all of 2009, pitcher Roy Halladay is going to have to pick up most or all of that work if the Jays hope to steady the ship that has been decimated by loss of high-caliber pitchers.
Prediction: 70-75 wins, 5th place in AL East. So, no improvement
The Tigers, after I picked them to win the World Series at the beginning of the 2006 season, went all the way there, only to come up short to the St. Louis Cardinals. Oh, the agony.
So, at the beginning of the 2007 season, I picked them to come in second, only to Boston in the American League. They missed the playoffs, losing the division to the Indians.
In 2008, the collapse became complete. I honestly don't know how, because they have two of the best young pitchers in the AL Central in Justin Verlander and Armando Galarraga. Tey also had some of the better hitters in the division, but still came up way short of the bar I set for them, which was either 2nd or 3rd in the division.
I do see them improving, however. When you think about it, they're not worse than the Royals, and I think that right now, they are better than at least Kansas City and Cleveland. The obstacle is overcoming the White Sox. The Twins, when it gets down to the final 30-40 games, won't and can't hold on, so the only real challenge the Tigers need to overcome is the Chicago White Sox, who have the ebst group of players in that division.
Prediction: 80-85 wins, 2nd in AL Central. BIG improvement
Sheesh, if it weren't for ONE player in Feliz Hernandez, I wouldn't even consider this team a professional club anymore. Forgget Ichiro, I have always thought that he was highly overrated, and he's still got a lot to prove to me before I pick their offense to improve at all.
I don't have much to talk about concernign the Mariners, seeing as I never hear about them. I think that Felix can give them a good 17-25 wins this season, despite how horrible the batters are on that team.
Prediction: 55-60 wins, 5th place in AL West. No improvement. When does Felixxxxxxxxx become a free agent?
Ha. HA HA HA HA HA HA HA!
All I have to say to the Natsv is, hope that Manny starts taking some sort of delusional drug that makes him think he can win here and that he signs with you. The real problem is that the citizens of the surrounding areas of Washington D.C. just aren't baseball fans. Maybe if their local team started winning, they would show up. Maybe if their fans started paying the Nats money, they would win games. It's a Lose-Lose stand-off, and nobody will ever win.
Sorry, Washington, at least ya got the Caps and 'Skins, right?
Prediction: 40-45 wins, 5th place in NL East. They get worse, if that's possible.
Oh, jeez. Can we just skip the Buccos? Kidding, of course.
I actually have high hope for this team, so try not to shoot them down, please. The Pirates will probably do that for me by mid-April, so just leave it alone.
I think that our pitchers are better this year than last. Paul Maholm is a real bright spot with a good future ahead of him. Jeff Karstens is a strong competitor, and should be a real problem for NL Central hitters in 2009.
We also signed two Indian kids, who, guess what!, have never thrown a baseball before. My grandfather is about ready to forsake the Pirates.
I, however, am holding out hope for them. I see the batters doing really good, and I think we'll get 2-3 All-Stars out of 'em this season. Nate McLouth, Ryan Doumit, Brandon Moss, the LaRoche brothers, and Jason Michaels are all strong hitters. Watch out for these guys, opposing NL Central pitchers.
Prediction: 80-85 wins. 4th place in NL Central. The 16 straight losing seasons are over (in my eyes)
San Diego Padres
Jake Peavy should GTFO of there while he still has time in his career left. I never hear anything about the Pads, except from BoltBacker, who, like me, is stuck with a horrible team. Not for long, though, for at leats one of us.
Prediction: 65-70 wins, 5th place in NL West. Sadly, no improvement. I'm cheerin' for 'em, though! Myabe if they win, BoltBacker will lose in our Fantasy Baseball thing. blue@orange would appreciate that for a change.
So, by my predictions, the Detroit Tigers will be the closest to winning their divison in 2009 of all 6 last place 2008 teams. GO TIGERS! (I like them, too, by the way)