If I had to describe myself in two words right now it would be “rock hard.” It’s Christmas Eve, baseball fans! The 2018 Major League season finally starts tomorrow! So many questions that brewed during the off-season will finally be answered. Will the Astros repeat? Will David Price return to form? Which Met pitcher will have a season ending injury this year? Will the Yankees fall apart because there’s only one ball? Well, tomorrow (today, actually because you’re probably reading this on March 29), talk time is over and playtime begins.
Initially I was going to do a “30 teams in 30 days” type of thing and then I realized that nobody who reads this site probably cares about the Padres and what they have coming up in their farm system so I bagged that one. Then I was going to preview by division, but quickly realized that after 20 minutes of looking up stats and writing about the fucking Pittsburgh Pirates that that idea was going to go way too in depth and take way too much of my time. Well, just like Goldie Locks, I finally decided to just give some bold decisions for the upcoming season. These predictions will range from “Lukewarm” to “Piping Hot” and are here just to give you a quick hit of baseball before baseball hits you, so let’s do it!
Bold Prediction 1: David Price Will Finish In The Top Five Of AL Cy Young Voting
Prediction Temperature: Hot
The fact that I’m predicting Price to have a strong year isn’t really that hot of a take. Despite all the off the field issues, people are forgetting that after his injury, Price finished the season with a respectable 3.38 ERA and 9.2 K/9. He also was the Sox’ best pitcher in the playoffs and has been dealing this spring. The take goes from “warm” to “hot” because I’m saying he’s going to be a top five pitcher in the AL. In case you forgot, the AL has some guys named Cory Kluber, Justin Verlander, Chris Sale, Luis Severino, and Dallas Keuchel. You could probably throw in a few more names that would be more likely to finish as a top five pitcher in the AL this year too. But for some reason, this just feels like the year Price finally and consistently shoves in Boston.
Bold Prediction 2: Tim Tebow Will Have At Least One MLB At-Bat This Year
Prediction Temperature: STEAMY
Tebow is starting off with the Mets’ double A team, the Binghamton Rumble Ponies. Double A is arguably the best competition in minor league baseball. As long as Tebow keeps his average at or around .250 and doesn’t look like a complete idiot in the field, he will absolutely get a September call up. Think about it: The Mets’ season will go one of two ways. One, they will stay healthy and wrap up either the division or a wildcard spot early in which case they won’t want Cespedes, Conforto, or Bruce to risk injury in the outfield so they’ll call upon Tebow to sell some extra tickets and t-shirts. The other, and more likely way their season will go is that deGrom, and Thor will go down early with injuries, Conforto’s shoulder doesn’t heal as quickly as they were hoping, Rosario and Dom Smith both continue to have difficulties settling into the Bigs, Harvey gets caught doing coke, and Cespedes hurts his knee. Well they’ll be out of race quite early so who gets the call? Tim Tebow. Book it.
Prediction 3: The Media Is Going To Suck Aaron Boone Off
Prediction Temperature: WARM
Aaron Fucking Boone. Everyone is going to be all over this guy’s dick because he’s the first “new wave coach” in the Yankees history. He’s also all buddy buddy with the analysts, so they’ll never say a bad word about him. Can’t fucking wait for that. NOT.
Prediction 4: Someone Will Finish The Season Hitting Over .370
Prediction Temperature: BOILING
I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but pitchers are really good these days. The last player to finish a season over .370 was Ichiro in 2004. Since then, the closest were Magglio Ordonez in 2007 who hit .363, and then Chpper Jones in 2008 who hit .364. Those are the only two guys to hit even .360 since Ichiro’s .372. Trends in sports are cyclical. The trend in baseball the past few years has been launch angle and exit velocity. However, based on some of the things I’ve read this off-season, I could see the pendulum start to swing back towards valuing high on-base percentage and lower strikeout rates. Who are some candidates for hitting above .370? In my opinion, your top candidates are: Mike Trout, Jose Altuve, Joey Votto, and Freddie Freeman.
Prediction 5: Josh Hader Will Be The Next Great Reliever
Prediction Temperature: Unknown, But Probably HOT
I saw Josh Hader pitch last year in person. Guy is electric. Wiry lefty that can light up the gun with a nasty slide piece. Very similar to an Andrew Miller type. Just watch for him to have a pretty big season with what should be a very good team.
Alright, it’s getting a little late, so let me just run down some of my other predictions:
AL Division winners: AL East – Yankees, AL Central – Indians, AL West – Astros
AL Wildcard winners: Red Sox and Angels
AL Pennant winner: Astros
AL Cy Young: Corey Kluber
AL MVP: Carlos Correa
AL Manager of the Year: Alex Cora
NL Division winners: NL East – Nats, NL Central – Cubs NL West – Dodgers
NL Wildcard winners: Cardinals and Brewers
NL Pennant winner: Cubs
NL Cy Young: Noah Syndergaard
NL MVP: Marcell Ozuna
NL Manager of the Year: Craig Counsel
World Series Champion: Astros
Alright, buckle the fuck up because it’s going to be a fun ride from tomorrow until the end of October. Let’s fucking have it!