Sons of ’84 Predictions Recap For 2015

Every year, I make predictions for the upcoming baseball season, along with a few of my old blogger friends and every year we take a look once the season is over and declare a winner. This year is no different and the post is a long one so lets check out how we did…

Division Winners

AL East
JD: Boston Red Sox
CV: Boston Red Sox
SK: Toronto Blue Jays
Winner: Toronto Blue Jays.  Boom!! (Shane +1)

AL Central
JD: Chicago White Sox
CV: Detroit Tigers
SK: Cleveland Indians
Winner: Kansas City Royals, how did we not guess this one!

AL West
JD: Los Angeles Angels
CV: Seattle Mariners
SK: Seattle Mariners
Winner: Texas Rangers, no one in the world had the Rangers!

AL Wildcards (2)
JD: Detroit Tigers, Seattle Mariners
CV: Cleveland Indians, Los Angeles Angels
SK: Detroit Tigers, Los Angeles Angels
Winner: New York Yankees & Houston Astros (we struck out here too)

AL Divisional Series Winners
JD: Detroit Tigers & Los Angeles Angels
CV: Seattle Mariners & Detroit Tigers
SK: Seattle Mariners & Detroit Tigers
Winner: Toronto Blue Jays & Kansas City Royals (yea, none of us had that)

AL Pennant Winner
JD: Detroit Tigers
CV: Seattle Mariners
SK: Seattle Mariners
Winner: Kansas City Royals (maybe we’ll do better with the NL)

NL East
JD: Washington Nationals
CV: Washington Nationals
SK: Washington Nationals
Winner: New York Mets (oh)

NL Central
JD: Pittsburgh Pirates
CV: Pittsburgh Pirates
SK: St. Louis Cardinals
Winner: St. Louis Cardinals (Shane 2, John 0, Chris 0)

NL West
JD: Los Angeles Dodgers
CV: Los Angeles Dodgers
SK: Los Angeles Dodgers
Winner: Los Angeles Dodgers (welcome to the predictions boys – Shane 3, John 1, Chris 1)

NL Wildcards (2)
JD: Chicago Cubs & San Diego Padres
CV: St. Louis Cardinals & San Diego Padres
SK: Pittsburgh Pirates & San Diego Padres
Winner: Chicago Cubs & Pittsburgh Pirates (Shane 4, John 2, Chris 1)

NL Divisional Series Winners
JD: Washington Nationals & Pittsburgh Pirates
CV: Washington Nationals & Los Angeles Dodgers
SK: Washington Nationals & Los Angeles Dodgers
Winner: New York Mets & Los Angeles Dodgers (Shane 5, John 2, Chris 2)

NL Pennant Winner
JD: Washington Nationals
CV: Washington Nationals
SK: Washington Nationals
Winner: New York Mets (It doesn’t count that we knew it would be a team from the east)

World Series Winner
JD: Detroit Tigers over Washington Nationals
CV: Washington Nationals over Seattle Mariners
SK: Washington Nationals over Seattle Mariners
Winner: Kansas City Royals (Yea, well…)

AL MVP
JD: Jose Abreu, CWS
CV: Mike Trout, LAA
SK: Jose Abreu, CWS
Winner: Josh Donaldson, TOR ( Trout finished 2nd, with Abreu 21st)

NL MVP
JD: Andrew McCutchen, PIT
CV: Giancarlo Stanton, MIA
SK: Andrew McCutchen, PIT
Winner: Bryce Harper, WAS (McCutchen was 5th and Stanton received 0 votes)

AL Cy Young
JD: Chris Sale, CWS
CV: Felix Hernandez, SEA
SK: David Price, DET
Winner: Dallas Keuchel, HOU (Price finished 2nd, Sale 4th, and Felix 7th)

NL Cy Young
JD: Clayton Kershaw, LAD
CV: Clayton Kershaw, LAD
SK: Max Scherzer, WAS
Winner: Jake Arrieta, CHC (Kershaw finished 3rd and Scherzer was 5th)

AL Rookie of the Year
JD: Micah Johnson, CWS
CV: Rusney Castillo, BOS
SK: Mookie Betts, BOS
Winner: Carlos Correa

NL Rookie of the Year
JD: Kris Bryant, CHC
CV: Jorge Soler, CHC
SK: Jorge Soler CHC
Winner: Kris Bryant (Shane 5, John 3, Chris 2)

Random Prediction
JD: Fomer Tigers breakout for other teams: Garcia, Smyly, Procello
CV: In 2015, Tiger fans will be complaining about moving Avi Garcia more than Doug
SK: Joe Nathan will be released by Memorial Day
Winner:  Well Nathan wasn’t released, but he was done for the season by Memorial Day

This year, we also stepped out side of the box with our Bold Predictions

CV: The Tigers will be in 3rd place (even 4th) mid-May & talk radio will project the sky is falling. Season isn’t going to start well & we’re playing all Divisional teams. But we’ll be ok…
SK: The AL is wide open this year, even with Marcus Stroman going down, there’s a chance they (Blue Jays) could end up in the World Series
Comments:  Well Chris was partially right, but the Tigers weren’t ok.  I’ll take credit for mine as well, with the Jays just missing the series

On the brink of playoffs AL & NL
CV: Toronto is a team to watch. Losing Marcus Stroman hurts for this year and a lot of key players are pretty young, including Norris and Sanchez but this is a team to watch for. In the NL, it’s tough picking one with the positive outlooks in both Florida and Chicago. I know a lot of people picked the Cubbies this year but I think they need another year of experience and probably another arm or two. But if you asked me to pick one roster for the next five years, Theo Epstein has it.
JD: Boston Red Sox & Miami Marlins
SK: I think Boston has a very good offense once they bench Shane Victorino and some very good young talent, but it all depends on how far their pitching takes them. Colorado is a sleeper for me every year as they have great offensive guys who always get hurt. This year, CarGo and Tulo still go down but pitching keeps them in the race
Comments:  I’m willing to give Chris a point since he’s struggling 

Unlikely MVP/Cy Young
CV: I don’t think Paul Goldschmidt (ARZ) is a sleeper at all, but he’s a beast and that’s who I’m going with. I don’t think he can win it this year because Arizona won’t be very good but he should be a top 5 candidate the next few years. For Cy Young, it’s Garrett Richards (LAA). If Anaheim makes the playoffs like I think they will, Richards will be a big reason. He has a heavy fastball and nasty offspeed to go with it and he didn’t miss time for anything having to do with his arm.
JD: Ryan Braun (MIL) & Sonny Gray (OAK)
SK: Chris Davis (BAL), now that he can get back on adderall legally, watch him rake again. I like John’s pick of Sonny Gray (OAK), the guy has phenomenal stuff!
Comments: Chris was close with Goldschmidt, John and I were on to something with Sonny Gray, and I was up there with Chris Davis and his adderall

Most Disappointing Team AL& NL
CV: The teams I’m leaning towards are teams I picked to make the playoffs and I can’t do that. I’ll have to think on that one.
JD: New York Yankees & New York Mets
SK: Oddly enough, I picked the Mariners to make the World Series, but I could also see them crashing and burning with a lack of offense and an injury to one of their young pitchers. For the NL, I have to go with the Cubs. They have some amazing young talent, but that will take time to develop at the Major League level.
Comments: I should take a point away from John for his Mets, comment and I was on with the Mariners, but way off with the Cubs.  No points awarded.

Most Disappointing Player AL & NL
CV: Victor Martinez (DET) but only if you compare him to his numbers from a year ago. Bryce Harper (WAS) – because I’ve seen him picked as the MVP winner in various places and he’s just not there yet. But don’t forget he’s only 22.
JD: Pablo Sandavol (BOS) & Madison Bumgarner (SF)
SK: Jeff Samardzzja will learn quickly that control issues and playing in a small ballpark in the American League don’t go well together. Yasiel Puig (LAD) is my most disappointing player in the NL as I’m just not sure now if he’s capable of putting all that talent together consistently
Comments:  Chris was on with Victor but waaaay off with Harper.  John was the best out of the three of us and I was right about Puig and a bit off with Jeff S.

Best Waiver Wire Pickup in your fantasy league
CV: Ryan Rua (TEX) and Michael Morse (MIA)
JD: Francisco Lindor (CLE)
SK: Alex Rodriguez (NYY) – Call me crazy, but I think he hits 20 homers and stays healthy as a DH

Who won’t finish the season (health/otherwise)
CV: Troy Tulowitzki and yes I own him on both of my fantasy teams (reverse jinx please). And I know I’m not going out on a limb here but Masahiro Tanaka. It should be weeks, not months before he’s going under the knife.
JD: Yordano Ventura (KC)
SK: Without a doubt for me after hearing Pedro Martinez talk about Masahiro Tanaka, that I think he’ll be done by Memorial Day
Comments:  Tanaka it was…

Surprise rookie AL & NL
CV: Micah Johnson (CWS) and Addison Russell (CHC)
JD: Dalton Pompey (TOR) & Mark Appel (HOU) – We’ll let John slide, even though Houston is in the AL now 🙂
SK: Taijuan Walker (SEA) & Addison Russell (CHC)

Breakout player AL & NL
CV: Gerrit Cole (PIT) and Michael Pineda (NYY)
JD: Ricky Porcello (BOS) & Josh Harrison (PIT)
SK: Drew Smyly (TB) & Todd Frazier (CIN)
Comments: Chris was on with Cole and I had Frazier

Now for the odd balls….
Over hyped
CV: Bryce Harper: One of the most exciting players in the game. The future is bright. I have seen him on lots of MVP lists. Maybe in 2 years, he’s still a young pup. Mike Trout doesn’t come around very often…
SK: Yasiel Puig, I love what he brings to the table as far as tools, but he just to prone to slumps to recognize his full potential

Non-Detroit player I’ll be keeping tabs on
CV: Matt Harvey. I think it’s going to be all or nothing with this kid and we’ll know within 2 years. Mark Prior or Roger Clemens (minus the steroid issue)?
SK: Kris Bryant, what I can I say, I’m a prospect junkie
Comments: We were both right in doing so…

Minor Leaguer I’m excited to see (not named Kris Bryant) & it may not be until September
CV: Byron Buxton, MIN
SK: Miguel Sano, MIN
Comments: Buxton fought injuries once up, Sano flashed major power

Where will Cole Hamels go?
CV: Boston Red Sox. Don’t count out Detroit if JV is done…
SK: Boston
Comments: Yea, no one had Texas…

If I was a GM and could pick one roster the next 5 years?
CV: Chicago Cubs
SK: Without a doubt, the Chicago Cubs
Comments: …and we’d be right

Geeking out, two relatively new sabermetrics stats I like to keep tabs on when evaluating pitchers
CV: Swing/Miss% and Strike Looking %.
SK: K per 9 and K to Walk ratio

Hometown Predictions
Chris
– JD proves 2014 was no fluke
– David Price won’t be a Tiger in 2016. Enjoy him, but can’t offer the deal he deserves for a 30 yr old..
– Castellanos bandwagon gradually grows…
– Was already going to say Soria has a phenomenal year but now it looks like I’m cheating with the Nathan news… Those who know me have heard me touting him all winter.

SK
– Victor has a “down year”
– Verlander’s ERA is over 4.00 again
– Cabrera bounces back in a big way
– James McCann will be your starting catcher after the All-Star break

I’m claiming victory in 2015, see you next year boys!!

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