Thursday, January 10, 2013

The AL Preview

AL North

Detroit: Here is a team that looks really great on paper and should easily be a 90+ win team. Dom Tabaka may or not be in the closer role though he looks well suited to make another 40 save run which would be his 6th in a row, btw that is a record for top closers. He is also only 2 saves away from vaulting into 2nd place all time in the saves department.

Minnesota: This team is poised to give the Tigs and others fits all season long just like Toronto last year. The biggest downfall I see is the catcher position, Denny Yamaguch, as I don't think he has what it takes to control the pitching staff. The roster isn't entirely filled out and may stay that way until the 23rd game of the season which makes it hard to give thorough justification.

Toronto: The team seemed to have peaked at the right moment to steal the crown last season, this season could be a different story. The pitching staff doesn't look all that bad even with the all-time saves leader, Pascual Solano, almost needing a walker to find the mound. The offense doesn't look to offend anyone other than themselves.
Montreal:  The good news is they are getting better. They still have some holes to develop and the pitching staff doesn't look over powering. The minors are a beehive of activity in the development process but it might be another two seasons before dividends mature.

AL East

Boston: By virtue of their pitching staff should once again be playoff bound. The competition is going to be stiffer this year than in the past however. Not really thrilled by the what looks to be inconsistent offense however. They will put some dents in the Green Monster.

Baltimore: Has had two identical 82-80 seasons and a third above .500 is eminent I do think. The relatively young pitching staff and inconsistent lineup doesn't look conducive to post season play however. Defense will look shaky at times.

Dover:  A dark horse contestant lives here with a good mix of vets and youngsters. They will make some noise before it is over to Boston's chagrin. If Jeff O'Toole complements Patrick Towers and the pitching staff holds together then we are in for an exciting division race.

Washington: Has pieces to the puzzle but have too many weaknesses to be a contender. The loss of Harpo Cust to FA didn't help matters at all.

AL South

Texas: Their first order of business this season was to find some pitching. I am not sure
Clinton Cedeno and Joseph Wang were highly touted in the money ball routine. Both were Met castoffs though Wang was pretty good in most situations and has a good season left in him.  Everett Hill is going to look old playing 1B, okay so he is...old I mean. Picking up Ariel Serra might have been a master stroke. Can they win the crown is another matter.

Tampa Bay: As strong as ever the last few seasons and the Champs no less. Snuck Nicky Paige right out from under me. It is gonna be a close hard fought race with them Rangers, who will end up on top is too close to tell.

Kansas City: If you think the division is a lock between Texas and Tampa Bay, you have another thunk a comin. KC might even be stronger than the other two if I see things right. This is all going to depend on how the ball bounces.

Little Rock: They said they were going to start over..errr...something like that anyway. Well, after looking things over, it seems that is not exactly true, more like regrouping. They will be competitive but don't expect nothing better than a 4th place finish.

AL West

Seattle: They don't look impressive until you look things over independently. A short roster at the moment, hmmm, AAA has three talented players that will probably make the trip but a fourth comes from left field...ummm. So they didn't look impressive last year and won the crown. 

Colorado Springs: At first glance my thoughts were simple...OH MY! After doing a deep search however some things came to light. Defense is really pretty good, pitch calling is trite and is sacrificed for offensive output. Offense is really power minded but can be up and down. Pitching looks great on the surface and can hold good leads, tight ones could be problematic.

Anaheim: They went shopping in the off-season and played money ball to the max. If ST is any indication, the team could gel and cause some serious problems in the division. Will it work is the question. Black Bart is gonna be the catcher, oooh the gloom starts already but it could work out for a change.

Helena: They have had identical records the last two seasons. The youngsters need to work together to be successful. They are the youngest team in the AL I think with the oldest player checking in at a mere thirty. They can be a factor if they get off on the right foot. If ST is any indication however, it could be another long season.

Best Guess:

1. Detroit - I really like the ergonomics
2. Boston - Every time I go against them, they win
3. Colorado Springs - Too much is too much sometimes
4. Tampa Bay - Have to choose one of them
5. Dover - I just like the team and think they are gonna play leap frog
6. Anaheim - Yeah, that's right, I'm choosing them over Seattle, KC and Texas.

Actually those two Wild Card spots could be filled by up to 6 or 7 different teams.

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