Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Surprise Teams In baseball

Well the Mets are sucking the tail pipe so far. They were expected to do much better.

No matter, it's very early in the season and some good teams are playing poor and some bad teams are doing well.

So, I will make a prediction on teams that are going to do surprisingly well.

Every year some sports writers pick a surprise team, a team that has a history of losing to have a good year.

The Colorado Rockies were that team last year.

I won't pick just one team, I'll pick one from each division.

NL East: Washington Nationals

The Nationals strike me as being a tenacious team that will be a thorn on the sides of the expected teams to win in the NL east. They have improved a bit in their lineup with the addition of the future Mets regret Lastings Milledge. They are playing in a new ballpark that seems a bit better for baseball than RFK stadium , which was good for no one.

NL Central: Pittsburgh Pirates

The NL Central is a division that seems like it has a different team winning the division every year and it always has a race up until the end. some teams have come out of nowhere and there is no reason why the Pirates can't take advantage of it. They are a hard luck team that haven't been above .500 since Barry Bonds was on the team. They have some new management that hopefully can emulate the Oakland A's model and put out a winning team with smoke and mirrors.

NL West: San Francisco Giants

This division was a problem. Last year every team but the Giants were in the hunt to win the division. The Dodgers faded in early September, The Padres blew it on the last weekend of the season and the Diamondbacks won the division and the Rockies were the wild card. So that leaves only one team, the Giants. But they totally suck. I don't think they have a chance. They have one year to go before they can think about rebuilding.

AL East: Tampa Bay Rays

The newly named Tampa Bay Rays (Begone You Devil!) have looked to be potentially good in recent years. They have a solid core of good to great young players. They give the Yankees fits. Unfortunately, they are in the toughest division in baseball. They have never played +.500 hundred baseball. Still, a little Yankee realization of age and a Red Sox slump, and the Rays could be right there to either win the division or grabbed the wild card. I think they finally should be over .500.

AL Central: Kansas City Royals

The Royals look good in the early running. I'm picking them to be the surprise team for one reason, it would be a surprise. They have improved their management too, play in a division that allows for surprise teams. Their pitching is pretty good and with a little luck...

AL West: Texas Rangers

I don't like the Texas Rangers. They have a Bush connection I can't stomach. But same as the NL West, they are the only team not expected to do anything. The Angels and the Mariners are expected to fight it out for first place and the A's always finds a way to be in the hunt after getting rid of some key players to free agency. That leaves the Rangers, who haven't won the division since 1999.

I expect at least one of these teams to make the playoffs, I don't know who but I think come October , I'll be proven right, still I got the crow stored in my freezer just in case.

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