AZ Diamondbacks 2015 Preview

As the Arizona Diamondbacks begin the 2015 MLB season, they are looking to bounce back after a terrible 2014 season that ended with the worst record in baseball, at 64-98.

They have a new Manager in Chip Hale. This is his first big league manager’s job; new Coaches, Mark Grace and Andy Green; a new General Manager, Dave Stewart; and a new Senior Vice President, Baseball Operations, De Jon Watson; and begin their first full season with Chief Baseball Officer, Tony La Russa.

There have been numerous roster changes as well. Half of the 25 players on this year’s Opening Day roster were not part of the Opening Day roster in 2014.

Let’s take a look at what will need to happen in order for this to team to win more than the 65 to 70 games that the writers have predicted for this season.

One positive is that the Diamondbacks will have several players return from disable list after injuries suffered last season. With the return of Paul Goldschmidt, Mark Trumbo and A.J. Pollock, the lineup should be at full strength. The Diamondbacks’ lineup looks strong with hitting and power and young players eager to show they belong in the Majors. With little to no pressure to win, since most writers have picked them to be one of the worst teams in all of baseball, they should be able to relax and produce at the plate.

The Diamondbacks’ also made some offseason moves with their pitching, acquiring right-hander, Jeremy Hellickson. Hellickson should help boost a rotation that needed another established starter. Right-hander, Rubby De La Rosa, was also acquired during the offseason. De La Rosa should be able to provide a power arm for the starting rotation, with his fastball hitting close to 100 MPH. Continue reading AZ Diamondbacks 2015 Preview

Award Predictions for 2015

I want to have accurate predictions for a random game. I do not expect to have perfect predictions, but it is always fun to look back and see how terrible your guesses were. After all, all these picks are are guesses, as no one knows for sure.

NL Rookie of the Year
I have to go with Joc Pederson. Andrew Friedman and the Dodgers are no idiots, and they traded away one of their best players (Matt Kemp) to get playing time for this guy. He had a huge Spring Training, and I do not want to pick the ever-hyped Kris Bryant (though I do have him in three of my fantasy leagues, wink wink).

AL Rookie of the Year
If only Mookie Betts was still a rookie. Alas, I am going with Francisco Lindor, a stud defensively midd shortstop prospect of the Cleveland Indians. He could be as good as Andrelton Simmons, and that could be worth a few WAR all by itself. Add in a respectable on base percentage, and you have the makings of a top of the order hitter in a shallow 2015 AL rookie class. That spells winner, ladies and gentleman.

NL Cy Young Continue reading Award Predictions for 2015

World Series Predictions After Game One

NL Wild Card: Pirates Vs. Marlins
Jose Fernandez comes to do the job he is best at after returning to form after Tommy John surgery as the Pirates are once again victims of an ace pitcher doing his job. The Pirates are grooming some former prospects to be an ace, and Gerrit Cole will put up a fight, but it will ultimately be to no avail.
Winner: Marlins

AL Wild Card Game: Indians Vs. Mariners
The Mariners win this one with King Felix pitching a strong game per usual. These two teams are prepared to take that last step forward to be contenders this year, and both should be good, but ultimately Kluber is just not quite as dominant as Felix Hernandez was built for this kind of win-or-go-home game, anyway. This will be a fun one to watch.
Winner: Mariners

NLDS Seed 1: Marlins Vs. Cardinals
The St. Louis Cardinals easily dismantle the Marlins en route to a four game series win with a pause before their ace, Jose Fernandez. The Cardinals rotation full of talent, improved, durable bullpen, improved defense, and vastly improved offense are too much for the young Marlins to handle in their first division series with Giancarlo Stanton.
Winner: Cardinals

ALDS Seed 1: Mariners Vs. Angels
The Angels heat up as Mike Trout’s second postseason is not taken for granted. Pujols and he do far better than everyone thought possible, and they leave people wondering if retro-Pujols is back. Meanwhile, King Felix wins two games, but the Angels still win the other three behind the strength of a strong game five from Garrett Richards. Continue reading World Series Predictions After Game One