- Minnesota Twins: No surprise here. Yes i love this team. I did give the White Sox a look at winning the division. But I feel the loss of Joe Nathan will not faze this team. They seemingly love facing adversity. Their rotation features four proven pitchers, and a resurgent Francisco Liriano who has had a phenominal spring. Their lineup is one of the most revered in baseball. And as long as everyone stays on the field, I will take this lineup against any pitcher. The only place it can improve is the 9 spot/third base which is filled by the gritty Nick Punto. The Twins will win the division, but the loss of Nathan keeps me from tabbing them as a AL favorite. But they always surprise us...
- Chicago White Sox: Many people are picking the White Sox to win this division. But people forget the team above loves to face adversity. So im gonna tell you why im not on board with the south siders yet. Can they hit? My answer is maybe. If they can stay on the field. CF Alex Rios has gone belly up since signing that extension with Toronto. He only hit .247 last year. OF Carlos Quentin can not stay healthy and that drags down the lineup. They brought in Andruw Jones to hit DH and last I looked he could not hit above the mendoza line. And 1B Paul Konerko is getting up there in years so his production could go down. This team will be one of the best pitching wise. But hitting wise I have issues there. And the White Sox lose in the final week.
- Detroit Tigers: Detroit came one win away from the postseason in 2009. And in the following offseason, they got a younger lineup. The let Placido Polanco leave via free agency and traded Curtis Granderson and Edwin Jackson away. But in those trades they did get promising youngsters Austin Jackson (OF) and Max Scherzer (P), while Scott Sizemore will come up from AAA and play second. Behind Verlander, the Tigers have some young guys and some wild card guys which raises some red flags for picking them higher. Their lineup will put up good numbers with Miguel Cabrera and newcomer Johnny Damon leading the way. But it came down to the experience and their lineup lost alot of that so the Tigers finish third.
- Cleveland Indians: It came down to Cleveland and Kansas City for fourth place in the division. And Cleveland has more proven players so that gave them the edge. They have Jake Westbrook and Fausto Carmona at the top of their rotation and Grady Sizemore and Travis Hafner lead the offensive attack. But they have many youngsters in the lineup and rotation. So watch out for the tribe in the coming years as these guys get more and more major league experience. But for now they do not stack up with the teams above and they will pay for it in the standings.
- Kansas City Royals: It was hard picking Kansas City in the cellar again. I like the makeup of the lineup. But pitching in the rotation and bullpen will kill this teams chances of finishing above fifth. They do have reigning Cy Young award winner Zach Greinke, but he only pitches every 5th game. And 1B Billy Butler is a very underrated player in the eyes of the media. They have one of the games best in Joakim Soria closing games, but they will have big problems getting him the ball with a lead. And thats why Kansas City will sit in the cellar for another season.
Saturday, April 3, 2010
MLB Preview-AL Central
Well, this is my final division to breakdown. And as you no doubt know, it is my favorite division. The past two years the central division has needed a tiebreaker game. That shows how close it is. And i tried to not be so biased while picking this division too...