Tagged: Phillies Nationals Braves Marlins Mets Brewers Reds Cardinals Cubs Pirates Astros Giants Dodgers Padres Diamondbacks

2011 MLB Season is here! With NL Predictions!

Welcome to the 2011 MLB and Nationals season Nats fans!

 

Well, the first series was pretty rough, especially with yesterday’s 11-2 rout. The bright spot is that Jordan Zimmermann went 6 solid innings, only giving up 2 earned runs. The bullpen imploded, as Todd Coffey, Doug Slaten, and Brian Broderick gave up a combined 8 runs. Hopefully this does not start a trend of bad bullpen pitching. Now, this entry will be my updated 2011 season predictions, right down to the World Series, so let’s get down to it:

 

NL EAST:

It is very hard to pick against the Phillies’ rotation. I mean come on, Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee, Roy Oswalt, Cole Hamels and Joe Blanton in ONE rotation? It really sounds like a fantasy team’s pitching, but, unfortunately for any fan of the NL East except those in Philadelphia, it is a sad, sad reality. Hey, at least they’re all in their low to mid 30s, huh? And Chase Utley is already having injury troubles, which really means almost nothing with that rotation. The Phillies have an opportunity every night to have their pitching go at LEAST seven innings. In 2010, the Phab Phive, with Lee on the Ranger/Mariners and Oswalt on the Astros/Phillies, went a combined 67-49 with a 3.25 ERA. That was with Lee in Seattle and Texas and Oswalt in Houston and Philly, imagine how good they will be a full season. The only other team in the division i see pitching with them in Atlanta. Tim Hudson, Derek Lowe, Tommy Hanson, Brandon Beachy, and Jair Jurrjens when he returns from the DL is pretty filthy as well, as their combined record was 50-40 with a 3.56 ERA. That’s pretty respectable and comparable to the Phillies, and with Jurrjens back and fully healthy, hopefully, and Beachy for a full season, the Braves are definitely a threat, especially with that lineup as well. The Nationals are going to take strides, not steps. They finally have a set five man rotation with the addition of Tom Gorzelanny. I believe that this with the combo of Marquis and Zimmermann being fully healthy will translate to the Nationals being a surprise team in 2011. Here is my NL East prediction:

1. Phillies 97-65 —

2. Braves 93-69 4.0 GB

3. Nationals 82-80 15.0 GB

4. Marlins 78-83 19.0 GB

5. Mets 75-87 22.0 GB

 

NL Central:

The Milwaukee Brewers are overrated, let’s get that out of the way now. Zack Grienke is on the 15 Day DL with a cracked rib and Shawn Marcum is having shoulder troubles, which is never good. If these two issues persist, they will certainly not live up to expectations. We know they can hit, with Prince Fielder, Ryan Braun and Corey Hart. I like the Reds, however. This offseason they didn’t change much, simply locking up their young core players for years to come. I don’t think they have much competition, save for the Cardinals, whose injury to Adam Wainwright really hurts, almost kills their chances for me. Here’s how my NL Central shakes out:

1. Reds 94-68 —

2. Cardinals 90-72 4.0 GB

3. Brewers 84-78 10.0 GB

4. Cubs 82-80 12.0 GB

5. Pirates 69-93 25.0 GB

6. Astros 64-98 30.0 GB

 

NL West:

The NL West is nothing short of a crap shoot. They have had 4 different division winners, and 4 different basement dwellers, the past 4 years. The best of the West to me is the Giants. Their rotation is really good, and can carry them to a World Series, and win, like last year. When they won the World Series. Hello redundancy. I like the Giants because they hit just enough, and pitch beautifully. I think Colorado will give them a run for their arms, and money. Tulo and CarGo are great players, and with the right mix of pitching and hitting, they can certainly win the West as well. Here’s my NL West:

1. Giants 97-65 —

2. Rockies 93-69 4.0 GB

3. Dodgers 82-80 15.0 GB

4. Padres 78-84 19.0 GB

5. D-Backs 67-95 30.0 GB

 

Wild Card:

I have the Braves and Rockies tied for the Wild Card at 93-69. This would call for a 1 game playoff to decide the Wild Card winner. The Braves’ mix of pitching and hitting is simply too much for Colorado to overcome and we see the Braves win the Wild Card for the second straight year. Here is how it shakes out:

1. Braves 94-69 —

2. Rockies 93-70 1.0 GB

3. Cardinals 90-72 4.0 GB

4. Brewers 84-78 10.0 GB

5. Dodgers/Cubs/Nationals 82-80 12.0 GB