By the Book

Last year, The Concordian had an extensive Major League Baseball preview. This year, it returns in a half-page soapbox for yours truly.

AL East

Last year, I received a few comments about picking the Blue Jays to win the division and the World Series. Boy, was that stupid. This year, I think the Blue Jays are even better as long as they stay healthy but the Red Sox and Yankees are much too strong for the Jays. The Red Sox made a questionable move by putting Jonathan Papelbon back in the bullpen, but their rotation is still very strong and they will win the division. The Yankees won’t even win the Wild Card. The Devil Rays will work their way out of the cellar and the Orioles will be in last place.

AL Central

This will be the best division in baseball has four World Series contenders as the season gets underway. I believe that the Indians will bounce back from an atrocious 2006 season and win the division with the White Sox, Twins and Tigers right behind them. The Wild Card will come from this division, and I will go out on a limb and say that the Tigers will pull it out with Joel Zamaya, Justin Verlander and co. pitching like, or better than last year.

AL West

This division has had its ups and downs in the past 10 years, and now it is in a bit of a rut. The Angels are by far the class of the division, but the A’s can make some noise if Rich Harden can stay healthy.

The Rangers and Mariners will hover around the .500 mark and are both on the way up, although Seattle did give up a couple of young players for an aging Jose Vidro.

NL East

My name is Jared and I’m a Nationals fan. I love laughing at their rotation, at their lineup and other parts of the team. They are getting younger, though and I think that they will be able to contend in a few seasons provided that Jim Bowden doesn’t destroy his second team. The Mets are the class of the division, but the Marlins will make some noise again this season and will finish second while the Braves and Phillies will finish ahead of the Nationals.

NL Central

The St. Louis Cardinals are the defending World Series champions, but they will struggle to finish at .500 this season because of injuries to Jim Edmonds and others as well as a rotation that is. suspect. However, they are in the NL Central and might have a chance to win, anyway. Houston, Milwaukee and the Cubs are up there and might have a chance to win the division but Cincinnati and Pittsburgh are long shots, but can get out of the 5th-6th spot. My pick is the Brewers.

NL West

I am going to pick the Colorado Rockies to win the division. The Dodgers are pitcher-heavy in a pitchers park, but their offence is iffy with the loss of J.D. Drew, but expect Russell Martin a former NDG baseball player to have an even better season in his second Major League campaign. The Padres and Giants are going to hover around .500. It is yet another wide-open division in baseball.

The World Series

Let’s assume the playoff teams are Anaheim, Boston, Cleveland and Detroit in the AL and Colorado, Los Angeles, Milwaukee and New York in the NL.

I think that the Angels will face off against the Dodgers in an all-Los Angeles World Series for the first time ever. (Not to be confused with the Subway Series or the Earthquake Series of the past.)

I will pick the Angels to win because they are that good. Great rotation, great lineup and great defence goes a long way and the AL is once again much better than the NL.

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