Well... the first two months of the Major League Baseball regular season are in the books. There have been some surprises and some disappointments. So here are my takes on the first couple months.
Teams For Real
1. Detroit Tigers- Haha you knew it was coming. Cant say enough about Justin Verlander, he has been out of this world. The rotation ERA leads the AL and the bullpen, though weak, has held its own. The offense still is not nearly where it can be, and with Marcus Thames coming back, who knows, maybe theres the spark. I like this team to push their lead and end up winning the AL Central pretty easily.
2. New York Yankees- pitching is everything in baseball. I love their rotation and the bullpen is finding ways. With ARod and Tex driving the ball, the offense is clicking, and as always the Melk Man delivers.
3.LA Dodgers- They're keeping their heads above water without Manny, and the offense is gaining confidence by the day. Watch out when big man gets back. The rotation is filthy, and Clayton Kershaw is my quiet name to watch in the Cy Young race. Shh.
1. Toronto Blue Jays- pitching is everything in baseball. I believe that I mentioned that, but its worth being said again. Obviously Roy Halleday is the big boss, but are Scott Richmond and Purcey going to bring home the division? hah. Offense is nice tho. Not great, but nice.
2. Texas Rangers- If everyone stays healthy and they add an arm, I can see them making a push in the wretched AL West, but there is not enough punch in that offense to compensate for a staff like that. Like Millwood and Francisco, loathe everyone else.
3. Milwaukee Brewers- I just cant see all these pieces continuing to perform. Braun and Fielder are great, but losing Weeks is rough. Cameron and Counsell are not going to keep them in this tight race.
Teams That Are Down, but Will Make A Surge
1. Tampa Bay Rays- To this point in the season, they couldn't have caught any more bad breaks. They lose their middle infield, Kazmir is roughed up and Sonny has been garbage, yet somehow, they're only five back. Theres too much talent there not to finish right along the big boys again. I see them coming in third in the AL East, but finishing just out of the money.
2. Atlanta Braves- There a little ways back in the east, but there rotation is solid. Getting Nate McLouth is a nice step and as they bring up some of their talented kids, I see this team catching fire and making a wild card run. Chipper gives them that veteran presence thats been there before. I'm calling it right now, if the Braves acquire one more bat, they win the wild card.
3. Arizona Diamondbacks- What the heck happened here? This team was my preseason pick to win the division and a playoff series. They are 13.5 games out currently. Obviously that is a huge deficit to come back from, and as good as the Dodgers are, I doubt they'll give that up, but the DBacks will turn it into a race. I just know it. Getting Brandon Webb back will spark this team as they can turn to two aces on back to back days and know what they're getting. Scherzer has been a nice surprise and the bullpen has nowhere to go but up. If a couple of their bats turn it around, this could be a dangerous team.