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Thursday, September 16, 2010

Pre-season predictions / Final Standings

In the AL, the blog called 3 of 4 division winners correctly, and both wild cards correctly, missing on New Orleans/Jacksonville. In the NL, the blog called 5 of 6 playoff spots correctly, missing on Chicago/Cleveland. In all, the blog nailed 10 of 12 playoff spots.

12. Montgomery Burns

Then - Any team with MVP Ken Daly must make this list. Would be higher on this list with a better pitching staff and more help at the AAA level. Prediction: NL Wild Card

Now - Won the NL Wild Card and finished #10 on the final power rankings. Good Call

11. Cleveland Wahoos

Then - Very little change to the Season 16 Division Champ. Louis Spense and Rafael Soriano return to lead a potent offense, while Derrek Peters and Junior Ozuna anchor a solid pitching staff. Prediction:NL Wild Card

Now - Won the NL North and was in and out of teh Top 10 all year. Good Call

10. Jacksonville TIMUACANS

Then - A risky pick, but some solid offseason moves will take this squad from worst to first in a very even AL South. Newly acquired Bill Reed and Ramon Chen add to an already solid pitching staff, while 2B Royce Aven leads an offense in need of another star. Prediction: AL South Champion

Now - A risky pick indeed. Never lived up to the high expectations, finishing 78-84, but only 3 games out of first place. Bad Call

9. Chicago Panthers

Then - Chicago was active in the off season and made some very good free agent moves. Benji Neill and Kelly Hinch anchor an offense that could use one more big bat. FA Cesar Almanzar will anchor a rotation that could surprise Cleveland and Pittsburgh. Prediction: NL North Champion

Now - Finished 4 games behind Cleveland for the NL North crown. Never appeared in the Top 10, although they did win 10 more games than last year. Bad Call, but not by much.

8. Buffalo Bisons

Then - Outfielders Robert Stern and Pepper Griffin were acquired in a trade that adds some pop to a line-up led by Francis Herzog and Allen Nichols. Veteran pitchers Joe Raymond and Flip Bones were added to the pitching staff anchored by 4 time all star Cory Clark. Prediction: NL East Champion

Now - Finished the season as the final Wild Card, 4 games back of Hartford. Also finished #9 in the final power rankings. Good Call

7. Santa Cruz Border Patrol

Then - A revolt from the pitching staff sent the Colrado team south to the friendlier confines of Vaniglia Stadium, where Phil Pride and Timothy Crawford will excel. This blog predicts a Cy Young for Phil Pride. Prediction: AL West Champion

Now - Won the AL West and finished just outside of the Top 10 after spending much of the season on it. Good Call

6. Monreal Garde Imperiale

Then - Montreal lost Acquino, Ortiz, and Glover, but will most miss the big bat of the recently traded Steven Starr. Iglesias, Forrester, Woods, Lynch, and Conigliaro make up the league's best rotation, while Melfi, Gagne, Gabriel, and Saez lead an outstanding bullpen. Dupler, Roosevelt, Clifton, and Bufurd headline one of the AL's most potent offense. Prediction: AL Wild Card

Now - Won the AL Wild Card and finished #3 in the final power rankings. Good Call

5. Cincinnati Redlegs

Then - Cincy will pose a major threat to the reign of Montreal this season, and this blog predicts that this will be the season that they finally break through. A stong pitching staff could be bolstered by the mid-season promotions of AAA stars Brant Riggan and Bubbles Judd. Jonathon Gload should win his first of many MVP's while protected by off-season acquisition Jesus Pineda. Prediction: AL North Champion

Now - Won the AL North and finished #2 in the power rankings. Good Call

4. Houston Hangovers

Then - NL pennant winner Houston will be strong as usual, and returns its squad relatively in tact. It boasts one of the league's best pitching staffs anchored by soon to be 200 game winner Dave Darr, and one of the most balanced offenses lead by former MVP Esteban Owen. Prediction: NL South Champion /NL Pennant Runner-Up

Now - Won the NL South, but remains to be seeen if they fall in playoffs. #1 in teh final power rankings. Good Call

3. Burlington Coat Factory

Then - One of the most successful clubs in 1530 history, the Factory underwent some major changes in the offseason. They lost All-Star Bernie Pena, but didn't have a spot for him in the rotation anyway. Their offense should be much improved with the signing of 2B Juan Johnson from rival Durham, and the absolute theft of CF Angel Bonilla. Prediction: AL Wild-card / AL Pennant Runner-Up

Now - Finished the as the Wild Card and #4 in the final power rankings. Good Call

2. San Juan Cangrejeros

Then - have long lived in the shadow of the Durham/Burlington domination of the AL East was active on the trade market and added Cy Young winner J.R. Beckett, Bullpen Ace Adam tucker, and All-Star Sandy Ramsey. San Juan also promoted some high-quality AAA talent and might be the team to beat in a very tough AL East. Prediction: AL East Champion / AL Pennant Winner / World Series Runner-Up

Now - Won the AL East and finished #7 in the power rankings. Good call on the AL East, but bad on ranking.

1. Los Angeles Hollywoods

Then - The Hollywoods have been built into a contender and this is the year that they should finally dethrone Houston. Victor Merrick and Leonardo Inge lead a strong pitching staff and Lee, Sabel, and Morales should be joined by SS's Rube Swann and Carson Hardy to make LA into one of the best fielding/hitting combnations in the league. Prediction: NL West Champion/NL Pennant Winner/World Series Champion

Now - Surged in the second half to claim the NL West and the #8 spot in the power rankings. Good call on the standings, but certainly overrated.

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