Norm from Clubhouse Chatter makes his 2016 predictions

I hate making early season predictions. So many things happen during the long regular season. So here we go. 

 

AL East

  1. Boston Red Sox
  2. Toronto Blue Jays
  3. Tampa Bay Rays
  4. New York Yankees
  5. Baltimore Orioles

The AL East is strong. I’m worried about the Blue Jays starting pitching. We know the Jays can hit the ball. The Rays are my sleeper team in the division. The Red Sox will win the division if Hanley and Pablo bounce back and have great seasons at the plate.

AL Central

  1. Kansas City Royals
  2. Detroit Tigers
  3. Cleveland Indians
  4. Chicago White Sox
  5. Minnesota Twins

The Royals are the defending World Champs. The Tigers will be on the Royals heals all season. The Indians will be there in the end and the White Sox have issues after the LaRoche retirement.

AL West

  1. Texas Rangers
  2. Houston Astros
  3. The Angels
  4. Seattle Mariners
  5. Oakland A’s

The Rangers bounce back after an injury filled 2015. The Astros will battle for wildcard spot. The Angels have the best player on the planet. King Felix has a monster season and if Cano has a huge season the Mariners could move up in the standings.

NL East

  1. New York Mets
  2. Washington Nationals
  3. Miami Marlins
  4. Philadelphia Phillies
  5. Atlanta Braves

The Mets quite possibly have the best starting rotation in baseball. Dusty Baker have the Nats playing for a playoff spot. But, will Harper be a cancer. There is no doubt that Harper can play. Miami can battle for a wildcard spot if, Stanton and Fernandez stay healthy. Phillies and Braves will battle for the fourth and fifth place spots.

NL Central

  1. Chicago Cubs
  2. Pittsburgh Pirates
  3. St. Louis Cardinals
  4. Milwaukee Brewers
  5. Cincinnati Reds

The NL Central sent three teams to the playoffs. Will it happen again in 2016? I don’t think so. The Cards will be left at home at the end of the season. The Cubs are so close. They have some of the best talent the baseball has to offer. The Pirates will be in the playoff hunt. The Cards will be starting their offseason early. The Brewers and Reds have too much to work on.

NL West

  1. Arizona Diamondbacks
  2. San Francisco Giants
  3. Los Angeles Dodgers
  4. San Diego Padres
  5. Colorado Rockies

The Diamondbacks did enough in the offseason to make the playoffs. It’s an even year and the Giants will battle for a wildcard spot if they keep their pitching staff healthy. The Dodgers can play into a playoff spot if they find pitching behind Kershaw. The Padres are headed in the right direction and the Rockies will deal Cargo before the end of 2016.

 

Norms playoff predictions

AL East-Boston

AL Central-Kansas City

AL West-Texas

Wildcards-Detroit and Toronto

Detroit will stay healthy and Verlander and Zimmerman have big seasons as the Tigers win the AL title.

AL East-New York

NL Central-Chicago

NL West-Arizona

Wildcards-Giants and Pittsburgh

It’s an even year. But, the Giants don’t win it all. The Mets will repeat as NL champs. The Mets pitching is too much to overcome.

 

World Series-NY Mets over Detroit in 7

Award winners

AL MVP-Miguel Cabrera

NL MVP-Paul Goldschmidt

AL Cy Young-Felix Hernandez

NL Cy Young-Jacob deGrom

AL ROY-Joey Gallo

NL ROY-Trea Turner

AL Manager-Brad Ausmus

NL Manager-Chip Hale

It’s a long season. It’s a grind. Where will my predictions be at the end of the season? Most likely not even close. Teams will wheel and deal before the trade deadline if they feel they can’t compete for a playoff spot. All I know is, 2016 will be an exciting season. So many different storylines in the game. Here is a few that I’m interested in.

  1. Can Stanton stay healthy? If so, can he hit 50 homers?
  2. Bryce Harper, there is no doubt he’s one of the best in the game. Will his comments about baseball create issues throughout the season?
  3. Chicago White Sox, The whole Kenny Williams-Adam LaRoche deal. Will the White Sox rebound? Chris Sale had some pretty harsh comments about Williams. Does Williams keep his job?
  4. The Cubs, will the curse be broken? They are headed in the right direction to break it. But, is it in 2016?
  5.  The Giants, It’s an even year. Can they do it again? Win the World Series? They can compete if they stay healthy.
  6.  The Dodgers, They are talented. Quite possibly have the best pitcher in the game in Kershaw. Can Dave Roberts put it all together and take them to the promise land?
  7.  Barry Bonds as the Marlins hitting coach. What can he do to help Stanton and the rest of the Marlins hitters.
  8. And last but not least, How many hot dogs will Clubhouse Chatters producer Brian Erikson eat this season? Who will eat more dogs, 9 Inning Know it All’s Kelly Byrnes of Clubhouse Chatters Producer Brian?
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