Friday, December 20, 2013

NL North


LAST YEARS PREVIEW: The Expos held off father time, made some slick trades to have reinforcements. The offense had a severe drop off (only 749 runs scored), but the pitching solidified and almost led the Expos to the World Series. The offense should be back in high gear with the addition of the Braves best player, Justin Lidge. Plus another full year with Ortiz. The Expos are better this year. Look out NL.

OUT: Dan Sogard, Ramon Wang, Tuck Eichhorn, Hugh Taylor, Brad O’Connor, Willie Smith, Justin Lidge, Joe Hoffman, Victor Pulido
IN: Allen Roosevelt, Edgardo Bocachica, Melvin Douglass, Kirk Sheffield

The Expos one of the top tier teams of Kinsella, and have been able to do so by not being afraid to make changes. At the end of last year, Vic Villafuerte joined the club for the home stretch and playoffs. This year ssauve made a few more brilliant moves to hopefully snag that elusive championship.
Can the Expos be better than their 109 win team last year? With the group being brought in, the answer is…only if they win the World Series.
PREDICTION: 113-49, 1st Place


LAST YEARS PREVIEW: The Cubs offense was superb, and scored 818 runs the BEST in the National League. The Cubs have the pitching. It’s HOW they are used, and WHO is playing defense behind them. The fielding situation is in shambles. Don’t expect much if these things can’t be fixed. This team could be GREAT, if only they had defense.
OUT: no one of consequence
IN: Yunel Park

The Cubs must have read the blog last year. Many changes were made to the team during the year and little by little the Cubs became more and more competitive. They wound up barely missing the playoffs, but that won’t happen again. This team is ready to take the next step.
Owner, littlejim, feels his team isn’t quite there yet. “My defense still is a little suspect. I need to work on that. I like my pitching for the most part. My starter are mostly young and solid and should keep me in games, but my bullpen may cost me.”
The offense is still in great shape with the big four of Descalso, Hammond, Perry, and Reagan. Yunel Park is an interesting pickup that is an immediate boost to LF defensively, and in his time with Tampa could turn into a Yasiel Puig type of player.
Overall, I think this team is ready now. The Cubs are a team to watch.
PREDICTION: 92-70, wild card

From the outside looking in, not much has been done to help this team. The pitching should remain even, but unless bison has a few cards up his sleeves to help the offense I’m not sure what is happening.
OUT: Rico Mendoza, Chad Richardson, Boone Rivera
IN: Edgard Nunez, Cesar Molina, Vernon Lane

Well, the card up bisons sleeve is that he left the league. But he did leave it to an experienced pro in Mongoose. In his 70 seasons he has an enviable 22 division titles, 39 playoffs, and 2 world series. The Brewers should begin to round back into shape soon.
The entire pitching staff has been gutted. Only the young and Lariel Chavez remain. The same could be said of the offense. A lot of new faces. We will have to see where this team goes from here.
PREDICTION: 70-92, Last Place

LAST YEARS PREVIEW: The pitching staff was still horrid, but the youngsters stepped up. Ugueth Pulido more than held his own (1.31 WHIP, 3.82 fip, 185 ip, 141 k). Spike Smoltz has become the ace of the staff Rookie Tony Baez joins the rotation and replicate Pulido’s success. Pitching will be much better this year. Don’t sleep on the Reds this year.

The Reds were not to be feared last year, winning 10 games less than predicted. The pitching staff got ROCKED to the tune of 974 runs (that’s 6+ runs per game…OUCH).
At this time I don’t see any involvement by sockless_joe. No free agent signings. Only a rule V pickup.
Once again, the league questions the commitment that the ownership has to the franchise in Cincinnati.

PREDICTION: 54-108, Wild Card

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