The 2017 season is right around the corner and its time to start making predictions on how the season will unfold. Here’s the first part of my six part series where I make nine predictions for each team. First up is the National League East:
- Dansby Swanson will win Rookie of the Year.
- Freddie Freeman will make it clear that he’s the best first baseman in baseball.
- The Braves will finish around .500 and it will become apparent that 2018 could be their year to contend.
- R.A. Dickey will be moved to the bullpen, traded or sent down by June.
- The Braves won’t trade Bartolo Colon but will trade Jaime Garcia, during the best season of his career.
- Matt Kemp and Freeman will combine for 72 home runs.
- The Braves will be in contention at All-Star Break and will trade some of their top prospects for a big name player.
- Ender Inciarte will win his second straight Gold Glove, while hitting over .300 and stealing 30 bases.
- The Braves will finish third in the division.
Record Prediction: 80-82
- Giancarlo Stanton will play his first full season since 2014 and finally break past 40 home runs in a season.
- The Marlins will struggle to find a true number one in their rotation.
- Dee Gordon will continue to struggle at the plate, but will still get 60 stolen bases.
- The bullpen will be one of the best in baseball, but will struggle late in the season after bailing out the starters all year.
- Christian Yelich, Marcell Ozuna and Stanton will combine for over 90 home runs and 265 RBIs.
- Justin Bour will hit 25 home runs, but will see his batting average drop to the .235 range.
- The Marlins will enter the All-Star break in last place in the East.
- Martin Prado will struggle after signing his $40 million contract.
- Miami will finish fifth in the division.
Record Prediction: 70-92
New York Mets
- Matt Harvey will return to ace form with a sub 2.50 ERA and a WHIP around 1.00.
- One of Noah Syndergaard, Jacob deGrom or Harvey will pitch a no-hitter, giving the Mets their second no-no in franchise history and their first since Johan Santana‘s in 2012.
- Yoenis Cespedes will be the only player to hit over .280 for the Mets
- Cespedes will hit 35 home runs and give the Mets their first 100 RBI player since David Wright in 2010.
- Syndergaard will win 20 games and be at the top of the Cy Young race.
- New York will enter August in first place, but a late losing streak will cost them the division title.
- The Mets will finish second in the division and get a berth in the Wild Card Game.
- They will win the Wild Card game against the St. Louis Cardinals with a great performance from Syndergaard.
- The Mets will be eliminated after falling short to the Cubs in five games in the NLDS.
Record Prediction: 88-74
- Clay Buchholz struggles early in season, but dominates in the second half of the season with an ERA around 3.00 and 65 strikeouts.
- Odubel Herrera has another fantastic season, making a run at the batting title while hitting over .300 for the first time in his career.
- Maikel Franco and Tommy Joseph will hit 65 home runs combined.
- Franco and Herrera are the only players to make the All-Star Game for the Phillies.
- Philadelphia will enter the All-Star break in contention for the Wild Card, but will lose six straight games after the break and will slowly disappear from the race.
- J.P. Crawford will make his Major League debut in May and be the Phillies starter by July.
- The Phillies will attempt to make a blockbuster trade at the deadline to try and get them back in the race, giving up two of their top five prospects.
- Philadelphia will fire Pete Mackanin after the post All-Star break collapse.
- The Phillies will finish fourth in the division.
Record Prediction: 74-88
- The acquisition of Adam Eaton will prove to be one of the best moves of the offseason, with the outfielder hitting a slash of .292/.372/.414.
- Stephen Strasburg will have the best season of his career, winning his first Cy Young Award.
- Max Scherzer will take a step back after his tremendous 2016 season, but will still post an ERA of 3.23 and win 15 games.
- Bryce Harper looks like his 2015 self, hitting 47 home runs and has his first career 100 RBI season.
- Trea Turner will be in the thick of the MVP race, hitting a slash of .325/.362/.468 with 23 home runs and 80 RBIs.
- Daniel Murphy will continue to be a double machine, leading the league in the category again.
- Washington will have the best record in baseball at All-Star Break.
- Tanner Roark will continue to be the most underrated starter in baseball, but will be the Nats number two starter in the postseason.
- The Washington Nationals will make it to their first NLCS and the first in franchise history since the Expos played the Dodgers in 1981. The Nationals will come up short though, falling to the Cubs in six games.
Record Prediction: 97-65