Hi everybody, and a very pleasant good afternoon to you, wherever you may be. It has finally arrived, after all the arduous days and nights called Spring Training—an endless rehearsal, it’s now time to play for keeps.
That’s right, it’s baseball time baby. And MARCH baseball at that. Some good old fashioned March baseball is what we’ve all been clamoring for, right? Forget the NCAA tournament, or the NBA and NHL playoff races; there are grown men out there in windbreakers ambling across under-manicured grass, stiffly chasing down weak pop flies in whatever direction the wind gusts take them! You love to see it.
Despite this early season hatred, there’s not much else that has changed since last year’s long journey toward the inevitable Red Sox championship run. Yes, some familiar faces are now wearing different caps in what proved to be an accelerated arms race at the very end of a dreadful offseason, and there are a few new rule changes that will try to speed up overall game length and incentivize the best players to participate in the Home Run Derby (plus Ichiro low-key retired out of seemingly nowhere??), but overall the same good teams will probably still be good, and the same crap teams will most likely still be crap.
That said, here’s what The Infuerno sees in the standings in six months time…scarcely a surprise to be found, but in no way does that mean we see the same result at the end of the season.
AL East: Red Sox (103-59)
AL Central: Indians (92-70)
AL West: Astros (105-57)
AL Wild Card: Yankees (101-61) over Mariners (98-64)
NL East: Phillies (97-65)
NL Central: Brewers (98-64)
NL West: Rockies (98-64)
NL Wild Card: Dodgers (91-71) over Nationals (94-68)
ALDS: Yankees over Astros (3-1), Red Sox over Indians (3-0)
NLDS: Brewers over Dodgers (3-1), Phillies over Rockies (3-2)
ALCS: Yankees over Red Sox (4-2)
NLCS: Brewers over Phillies (4-3)
World Series: Yankees over Brewers (4-2)