April 2, 2017

2017 MLB predictions: Sanchez, Bird & Judge

Without a doubt, these 2017 Yankees are the most exciting I've ever covered on this blog, which dates back to 2009. What a good year that was to start a Yankees blog, am I right?

Anyhow, with names like Gary Sanchez, Greg Bird and Aaron Judge slotted in the Opening Day starting lineup, how can you not be pumped? Are these three the next Jorge Posada, Tino Martinez and Paul O'Neill? Only time will tell. 

And let's not forget about Gleyber Torres, the blue-chip prospect the Yankees received in last year's Aroldis Chapman trade with the Cubs. With Didi Gregorius sidelined to start the season (shoulder), it's possible Torres makes a Sanchezesque rise to the Show later this year.

As for the team's fate, unfortunately, the AL East remains one of the most competitive divisions in all of baseball. The Red Sox are the heavy favorites despite losing David Ortiz to retirement, and the Orioles and Blue Jays are still loaded too. 

The Yankees' offense looks to be much improved with a full season of Sanchez and Bird at the top of the order, plus a seemingly healthy Matt Holliday inserted at DH. Their bullpen also looks almost as good as last year, as Chapman is back in pinstripes after helping the Cubs break their curse. However, the Yankees' success will come down to starting pitching, as it usually does. 

After Masahiro Tanaka, there are a lot of question marks. Can CC Sabathia keep it together for another year? Will Michael Pineda's numbers match his electrifying stuff, for once? And which Luis Severino will we see: the 2015 dominant young stud or the 2016 bust? 

AL East 
1. Red Sox
2. Blue Jays*
3. Yankees*

4. Orioles
5. Rays

AL Central 

1. Indians
2. Royals
3. Tigers
4. Twins
5. White Sox

AL West 
1. Astros
2. Mariners
3. Rangers
4. Angels
5. Athletics 

NL East 

1. Nationals
2. Mets*
3. Marlins
4. Phillies
5. Braves

NL Central 
1. Cubs
2. Pirates*
3. Cardinals
4. Brewers
5. Reds

NL West 
1. Dodgers
2. Giants
3. Rockies
5. Padres

*Wild Card Winner 

AL Champion: Astros
NL Champion: Cubs
World Series Champion: Astros, 6 games

AL MVP: Carlos Correa – I was a year too soon with this pick last year
NL MVP: Clayton Kershaw
AL Cy: Chris Sale
NL Cy: Clayton Kershaw
AL RoY: Yoan Moncada
NL RoY: Dansby Swanson
AL Manager: A.J. Hinch
NL Manager: Joe Maddon

Yankee Stats 
Gary Sanchez home runs: 27 
Aaron Judge home runs: 18 – too many strikeouts will lead to a demotion
Greg Bird home runs: 32
Greg Bird OBP: .387 – The Bird Watcher
Gleyber Torres at-bats: 0
Luis Severino wins: 13 
CC Sabathia ERA: 4.95
Dellin Betances saves: 15
Aroldis Chapman saves: 33

Previous Predictions
2009 | 2010 | 2011 | 2012 | 2013 | 2014 | 2015 | 2016

2009 | 2010 | 20112012 | 2013 | 2014 | 2015 | 2016

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