2012 MLB Predictions: Team-by-Team Wins, Playoff Picks, World Series Prediction

Three games down, 2,427 to go.

Which means it must be time for Midwest Sports Fans’ second annual MLB prediction special!

This comes off last year’s dazzling performance in which I went with a Red Sox/Braves World Series, and we know how that went last September.

Here are my 2011 win predictions. I was at least on target with the AL East and NL East, but for the second year in a row I completely missed it with the NL West. In all I was within ten games with 21 of the 30 teams.

How do I follow that this year? Well, I came up with the numbers and made sure that the totals all added up to 2,430 wins, putting the win numbers on each team before last week’s A’s/Mariners two-game series and last night’s Cards/Marlins game. I can’t prove it; I’ll just have to try to convince you like Ryan Braun.

On to the 2012 predictions…

AL East Predictions

Yankees – 95 wins (AL East Champion)

The new Wild Card playoff game makes the regular season more meaningful than years past in the Bronx. Look for the Yanks to win the division. They still have the best offense and have the bankroll to make adjustments during the season if needed.

Red Sox – 90 wins (Wild Card)

I was quickly reminded why I hate fantasy baseball and why I hate Bobby Valentine. Would-be closer Andrew Bailey goes down with significant thumb injury (don’t be surprised if he misses season) so I immediately target Mark Melancon for saves. Sure enough, Alfredo Acevedes is pulled from the rotation to become the closer. At least it was announced just before my waiver wire deadline.

Blue Jays – 86 wins

I have to make one bold prediction, so I have the Jays jumping over one of the Big Three in the AL East. Brett Lawrie is worth the hype and the Milwaukee Brewers will soon REALLY regret dealing him during the 2010-11 off-season.

Rays – 85 wins

It’s almost all-in this year for the Rays. While the Red Sox and Yanks continue to re-load, the costs of Evan Longoria, James Shields, and David Price will go up in years to come. Take a look at Joel Peralta in fantasy, as he looks like best option to close (out of the so-called committee) with Kyle Farnsworth out.

Orioles – 67 wins

Well, I got their win total right last year, and the O’s might be stepping it down yet another level this year. They closed out their spring schedule losing to a community college squad followed up by losing to their AAA affiliate.

 

AL Central Predictions

Tigers – 94 wins (AL Central Champion)

Jerod Morris and Ari Kaufman had a podcast guest on late last year who thought someone in the Central would go on a late run and surpass 90 wins. Jerod and Ari were left wondering what the guest was smoking. Well, the Tigers wound up 95-67 and in the ALCS, then broke bank for Prince Fielder.  Defense and the late innings will be an issue this year though. Joe Valverde WILL NOT go 49-49 in save chances again.

Twins – 82 wins

They can’t possibly go 63-99 again. And if you got Justin Morenau in the late rounds in fantasy like I did over the weekend, he’s worth the roll of the dice.

White Sox – 80 wins

Hopefully Jerod can stay somewhat in control at Rangers ballpark this weekend. The South Siders are neither good or bad, just not enough to be a factor.

Royals – 75 wins

One of these years enough of that young talent will develop and the Royals will end up as a darkhorse. The problem is I keep calling that shot every year.

Indians – 70 wins

For all I know he may not have even been calling the game, but I wonder what radio PBP voice Tom Hamilton would say if Ubaldo Jimenez was pitching for another team and drilled a Cleveland batter with alleged intent. It would probably be similar to his feelings for Josh Beckett.

 

AL West Predictions

Angels – 93 wins (AL West Champion)

Maybe Albert Pujols will have some ‘difficulty’ switching leagues and have a ‘down year’. Beware though; he just got done hitting .400 with 7 HR/18 RBI during the exhibition schedule.

Rangers – 89 wins (Wild Card)

I was glad to get Yu Darvish on my final fantasy team. Look for him to make a bid for 20 wins and beat the Red Sox in the AL Wild Card game. The biggest concern is the potential Josh Hamilton time bomb. Tick, tick, tick…

Mariners – 77 wins

Are you going to doubt Ichiro now, after getting four hits Opening Night? He Is only 568 knocks away from 3,000, which is just three more solid years. The smart money says he gets it. Also Felix Hernandez was very solid in first start, complete with his usual hard-luck (actually more a case of non-support) no decision.

A’s – 68 wins

Cuban rookie Yoenis Cespedes is already most relevant player in Oakland. His first MLB homer in Tokyo was impressive, but also K’d three times in 6 AB’s.

 

NL East Predictions

Phillies – 92 wins (NL East Champion)

Ari Kaufman missed chance of a lifetime: he had the opportunity to face Ryan Howard at a ticket window and personally tell him how overrated and declining he has been the past five seasons.

howardtickets

Marlins – 89 wins (Wild Card)

Yes, I drank the Kool-aid and made this win total before Miami was shut down by Kyle Lohse on Opening night. Miami would have to improve 17 games from last year to get to this mark, and Accu-Score only had the Marlins for 74 wins, as opposed to 82 by the Vegas line.

Braves – 84 wins

Bobby Cox returned to the dugout the other day to manage the organization’s top prospects against the big club. My bold prediction is Bobby does a Jack McKeon and takes over for Fredi Gonzalez at some point this season.

Nationals – 82 wins

How much has the Nats rotation improved? So much that two-time Opening Day starter John Lannan and his $5 million salary just got optioned to AAA. Yes, the Nats move into contention this year if everyone stays healthy.

Mets – 63 wins

Yes, the bottom falls completely out on the bankrupt Mets this year, and it will be even worse than possibly expected.

 

NL Central Predictions

Reds – 88 wins (NL Central)

$251 million to Joey Votto sends a huge message that Cincinnati expects to be contenders in the division now and in the future; just don’t expect Dusty Baker to be part of it, because he still doesn’t know what to do with Aroldis Chapman.

Cardinals – 87 wins

St. Louis picked up right where they left off 5+ months ago with their win in Miami, but how far can they get without Pujols? I say the Cards end up with a small case of the championship hangover.

Brewers – 83 wins

Would you trade Prince Fielder/Yuni-B/and .220 hitting Casey McGehee for Alex Gonzalez/Mat Gamel/Aramis Ramirez? That’s most of the changeover from last year’s roster. Also, just when is Ryan Braun going to get some balls and either (a) confess, or (b) prove that he’s innocent? Local writers are now even starting to call him out.

Cubs – 77 wins

Without a dominant team, the North Siders could make some strides in the division and stay in the mix. It’s going to take a couple years though for the Theo Epstein factor to have a chance at taking any effect.

Pirates – 69 wins

They had their window of opportunity for four months last year before a bad call in extra innings in Atlanta ruined their season – but if it wasn’t that it would had been something else. It is back to regularly scheduled programming this season. Andrew McCutchen does have 30-30 potential though.

Astros – 61 wins

Do Brewers fans still gripe over losing Carlos Lee and his declining skills? El Cabello bargained away his 5-10 rights and can only block trades to 14 teams this year.

 

NL West Predictions

Giants – 93 wins (NL West Champs)

Matt Cain’s 5-year/$112 million contract is a record for a right-hander, and it is good news for Zack Greinke and other RHP’s of similar talent seeking nine-figure numbers. SF wanted to take it slow with Brandon Belt this time around, but was so hot during March that they couldn’t possibly keep him off the Major League roster.

Rockies – 91 wins (Wild Card)

My Marlins/Rockies Wild Card prediction might look pretty silly come August, but I’m going off the board here. Throw out last year’s bad record, and look for Jamie Moyer to make baseball history when he beats the Astros this weekend to become the first pitcher to win at age 49.

Dodgers – 81 wins

Frank McCourt finally is shown the door…with a tidy profit as a parting gift. Now LA can move forward with a stable ownership group. Potential MVP Matt Kemp, Clayton Kershaw, and a nice bullpen are a good start. I only have them .500 for now, but don’t be surprised to see Dodgers contend.

D-Backs – 74 wins

After getting to extra innings in Game 5 of the NLDS last year, Arizona will be hard-pressed to duplicate the feat this time around. Paul Goldschmidt lasted WAY too long in fantasy drafts this spring.

Padres – 63 wins

Challenge of the day: name five players on San Diego’s current 25-man MLB roster. Remember, Heath Bell is gone. The line out of the 6-1-9 is that this year is more about 2013 than 2012. And 2013 will be more about ’14 or ’15, and so on…

World Series Prediction

DETROIT OVER MIAMI

justin-verlander-al-mvp

**********

What ya got?

Comment below with your predictions, or whichever predictions above you agree or disagree with.

 



About Kurt Allen

Have written/blogged about sports since 2000, along with starting my popular Twitter feed in 2009. I also closely follow fantasy sports developments, along with events such as the NFL Draft.

Comments

  1. Ajkauf7 says:

    To see Ryan Howard, I’d have to visit Philly. Been there. Not happening anytime soon.

    Good picks, though if Cleveland finished ten games behind Chicago, I’ll wear a White Sox hat for a week. 

    Padres will be 15-20 games better than you say. They tore it up this spring and are better than the 2010 team that won 90 games.

    Nice call on Cincy. Agree there. They’ll overcome Dusty’s ineptitude with talent–I think.

    • Derrick_miller says:

       what’s wrong with Philly, AJ…too rough for your taste? I mean, why would you want to go to a class A ballpark and watch one of the best rotations in baseball do their thing? Just please stay true to your word and hatred for the city of Philly and keep your bald, ugly dome out of there. There will be lots of people more than happy to have those seats.

  2. Bradford Antalik says:

    There is no way the Indians finish last in the AL Central. In fact they will probably finish second.

  3. StraightCashhomie says:

    the nats tht low think about it their best player only played 101 games, LIVAN HERNANDEZ was their ace last year, they had to start rookies and second yr players all yr and their 126 million dollar man was terrible and Adam was terrible and their ace was out most of the season but yet they won 80 games. with all those people comin back plus gio, jackson, lidge they should win 88-92 games 

  4. dodgersfan101 says:

    Wow, no faith in the Diamondbacks? I’d give them top billing this season or at least a wildcard birth in the NL west. I also think you underestimate the Cardinals. I think we will be seeing them in the playoffs again this season. as for the AL: you seem to be on to something with the Tigers. they were rockin’ last season and nothing has happened in the off season that would prevent them from going back this season. Finally, don’t count out the Red Sox. they are just as potent as the Yankees and just as capable of taking the division.  

  5. If Philly is going to contend, they will have to set an MLB record for shutout games in a season.  With their rotation… ehhh–possible….

  6. Favrestoold says:

    Detroit all season!

  7. Lol I guess you are going to completely miss it in the NL West again… Even when the Diamondbacks win, everyone still underestimates them. Dbacks, Dodgers, Giants, Rockies, Padres. 

  8. Wait what am I saying, this whole thing is off, not just the NL West.

  9. Ryanbraves26 says:

    Marlins in the World Series? How do you not have the Braves in the poastseason? They have one of the top 5 rotations, top 10 hitting, and top bullpen. Also, how are the Twins second in the division. Next, the Dbacks have the best hitting in baseball! And Ian Kennedy and Daniel Hudson are hard to beat. The Rays should be in the poastseason instead of the Sox. That offense is very talented.Shields, Price, Hellickson, and Moore all can be aces. I rate your predictions a 5 out of 10. I don’t like it.

  10. MIkethevike says:

    It’s fun to look at April predictions in September… Missed the surge of the Nats and the surprising O’s as well as the total collapse of the Phillies and RedSox. If the season ended today you’d have 50% of the playoff teams right, but your other 5 picks are pretty much out of the playoff picture already.

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Trackbacks

  1. […] year the Tigers are on many lists to be the AL Champions and some lists to win the World Series. Apparently this Prince Fielder is some slugger!  (I won’t pretend to […]

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