MLB 2019 preview: Predicting the AL’s division champs, pennant winner, award getters | MLB

The American League, in distinction to the Nationwide, is extremely high heavy once more in 2019.

The Purple Sox, Yankees, Astros and Indians are all able to successful 100 video games and the underside of all three divisions are able to shedding 100 or extra.

However the playoffs shall be completely improbable, so you’ll have to take the great with the unhealthy.

Listed below are our predictions for a way the AL will shake out in 2019.

Central — Cleveland Indians

Sure, Cleveland underachieved final yr and sure, Francisco Lindor is beginning the season damage, Jose Ramirez was unhealthy down the stretch and you may’t identify a single one in every of their outfielders however the Indians are nonetheless actually, actually good.

Their rotation had 4 starters who struck out 200 or extra batters final yr they usually have each probability to do it once more and Lindor and Ramirez are nonetheless actually good too. The bullpen can also be seemingly to enhance from final yr’s catastrophe.

Cleveland will win this division in a stroll.

East — New York Yankees

The Yankees are already coping with lots of accidents as Luis Severino, CC Sabathia and Greg Hen have already gotten damage, however the rotation continues to be good, the lineup is superb and the bullpen in transcendent.

The Indians received 10 video games lower than they need to have a yr in the past due to their bullpen whereas the Purple Sox are in the same spot this yr. It acquired them by way of the postseason in 2018, however that was with huge assist from Nathan Eovaldi and Chris Sale. These males won’t be within the pen throughout the common season and it’ll value them wins and the division.

West — Houston Astros

The Astros misplaced three starters from a yr in the past, however are you able to identify the Astros’ high two starters from 2017? You most likely cannot. Are you able to identify their backside three? For sure you will not. However, this yr they nonetheless have Justin Verlander and Gerrit Cole on the high and an accumulation of fellows on the backside.

Verlander and Cole will win greater than sufficient to hold the staff to the deadline and Collin McHugh, Wade Miley and Brad Peacock shall be greater than satisfactory to solidify the rotation.

Reinforcements will even come within the type of Josh James, Forrest Whitley, Corbin Martin and J.B. Bukauskas. The pitching shall be greater than high-quality, the bullpen is superb and the lineup acquired higher with the addition of Michael Brantley. If Carlos Correa, Jose Altuve and George Springer are merely barely extra wholesome than they have been a yr in the past this staff will certainly win 100 video games and perhaps even 105.

Wild Playing cards — Boston Purple Sox, Seattle Mariners

The Purple Sox are an apparent choose right here. The Mariners not a lot. This is the pondering: The Athletics are going to regress this yr. They’ve one beginning pitcher and whereas everybody thinks they’re going to succeed with bullpenning like they did final yr keep in mind Sean Manaea was a staple within the rotation till August and Trevor Cahill and Edwin Jackson ate up some innings whereas combining to win 15 video games.

None of these guys are within the rotation this season and that may actually damage Oakland. The one different staff that we predict might slip in can be the Rays, however they went by way of lots of turnover.

Seattle has stable pitching once more, and a lineup that works. Whereas it could really feel like recency bias because the Mariners simply beat the A’s twice in Japan, it isn’t. We actually like this staff and assume they’re going to beat up on the Angels and Rangers and use that to get again to the playoffs for the primary time in what looks like an eternity.

ALCS choose — Astros vs. Yankees

A rematch of the 2017 ALCS, this collection will all come all the way down to who has home-field benefit. If the Yankees get it, they win. If the Astros get it, they do. We’ll take the Yankees to win the collection because of this and nearly this purpose alone: James Paxton is the Astros’ kryptonite.

Paxton is 7-Three with a 2.89 ERA in his profession versus Houston and he’ll seemingly get two begins in an ALCS matchup between the 2 groups. Houston can also’t hit Luis Severino, and if the teen comes again wholesome after a spring coaching arm damage, that might be 4 wins between simply these two pitchers.

4 video games wins an ALCS, so that is the choose.

MVP — Mike Trout, Angels

Cy Younger Winner — Trevor Bauer, Indians

If Bauer had been wholesome all of 2018 he would have received the AL Cy Younger. He bested teammate Corey Kluber in nearly each single class and Kluber was a Cy Younger finalist.

There is no such thing as a pitcher in MLB with higher stuff than Bauer in the mean time. His assortment of fastball, curveball, slider and alter is nearly as good as gold and while you see him pitch up shut you don’t have any thought how anybody can contact him.

If he stays wholesome he’ll win the award this yr.

Rookie of the Yr — Yusei Kikuchi, Mariners

This feels a bit crummy as a result of Kikuchi is 27 years previous, however will probably be his first season in MLB and he shall be within the rotation for Seattle from day one.

He’ll publish good numbers in a pitcher-friendly ballpark and earn lots of wins in a division with unhealthy groups like Texas and Los Angeles and horrible hitter’s parks in Oakland and LA. However, do not low cost Houston for a way unhealthy of a park it may be to hit in as nicely. Nobody likes that batter’s eye in heart discipline and it hurts runs scored. 

Kikuchi has superb stuff and is a mature pitcher which ought to be sufficient to win him the award.

Supervisor of the Yr — Scott Servais, Mariners

If the Mariners get again to the postseason for the primary time since 2001, Servais will win the award. This one is fairly self-explanatory.

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