Posted on Monday, April 03, 2017
BY DAN ZIELINSKI
Opening Day is only a few days away and it will be intriguing to see if the Chicago Cubs can repeat as World Series champions. Here are the teams I believe will each claim a spot in the MLB playoffs
AL East: Boston Red Sox
With the off-season acquisition of left-hander Chris Sale, the Red Sox have one of the best starting rotations to go with their core of young, talented position players.
AL Central: Cleveland Indians
he Indians have an elite pitching staff and the addition of slugger Edwin Encarnacion makes their lineup even more dangerous.
AL West: Houston Astros
oaded with young talent, the Astros have one of the best lineups in baseball.
AL Wild Cards: Seattle Mariners and Texas Rangers
The Mariners will make the playoffs for the first time since 2001, while the Rangers will beat out a handful of teams for the final wild card spot.
NL East: Washington Nationals
With a pitching staff led by Max Scherzer and Stephen Strasburg and an offense featuring Bryce Harper and Trea Turner, the Nationals will fend off the Mets for the division crown.
NL Central: Chicago Cubs
Last season, the Cubs won the World Series, after winning 103 games in the regular season. They will once again be the best team in baseball.
NL West: San Francisco Giants
If it wasn’t for a horrific bullpen last season, the Giants would have easily won over 90 games and the division. With the addition of closer Mark Melancon, the Giants will compete with the Cubs for the top spot in the National League.
NL Wild Cards: Los Angeles Dodgers and New York Mets
On paper, the Dodgers have enough talent to win the World Series, but injuries have kept them from winning it all in the past. The Mets might have an ageing lineup, but they have a deep rotation of seven starts when everyone is healthy
World Series: Chicago Cubs over the Cleveland Indians
This season’s World Series will be a rematch of last year’s Fall Classic, which the Cubs won in a historic seven-game series. The Indians are better than they were last year and are capable of winning it all. But, the Cubs are a dynasty in the making and will become just the fifth NL team to win two-straight World Series titles (the 1908 Cubs, '22 Giants and '76 Reds).