(Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
By Bruce Nye - Angelswin.com Columnist
The Mid-term Disappointments
You can call me Charlie Brown because I think Lucy one time will not lift up the football when Charlie Brown runs to kick it. And, I think one of these days the Chicago Cubs will achieve what I thought they would all along. They break more hearts than the cheerleader we were secretly in love with only to see her run off with the Harley guy from the competing high school. There oughta be a law.
Then there is the New York Mets. At mid-term in 2009 they are a MASH unit and noting seems to be working right. They have guys playing all over the field in the wrong positions, but there is little they can do.
Finally there are the Cleveland Indians, I thought they were the best team in the AL Central. I thought that also last year, even though the general consensus was the Tigers would score more than Brad Pitt at the Homely Girls School in New Hampshire. They didn’t then and look strong now, but what about the Indians? Even though they lost CC Sabathia, they looked poised to step it up and win the Central. One of the baseball talking heads at ESPN predicted that the Indians would win the World Series.
The Mid-term Surprises
No question, the Seattle Mariners are this year’s biggest surprise. After losing more than 100 games last year, the Ms have come back and are impressing a lot of people. Their pitching staff has been more than solid and they are getting great contributions from Branyan, Gutierrez and, of course, Ichiro.
The Texas Rangers have been very strong all year and history buffs will tell you that their pitching staff will melt in the August and September Texas heat. I’m not so sure. Their hitting is off the chart and appears to be loaded for many years to come and if their pitching can hold up they will give the Angels all the pennant race they want.
The Los Angeles Dodgers are a mild surprise in the NL West. Many people expected their team to be strong, but I don’t know anyone who thought at the mid-term they would enjoy the MLB’s best record. The Dodgers are very strong in all aspects and now have Manny back for the second half, but I think their starting pitching is not as strong as it could.
Here are my predictions for the races and the post-season in 2009:
Winner – Boston
Wild card – New York
Winner - Detroit
Winner – Los Angeles
Winner – Philadelphia
Winner – St. Louis
Winner – Los Angeles
Wild Card – San Francisco
Boston over Detroit
Los Angeles over New York
Los Angeles over Boston
Los Angeles over Cardinals
San Francisco over Philadelphia
San Francisco over Los Angeles
Los Angeles Angels over the San Francisco Giants – a 2002 repeat