Don't Fear Spring Is Almost Here
The champagne has been popped, spring bags are packed, and baseball season is just around the corner. We are only 14 days from the first pitchers and catchers reporting. As the new season nears we all have the same questions on our mines. Questions of free agency, rookies, and who will bring home the hardware.
Oh where, oh where will Bryce Harper and Manny Machado sign?
Every time i turned on ESPN this winter it seemed to be all they talked about. The more i saw it the more i started to think about the possibilities. So could these two both go to the same team? The Philadelphia Phillies have shown interest in signing both. That would result in either Manny Machado or Bryce Harper taking a pay cut. These players want to get the most money possible that's why they are in a holdout.
I really think Bryce will stay in Washington. The nationals are still a team with good prospects and a veteran core. Washington is a big enough market that he will be able to get paid and still be a big name player. I think the Nationals get back on track this season and get to the playoffs.
Manny Machado on the other hand is a toss up between the Philadelphia Phillies and Chicago White Sox. Both teams have great young talent ready to play now. I think Manny ends up going to the White Sox. He wants to be the face of a organization. There has been talks of a mystery team reaching out to him. If i was to take a guess on who it might be i would say the Milwaukee Brewers. The Brewers want to keep a hold of the National League Central. They could be willing to add another superstar to go along with MVP outfielder Christian Yelich.
So what rookies will make a impact?
The biggest name to look for this season is Vladimir Guerrero Jr. of the Toronto Blue Jays. He is the son of Hall Of Fame outfielder Vladimir Guerrero. Unlike his father he plays third base. He had a Career Minor League average around .330 and 200 RBI's in three years. He is ranked the number one prospect in baseball by many different sites.
A name that's not in the top 20 prospects that i expect to see good things from is Houston Astros Pitcher Josh James. We got to see him play in six games last season. He showed some promise in his Major League Debut striking out nine batters. If Houston scores like they have been in the past. Look for him to post good numbers and rack up the wins. He is ranked 62 on the new MLB.com Prospects list.
Lastly a name to be known later in the season is Mitch Keller of the Pittsburgh Pirates Organization. Depending on how the season goes for the Pirates will factor in if we see him this year or not. He is the future ace in a pretty under the radar rotation. If this pirates team can get some run production from it's young guys they might be a surprise team in the NL Central.
And the Champion is?
I think this is the year the New York Yankees end the drought. The last time they won was in 2009 against the Phillies. The Yankees bring back young talent in Gleyber Torres and Miguel Andujar. Veterans Giancarlo Stanton and Aaron Judge will help power the Bronx Bombers to the World Series. The only question will be if the starting rotation can hold together for the whole season. Hard to believe baseball is back...But we're not complaining.