It’s the halfway point of the major league season, and the elite teams are starting to separate themselves. Many clubs, such as the Brewers, Red Sox, and Angels, are already running away with their respective divisions. The Mets, Tigers, Indians, Padres, and Dodgers are facing greater competition in their divisions, though they all should make the playoffs. But which of these teams has the best shot at winning the World Series? It’s a loaded question, but I gave my best shot at ranking them. Here are the eight teams that can win the World Series.
April baseball may be about as meaningful as the 7th round of the NFL draft (do you really think Ramzee Robinson will have a big impact on the Lions next season?). Still, this opening month of baseball has been quite an eventful one. The Yankees are in last, the Brewers are in first, the Braves have returned, and Barry is back. Here is some hardware for the best (and worst) of April.
After giving you my rankings for the hitters, it’s now time for the pitchers. While closers are generally easy to predict, the starters are a whole different animal. After about the top eight or so, there is a group of about 15-20 starters that can be grouped in many different ways. The trick is to find candidates for a breakout year, such as Brandon Webb or Aaron Harang last season.
The most entertaining sports weekend of the year is heading our way. Sixty four teams will be whittled down to 16 in a crazy four-day rush of non-stop college basketball. While every person worth knowing has already filled out a bracket, here are ten March Madness predictions anyway.
With many fantasy baseball drafts just around the corner, it’s time to start breaking down each position. Here’s part one of my two-part preview, in which I give you my top hitters at each position:
Indianapolis Colts. Super Bowl champions. After seeing the team fail in the playoffs year after year, I didn’t expect they would ever win. But they convinced everyone they were the true champs with an impressive postseason performance, quieting all their doubters with win over archrival New England and a Super Bowl blowout over the Bears. With all the doubt and criticism that Peyton Manning and Tony Dungy have withstood for so long, I think this franchise truly deserves a Super Bowl title. But an intriguing question is, how did they get here? How could this team finally lift up their play and win a championship after six years of postseason failures?
I thought the Patriots-Chargers divisional round clash was a great game. It had a lot of bizarre plays, an exciting ending, and plenty of star power. But yesterday’s AFC Championship was like that to the tenth power–an intense game with plenty of momentum changes, almost like an episode of “24.” The Colts’ 38-34 victory over their archrival Patriots was one for the ages, a game that any true sports fan who watched it will remember for the rest of his life.
Last week’s divisional playoff games were an absolute riot. Like most years, those four games provided a weekend of football that is hard to top. Every game featured big-time surprises, and all but one had down-to-the-wire endings. Could anyone have predicted that both Peyton Manning and Tom Brady would have sub-par games, yet their teams would still win? This is what the playoffs are all about: discovering things about each team that the regular season could not show, answering all questions, and delivering an undisputed champion. The Final Four is set, and each team absolutely deserves to be there.
For all the attention that the BCS bowls get, it’s surprising how little is focused on the actual games. I’ve heard much more about proposed playoff systems that won’t happen then the games that will actually take place. And when people do predict the BCS games, it’s about 95% in favor of one team. This year, every BCS game but one features a heavy favorite. Can any of the underdogs win? Which team will surprise the most people? As we’ve seen countless times, great performance in a BCS bowl one year can lead to a national championship the next.
Nine games into the season, we are finally being shown some team’s true identities. The Falcons, Bengals, Rams, Vikings, and Jags have all declined from the teams they were a month ago. Even New England is down, after back-to-back losses for the first time in years. While the NFL’s middle ground remains muddled, two things are clear: some teams are elite while many have already secured a top 10 pick in next year’s draft. This week, with the exception of a few games, it’s the haves playing to have-nots.