A Look At How The 2009 MLB Season Will Go, Team By Team

joel kirsteinCorrespondent IApril 3, 2009

CLEARWATER, FL - FEBRUARY 20:  Ryan Howard #6 of the Philadelphia Phillies poses for a photo during Spring Training Photo day on February 20, 2009 at Bright House Networks Field in Clearwater, Florida.  (Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images)

So, this is how I think the 2009 MLB season will go, team by team and division by division. My playoff picks are at the bottom.

AL East

1—Red Sox: Here's a scary thought: They're even better than last year!
2—Yankees: Great pitching, older slower defense, less hitting, no A-Rod equals wild card.
3—Rays: Not likely to over-achieve like last season, and probably no postseason either.
4—Orioles: Getting better, but not enough to be a factor.
5—Jays: Playing in Canada means 25 percent exchange on wins; 81 is actually 60 wins.

AL Central

1—Indians: 90 wins will win it if Pronk, Carmona, and Wood come back big.
2—White Sox: If the Sox don't make the postseason, goodbye Ozzie!
3—Twins: Mauer and Morneau are All-Stars. The rest? Not so much.
4—Tigers: Ordonez and Cabrera will hit tons; the pitching will give up even more.
5—Royals: Not even close, but getting better.

AL West

1—Angels: The class of the division. It won't even be close.
2—Rangers: These guys will score lots of runs, but the pitching will give up even more.
3—A's: Giambi, Chavez, and Holliday won't be enough to get to .500.
4—Mariners: Jr. is back; Ichiro will hit, and the M's will still suck.

NL East

1—Phillies: They will repeat as division and NL Champs and go deep into October.
2—Mets: If they're lucky, maybe the wild card spot? Older and less hitting, though.
3—Marlins: The biggest obstacle to winning: Ownership.
4—Braves: Cox' legacy on the line. Get a mediocre team to play .500.
5—Nationals: They could have stayed in Montreal to stink this bad. I hope they rot!

NL Central

1—Cubs: I think the devil has run out of ways to torture and deny them a title.
2—Brewers: Not as good as last year, but enough to finish second.
3—Reds: Lots of good, young talent, but not good enough...yet.
4—Cardinals: Albert and not a whole lot more.
5—Pirates: The devil isn't quite done torturing the Buccos.
6—Astros: This is the year the wheels come off the cart for the 'Stros.

NL West

1—Dodgers: Second straight division title in Mannyland, but no further.
2—Diamondbacks: Good young pitching and, if the hitting clicks, wild card.
3—Giants: All pitch, no hitting, no fun.
4—Rockies: Not going in the right direction.
5—Padres: Great ballpark, better weather, but it will be a brutal season in SD.

Managers fired in 2009

Guillen, Leyland, Trembley, Gaston, Washington, Gonzalez, Acta, Cooper, Hurdle, Black—there will be blood, and lots of it!

NL HR Champ: Ryan Howard—51
AL HR Champ: Josh Hamilton—44

NL Cy Young: Cole Hamels
AL Cy Young: Daisuke Matsuzaka

NL MVP: Chase Utley
AL MVP: Kevin Youkilis

AL Champs: Red Sox
NL Champs: Phillies
WS Champs: Phillies repeat

Related

    Struggling Players Already Facing Benching

    MLB logo
    MLB

    Struggling Players Already Facing Benching

    Joel Reuter
    via Bleacher Report

    Athletes Smoke Weed. These Are Their Stories.

    MLB logo
    MLB

    Athletes Smoke Weed. These Are Their Stories.

    Bleacherreport
    via Bleacherreport

    Each Team's Prospect Who Could Help Right Now

    MLB logo
    MLB

    Each Team's Prospect Who Could Help Right Now

    Joel Reuter
    via Bleacher Report

    Farquhar Taken to Hospital After Collapsing in Dugout

    MLB logo
    MLB

    Farquhar Taken to Hospital After Collapsing in Dugout

    Kyle Newport
    via Bleacher Report