MLB: 5 Successful Spring Training Teams That Will Disappoint This Season
With spring training headed out the door and fans welcoming Opening Day tomorrow, the excitement is building around the country.
Spring training allowed players to get back into the swing of things with their teams, after taking a break in the offseason. This time lets new acquisitions get used to their new teams for the upcoming season.
Teams like the Kansas City Royals and Baltimore Orioles excelled in spring training. Sometimes, spring training success doesn’t always translate into the regular season.
Here are five successful spring training teams that will disappoint in the upcoming season:
Boston Red Sox
The Boston Red Sox did a lot better in spring training than most people thought they would do. Last year, the team struggled in the AL East and finished the season with one of their worst records in Sox history.
This season, new manager John Farrell hopes for better results. But there weren't any major offseason moves that would help this team significantly.
The AL East looks like the toughest division in baseball because of other top teams like the Toronto Blue Jays and Baltimore Orioles that have improved from last season.
The Sox will have to get off to a good start, winning games early. If they don't, then Boston’s struggles will continue to hurt them this season.
New York Mets
During spring training, the New York Mets showed success, beating teams like the Atlanta Braves, St. Louis Cardinals and other quality opponents.
New addition John Buck and first baseman Ike Davis had solid spring training seasons, which should set them up well for the upcoming season.
This year, the Mets are going to have a tough time at making the playoffs because of their weak pitching staff. They gave up their best pitcher R.A. Dickey, but received some quality young talents like Travis d'Arnaud and Noah Syndergaard in return.
These prospects will take some time to develop and make their way into the Mets' 40-man roster.
This year, the Mets are going to continue to struggle against the Nationals and Braves in the NL East. But they do have a future—if players in their farm system continue to mature.
New manager Walt Weiss has taken on a major task trying to turn the Colorado Rockies into contenders in the NL West.
Other than Weiss being added to the organization, the front office didn't make any major moves in the offseason.
This will hurt their chances of competing with the Dodgers and Giants because of their talented lineups and solid starting fives.
It's tougher to spend on the top players because the Rockies payroll isn't as big as the rest of the division.
Also, their rotation is pretty weak in comparison to other teams because there isn't an ace pitcher. Good pitching is key to having success in their division.
It probably won't be a great year for this squad, but hopefully, they will have a better record than last year.
The Minnesota Twins finished with the fourth-best record in the Grapefruit League. It's a good sign that the Twins had success this spring, even with unloading outfielders Denard Span and Ben Revere this offseason.
One of the main reasons for their success was because of 23-year-old Aaron Hicks, who will become their new center fielder and leadoff man. In 21 games, Hicks posted a .371 batting average with four home runs and 18 runs batted in.
Hicks and players like Joe Mauer will bring hitting to the field, but their starting rotation is lacking. In a Bleacher Report column, Featured Columnist Rick Weiner ranked their rotation 26th out of the 30 teams.
If the Twins' rotation doesn't get better in the future seasons, then they will continue to sit at the bottom of the AL Central.
The Seattle Mariners performed really well in the Cactus League during spring training. They recorded the second-best record in Arizona, but the upcoming season doesn't look as promising.
The Mariners spent a fortune on keeping starting pitcher Felix Hernandez in Seattle. But other than King Felix, their rotation is weak, and they didn't add enough quality hitters in the offseason.
Kendrys Morales will help produce some offense, but not enough to keep up with teams like the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim and Oakland Athletics in the American League West.
The good news is that they probably wont be the worst team in the AL West with the Houston Astros joining the division. The addition will provide the Mariners with more victories than last season, but not enough to make the playoffs.