Dodgers Will Win World Series, and Other Things I Will Incorrectly Predict

Mark E. SmithCorrespondent IMay 15, 2011

Dodgers Will Win World Series, and Other Things I Will Incorrectly Predict

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    Nearly a quarter of the baseball season has passed and things are just beginning to shape up.

    It's the time of year where we have enough information to make somewhat educated predictions about what the rest of the season will look like.

    Most of the time those predictions turn out to be wrong, but it's always fun to try to peek into that crystal ball anyway.

    So here are four predictions that will probably be wrong and one that will be right, but not necessarily in order.

    This is part one, with another bunch of bad, I mean bold predictions to come later this week.

Don Mattingly Will Guide the Dodgers to the World Series

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    Some of you may be laughing at this one now and thinking, "If the Dodgers win it, who gets the trophy?" Ownership issues aside, the Dodgers have the type of team that is capable of competing.

    The starting pitching has been excellent over the past few weeks, as many thought that they would. Kershaw, Billingsley and Co. have the stuff to propel the Dodgers if they can make it into the postseason.

    Ethier and Kemp provide a great middle-of-the-lineup tandem. And eventually Jerry Sands will find his power in the bigs (didn't we think that about James Loney?).

    One of the biggest problems for the Dodgers offense this season has been injuries. Rafael Furcal, who goes down every year, is on the DL again, but should return later and give the Dodgers a much-needed boost.

    Casey Blake will be huge in the second half as the veteran who drives this team to live up to its potential.

    The team may not be able to make a big-player acquisition until the ownership situation is decided, but they will probably fix the bullpen from within, maybe using Kenley Jansen as the full-time closer.

    They may not look like it now, but they will get hot and find a way to return to the World Series to face. . .

Detroit Tigers

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    The Detroit Tigers haven't won a World Series since 1984 when a certain guy by the name of Kirk Gibson hit a dramatic home run. Wouldn't it be fitting to see the Tigers and Dodgers match up trying to end their long championship droughts?

    The Tigers have built a team that really looks capable, Miguel Cabrera and Victor Martinez lead a very good offense. And the pitching staff has a guy who seemingly can throw a no-hitter any time he takes the mound.

    Justin Verlander, Brad Penny, and Max Scherzer (currently tied for most wins in AL) form an excellent rotation that should put fear into the rest of the American League.

    The AL East may get all the attention, but the Central will be making noise at the end of the year.

Mark Buehrle Will Be Traded

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    This is a prediction that I really don't like making. Mark Buehrle has spent his entire career with the White Sox and should be able to retire with them.

    Over the past 10 years he has been one of the most consistent starters in all of Major League Baseball. He has won at least 10 games in each season since 2001.

    But, the 2011 White Sox are horrible. They are already almost 10 games out, and they have a manager who is perennially on hot seat.

    GM Kenny Williams will be forced to make some bold moves this year, and there will surely be suitors for a guy with Buehrle's talent and experience. Sadly, this will be the season for the dean of the Sox.

Derek Jeter Will Win All-Star MVP

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    Derek Jeter began the year in a horrible slump and was coming off a down year in 2010. He's recently been showing signs that he's finally coming out of it.

    While he may not be deserving of an All-Star Game selection, he will undoubtedly find a way in for his 12th appearance.

    Reaching the 3,000 hit milestone prior to the contest will greatly help his candidacy. I'm not exactly sure why, but I foresee Jeter doing something spectacular to lead the AL to victory and earn his second ASG MVP award.

Bryce Harper Gets the Call

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    Bryce Harper is one of the most anticipated prospects in recent memory. He is still only 18 and at low A ball right now, but he appears to be on the fast track.

    For his age he is way ahead of others, but he is used to playing at a level beyond his years. He spent last year playing at a junior college in Nevada. He's currently hitting around .400 in low A and his manager expects that he won't stay around for long.

    The Nationals have a good outfield, so I don't think they have a need to rush him, but come September, if they aren't contending, it would be a good marketing boost for Harper to appear in a Washington jersey.

    That's all for now, but I've got a few more predictions that I will be sending out in a couple of days after I see how badly I get bashed for these.