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2018 MLB Predictions (Standings, Leaders, Awards)

2018 MLB Predictions (Standings, Leaders, Awards)

We are officially less than 24 hours from the first pitch of the 2018 baseball season. Hopefully you all love your fantasy teams and haven’t already suffered from the injury bug. It is bound to happen sooner than later, but before we need to worry about which waiver wire pickups to add, you’ve got a moment to breathe and just take in the game. Today, I’ll be doing just that with my annual MLB Predictions piece. I’ll give you my predictions for the MLB Standings, fantasy leaders at all 5×5 fantasy categories, the MLB awards races and the MLB playoff results.

It is obvious that Mike Trout is your best bet to win the AL MVP and that the Dodgers are near-locks to win the NL Central. That easily predicted combination is never how the season plays out, however. Think of this my attempt at the perfect bracket. I’m trying to build out a realistic scenario with injuries, trades and volatility in mind. When you are finished, let me know a few of your predictions for the season on Twitter. Thank you for reading and good luck in your fantasy leagues this year!

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AL East

93-69 Yankees
85-77 Blue Jays
84-78 Red Sox
78-84 Orioles
74-88 Rays
–Everyone is expecting the Red Sox and Yankees to be neck and neck, but the Red Sox will start the season slow with Pedroia, Pomeranz and Eduardo Rodriguez all on the DL. They will never able to entirely crawl out of the hole either, as Mookie Betts misses a chunk of time just as they were getting back in the race. The Yankees will win the division handily, but not without injury issues of their own. Both Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton spend stints on the DL, but New York acquires Mike Moustakas mid-season from the Royals to plug one of their holes. Meanwhile, the Blue Jays’ finally healthy pitching staff will have them quietly in contention for the Wild Card. At the trade deadline, they add Starlin Castro but it won’t be enough as they miss out on the second Wild Card by two games.

AL Central

102-60 Indians
*89-73 Twins
70-92 Tigers
66-96 Royals
63-99 White Sox
–Both the Indians and Twins are major beneficiaries of playing in the worst division in baseball with three of the worst five teams in the Majors. Minnesota rides Miguel Sano’s breakout bat and a much-improved rotation to a Wild Card spot. The division will never be in question, however, as the Indians’ rotation features five terrific starting pitchers. Each one of them will finish the year with an ERA below 3.40 while their bullpen does just enough to bring the team ERA to a tie with the 2016 Cubs’ 3.15 mark.

AL West

98-64 Astros
*87-75 Angels
83-79 Mariners
76-86 Rangers
73-89 A’s
–There is little doubt that the Astros have the most talented roster in the Majors, but they again will suffer multiple injuries including one to the ever-durable Jose Altuve that knocks him out for two months. They will still nearly manage to win 100 games, though, thanks to a great wealth of depth featuring J.D. Davis and Derek Fisher. The Mariners nibbled at Houston’s heels for a few months, but James Paxton, who at the time will lead the AL in ERA, will be shut down and the hot Seattle offense goes cold for an extended stretch that the Angels inevitably will pass them up. The Angels’ six-man rotation will do the trick in front of a brilliant defense, carrying L.A. into a wild-card showdown against the Twins.

NL East

89-73 Nationals
83-79 Mets
80-82 Phillies
79-83 Braves
59-103 Marlins
–The Nationals begin the season as the most popular National League contender, but there are injury risks all over the field and they won’t be able to escape unscathed. Ryan Zimmerman, Bryce Harper and Max Scherzer all spend extended time on the D.L. They are able to send Juan Soto and Carter Kieboom to the White Sox for Jose Abreu, and that proves to be plenty for them to push past the Mets late into the season. While Noah Syndergaard staying healthy will be a factor for New York’s contention, the fact that they will lead all of baseball in home runs will play the largest role. They won’t be the only surprise team winning some ball games either. Both the Phillies and Braves will be in the race for nearly half of the season. In fact, the Braves will package Kyle Wright, Ian Anderson and Kyle Muller to the Rays in exchange for three and a half seasons of Chris Archer. It won’t do the trick to get them over the hump in 2018, nor will Ronald Acuna’s fluke injury, but pundits will be calling them a 2019 favorite by this fall.

NL Central

92-70 Cubs
*88-74 Cardinals
79-83 Pirates
77-85 Brewers
67-95 Reds
–From the first week of the season, both the Cubs and Cardinals will separate themselves from the rest of the pack. The Cubs with their hitting and double-aces while the Cardinals do it on the backs of three breakout pitchers and a steady offense. When St. Louis lands Wil Myers from the Padres for Carson Kelly, Harrison Bader and Jose Martinez, the Cubs will trump them by making a major splash for Manny Machado. Behind them, the Brewers’ rotation will be so abysmal that the sneaky Pirates will even manage to slip past them before the close of the season.

NL West

97-65 Diamondbacks
*95-67 Dodgers
84-78 Rockies
77-85 Giants
64-98 Padres
–The Dodgers are built to contend for a World Series this season and they will have a tremendous season, but not without Arizona ruining their parade. Arizona’s offense is stacked and Alex Avila will be one of the top surprise players of the season, but it is their rotation that will turn heads this year and help them win nearly 100 games and home-field advantage in the NL. The Rockies will have a spot in the playoff race as well thanks to the emergence of David Dahl and Ryan McMahon coupled with the resurgence of Carlos Gonzalez and Trevor Story, but without their pitching continuing last year’s success, it won’t be enough. 


AL Hitters

  • BA – Miguel Cabrera (.331)
  • HR – Joey Gallo (48)
  • RBI – Miguel Sano (120)
  • R – Carlos Correa (124)
  • SB – Byron Buxton (40)

NL Hitters

  • BA – Joey Votto (.356)
  • HR – Cody Bellinger (46)
  • RBI – Marcell Ozuna (127)
  • R – Christian Yelich (117)
  • SB – Trea Turner (76)

AL Pitchers

  • ERA – Garrett Richards (2.38)
  • WHIP – Corey Kluber (0.90)
  • W – Luis Severino (20)
  • K – Chris Sale (284)
  • SV – Roberto Osuna (40)

NL Pitchers

  • ERA – Stephen Strasburg (2.04)
  • WHIP – Zack Greinke (0.99)
  • W – Yu Darvish (19)
  • K – Noah Syndergaard (255)
  • SV – Brandon Morrow (41)



  1. JD Martinez (.309 BA, 46 HR, 112 RBI)
  2. Manny Machado (.300, 42 HR, 14 SB)
  3. Mike Trout (.310, 38 HR, 120 R)
  4. Carlos Correa (.317, 30 HR, 124 R)
  5. Francisco Lindor (.291, 28 HR, 17 SB)


  1. Corey Seager (.323 BA, 30 HR, 110 R)
  2. Joey Votto (.356 BA, 33 HR, 116 R)
  3. Trea Turner (.303 BA, 20 HR, 76 SB)
  4. Tommy Pham (.312 BA, 30 HR, 33 SB)
  5. Freddie Freeman (.332 BA, 33 HR, 100 RBI)

AL Cy Young

  1. Corey Kluber (18 W, 2.49 ERA, 254 K)
  2. Chris Sale (16 W, 2.48 ERA, 284 K)
  3. Luis Severino (20 W, 3.02 ERA, 222 K)
  4. Lance McCullers (16 W, 2.55 ERA, 216 K)
  5. Mike Clevinger (18 W, 3.17 ERA, 229 K)

NL Cy Young

  1. Stephen Strasburg (17 W, 2.04 ERA, 232 K)
  2. Noah Syndergaard (14 W, 2.33 ERA, 255 K)
  3. Zack Greinke (15 W, 2.49 ERA, 191 K)
  4. Luke Weaver (18 W, 2.66 ERA, 214 K)
  5. Yu Darvish (19 W, 3.20 ERA, 246 K)

AL Rookie of the Year

  1. Shohei Ohtani (166 IP, 2.65 ERA, 198 K)
  2. Dan Vogelbach (.262 BA, 26 HR, 88 RBI)
  3. Franklin Barreto (365 AB, .311 BA, 22 SB)
  4. Austin Hays (398 AB, .270 BA, 17 HR)
  5. Anthony Banda (117 IP, 3.39 ERA, 115 K)

NL Rookie of the Year

  1. Jack Flaherty (179 IP, 3.12 ERA, 186 K)
  2. Ryan McMahon (.291 BA, 26 HR, 10 SB)
  3. Scott Kingery (.266 BA, 19 HR, 20 SB)
  4. Nick Senzel (380 AB, .294 BA, 18 HR)
  5. Alex Reyes (124 IP, 2.46 ERA, 151 K)


Wild Card Games

Angels > Twins — Richards tosses a complete game shutout
Dodgers > Cardinals — Kershaw finally beats STL in the playoffs

Divisional Round

Indians > Angels in 3 — Dominant performances by Kluber, Clevinger and Salazar
Yankees > Astros in 5 — The best bullpen in MLB history is the difference for NY
Dodgers > Diamondbacks in 4 — The three lefties (Kershaw/Hill/Urias) prove to be too much for ARZ
Nationals > Cubs in 4 — Getting Scherzer and Harper back just before the playoffs helps WAS

League Championships

Yankees > Indians in 7 — Gleyber Torres begins his breakout as the next Yankees’ star
Nationals > Dodgers in 6 — Scherzer and Strasburg each win two games

World Series

Yankees > Nationals in 6 — The Yankees’ bullpen gives up just 6 runs in a remarkable 39 innings  (MVP: Gary Sanchez)

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