Photo by AP Photo/John Minchillo
MLB’s Opening Day Schedule
Orioles vs Yankees (10:05 am) ESPN
Mets vs Nationals (10:05 am)
Cardinals vs Brewers (11:10 am)
Braves vs Phillies (12:05 am)
Tigers vs Blue Jays (12:37 pm)
Astros vs Rays (1:00 pm)
Cubs ve Rangers (1:05 pm)
Angels vs Athletics (1:07 pm)
Pirates vs Reds (1:10 pm)
Rockies vs Marlins (1:10 pm)
Diamondbacks vs Dodgers (1:10 pm) ESPN
Giants vs Padres (1:10 pm)
Indians vs Twins (1:10)
White Sox vs Royals (1:15 pm)
Red Sox vs Mariners (4:08 pm) ESPN
The AL West has been the Astros division over the last two years, winning over 100 games in both seasons. The Mariners aren’t really sure if they want to be sellers or still content, but their roster is certainly a lot younger than it was last season. The Rangers haven’t made any big splashes this offseason, so they should finish around 75 wins. The Angels are depending on the right arm’s of Trevor Cahill and Matt Harvey in 2019. The Angels will go only as far as their starting rotation allows them. The A’s should be competitive in 2019 with a well-rounded lineup, solid bullpen and a couple of quality arms in their rotation.
The AL East is a two-horse race at the top. The Red Sox and Yankees are arguably the two best teams in baseball, however one of these two teams will fall short of the division and more than likely settle for a wildcard spot. The sometimes forgotten about Tampa Bay Rays won’t be a slouch this season either. Last year the Rays won 90 games and still missed the playoffs. The Blue Jays didn’t do enough this offseason to contend, and are still waiting to call up their young core of prospects. The Orioles are still in rebuild mode and look to be a couple of years away, as they lost 115 times last season.
The AL Central needs a lot of help from top to bottom. The Royals, White Sox, and Tigers weigh down the division, despite the Twins and Indians fighting it out for the top spot. The Twins and Indians should have a lot of wins after beating up on the bottom half of the division. The Royals, White Sox, and Tigers collectively lost a total of 302 games. One thing to not forget, the Indians have lost a multitude of key players, giving the Twins a real shot at taking the division in 2019.
The NL West is the Dodgers division to lose. The Dodgers are coming off of back-to-back world series appearances and it doesn’t look like they are far off from doing so again. The Diamondbacks and Giants didn’t do much this offseason to shorten the gap between them and the Dodgers, although the Padres did break the bank singing Manny Machado in the offseason. The Padres have a young up-and-coming core of position players, but still seem to be a couple of years away. The race to the top of the division will likely be between the Rockies and Dodgers. If the Rockies starting pitching can show some promise down the stretch of the season, they can be a serious contender for the NL West.
The NL East should be one of the most competitive divisions in baseball. The Nationals, Phillies, Braves and Mets are all contenders for the top spot. The Marlins can almost get penciled in for the bottom spot, as they are in complete rebuild mode. The Phillies spent money this offseason, as if money is not an issue what so ever. They brought in Bryce Harper, Andrew McCutchen, Jean Segura, J.T Realmuto, and David Robertson. The Phillies have an intriguing combination of veterans that will surround their young core, giving them a solid everyday lineup. The Braves broke through last season winning the NL East with their young prospects producing at the big league level. Although, they did appear to be a year ahead of schedule. After a year under their belt 2019 could be the season they can make a serious run in the playoffs. The Mets were active this offseason bringing in Robinson Cano, Edwin Diaz, and Wilson Ramos to help make a push for the playoffs. Even with the Nationals losing Harper, they still should be in control of the NL East. From top to bottom the Nationals arguably have the best roster in the division and should be one of the teams at the top.
The NL East can arguably have three teams that make the playoffs. The Cubs and Brewers are almost a lock for 90 wins and the Cardinals are no slouch either. The Cardinals brought in one of the most complete players, adding Paul Goldschmidt to their everyday lineup. The Reds have made some drastic improvements this offseason bringing in a haul from the Dodgers, getting Alex Wood, Matt Kemp, and Yasiel Puig. They’ve also added Sonny Gray and Tanner Roark to help bolster the front end of their starting rotation. The Pirates round out the division as a quality team in the NL East, but will have a difficult time fighting it out for the top spot because every team in their division improved this offseason.
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