Birds are chirping, flowers are blooming, and the smoke from Opening Day fireworks has dissipated. With the 2018 MLB season in full swing (see what I did there?), there’s no better time to make big, bold predictions on which teams will make a playoff run and which will make it to the World Series this October.
Teams Likely To Make A Playoff Run
The Houston Astros
The Astros won’t repeat as champions because history says they won’t — no team has won championships back-to-back since 2000. The Astros were under .500 without their phenomenal shortstop Carlos Correa last season, and they can’t be that reliant on one player to have a chance at winning it all, again. This team is still going to be phenomenal but they’re playing in the AL West, which is arguably the most improved division in baseball right now.
The Milwaukee Brewers
The Brewers are one of two teams that didn’t make the playoffs last year that will in 2018.
By adding Christian Yelich and Lorenzo Cain, the Brewers have managed to stabilize their offense. Plus, this team was only a game behind the Rockies in the NL Wild Card last season.
The Seattle Mariners
The Mariners are the other team sure to make the playoffs this season. With Dee Gordon now setting the table, it’s easy to expect even more RBIs from Nelson Cruz and Robinson Cano while James Paxton will feast on innings behind Kings Felix. Plus, Ichiro is back. What more could you want?
Playoff Predictions By Division
NL West: Dodgers AL West: Astros
NL Central: Cubs AL Central: Indians
NL East: Nationals AL East: Yankees
NL Wild Card: Rockies AL Wild Card: Red Sox
NL Wild Card 2: Brewers AL Wild Card 2: Mariners
The San Francisco Giants
Evan Longoria and Andrew McCutchen will stretch this lineup and bring back some magic to the team, magic that has been missing since the Giants won the World Series in 2014. Still, though, losing Madison Bumgarner and Jeff Samardzija will be too much of a blow for this team to make it to the playoffs.
The Washington Nationals
The Nationals will make it out of the NLDS for the first time ever! Their reward? The Los Angeles Dodgers in the NLCS.
World Series Prediction: Dodgers over Red Sox in six games
The last three championships have been all about ending long championship droughts: the Astros in 2017, Cubs in 2016, and Royals in 2015, and of those three only the Royals had ever won a championship before and that was in 1985. Similarly, the Dodgers haven’t won since 1988, so it’s fair to say they’re due.
Aiding in their odds, the Dodgers let Adrian Gonzalez walk to the Mets to make way for Rookie of The Year Cody Bellinger, making Justin Turner’s injury a little less insurmountable because of the team’s depth. Just like the 2015 Royals built off their 2014 game seven World Series appearance, the Dodgers will do the same.
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