MLB Top 5 Teams Going Into the Season

5. Atlanta Braves.  The addition of Cole Hamels to a young but strong rotation will make the Braves better than they were last year (if he can stay healthy) and sliding Marcel Ozuna into a lineup alongside Ronald Acuña, Ozzie Albies, and Freddie Freeman makes Atlanta the clear front-runner in the NL east.  Could this be the year that Dansby Swanson lives up to the hype? Projected record 38-22

4. Houston Astros. No team is happier than the Houston Astros to be playing games without fans this season.  After being caught in the biggest scandal since the steroid era (maybe since the Black Sox), it will be interesting to see how Houston fares in their new role as league villain.  Their division will be tougher as they’ll have to face Anthony Rendon, Mike Trout, and a healthy Shohei Ohtani on a regular basis, but their lineup of stars and a rotation of Verlander, Greinke, and McCullers Jr will be tough to push out of the top spot in the AL West. Projected record: 39-21 

3. Tampa Bay Rays. The Rays have built one of the best starting rotations in baseball with Blake Snell, Tyler Glasnow, and Charlie Morton and they have a bullpen to match it.  Their bats leave something to be desired, especially after losing Tommy Pham, but look for the Rays to push the Yankees hard in the AL East, especially in a 60-game season. Projected record: 39-21

2. Los Angeles Dodgers. The Dodgers have been the cream of the NL crop for the last three seasons.  This winter all they did was add an experienced veteran arm in David Price and one of the game’s absolute best 5-tool players in Mookie Betts.  I’d bet on some regression from Bellinger, but even so, if LA is going to finally break through and win a title, this is the year to do it.  Projected record: 42-16

  1. New York Yankees. In 2019, 30 different Yankees landed on the IL and they still won 103 games and a division title.  This year, Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton look poised to be the destructive duo that we missed out on last summer and GM Brian Cashman addressed the team’s one real weakness by adding arguably the best starting pitcher in the game to an already solid rotation.  If there’s a chink in New York’s armor, I don’t see it. Projected record: 43-17

Did your team crack the top 5?

Article by: Daniel Nelson

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