My annual MLB predictions are back, and I’m coming off a very strong showing of correctly predicting the World Series. As you know, my favorite team since 1993, the Minnesota Twins, have lost an unfathomable world record 18 straight playoff games. If this blog’s predictions somehow affect the actual outcomes on the field, then I would be wise to choose the Twins to do well this time! But until they actually prove it and win a game, I just can’t.
I think the Twins’ success will ride on their ability to keep Buxton and Donaldson healthy and in the lineup. If both hitters play in 130 games and are 100% healthy for a playoff run, I think the Twins could be World Series contenders. But if they are banged up and unable to regularly contribute, it will be a rough season for the Twins’ offense. People keep saying “this team will hit”, but I’m not so sure. They took a huge step back last year, and were atrocious innings 4 through 9. I’m a big fan of Nelson Cruz, but it’s asking a lot of a 40-year-old to carry an offense. I don’t think this is the offensive juggernaut people remember from 2019.
However, the pitching looks pretty solid. With a true ace in Kenta Maeda and a veteran back of the bullpen with Colome and Robles joining Rogers and Duffey, I think the Twins’ staff will be very good. I have my doubts that both J.A. Happ and Matt Shoemaker will pan out, and it will only be a matter of time before Dobnak, Smeltzer, or Thorpe wind back up in the rotation. But at least they have some depth there.
If I am going with my gut, I really do think the White Sox are better than the Twins, but I’m predicting a Wild Card berth for the Twins. I think the AL Central could be tight. I’ve got it separated by 21 games first to last, but I wouldn’t be surprised if it was even less. I personally think the Royals will be very respectable and the Tigers are clearly better than before.
Anyway, here are my 2021 predictions.
|AL East||W||L||GB||NL East||W||L||GB|
|Tampa Bay*||90||72||8||NY Mets*||86||76||14|
|AL Central||W||L||GB||NL Central||W||L||GB|
|Kansas City||84||78||10||Chicago Cubs||79||83||12|
|AL West||W||L||GB||NL West||W||L||GB|
|LA Angels||82||80||3||San Diego*||99||63||5|
As for the playoffs, I predict the Twins make it, but drop their play-in game to lose their 19th in a row.
ALWC: White Sox over Rays
NLWC: Padres over Mets
ALDS: White Sox over Yankees, 3-2; Astros over Twins, 3-0
NLDS: Braves over Cardinals, 3-2; Dodgers over Padres, 3-1
ALCS: Astros over White Sox, 4-3; Braves over Dodgers, 4-3
WS: Braves over Astros, 4-1