2014 MLB National League Preview

Posted: March 30, 2014 in News, Opinion
Tags: ,

By Steven Inman

Andrew McCutchen should help Pittsburgh compete for a playoff spot again in a tough N.L. Central

Andrew McCutchen should help Pittsburgh compete for a playoff spot again in a tough N.L. Central

With Opening Night just a few hours away it is time to break down the entire National League. We normally do strictly the N.L. East here on BrokeMets but it is always fun to make preseason predictions. Post your own predictions for all division winners in the comment section and we will see who gets it right at the end of the year.

N.L. East

The 2013 N.L. East Champion Braves have taken a step back with the losses of Kris Medlen and Brandon Beachy in their rotation due to Tommy John surgery. The team also lost Tim Hudson in free agency to the SF Giants. The team will go as far as their new rotation can take them led by Julio Teheran and the already injured Mike Minor. Freedie Freeman should be an MVP candidate once again.

The Nationals should be the favorite here with a stacked rotation and a solid lineup top to bottom. This could be the year where Bryce Harper breaks out. The Miami Marlins continue to stockpile young talent and Jose Fernandez should be a Cy Young candidate yet again, this time with no innings limit. The Phillies continue to get older and older without getting better and should continue to slide in the standings. The Mets are likely somewhere in between.

  1.       Washington Nationals
  2.       Atlanta Braves
  3.       New York Mets
  4.       Miami Marlins
  5.       Philadelphia Phillies

 

N.L. Central

The St. Louis Cardinals continue to be the class of the division if not the entire National League. They continue to bring up young players that seem to contribute immediately. They get a full year out of Michael Wacha this season as well as Matt Adams playing everyday at first base. Trevor Rosenthal and Carlos Martinez will form a dynamic back end of the bullpen. Both players are expected to be starters at some point but the Cardinals simply don’t have the room in their rotation.

The Pirates should take a step back to open the year as they look to be a bat and a pitcher short. They may get both those pieces soon however with prospects Gregory Polanco and Jameson Taillon. The Reds should also take a step back with the loss of Shin-Soo Choo. It will be interesting to see if his replacement Billy Hamilton can hit enough to capitalize on all of his speed. The Brewers and Cubs are still rebuilding  but the Cubs look like they are getting closer with some interesting hitting prospects getting very close.

  1. St. Louis Cardinals

    Top Prospect Oscar Tavares is just waiting for a spot in a loaded Cardinals lineup

    Top Prospect Oscar Tavares is just waiting for a spot in a loaded Cardinals lineup

  2. Cincinnati Reds
  3. Pittsburgh Pirates
  4. Chicago Cubs
  5. Milwaukee Brewers

N.L. West

The N.L. West is the Dodgers to lose. With the star power they have there they should be one of the early favorites for the World Series. They need to keep their starting rotation healthy and if they do they should have no problems winning this division.

The Diamondbacks are interesting because they have a lot of players coming off down years. Players like Martin Prado, Cody Ross and Aaron Hill all are veterans with a track record, now with something to prove. Archie Bradley will start the year in the minors but has little left to show down there. It is more of a service time situation but once he comes up he should be the early favorite for N.L. Rookie of the Year. Losing All-Star Patrick Corbin badly hurt the Diamondbacks chances of competing with the Dodgers.

The Giants look to be in no mans land with a great rotation but not enough offense. They have won two championships with this same core though so they can’t be ruled out. They are trying to negotiate a deal with Pablo Sandoval but he is currently asking for an absurd amount of money and he looks likely to have a big year and go to free agency.

The Rockies can never be ruled out but they just don’t have the pitching to compete. They badly need Troy Tulowitzki and Carlos Gonzalez to stay healthy. When the two are playing together the team is very good. The Padres just don’t seem to have any sort of offense this year and lack the front line pitching needed to compete consistently.

The Rockies must keep Cargo and Tulo healthy if they want to compete in '14

The Rockies must keep Cargo and Tulo healthy if they want to compete in ’14

  1. LA Dodgers
  2. Arizona Diamondbacks
  3. SF Giants
  4. Colorado Rockies
  5. San Diego Padres

MVP: Paul Goldschmidt

NL ROY: Archie Bradley

CY Young: Jose Fernandez

Manager of the year: Matt Williams

I’m giving the Diamondbacks the ROY and the MVP but it will not be enough to overtake the Dodgers. Goldschmidt deserved the MVP last season and if he puts up similar numbers this season he should win it. Bradley looks like a star in the making and should make the snakes a fun team to watch in the desert. Matt Williams takes over an underachieving Nationals team. They should understand that they can’t take this race for granted. If they play up to their potential they should win and first year manager Matt Williams should win Manager of the year. Fernandez is as good as they get and makes Marlins games a must watch when he is on the mound. The question with him will be will he get enough run support to win a Cy Young.

What are your predictions for the National League????

 

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Comments
  1. […] With baseball thankfully just a few short days away let’s take a look at the entire National League with the official 2015 BrokeMets National League predictions. Last year my predictions on division winners were perfect but my award races were way way off… You can check last year’s post out here. […]

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