By Ben Diamond
With the MLB Winter Meetings around the corner, and the offseason gets into full swing, Yankee fans should start spreading the news: some very exciting moves could be on the way.
Trading for starting pitcher James Paxton from the Mariners (with the unfortunate exchange of Justus Sheffield) was only the first piece to the Yankees offseason puzzle. With the possibility of getting a starting pitcher (Not named Patrick Corbin), Manny Machado, and/or Bryce Harper, this offseason really can push them into being a real World Series contender.
Corbin originally had three teams on his mind: the Yankees, Nationals, and the Phillies, but the Phillies were reportedly dropped off the list late last week, making the possibility of him going to the Yankees even more likely. It was rumored that the Yankees were going to offer five years and $100M. The possibility to go to his childhood team was just a pipe dream however, and Corbin went for the extra year, and the extra money, inking a six-year $140M contract with the Washington Nationals.
So now what? Bryce Harper’s name has been coming up more as a real possibility for the Yankees, although the front office continues to deny. Manny “Johnny Hustle” Machado has also been linked, although his on-field antics down the stretch and into the postseason have hurt his stock. Never doubt the Evil Empire though, as either of these generational talents could be in play. If they do end up signing Harper, he will most likely play first base for them, with a crowded outfield. Harper also has a great lefty bat and can go opposite of breakout Yankee Luke Voit, who showed potential in 2018.
The other side of the coin is in Cleveland, where Trevor Bauer and Corey Kluber are elite starters who are certainly available in a trade with the Indians. And let’s not forget about San Francisco Giants ace Madison Bumgarner, who will be a free agent in a year. Finally, Dallas Keuchel and J.A. Happ are the next tier of free agent pitchers, and are worth looking at.
All in all, this offseason will be a rollercoaster ride for all Yankee fans, with the chance that it leads to a parade down the Canyon Of Heroes
By Brett Malamud
Brett Malamud is a Computer Science Major at Binghamton University. He is the co-founder of dabuzzza.com. His favorite athletes are Derek Jeter and Todd Bertuzzi. You can follow him on twitter at @brettnyy
The smell of peanuts and cracker jacks is in the air. After 152 days since the Red Sox walked off the field as champions, baseball is back. Our picks are in for this year’s fall classic. Here they are:
|I’m taking the Yankees over the Dodgers. Both teams have proven this offseason that they want to win now. The Yankees unloaded after missing the playoffs by opening their checkbook and spending close to $500 million. The additions of Jacoby Ellsbury, Carlos Beltran, Brian McCann, and Masahiro Tanaka immediately make the Yankees a legitimate threat. But don’t think they’re the only team spending the big bucks. The Dodgers passed the Yankees for the MLB’s highest payroll, ending the Yankees 15 year streak, by spending $235 million this season. All and all I’d say Derek Jeter better start spreading the news that his final season will end with a ticker tape parade down the Canyon of Heroes.|
|As an extremely optimistic Mets fan with nothing but the highest expectations, I’m always going to take my team. So along with my Mets, I’m taking the rival Yankees. The Mets have young talent in there rotation, and a growing lineup. They may make a huge move by the deadline, and Zach Wheeler will suprise people this year. Yankees, because they spent money this offseason and are clearly doing anything to win a year after missing the playoffs|
|In the NL I’ll take the Dodgers and in the AL I’ll take Detroit. Dodgers win a six game series behind Kershaw and Greinke who each win two games|
|Tigers over Cardinals. Lots of solid pitching between the two of them. I think Justin Verlander comes back big this year and comes out as the Tigers’ #1 with Rick Porcello having an awesome year too finishing ahead of Max Scherzer in the pitching rotation. The Cards are going to need Yadier Molina to manage the pitching staff well, but they just don’t have the overall offensive firepower that Detroit does with the addition of Ian Kinsler. Watch out for the Rangers though if they can have someone aside from Yu Darvish step up in their rotation.|
|Red Sox over Dodgers. Only a little bit of bias plays into this one…Both are great teams with amazing young talent. With the recent resurgence of John Lackey, John Lester, a healthy Clay Buchholz, and a young and very talented Xander Bogaerts, the Red Sox will be the 2014 World Series Champions. With the leadership of David Ortiz, Dustin Pedroia, and Mike Napoli, look for the Sox to make a push for the repeat.|
|Rays vs Dodgers. There’s no explanation for why the Rays are good every year, but the undeniable fact is that they are. However nobody is on the Dodgers level in terms of overall talent. Despite multiple holes including infield depth and major league ready pitchers in the minors, their superstar talent everywhere else will cover that up.|
|Dodgers over Tigers. The Dodgers are armed with a wealth of talent and the largest payroll in history. Anything less than a championship would be a disappointment.|
|Nationals vs Tigers. Nationals win. The Nationals have the best pitching rotation in baseball with the front four being Stephen Strasburg, Gio Gonzalez, Jordan Zimmermann, and Doug Fister. Pitching wins games. Although the Tigers have a great all around team, the team is full of veterans. However, they are definitely a contender for the World Series because of their many stars such as Justin Verlander, Miguel Cabrera, Ian Kinsler, and Max Scherzer. Both teams have unbelievable pitching and hitting, but I have the Nationals taking home the trophy in this one.|
|Dodgers vs Angels, but I’d pick the Angels because Mike Trout is amazing|
We hope everyone enjoys Opening Day and stays locked in to Dabuzzza here and on our twitter page this MLB season. We know we will.
By Dan Lagnado
East: Washington Nationals
Coming off a disappointing season in which the Nats were 10 games behind the first place Braves, I expect a bounce back season and 95+ wins from the Nationals. An improved starting rotation with the addition of Doug Fister and a lineup without a weakness, the Nats and first year manager Matt Williams can make a run in the playoffs.
Central: St. Louis Cardinals
Last year’s National League champions continue their regular season success led by a batch of young starters. The loss of Carlos Beltran is minimized by the arrival of Jhonny Peralta and the Cardinals have a good chance to defend their title.
West: Los Angeles Dodgers
The Dodgers simply have too much firepower to not win this division. They won the division by 11 games last season and there is no reason for them not to repeat unless the team is decimated by injury.
Wild Card 1: Cincinnati Reds
The NL Central is one of the most competitive divisions in baseball with three teams making the playoffs last year. I think the Reds jump up a spot from WC 2 to WC 1 in the upcoming season behind the strength of Joey Votto and Brandon Phillips. Another reason for the improvement is that Pittsburgh’s dream run last year does not have the same impact this time around and they drop off enough for the Reds to overtake them down the stretch.
Wild Card 2: San Francisco Giants
In a bounce back year the Giants will finish second in their division and take the second Wild Card position. The starting rotation will return to its former glory and the addition of Tim Hudson will add stability to a rotation that already contains Matt Cain, Tim Lincecum and Madison Bumgarner.
East: Boston Red Sox
This was not an easy decision but in the end I have to stay with the defending champions. A solid pitching rotation returns intact and the playoff experience will help this team retain their division title.
Central: Detroit Tigers
Even with injuries to Jose Iglesias, the Tigers are still the team to beat in the AL Central. Miguel Cabrera is coming back healthy and new acquisition Ian Kinsler will provide a big boost at second base. Joe Nathan will provide a boost at the back of the bullpen and Justin Verlander should be back healthy.
West: Texas Rangers
The arrival of Prince Fielder and Alex Rios and the first full season of Jurikson Profar will key the Rangers to a division title. Yu Darvish looks to follow up a dominant year and cement himself as one of the best pitchers in baseball. In a competitive division that goes down the wire, the Rangers will edge out the division.
Wild Card 1: Oakland Athletics
The A’s continue their recent success by locking up another playoff birth, this time by Wild Card. Despite injuries to the starting rotation, Oakland does have enough young pitching to get them through the season effectively.
Wild Card 2: Los Angeles Angels
The Angels’ power bats finally get it together and make it into the postseason. Mike Trout once again will be one of the best in the league and Josh Hamilton and Albert Pujols finally get it together in the American League to carry the Angels to success.
Dan Lagnado is studying communications, law economics and government at American University. He’s a fan of both the Mets and Jets and has been writing about sports for four years. You can follow him on twitter at @dlag1995