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March 31, 2005

2005 RLYW Staff predictions
by SG


Injuries fell Boston's rotation as Schilling never really gets going and Wells is average in the ballpark he once wanted burned down. Wade Miller doesn't throw a pitch in anger this season and Matt Clement is the de facto ace.

The Yanks finally post that 1000 run season that Gammons talked about last season. Mussina wins 20, along with Johnson and Kevin Brown throws 180 innings. Wright and Pavano are both slightly above average.

In the Central, Minnesota and Cleveland feast on the weak sisters in the division -Chicago and Kansas City-and both win over 90 games.

Out West, the Angels break out to a Mickey Mantle dream season: Jump out to a big lead, come out of the all-star break and win 10 or 15 in a row and coast home.

In the playoffs, Johan Santana dominates the Angels, winning three games - 1, 4 and 5 in relief. But the Yanks steamroll the Twinkies in the ALCS after Minnesota just runs outta gas.

Atlanta and Florida provide a great pennant race, finishing 1-2 in the league in wins. San Diego wins a watered-down and Barryless NL West. St. Louis is never really challenged.

In the playoffs, Florida's pitching quiets the Cards lineup and San Diego wins three games in Atlanta to beat the Braves. Florida's three aces of Burnett, Beckett and Willis dominate the Pads, who only win Peavy's two starts.

In the World Series, the Yankees exact revenge for 2003 and erase a painful 2004 with a drubbing of Florida in the Fall Classic.

AL East: Boston. I feel it in my bones. Their pitching holds up, ours
AL Central: Cleveland. I don't see Santana extending his pitching from
great to historic by keeping this up.
AL West: Anaheim. I want to, but I can't pick any of the other
AL Wild Card: New York. I see the Twins and the White Sox actually
challenging for this.

AL Playoffs: Boston beats Anaheim, New York beats Cleveland. Yanks over
Sox in 6 games.

NL East: Atlanta. I've been wrong too many times before.
NL Central: Chicago. They have some pitching injuries, but it's enough
to push St. Louis back.
NL West: I see San Diego winning the thing. That would be back-to-back
good years from that franchise; first time since the Eighties.
NL Wild Card: St. Louis. There won't be much doubt about this unless
the Mets are better than I think they are.

NL Playoffs: Atlanta beats St. Louis, Chicago beats San Diego. Chicago
beats Atlanta in five.

World Series: Yankees beat Chicago in six.

Arod hits 800 in world series, yet still "not a real yankee"

The Yankees storm out of the gate by sweeping Boston in the first series of the season, and go wire-to-wire to win the AL East by five games, winning 102 games in the process. Alex Rodriguez hits fifty homers and wins a Gold Glove, and gets several hits with runners in scoring position in winning the MVP. Randy Johnson wins 20 games and breaks Ron Guidry's Yankee strikeout record of 248. Boston gets the Wild Card with 97 wins.

In the AL Central, something clicks for Jose Contreras, and he and El Duque combine for 35 wins. The Sox ride their starting pitching to an upset win in the AL Central, as Johan Santana regresses a bit and the Twins defense struggles after the losses of Koskie and Guzman.

In the AL West, Oakland's young pitchers struggle to acclimate to the majors, and Los Angeles of Anaheim rides Vladimir Guerrero and Bartolo Colon's bounceback season to a fairly easy divisional title.

In the playoffs, the Yankees lose to Contreras and El Duque but beat Mark Buehrle twice and Freddy Garcia once to advance to the ALCS. The Angels sweep the Red Sox, who don't have the hunger to win after their victory last season.

In the ALCS, the Yankees lose the first two games of the ALCS, then storm back to win the next four.

In the NL East, Tim Hudson and John Smoltz key another Braves division title. The Mets finish below .500, as Victor Zambrano and Kaz Ishii combine for 300 walks, and Carlos Beltran keeps his low batting average from last year but loses the power that he had (steroids?). Larry Bowa's departure and Jim Thome's monster season propel the Phillies into the wild card.

The Cardinals romp through the NL Central, as the Cubs suffer injury after injury to their starters, and their tattered bullpen completely collapses.

The Dodgers hold off the Padres in the NL West, as JD Drew stays healthy and makes up for the loss of Beltre.

In the NLDS, the Braves leverage their starting pitching advantage to beat the Dodgers, and the Cardinals pound the Phillies pitchers to advance. In the NLCS, the Cardinals are too strong for Atlanta.

In the World Series, Pujols and Rolen are too much for Randy Johnson, and the Cardinals beat the Yankees in six games.