Dodgers Turn to a Horse For Offensive Help

As many of you know by now, earlier today The Blue we’re not only swept up north by the hated ones, but not a single run scored during the entire 3 games. After such a fast offensive start, The Blue is going through a stretch of offensive ineptitude that goes back to Saturday’s contest with the Colorado Rockies. During that stretch of 45 innings, only 2 runs have crossed the plate. The pitching has done a respectable job in that stretch, allowing 17 runs, equating to a 3.40 ERA during that stretch. 

Baseball can be such a maddening game. One night, your dishing out 21 hits and scoring 11 runs, and then of course, you come back and you cant hit a lick. It happens. Even against our rivals. This is not the first time in the history of baseball a team has gone 30 plus innings without crossing the dish. This dubious achievement also happened to The Blue in June of 2012 against the Giants as well, and also during the 1966 World Series, as the Dodgers we’re not only swept by the Baltimore Orioles, they would not score a single run the final 33 innings of the series.

Hey Mr. Ed !!!

It’s funny how life can imitate art. Or something along those lines… In this classic Mr. Ed episode from 1963, titled ” Leo Durocher Meets Mr. Ed “, that lovable talking horse, Mr. Ed, call’s Dodger coach Leo Durocher during the 2nd game of a doubleheader against the Giants at Candlestick Park to give him some offensive batting tips after the Dodgers struggle to lose the first game ( Sound familiar folks ? ). Mr. Ed and his trainer Wilbur Post would then be invited to Dodger Stadium to give more tips. How does this turn out ? A young Sandy Koufax, along with Moose Skowron, Willy Davis and Johnny Roseboro would also guest star, as well as another familiar voice that still keeps us entertained today. Some guy named Vin…

MR. ED_SANDY walteromalley.com

Alan Young, Mr. Ed and Sandy Koufax. Dodger players and Hollywood often frequented each other…

Rainy May Over Chavez Ravine

This past Thursday a rare occurrence happened for both Dodger Stadium and as of late the southland as a heavy rainstorm would come our way, causing a delay of approximately 90 minutes. Here are a couple of Sights and sounds of Thursday’s rare rain delay from the Left Field Pavillion, with more to come later as I will bring you 4 Days of May to Drei’s SUN-DAY, FUN-DREI, which I will give you a recap of 4 straight baseball days for me from Chavez Ravine to Blair Field, with some perspective on lawn care, from of all places, the StubHub Center.

In this first clip, we see the grounds crew bringing out the tarp to cover the infield. For hardly ever using it, I would say that they did a fine job. Of course, we wouldn’t be the expert witness either when it comes to viewing tarp roller preparation…

Here’s another rare sight, rain flowing from the roof of the LF Pavillion into the plaza, as seen on my Instagram @good_drei

A Tribute to Urban Lights

urban lights_drei Many of you resident Angelenos and tourists who have cruised down Wilshire Blvd through Mid-City have undoubtedly notice a bank of cast iron street lights outside of the LACMA, snapping pictures/selfies of various posses. Recently Chris Burden, the man behind the lights, known as Urban Lights, passed away at the age of 69. Countless visitors have taken their share of photos since it’s inception in 2008. Here are 3 pics of mine I snapped, with of course a Dodger theme Urban Lights_Vin Scully A Very Good Afternoon wherever you may be… Urban LIghts_Puig Mini Puig strolling through and pointing toward the lights… Urban Lights_night Taken in February 2012 sometime in the early morning as the rock for Levitated Mass was making it’s way down Wilshire Blvd  Urban Lights A Touch of Blue…

Rocky Forecast Ahead ?

With the Rockies coming in for 4, the forecast for Thursday and Friday is calling for some rain in the southland. The Dodgers recently had a game postponed over the weekend in Colorado while the Rockies have already endured 4 rainouts already. Since opening in 1962, Dodger Stadium has had a minuscule 17 games rained out in it’s 53 year existence, the most recent being in 2000 against the Astros. 

4/21/67 vs StL
4/12/76 vs SD
9/10/76 vs Atl
9/11/76 vs Atl
5/8/77 vs Phil
5/9/77 vs Phil
8/17/77 vs SF
4/15/78 vs Atl
9/5/78 vs SF
4/11/82 vs SD
8/18/83 vs NY
9/24/86 vs SD
4/19/88 vs SD
4/20/88 vs SD
4/21/88 vs SD
4/11/99 vs Col
4/17/00 vs Hou

More Rare Dodger Stadium Numbers…

On Tuesday, Giancarlo Stanton of the Miami Marlins became only the 4th player to launch a home run outside of Dodger Stadium. As a fan, I also have that rare feat of saying i’ve seen two of those, the most recent being McGwire’s blast in ’99 when Big Mac was with the Red Birds…

Giancarlo Stanton Miami 475 feet Mike Bolsinger Left field May 12, 2015
Mark McGwire St. Louis 483 feet Jamie Arnold Left-center May 22, 1999
Mike Piazza Dodgers 478 feet Frank Castillo (Col) Left field Sept. 21, 1997
Willie Stargell Pittsburgh 470 feet Andy Messersmith Right field May 8, 1973
Willie Stargell Pittsburgh 506 ft., 6 in. Alan Foster Right field Aug. 5, 1969

9th Inning…

Story time, from the greatest baseball story teller himself…

Sandy Koufax Meet Mr. Ed

On Saturday the 16th, the Dodgers will be honoring the 1965 World Champion team  prior to their game against the Colorado Rockies. Among those who will be present is of course Sandy Koufax. Though Koufax would miss Game 1 of the 1965 World Series due to his religious obligations to the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur, he would go on to win 2 games in the series, including the deciding Game 7 at Metropolitan Stadium against the Twins, pitching on only 2 days rest.

2 years prior, in addition to the Dodgers sweeping the Yankees in the 1963 World Series, Koufax, along with Moose Skowron, Willie Davis, Johnny Roseboro and Leo Durocher would guest in the classic Mr. Ed

Drei’s SUN-DAY FUN-DREI Ballpark Tale From The Ravine… A Birthday Tale With Kid Marly Marlz

Spring Training…Leading Off…

They don’t call me DodgerDrei for no reason, for DodgerDrei is always happy to spend some quality time with his newborn niece Toia. After all, it’s always good to start ’em young, right ?

32 And Still a Kid…

Featuring, As Always…

Marlz_Bday PicThe Birthday Boy… The Kid At Heart…KID MARLY MARLZ !!!

Tonight’s number…

Dodgers_32What could possibly be a better place to celebrate a birthday than at Chavez Ravine ? Especially against the hated ones ? 

The night would start and end on top of The Ravine by the number 32, the number once worn by Dodger legend Sandy Koufax . The idea of doing a Dodger themed birthday based around a retired number was actually suggested to me by another buddy of mine.

Toia_Uncle Drei Toia: ” Uncle Drei, does that mean when I turn 1, you’re going to throw me a Dodger themed birthday ? “

Pee Wee Reese

Drei: You know Toia, when your Uncle Drei does throw you your first Dodger birthday, some storyteller named Vin will be talking about what a precious little thing you are, with ” Not a Care In The World…”

With Kid Marlz about to turn the Big 3-2, with Kid Marlz being, well… you’ll see why he’s called Kid Marlz, and with the hated one’s from up north in town, what other way could a Kid, even this Big Kid, celebrate his birthday ?  It’s always great that even the Magic Castle up on Chavez Ravine ( What Magic Castle did you all think I was talking about ? ) is one where, here goes, a Kid…..This Kid….. The heck, KIDS OF ALL AGES …A Kid Can Be a Kid..

Marlz_Top of Park Before the GameKid N Drei, or My Chemical Bromance ? Uh, I think we’ll stick with Kid N Drei…Hey Kid, the big 3-2 is coming soon kid !!!

After starting off the night at the Big 3-2, we make our way inside The Ravine with Kid Marly Marlz and friends, including his mascot buddies. As for a retired number Dodger theme for Drei, Double D here has two more numbers left to look forward to ( I’ll let you all guess which numbers and yes, Double D ‘s age is up there…) So, how does a ” Kid ” celebrate his birthday at that Magic Castle we call…Chavez Ravine ?

Marlz_Minion Dave Hey Kid, Drei here see’s that you brought back the 2014 Foam Party and your favorite pet Minion Dave 

As for the Action on the Diamond against The Hated Ones…

A win over the hated ones always does make a great birthday gift, right Kid ?

And what better way to WALK OFF this recent homestand than with this…

You may have been a little one when The Blue last won the World Series Kid, but this year really could be our year !!! Drei’s only been saying that the last 26 years…

Kid Marlz_West Side Kid Marly Marlz reppin’ the WEST SIDE …

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It was quite an enjoyable night that started and ended at 32. Perhaps this could give some of you Dodger or baseball fans an idea what kind of baseball themed birthday celebration you could throw for a buddy or loved one of yours. What’s up next from Kid N Drei ? Stay tuned… ‘Til The Next Episode

Marlz_BubblesLooks like Kid Marly Marlz wants the BUBBLES to keep flowin’ through 2015…

Marlz_Cindy n Bday wrapLooks like Cindy really enjoy’s the Kid in Kid Marly Marlz…

Marlz_1983 25thMy Chemical Bromance ? As much as Cindy loved that, I think we’ll stick with Kid N Drei… Never a dull moment with you Kid…

Marlz_32 N Drei Even if you are and will always be… FOREVER A KID…KID AT HEART…Drei can’t believe you’ll be turning the BiG 3-2….

Kid N DreiHAPPY BIRTHDAY KID !!!

The Week In Review and Drei’s SUN-DAY, FUN-DREI Ballpark Tale From The Ravine

Before we get started with Drei’s SUN-DAY FUN-DREI tale, let’s look back at events from earlier this week… 42_Civil Rights Logo This past Wednesday, on April 15th, The Civil Rights Game took place at Dodger Stadium on Jackie Robinson Day. Earlier in the day, it was also announced that some time this season the Dodgers will further honor Jackie later on this season by erecting a statue in his honor , the first in a series the Dodgers are planning…

42_jereseysDodger fans proudly wearing their free replica Jackie Robinson jerseys…

65 and Counting…

11037253_10205115609547286_8926969167614986815_n This past weekend, on April 18th, 1950, Vin Scully would call his first Dodger game . Vin is currently in his 66th season calling the action for The Blue and like fine wine gets better with age…

Foam Party in 2015 ?

You all remember the bubble machine from last year right ? The machine that created bubbles afloat after each Dodger home run ? It was so popular that it eventually carried over into the stands, bringing out the kid in all of us, even this kid…

kid_bubbles Kid Marly Marlz and the bubbles, Angel Stadium, August 7 2014…

Well, it’s been reported that Gazillion Bubbles will be providing the bubbles for the Dodgers in 2015  as they will be making pre-game appearances on Sunday afternoons as well as appearances in the Kid Zone as well. As for the dugout presence, only time will tell…

BUBBLES1 Kid Marly Marlz with Drei at Petco Park’s PARK AT THE PARK. The bubbles sure made their rounds throughout SoCal in 2014. Hey, speaking of  Kid n Drei…

Drei’s SUN-DAY, FUN-DREI Ballpark Tale

Our first SUN-DAY, FUN-DREI tale from the yard…

With our resident Dodger Dog and his special guest, The Mariner Moose…

Dodger Dog n Moose

Also back with us for 2015, our featured Kid at Heart…

Marlz_Dog n Moose KID MARLY MARLZ !!! The Kid always finds a way to have a good time at the yard, especially with his favorite resident Dodger Dog and his other favorite mascot from way up in the Pacific Northwest… Chavez Ravine, 4/13-15 With the Mariners in town for 3, some are saying that this could be a possible World Series preview…

MOOSE_2 Hey Moose. Can you just imagine what the atmosphere would be like here if we meet again in October ?… Yo Dog ! I’ve never seen so many people inside a stadium… With the Mariners in town for 3, the Dodger Dog even had a themed dog in the Moose’s honor, The Pike Place Dog… Pike Dog The Pike Dog, a Brooklyn Dog with caramelized grilled onions and cream cheese on a thick bun. Drei here was expecting something different that would reflect The Ivar Dog . More on that later… On the field, the Mariners wasted no time putting the heavy lumber on display, particularly Nelson Cruz, who would hit 4 homers during the 3 game series, 2 on Monday night. Also on Monday night, the M’s would total 4 homers all together…

Kid Marlz, always a happy kid, was not to thrilled with The Blue being down 4 runs to our guests from the Pacific Northwest…

Moose_3 Hey Kid ! I hope you’re not confusing The Moose for smoked denizen… In spite of an early deficit, The Boys in Blue would come back and eventually tie the game, just in time for Kid Marly Marlz and Dodger Drei’s first 7th inning stretch of the season ( With the Resident Dodger Dog and The Moose…)

Uh oh. What’s this ? It looks like Sir G-O, dressed in those team colors from that team in The O.C. has got a stranglehold on The Moose…

Moose_Sergio Poor Moose. ” Yo Dog ! HELP !!! “. Hey Moose, I think Sir To The G-O was sent to The Ravine by your nemesis, you know, that Red Monkey… Hey, Sir G-O could be here to see Howie Kendrick. The way Howie has started off for the Blue, I wouldn’t blame him…

Rally Monkey_Red You know folks, Drei actually doesn’t mind the presence of this monkey when we play his Angels. It just mean’s The Boys in Blue are winning… Monday night’s game would go into extras. With the game still tied in the home 10th… Bases loaded, 2 outs, and the rookie Alex Guerrero at the plate, Drei here with this InstaByte from the LF Pavillion…

Don’t you all love Drei’s timing ? Another walk-off win for The Blue and a 5-2 win on Wednesday, and the Dodgers would complete a 3 game sweep of the Mariners. If this is what some say is a preview of this years World Series, L.A. should be one happy place come October. Of course, what happens in April is hardly any indication of what can happen later. It’s still a long season folks. But hey, you got to like how things have started off for The Blue, especially during this past homestand, which will finish off today as the Boys in Blue look to not only win their 8th home game in 9 tries, but also pull off back to back 3 game sweeps as they hope to bring out the brooms against the Rockies and continue to build upon their fast start .  

MOOSE_DOG Yo Dog, I want a rematch come October !!! Hey Moose, maybe you can take your anger out on that monkey when you come back to SoCal in early May…

Hey Moose ! You always got Kid Marly Marlz to make you feel better, right ?

Marlz_Moose Pics Art You know kid, you two have had so many happy moments together, Drei here thinks we ought to just call you two…M N M…MOOSE N MARLZ… Hmmmmm…

 DREI_MARLZ N CREW  First pic of the 2015 season with Kid, Drei and friends. Who else will be joining Kid N Drei in 2015 ? Oh yeah, you’ll all be glad to know no animals we’re harmed throughout the entire tale…

PicsArt_1429409866772 Like I said, no animals we’re harmed throughout the entire tale… Hey Kid, The Moose sure looks good with all that Blue around him, especially the hat. Oh yeah, easy on those antlers…

MOOSE_KID AT HEART Always a Kid…Kid at Heart…

KID N DREI 2015 What’s next for Kid n Drei ? Stay tuned… ” Til the Next Episode…”

10TH INNING…

As seen and heard from the Left Field Pavillion, 4/13/2015…

 

Game Winning Insta-Byte From the LF Pavillion…

Drei’s first game of the season…Extra Innings…Home 10th… Bases Loaded…2 out… Tied with the Mariners 5-5…Rookie at the Plate…Alex Guerrero with a chance to be the hero… From the LF Pavillion…

 

OK, I’m sure you all would probably want Vinny’s call. I can’t say I blame you…

Drei’s Ballpark Tales…

Marlz and the Moose 4 13 2015 He’s Baaaaaaaaaack !!! It’s Kid Marly Marlz, ready for another season of Dodger Baseball !!! Here he is, with his favorite baseball mascot, The Mariner Moose, with Seattle in town. Hey, The Moose loves you too kid…

Extra Innings…

KID N DREI 4 13 2015 Drei here with Kid Marly Marlz, after a thrilling win over the Mariners, and yeah, KID N DREI are ready to bring you more tales from and around the yard once again in 2015. ‘Til the Next Episode…

 

Honoring Jackie’s Legacy From Westwood To Chavez Ravine

This Wednesday, Dodger Stadium will be the host of this years Civil Rights game. This will mark the first time the Civil Rights game will take place on Jackie Robinson Day, April 15th. Recently, UCLA,  Jackie Robinson’s alma mater, took a page from Major League Baseball by officially retiring the number 42 throughout both their men’s and women’s athletic program…

42_PAULEY Jackie’s presence is felt inside Pauley Pavillion among other Bruin greats…

42_UCLA Quad A touch of Blue from Westwood to Chavez Ravine…

Jimmy Rollins and Howie Kendrick on the significance of the Dodgers hosting the Civil Rights game on Jackie Robinson Day…

42_JR Stadium This statue and mural is located along the 1st base concourse at Jackie Robinson Stadium where UCLA Baseball plays it’s home games

42_top of the park Of Course, 42, at the Top of The Park…

 

 

 

Drei’s 2015 NL Forecast

With Opening Day 3 days away, here are Drei’s NL Division Picks…

NL East

One word to describe the starting 5 for the Nats… SCARY. Stephen Strassburg, Jordan Zimmerman, Max Scherzer, Doug Fister and Gio Gonzalez. That’s a hitters nightmare. The main concern in the nations capital will be the health of the lineup. with their key players, Bryce Harper, Wilson Ramos and Ryan Zimmerman playing in 100 games or less in 2014. This team is still pretty deep talent wise and should run away the the NL East…

The Marlins, notorious bean counters of the past, have made some off-season noise by signing Giancarlo Stanton to a 13-year, $325 million contract extension. Their young outfield of Stanton, Marcell Ozuna, and Christian Yelich is being looked at by some as the best in baseball. This is a young team on the rise, but still behind the Nats when it comes to depth and talent. especially in the starting rotation, Jose Fernandez is expected to return to the rotation in June…

The Mets are making slow strides to respectability, but there is something to say about a rotation who’s Opening Day ( Bartolo Colon ) starter will be 42 in May. 

The Braves and Phillies, once the class of the NL East, have reversed roles with the Nats and Fish. The loss of Evan Gattis and Justin Upton wont help an already struggling Braves offense. The Phillies are a far cry from their run of 2007-11. How Chase Utley, Ryan Howard and Carlos Ruiz, names that could work well if every year was 2008,  are still wearing the peppermint pinstripes can only speak of other teams reluctance to deal with GM Ruben Amaro

NL Central

After going 21 consecutive seasons without a winning record, the Bucs have made it to the playoffs in 2 straight. After suffering through a long stretch of futility, one could not blame a Bucs fan for raising expectations.  Their outfield trio of Starling Marte, Gregory Polanco, led by Andrew McCutchen boast an highly talented outfield. Gerrit Cole looks to take over the role of the ace. The Cards are the overwhelming favorite to win their 3rd straight NL Central crown. However, there is always that one team that puts a wrench to what the bookends have to say. The Bucs have played the Cards well the last couple season, why not Pittsburgh ?

The Cards are poised to make another post-season run for the 5th consecutive season. The fact that the Red Birds biggest run producer, Matt Holliday, was 10 RBI’s short of the century mark speaks says a lot about the pitching, led again by veteran ace Adam Wainwright.

In Back to the Future 2, the Cubs would win the 2015 World Series. Well, it’s 2015, and we’re still waiting for flying cars… All kidding aside, the Cubs could be another sleeper in the National League with the addition of Jon Lester to their rotation…

Both the Brewers and Reds have too many holes in their pitching to seriously contend. The Brewers, at one point in 2014 the NL’s best team, suffered a major meltdown down the stretch and while still backed by a potent offense led by Ryan Braun, will need the pitchers to step up if they are to contend once again in the Central…

And Finally…

The NL West

Since Don Mattingly took over the managerial reins in 2011, the Dodgers have improved their win total by an average of 4 games. Should that trend continue into this season, the Blue Crew should finish with 98 wins, and yet, he seems to be on the hot seat every season…

Much was made of the Dodgers off-season moves, unloading Matt Kemp, Dee Gordon, and Hanley Ramirez and in return getting Jimmy Rollins, Howie Kendrick and Yasmani Grandal. The outfield could be loaded once again, but with Kemp gone the real estate should not be as crowded. Joc Pederson has had a huge spring and many are tabbing him as the projected starter in center field. Andre Ethier has stated he would like to start, but his salary and lack of production the last 2 seasons has been an issue throughout the league. Could there be a platoon in left field between Dre and Carl Crawford ? Is this the year Yasiel Puig shows that he truly belongs to the big stage ? 

The rotation, anchored by the 1-2 punch of Kershaw and Greinke, will once again be a huge strength. The question among the pitching will be the bullpen and their ability to get the ball to closer Kenley Jansen, a major factor to their first round exit last year…

The Padres may be the divisions most improved ball club, and the additions of Kemp, Justin Upton, and the addition of James Shields to an already highly regarded pitching staff led by Tyson Ross, could have the Friars in contention for a spot in October…

Having won the World Series now in 3 of the past 5 seasons, it seems the Giants still can’t convince the “experts” that they are contenders. When looking at their lineup, you could see why they still have their doubters. However, given their recent history and their rotation, anchored by big game Madison Bumgarner, as much as the truth hurts Dodger fans, you still cannot count the Giants out of the race. It will be interesting to see though how the loss of Pablo Sandoval affects their lineup…

Drei’s NL Playoff Forecast

Wild Card

Cards over the Padres… I’m really starting to like the one game, winner take all Wild Card format

NLDS

The Cardinals have a recent history of breaking hearts in October, but this time, Washington proves too much for the Red Birds to handle. Nats over Cards

 

The Bucs are going to be improved once again, and with their 3rd straight playoff appearance, Bucs fans will be partying like it’s 1992. However, the end result won’t be as drastic. The series will be close though, but don’t expect Adrian Gonzalez to reprise the roll of Sid Bream. Dodgers over the Bucs

NLCS

This really has the makings of a low scoring affair that could very well go the full 7. If the bookends have their way, all excitement will be focused on the nations capital, with Kershaw and Strassburg toing the hill. After all, the nations capitol could use some much needed positive excitement right ? Dodgers over the Nationals. This time, Kershaw comes through in the clutch….

And now, for Drei’s World Series pick ( I’m sure you know where this is going…)

World Series

At this time last season, these we’re my World Series picks i’m sticking with it. Many feel the Dodgers are an improved team from last year, while the American League seems to be up for grabs. Then again, with so much parity ( There’s that word again folks ) in baseball this season, there really is no clear cut favorite to win it all, though the Dodgers and Nationals appear to be the favorites, while some believe this to be the Mariners year. The Tigers are not looked upon by many to even win their division, however, they still do return enough of their offensive firepower to be able to contend and with practically every team in the American League playing on an even field ( At least it seems that way ), Motown should see some more October baseball.

It’s been 27 years now. There are enough Dodger fans out there young enough asking what was it like to have experienced a World Series victory. My sister, born in 1989 and soon to bring in a new Dodger fan to our family, reminds me every year of the fact she is one year removed of the Dodgers winning one in her lifetime. For the third year in a row now, Drei says it’s time… Dodgers over the Tigers

1988 1988 Fun Facts… Reagan’s last term… Bobby McFerrin’s ” Don’t Worry Be Happy” tops the charts…The Iran-Iraq war would come to an end… The Cosby Show had the #1 spot on the Nielsen Ratings for the third straight year, back when Bill Cosby, ah, nevermind…

Extra Innings…

Legendary Dodger Stadium peanut vendor Roger Owens, prior to the Dodgers final exhibition game before the Angels…

 

It’s time to add another ring… LETS GO DODGERS !!!

Drei’s 2015 AL Forcast

Hello Baseball Fans !!! It’s been a while since Drei has made his presence known. Well, not quite. It hasn’t exactly been a slow off-season for Drei, as he has been cruising the SoCal college basketball scene for Stadium Journey , among other off-season activities. Got a ballpark or two you plan to take in this summer ? Check us out at Stadium Journey for tips for your sports themed travels worldwide, including all 30 MLB yards.

Stadium Journey

How’s your off-season been ? We’re you satisfied with the off-season moves ( or maybe lack of ) by your team ? 

Here’s Drei’s 2015 picks

AL East

If there was ever a case for parity ( a word we’ll be hearing throughout the season ) in one division, the AL East makes a case. There certainly won’t be a lack of offensive firepower in this division. The Red Sox could have the strongest team all-around in the division. The additions of Rick Porcello and Wade Miley should provide a boost to their rotation as well as complement their offensive lineup with the additions of former Dodger Hanley Ramirez and former Giant Pablo Sandoval….

The Blue Jays and Orioles will also be in the heat of the race, anchored by their offenses.  However, both starting 5’s carry starters whose ERA’s last season was over 4 runs a game….

The Yankees field a lineup of players not exactly in their prime. This will be a hard pill to swallow for Yankee fans, but the rebuilding process starts this year. Also a hard pill that could be hard to swallow ? The Yankees finishing south of .500 for the first time since 1992….

The Rays, in spite of the loss of David Price, should still have a formidable pitching staff. However, an anemic offense will make it difficult for the Rays to stay competitive in the east….

AL Central

 

Parity. Did I say we’d be using that word A LOT this season ? This could be baseball’s most exciting division race, with 4 teams capable of winning claiming the flag. Detroit’s pitching took a hit with the loss of Max Scherzer and Rick Porcello. The starting unit for Motown should still be formidable with David Price and Justin Verlander, who I expect to have a bounce back season.

The starting 5 for the Tribe are all under 30, and their pitchers average over 8 strikeouts per nine innings. This could be the best starting rotation in the central….

The White Sox should be competitive as well with Jose Abreu and the addition Melky Cabrera and Jeff Samardzija to the starting rotation.

The Royals we’re carried for much of last season by their pitching, particularly their bullpen. However the loss of James Shields could be the difference between the Royals making another October run….

AL West

Somebody in the Junior Circuit has to win 90 games, right ? The AL’s two best teams could very well be here in the west, setting up a potential ALDS showdown between these two. The Mariners and Angels are among the vast favorites to represent the AL in The Fall Classic. The Mariners are counting on a big improvement in the middle of their lineup, especially with Nelson Cruz at the DH. It was the lack of offensive production, particularly at the DH position that prevented the M’s from reaching post-season play. The M’s starting 5, anchored by Felix Hernandez, just may be the AL’s best…

The Angels, baseball’s best team record wise last season, will be putting up some loud offensive numbers again with Mike Trout ready to take leadership down I-5. The starting 5, anchored by Jared Weaver, is not as dominant as the starters in Seattle but is still formidable. Having 2 lefty’s in the rotation should help the Halos as well…

The A’s, after trading Yoenis Cespedes, took an unexpected fall that nearly cost them a playoff spot, only to see them blow a 4 run lead late in their epic Wild Card battle with Kansas City. The A’s could still be the sleeper in the division with the additions of Ben Zobrist and Billy Butler to their lineup. The losses of Josh Donaldson, Jon Lester, Jeff Samaardzija, and Brandon Moss could be their downfall…

Wild Card

Angels over Bean Town in another epic playoff showdown between these two….

ALDS

Mariners over the Angels in 5 close games. This could also be a potential ALCS matchup…

Tigers over the Blue Jays. With Toronto making post-season play for the first time in 22 years, I still like Detroit’s offense to power them past their northern neighbors…

ALCS

This is a tough one. Detroit has enough experience in their lineup to carry them to The Fall Classic. Seattle has possibly the best starting 5 in the AL. If Verlander can stay healthy and have a bounce back year as I expect, a 7th game showdown between Justin and King Felix would be epic. Verlander is no stranger to the big stage in October, while the bright lights of October will be a first for King Felix…Tigers over the Mariners

Next up, Drei’s NL Forecast

9th Inning With Drei…

Moose We just may see each other come October, Moose…

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