2015 Season Predictions Post: MJ Lloyd

Mj Lloyd writes (and owner operates) Off Base Percentage. You can follow him on twitter here. Here are his predictions for the 2015 Major League Baseball season:
Baseball season is back! It feels like just yesterday Josh Hamilton was in the news for something or other. How time flies by. After months of offseason movers and shakers, it’s time to make picks before the best day of the year. I’ve crunched the numbers (I ate Cap’n Crunch while reading Fangraphs) and feel confident in my 2015 predictions. Let’s go get it…
AL East
  1. Boston Red Sox
  2. Toronto Blue Jays
  3. Baltimore Orioles
  4. New York Yankees
  5. Tampa Bay Rays
The Red Sox reloaded by signing Hanley Ramirez and Pablo Sandoval. Plus there is a full season of Mookie Betts coming up. Believe all of the hype. Betts is going to be a lot of fun to watch and he has center field to himself. Rusty Castillo will be up at some point but that’s Shane Victorino’s problem to deal with. Toronto bolstered its lineup by adding Josh Donaldson but lost their ace, Marcus Stroman for the season. Of course, the media will be focused on A-Rod’s return to the Yankees and whether he can take the club to 4th place instead of 5th.
Division MVP
Josh Donaldson
New Comer of the Year
Josh Donaldson
Division Rookie of the Year
Aaron Sanchez
Welcome to the rotation, Aaron Sanchez. He probably would have been my pick if he was the Blue Jays closer too.
AL Central
  1. Detroit Tigers
  2. Chicago White Sox
  3. Cleveland Indians
  4. Kansas City Royals
  5. Minnesota Twins
Really, I think you can flip a coin between the top three teams in this division. But I like the Tigers to win it in a tight race. We might have seen the best of Miguel Cabrera but they still have a dominant lineup. Chicago is the wild card for me. Chris Sale should only miss a start or two and Carlos Rodon shouldn’t be down for long.
Division MVP
Miggy Cabrera
New Comer of the Year
Jeff Samardzija
I’m 43% sure I spelled that correctly.
Division Rookie of the Year
Fransico Lindor
Lindor is ready but will be toiling in the minors for a few months. I like his immediate impact more than Rodon’s.
AL West
  1. Los Angeles Angels
  2. Seattle Mariners
  3. Oakland A’s
  4. Texas Rangers
  5. Houston Astros
I’ll stick with the Angels here instead of the trendy M’s pick. Frankly because…Mike Trout. Garrett Richards isn’t going to miss a lot of time which leaves 2B and Josh Hamilton as the wild cards. I can never figure out what the A’s are doing so I quit trying. The Astros could certainly top the Rangers this year. Adrian Beltre would be an interesting trade chip if shit hits the proverbial fan in Arlington.
Division MVP
Mike Trout
New Comer of the Year
Nelson Cruz
While I don’t love it long term, he upgrades a DH position the M’s haven’t been able to fill with a turnstyle of jabronis.
Division Rookie of the Year
Andrew Heaney
The Angels gave up Howie Kendrick for him and Heaney will be important to the rotation at some point.
NL East
  1. Washington Nationals
  2. Miami Marlins
  3. New York Mets
  4. Atlanta Braves
  5. Philadelphia Phillies
Frankly, I’d be a little surprised if the Nats don’t have the best record in baseball. The Marlins made some odd moves and the bottom of the division should be easy to beat up. Will the Phillies trade Cole Hamels? This past season of It’s Always Sunny is probably the best thing that happened to Philly this year.
Division MVP
Giancarlo Stanton
My heart says Bryce Harper though.
New Comer of the Year
Max Scherzer
Division Rookie of the Year
Noah Syndergaard
NL Central
  1. St. Louis Cardinals
  2. Pittsburgh Pirates
  3. Chicago Cubs
  4. Cincinnati Reds
  5. Milwaukee Brewers
Cards and Pirates are a toss up. I think it will boil down to the rotations. Can Wainwright stay healthy, does Garrett Cole take the next step? The Cubs are close. But sending Kris Bryant down for three weeks might cost them a game or two and that could be enough to miss the playoffs. My suggestion to ease the pain of Cubs fans who wanted Bryant up, have Will Ferrell call the first month of games as Harry Caray. It seems like something he’d do.
Division MVP
Andrew Mccutcheon
New Comer of the Year
Jason Heyward
Division Rookie of the Year
Kris Bryant
NL West
  1. Los Angeles Dodgers
  2. San Diego Padres
  3. San Francisco Giants
  4. Colorado Rockies
  5. Arizona Diamondbacks
The Padres reshuffled their team. James Shields, Matt Kemp, Wil Myers, Justin Upton, Will Middlebrooks. The Dodgers lost Kemp and Hanley Ramirez but added Howie Kendrick and Jimmy Rollins. Dodgers should run away with this but give the Pads some credit for growing a pair. I’m excited to see how that team does especially if they wear more of the brown and yellow throwbacks. Arizona seems like they’re stuck in mud and content to gun the engine until they run out of gas.
Division MVP
Clayton Kershaw
New Comer of the Year
Justin Upton/James Shields
Division Rookie of the Year
Joc Pederson
WIld Card
Mariners over White Sox
Pirates over Marlins
Divison Series
Mariners over Red Sox
Angels over Tigers
Nationals over Pirates
Dodgers over Cardinals
League Series
Angels over Mariners
Nationals over Dodgers
World Series
Nationals over Angels
Who do I think will win the major awards? I’m glad you asked. Mike Trout. It isn’t fair that he isn’t eligible for NL MVP. There’s interleague everyday, he should be eligible for NL MVP. But I’ll abide by these ridiculous rules. How do we know he’s not the best pitcher either? He’s five months older than Kris Bryant. He should still be racking up ROYs. Anywhoo, I have a bunch of replica Mike Trout trophies in my basement if anybody is interested…
Mike Trout
AL Cy Young
Felix Hernandez
He’s turning into Greg Maddux. He’s been special and he’s getting specialer.
Francisco Lindor
Lindor, Rodon and Rusney Castillo will all start in the minors. Your guess is as good as mine.
Terry Francona
I think this award is bullshit and I only really like two managers. One moved to the NL which makes this soooo much easier.
Andrew McCutchen
Look, Stanton is a trendy pick and rightfully so. In a world where Mike Trout doesn’t exist, Cutch would get more press.
NL Cy Young
Jordan Zimmermann
He’s really good. He’s the Nats number three. He’s going to pile up wins. He’s in a walk year. I already picked Trout. Picking another slam dunk isn’t fun.
Joe Maddon
What did you expect? I hear Dusty Baker is coaching a beer league softball team to shit. Already blew out one poor waitress’ shoulder.