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2012 MLB Predictions

Apr 4, 2012, 7:25 PM EDT

US Presswire photo
Prince Fielder and Miguel Cabrera will lead the Tigers to a World Series title.

Trying to predict on April 4 what MLB's standings will look like on Oct. 4 — and then trying to predict how the entire postseason will play out — is a fruitless effort. There are so many unknown variables to this equation. What teams will suffer major injuries? What rookies will burst onto the scene and make a difference? What big names will be dealt at the July 31 trade deadline and shake up the pennant race?

But it's a rite of spring for those of us who cover baseball for a living to put our reputations on the line and make bold, Opening Day predictions that are sure to look foolish six months from now. We just can't help ourselves.

So without further ado, my predicted order of finish for all six MLB divisions, the major end-of-season award winners and a World Series showdown between Motown and the city by the bay. Oh, and be sure to check back tomorrow morning as I and my counterparts on the beat reveal a plethora of Nats-related predictions. Enjoy (and please feel free to post your own outrageous predictions below)…

NL EAST
1. Phillies
2. Marlins
3. NationalsRead more ยป

  1. UNTERP - Apr 4, 2012 at 7:29 PM

    93 – 69

  2. Will B - Apr 4, 2012 at 7:30 PM

    The effing Marlins, Mark? Really? That's a dagger.

  3. pauloyd - Apr 4, 2012 at 7:30 PM

    Good picks. Glad someone realize the NL East will mostly cancel itself out. I can definitely see the Nats finishing 3rd but I am just not buying into the Marlins.

  4. Mr. Doggett - Apr 4, 2012 at 7:37 PM

    As long as we are contending, we are happy. We just want to be relevant!

  5. sjm308 - Apr 4, 2012 at 7:38 PM

    I do a pool with all my kids, their significant others and the spousal equivalent. Interesting this year is of the 6 people, all have 6 different teams winning the WS. That is the great thing about baseball, its just a crap shoot predicting things this early. It killed me not to have my Nats in one of the wild card spots but I just saw too many other good teams. I have the Reds and Diamondbacks as WC. I have the Rays and Giants in the WS with the Rays winning. Hope you guys don't drum me off here. I am still rooting for our first winning season and have 85+ wins penciled in.Go Nats!!

  6. Cwj - Apr 4, 2012 at 7:47 PM

    I posted this on another thread 5 minutes ago :-)I'll be posting my own player predictions very soon.I worked hard on it to make sure they fall in line with my 87-75 prediction, runs scored, league averages for IP and ABs, etc.First up will be the starting rotation. The Lannan move has forced me to make some modifications to what I started with.Anyway, hope you guys and gals enjoy them :-)

  7. UNTERP - Apr 4, 2012 at 7:50 PM

    I don't know if folks are afraid to put their hearts out on a sleeve, but if you can't be excited about this Nationals team when can you?Oh, 2013. The Mayan prediction of 2012 doesn't guarantee 2013 will come. I believe most who have followed the Nationals have been so demoralized and who have been so accustomed to losing that fears cloud their hopes for success, so lower their expectations. Too bad.Signed93 – 69, all season…

  8. Anonymous - Apr 4, 2012 at 7:54 PM

    We were third last year. This year our pitching is way, way better. Mark, you are just being conservative.

  9. Cwj - Apr 4, 2012 at 7:55 PM

    Ugh, the Marlins?I really don't think they improved that much over the winter.And remember they were 72-90 last season. I have a hard time believing they'll improve by more than 10 wins. Buerhle is overrated (his best attribute is his great fielding), Bell is a good closer but that doesn't add many wins. Reyes is the only player I think will actually help improve the Marlins.

  10. jd - Apr 4, 2012 at 7:56 PM

    85 – 77 and on the cusp of wild card contention.

  11. NatsBrat - Apr 4, 2012 at 7:57 PM

    The Philthies are a bunch of has-beens, even when taking into consideration their fabled blue-ribbon rotation. I have less faith in them than some of the other bums in the NL East.The Marlins are over-rated, as are the Braves. As for the Metsies, fugedaboutit!!! That leaves the Nats surprising everybody and kicking some NL East butt real hard.Mark, you gotta believe like Davey and me-and drink some Kool-Aid while you're at it!!! Time to stand up and be a real NI!!!!!Go00000000000000 Naaaaaaaaaaaaats!

  12. Section 3, My PFB Sofa - Apr 4, 2012 at 7:59 PM

    I am SO tempted to bite on the Phillies getting old again this season … we need to start chanting "TICK TOCK" at the Phillies games … but the champ is the champ until somebody beats them. They will struggle to win 95 games, but they will win 95 games, and the division one last time. The Braves are going to miss Bobby Cox again this season, but not as much as they'll miss Chipper, who won't finish on the active roster. Still, all that pitching. 87-75, but neither wild card.Nats will give them a run, but the mid-season losing spell, and the late fade will not make up for the rest of a fine season. Strasburg will lead the league in losses-while-pitching-without-run-support, but Znn will be right behind him. Jackson, of all people, will lead the staff in wins, because he will get the run support–go figure. Zimm will pull something else this time, for at least 1 15-day DL stint. Davey will still manage better than Bobby Valentine, and get significant votes (but no award) for MOTY. Desmond will figure it out. Espinosa won't. Ramos already has–MVP votes, All Star selection. 83-78 (another rainout lost), third place, just.Marlins will be a circus, which is always fun when it's not you being shot out of the cannon. Late push gets them to 82-80. Hanley gone by August.Mets — won't finish in sixth. 61-101.Is there anything else you'd like to know about your future, Mr. Barney?

  13. Cwj - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:02 PM

    Unterp- Very bold prediction, but I like it :-)Some other insiders put up their W-L record predictions, but they are scattered among older posts.Maybe they would be kind enough to re-post them here :-)Natsfan- I know you don't do the prediction thing :-)Though it does seem like you are at least sipping some of the Kool-Aid.

  14. jd - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:04 PM

    Additional predictions: Phills in the East (Nats, Marlins and Braves in a dogfight for 2nd). Reds in the central (Brewers won't be close) Dbacks in the West. 2 of the Nats, Marlins and Braves for the wild card. Yankees in the AL East. Tigers in the AL central (even though they completely punted defense with Cabrera at 3rd. Angels in the AL East. Rays and Rangers for AL wild Card. Kershaw and Weaver for Cy Young Zim and Pujols for MVP Belt and Darvish for ROY. Angels for WS win.

  15. Cwj - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:06 PM

    NL East:Phillies 90-72Nats 87-75Braves 87-75Marlins 82-80Mets 62-100

  16. Anonymous - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:07 PM

    The Marlins had a very off year last year. They were 80-82 in 2010 and the 2012 Marlins are appreciably better than the 2010 Marlins.People would be foolish to dismiss them.I think the Braves will also finish ahead of the Nats, but the Nats will finish above .500 and perhaps only 7-10 games out. Nats offense is just too weak.

  17. Section 3, My PFB Sofa - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:07 PM

    Oh, yeah, Wild Cards. Cincinnati will run away with the NL Central, only to collapse spectacularly in the playoffs. Brewers and Cardinals will sprint to the finish for the second WC, Brewers getting in on the next-to-last day. Giants, D-Bax, and a resurgent and just plain dumb-lucky Dodgers go all the way to the last week, in the West. Could be a three-way tie. But I hate the Dodgers, so there. Phoenix squeaks through, Giants get the first Wild Card, and beat the Brewers in SF, the Reds in Cincinnati, and the Phillies for the pennant. I don't really believe that, but I grew up a Giants fan, I get to pretend.

  18. jd - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:10 PM

    Phills are old and breaking down but when you have Haladay, Lee and Hammels you are not quite all the way over the hill.

  19. Cwj - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:10 PM

    AL MVP- PujolsNL MVP- VottoAL Cy Young- Felix HernandezNL Cy Young- Cole Hamels

  20. Section 3, My PFB Sofa - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:10 PM

    Oh, yeah II — Bryce Harper.Most of the year in AAA–non-factor this season. But wait til next year.

  21. Anonymous - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:11 PM

    Davey now says he's going to win the division. I kind of believe him. Davey's team is built for the playoffs and short series. FOUR closers, one veteran to mentor the 3 young developing prospects. How many teams have that? Do the Phillies? The Rays who Mark picks first in the AL Eaast are back to using former Nat 36 year old Joel Peralta as their closer.The Nats starting rotation is all power pitchers now that Wang has apparently recovered the 93 mph sinker … miraculous but how long will he last? They've got Stammen, Gorzleanny with Lannan in AAA behind them. Rosenbaum starting in AA and could end up in AAA by June. But, Strasburg on innings limit … and injuries do happen to these Nats. A lot depends on all the starters and the backups staying healthy. If they manage this I can't see them not winning the division with the Phillies losing so many players to injuries. The Marlins can't compete. its all about dealing with adversity of injuries and continuing to develop the young hitters. 1. Nationals.2. Marlins.3. Phillies.4. Braves.5. Mets.

  22. Anonymous - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:11 PM

    2013 will be the Nationals' year. Harper won't figure out the changeup and curveball until September, when the Nats call him up this season. In 2012, the Nats win 85 games but fall short because of a paper-thin offense. Their pitching is good, but they lose a lot of 2-1, 3-2 games.

  23. Positively Half St. - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:14 PM

    The Yankees designated Justin Maxwell for assignment. He apparently had a really good spring. Someone will take him on waivers. Would we rather have Maxwell or Bernadina?+1/2St.

  24. Cwj - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:16 PM

    Half St.- Definitely Bernadina.

  25. NatsNut - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:26 PM

    Will B., I agree, but I'm cracking up while I do it. Well said.Will B said… The effing Marlins, Mark? Really? That's a dagger. April 04, 2012 3:30 PM

  26. Anonymous - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:29 PM

    You're looking at it the wrong way .. 1/2 street … again? Sigh …Its not would you rather have Bernadina or Maxwell its would you rather have Carroll or Maxwell because that's the slot Maxwell would fit in at this point given he is a right-handed bat.

  27. DWS - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:40 PM

    If (and a big if) the team stays relatively healthy they will win 90. And of course there's the X factor.The "experts" at SI are almost unanimous in the NL rookie of the year.

  28. Constant Reader - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:45 PM

    The NL East feels a lot like the NL West of 2007. Four teams over .500, 8 games separating first through fourth and a virtual three-way tie at the top. I'm equally skeptical of the Marlins keeping it together, but on the strength of their lineup, I don't begrudge anyone predicting the Marlins ahead of us.I also think the Phil-thies are no sure thing and I think it takes some serious faith in their pitching to put them clear and above the rest of this division.Four teams over 500 and no more than 7 games separating them. Every game is so critical this year.

  29. Gumbo in Gotham - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:45 PM

    Hey Guys,I've been lurking a while and just decided to join up. I enjoy Mark's articles and also enjoy the comments by many of the people who post regularly.My prediction for the Nats in 2012:86-76 third in the NL East, just missing the second wild card spot, but securing their first winning season in DC!

  30. gonatsgo - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:47 PM

    I think we very well may be third again this year – I am hoping for better, but I think the gaps between all of the teams will be much, much smaller. I think especially in the NLE we will all beat up on each other a lot. My main prediction is that it's going to be a very exciting season and that we are going to be competitive with every team the whole way. I also think Harper can just stay in the minors for most of the year. In 2013 — we kill it!

  31. baseballswami - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:49 PM

    Welcome, Welcome Gumbo in Gotham!!!! Join in the fray! You can take the place of Chad Durbin's father — how cool was that?

  32. Cwj - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:49 PM

    Welcome Gumbo in Gotham!Lots of good folks here.

  33. Cwj - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:52 PM

    Swami- Yeah that was pretty cool having Mr. Durbin post here.He definitely put some things in perspective.

  34. Anonymous - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:52 PM

    106.7 ( your local nfl station) was having a call- in today about how Nats Park just needs something — more fan interaction (more clint?) — what they came up with is that there should just be lots more american flags ( sheesh) and that big green area in center field should have mini-monuments on it. He was describing the batter's eye……………No one corrected him because they have no idea……… well, cough, cough..it was — amusing???

  35. Anonymous - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:53 PM

    Oh – and one lady called in complaining that you can't even get a decent wave going. Oh, dear – those are the people that I really want to leave me alone to watch the game.

  36. NatsJack in Florida - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:56 PM

    This site is read by other player family members as well as reps and other news personnel.

  37. Gumbo in Gotham - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:57 PM

    Thanks baseballswami and Cwj! I'm looking forward to an exciting season. This is definitely the most "buzz" for the team since back in 2005 when they came to town.

  38. Cwj - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:58 PM

    NatsJack- While you are here I was meaning to ask you something.What becomes of all the spring training ballparks during the regular season?Do they host other events?

  39. natsfan1a - Apr 4, 2012 at 8:59 PM

    Don't know about other teams, but I believe the Manatees play at Space Coast stadium in the, um, off ST season.

  40. natsfan1a - Apr 4, 2012 at 9:01 PM

    I believe that they're a Brewers affiliate.

  41. Eugene in Oregon - Apr 4, 2012 at 9:07 PM

    I'll follow the west coast convention and list the western divisions first:AL West:Angels win division, Rangers a close second and the top-seeded wild card. Angels and Rangers have two of the three best records in the AL.AL Central:Tigers by a dozen or more games. Cleveland second (with Manny Acta's first winning record), but nowhere near a wild card.AL East:Yankees win division, Rays second by a couple of games. Boston's pitching never really develops and they finish a weak third; Valentine survives the season (barely), but quits once the World Series concludes.NL West:Diamondbacks win division, Giants a disappointing second (their offense continues to score runs well below league average), LA a close third.NL Central:Weakest division in baseball produces the most exciting divisional race between and among the Reds, Brewers, and Cardinals. The title is decided in the final season series between the Reds and Cardinals. St. Louis squeaks in, again, and the Reds manage to get a wild card berth.NL East:Fratricide in the NL East. Phillies stagger and stumble through the season because of age/injuries, but ultimately manage to win the division. Nats, Braves, and Marlins keep losing to each other, to the point that it's not clear any of them will secure a wild card berth. Braves are fortunate enough to play the Mets and Pirates in their last six games, go 5-1, and just manage to secure the second wild card.Wild Card Games:Braves beat the Reds in the NL.The AL is a stunner, though, with the Rangers losing to Tampa Bay despite Texas having had the third best AL regular season record. Many pundits suggest the one-game play-in is a sham and demand at least a three-game series. Divisional series:AL: Angels beat the Yankees; Tigers beat the Rays. Yawn.NL: Braves beat Diamondbacks; St. Louis beats the Phillies, with Roy Oswalt pitching a six-hit shutout to win the final game of the series for the Cardinals.LCS:Angels beat the Tigers in six. Pujols significantly outperforms Fielder. Cabrera has a tremendous series at the plate, but also commits three decisive errors at third, leading to four unearned runs and two losses.The Cards' magic fades, as the Braves pitchers dominate during a sweep.World Series:Angels win in five. All are low-scoring games except for one in which Pujols and Morales each hit two HRs.

  42. NatsLady - Apr 4, 2012 at 9:09 PM

    Yeah, but if you claim Maxwell, how long do you have to keep him? Are the rules on waivers similar to Rule 5 (namely you have to keep him on the 25-man or return him), or if you want to stash him in the minors when Morse comes back does he just go through waivers again?

  43. NatsJack in Florida - Apr 4, 2012 at 9:16 PM

    Concerning ST ballparks after ST, just about all of them hist teams in the high "A" Florida State League at nite and the short season rookie league during week day time hours.There is also extended ST and the fall instructional leagues.They stay busy for about 10 months every season.

  44. Joe Seamhead - Apr 4, 2012 at 9:18 PM

    Mark, you know I used to like you.

  45. Tom in AR - Apr 4, 2012 at 9:20 PM

    80 wins last year, replace Livan with 160 innings of Strasburg, replace Lannan with Gio, replace 160 innings of Zimmermann with 200 innings of improved Zimmermann, replace Jason Marquis with Edwin Jackson.Add in a full year of Zimmerman and LaRoche, moderate improvement for Werth and Desmond.Are you telling me there aren't 8-10 wins in there?I know, something will go wrong, someone will get hurt, etc. But this team is playoff bound. Come on Mark, get on the Bandwagon (oops, I think that is trademarked by Mr. Tony)

  46. Thom Loverro - Apr 4, 2012 at 9:25 PM

    Lannan will be a starting pitcher for the New York Yankees in the American League playoffs.

  47. NatsLady - Apr 4, 2012 at 9:25 PM

    Nyjer playing LF in Brewers/D-backs game. Still has no arm.

  48. NatsJack in Florida - Apr 4, 2012 at 9:29 PM

    And no brain most of the time.

  49. PL - Apr 4, 2012 at 9:30 PM

    The Nats were 80-81 last year without LaRoche, Strasburg, Gio, Jackson, full seasons of both Zimm's or Detweiler, and a season with a terrible bench, including several months with a very washed up MStairs (that was unbelievable, wasnt it?). Plus, one would expect some overall increase in productivity for Espinosa, Ramos, and Desmond to occur. Especially Espinosa – watch out for this guy – his swing is as impressive as any other 6' player Ive ever seen. Overall, the Marlins and Braves (despite very good bullpen) cant compete pitching-wise and thats what wins games. The Phillies: how will their top 3 SPs hold up? Halliday isnt getting any younger (and neither is Lee). I just dont see any other team other than the Nats winning this division.

  50. Cwj - Apr 4, 2012 at 9:33 PM

    Thanks for the spring ballpark info NatsJack and Natsfan!Btw, I like the name Manatees for a baseball team.:-) My favorite minor league team name is the Isotopes. I don't think they play in Springfield or are managed by Mr. Burns though…

  51. A DC Wonk - Apr 4, 2012 at 9:34 PM

    I'm going with 89 wins, and in the playoff hunt till the end. I'll go further, I can see that the Nats will still not have been eliminated from the playoffs going into the last weekend of the season, and possibly even the last series — a 3 game home series against the Phils (how would *that* be for fun!)I think the Nats improved at least 6-7 games from last year (for all the reasons everybody else is saying — plus I think HRod will come into his own, and Lidge will be at least semi-solid) — and I'm throwing in another 1-2 wins because I think the NL East is weaker than last year.So, I'm going with 89.Note: I predicted "80" last year. As Casey Stengel used to say: "You can look it up!"

  52. RPrecupjr - Apr 4, 2012 at 9:38 PM

    Tom, that is basically what I said yesterday in the "Storen Mid-April Return" thread. Don't forget, we also get a full year of Ramos as the starter as well.So we healthy RZim, ALR, some Werth improvement and full season of Ramos to go with Stras, Gio, full JZim and EJax. That's eight guys….add one win each and that equals my prediction of 88-74.

  53. NatsLady - Apr 4, 2012 at 9:40 PM

    Vermont Lake Monsters–so sad we broke up with them before I got a hat…Not making any predictions because it's no fun if I know what's going to happen before it happens. :)

  54. John C. - Apr 4, 2012 at 9:42 PM

    On Maxwell, I believe taht as a DFA player the Yankees 10 days to trade him. Failing that he is waived, and any team can put in a claim. If no team puts in a claim Maxwell is a free agent and can sign with anyone.I don't think the Nationals should even offer a bucket of baseballs for him. But if he hits waivers they should consider putting in a claim. He had a great spring, and was tearing up the International League last year when he hurt his should going over the wall and bringing back a would-be HR. His numbers against LHP are actually OK, making him useful in lieu of Ankiel or Bernadina (or Harper, when it comes to that), and he plays good defense and can pinch run. I certainly don't want him starting, but as the 25th man on the roster he could be useful.

  55. baseballswami - Apr 4, 2012 at 9:44 PM

    So – while you all are making your bold predictions – since yesterday I have been wondering about the whole logistics of these guys on the major league bubble. Where do they actually live? It's not like they can sign a lease or anything. Lannan probably got an apartment in DC – does he just show up in Syracuse and sleep on someone's couch? Some of these guys found out they made the team yesterday , flew to chicago today and could be right back off the team when one of the dl guys comes back. Do they just live in hotels? I know most of their families stay "back home". No wonder. For a lot of these guys it's not a very stable life. When do they feel safe enough to sign a lease? The guys with the long contracts actually buy a place to live – some security. Just wondering is all…

  56. NatsJack on Florida - Apr 4, 2012 at 9:46 PM

    And after losing last nite to a junior college, the Orioles are about to lose to their AAA team. Tslk about being on a roll.

  57. NatsLady - Apr 4, 2012 at 9:52 PM

    Swami– if you read the article on Werth, before he bought his house in No. Va, he speaks to that issue. He didn't even have a dog (which he now does). I worry about Gio, buying all those cars. With that big mega-millions jackpot, there was discussion of how most winners are tapped out after 5 years. Someone needs to help Gio with finances or he will end up like Livo. I know he's a grown man, but still.

  58. NatsLady - Apr 4, 2012 at 9:59 PM

    When I was in the business world, my company had leases on several apartments which people could live in on short- to medium-term assignments (2-6 months). I don't know, but I expect the team has connections with local real estate agents to help the players out.

  59. DHamm - Apr 4, 2012 at 10:04 PM

    I'll take my shot:NL East – BravesNL Central – RedsNL West – GiantsWC#1 – PhilliesWC#2 – CardinalsNL Champ – RedsAL East – YankeesAL Central – TigersAL West – AngelsAL WC #1 – RangersAL WC #2 – RaysAL Champ – AngelsWS Angels over RedsI think we stay in the race until very late, but just don't have it down the stretch.

  60. natsfan1a - Apr 4, 2012 at 10:09 PM

    You're welcome, Cwj. I like Manatees for a name, too. MiLB team names are fun. One of my fave names and logos (but not teams) was the Warthogs. Then they became the Dash. From a fearsome beast to a punctuation mark = lame, imo. And they don't even have a mascot named "Dot." :-)Cwj said… Thanks for the spring ballpark info NatsJack and Natsfan! Btw, I like the name Manatees for a baseball team. :-) My favorite minor league team name is the Isotopes. I don't think they play in Springfield or are managed by Mr. Burns though… April 04, 2012 5:33 PM

  61. natsfan1a - Apr 4, 2012 at 10:12 PM

    That was a good one. AFL names are good, too. I especially liked the Javelinas name and logo.NatsLady said… Vermont Lake Monsters–so sad we broke up with them before I got a hat..

  62. Anonymous - Apr 4, 2012 at 10:14 PM

    This site is read by other player family members as well as reps and other news personnel.The site sure but the comments? Maybe we should get sports journalist credentials? I seem to be doing a better job at 'inuiting moves' the Nats might make versus Mark … as a result sometimes I wonder …

  63. Section 3, My PFB Sofa - Apr 4, 2012 at 10:19 PM

    Concerning ST ballparks after ST, just about all of them hist teams in the high "A" Florida State League at nite and the short season rookie league during week day time hours.There is also extended ST and the fall instructional leagues.They stay busy for about 10 months every season. And then there's the Fantasy Camps and tournaments scattered throughout the winter months.

  64. natsfan1a - Apr 4, 2012 at 10:20 PM

    In other news, Bos thinks that the Nats are PFB.

  65. Section 3, My PFB Sofa - Apr 4, 2012 at 10:22 PM

    Best cap logo…the Las Vegas [Area] 51sbut the Elsinore Storm is pretty good, too

  66. natsfan1a - Apr 4, 2012 at 10:25 PM

    LOL at the 51s! (I'm not familiar with the hamlet of Elsinore.)

  67. natsfan1a - Apr 4, 2012 at 10:27 PM

    Warthogs logo (moment of silence).

  68. Unkyd - Apr 4, 2012 at 10:50 PM

    My only predictions:More wins than last yearMore fun than last yearWAY fewer 200+ "pissing and moaning" threads, after stupid lossesYep….. It's gonna be Pretty Frickin' Bueno…

  69. Joe Seamhead - Apr 4, 2012 at 11:09 PM

    My prediction all along has been that Davey Johnson will be the NL Manager of the Year.That's not going to happen with a 3rd, or 4th place finish.I'm telling you NI er's, the last series against the Phils will be be meaningless because the Phils will be collecting ML Medicare by then, and be out of the race. The dogfight will be with with the Nats and the Braves.

  70. NatsJack in Florida - Apr 4, 2012 at 11:13 PM

    You stay classy Jeffrey Loria, you slime ball.

  71. ehay2k - Apr 4, 2012 at 11:15 PM

    I say this will be a PFB year. The Phillies will show their age, and sputter to an 83 win season. The Marlins will simply implode. The new stadium will be damaged by an early hurricane, and they will have to play some home games on the road, or at the Trop, while repairs are made. Lacking healthy pitching, they lose 90 games. The Braves, playing with a rejuvenated Livo, surprise everyone and win 85 games. :-) The Mets stink it up, but still win 73 games, beating the Marlins by a game.The Nats go on a tear, with RZimm hitting in 25 consecutive games, and their top three pitchers winning 15 games each. Dominating the now-depleted and dysfunctional NL east, the Nats win 88 games and take the division. Hey, we're at 0-0, so I can dream, can't I?

  72. The Fox - Apr 4, 2012 at 11:29 PM

    CWJ said,"My favorite minor league team name is the Isotopes. I don't think they play in Springfield or are managed by Mr. Burns though…"They play in Albuquerque and Mr. Burns does not own the team but Homer and Marge attend every home game. http://www.milb.com/team1/page.jsp?ymd=20100304&content_id=8674194&vkey=team1_t342&fext=.jsp&sid=t342

  73. Section 3, My PFB Sofa - Apr 4, 2012 at 11:31 PM

    Lake ElsinoreI was there once, for a funeral, with a college friend. Things got crazy, we wound up in England, just hanging out. Long story.

  74. MicheleS - Apr 4, 2012 at 11:39 PM

    I never licked Art Deco.

  75. MicheleS - Apr 4, 2012 at 11:41 PM

    LIKED. god i hate auto correct

  76. ehay2k - Apr 4, 2012 at 11:41 PM

    Lines about the new ballpark from the Marlins game tonight:"If you like lime green, you have come to the RIGHT place!""It looks like a cruise ship and a spaceship had a baby."And so it begins. :-)

  77. Arthur Decco - Apr 4, 2012 at 11:43 PM

    Sure, that's your story and you're sticking to it. Fine.

  78. baseballswami - Apr 4, 2012 at 11:48 PM

    ehay2k – you watching the game or the mlb prediction show? I am flipping — David Freese picked up right where he left off in October and Hanley and Jose just had a big miscommunication between short and third. The season is open for business

  79. HHover - Apr 4, 2012 at 11:56 PM

    Sorry, John – personally, I wish you the best, but if they're going to trade you it, it needs to be because it's good for the team, not because it's good for you. The fact that you were demoted, not traded, suggests your trade value was already pretty minimal, and this only lowers it further.

  80. natsfan1a - Apr 4, 2012 at 11:56 PM

    Was there also a dippy flower child type of gal who hung around? What was her name? Oh, Phyllis or some such?Section 3, My PFB Sofa said… Lake Elsinore I was there once, for a funeral, with a college friend. Things got crazy, we wound up in England, just hanging out. Long story. April 04, 2012 7:31 PM

  81. HHover - Apr 4, 2012 at 11:57 PM

    Oops – that comment was meant for the John Lannan demands trade thread.

  82. natsfan1a - Apr 4, 2012 at 11:57 PM

    Watched a few innings of the ESPN game, a bit of the pregame hoopla (missed the showgirls, though, oh well). Was hoping to see that sculpture thingy go off, but turned the channel when they said Bud was coming up next.

  83. Section 3, My PFB Sofa - Apr 5, 2012 at 12:17 AM

    1a, she was a townie. Not to speak ill, but let's just say, you know what they say about preacher's daughters? Her father was a diplomat. Girl talked some crazy [stuff].

  84. Section 3, My PFB Sofa - Apr 5, 2012 at 12:19 AM

    Best advice we never gave that guy: Don't think, meat.

  85. Anonymous - Apr 5, 2012 at 12:27 AM

    The young Nats will really grow this year. No other predictions here. Injuries, slumps, young player's inconsistencies, etc., are unpredictable. Morse and Harper could make the biggest difference in this team, but how can anyone predict if the Beast will return to form or that Harper will mature early? Will the top of their order set the table, as Davey thinks, or repeat last year's subpar performance?They could be really good, or just mediocre. On paper, they are much better, especially where it counts the most, pitching, and marginally better on defense, and somewhat better on bench support. The offense is the wild card.Davey will have a different approach than Riggs did, and Rizzo could still spring a surprise trade, or two.No one knows. That's why we have to watch.Laddie_Blah_Blah

  86. FS - Apr 5, 2012 at 12:33 AM

    NL WILD-CARD GAME: Diamondbacks over BravesNLDS: Giants over Phillies, Diamondbacks over RedsNLCS: Diamondbacks over GiantsNL MVP: Joye Votto, RedsNL Cy Young: Cliff Lee, PhilliesNL Rookie of the Year: Zack Cozart, RedsAL WILD-CARD GAME: Rays over AngelsALDS: Tigers over Yankees, Rays over RangersALCS: Rays over TigersAL MVP: Miguel Cabrera, TigersAL Cy Young: Jered Weaver, AngelsAL Rookie of the Year: Matt Moore, RaysWORLD SERIES: Rays over DiamondbacksI think Nationals finish 3rd behind Phillies and Braves. I don't buy into Marlins until I see some results. We don't know how fit JJ is, Hanley at 3rd, and Guillen as head of headcases.

  87. JaneB - Apr 5, 2012 at 1:02 AM

    Sofa, I like your new name. Just noticed it. Mark, I know you know what you are doing but I hope you are wrong wrong wrong. It took the air out of me to read that you put those fish over us. Jose hasn't played a solid year in a while, and I don't think he will this year, either. I kinda love him — the Mets were my team till I feel for the Nats — but he won't be enough for them. Neither will their fancy new pitching. I am so sad about Pudge it's almost killing the opening day buzz for me.

  88. ehay2k - Apr 5, 2012 at 1:55 AM

    Swami – I am watching the game. Since those comments, the b-cast crew has heaped praise – "…good for baseball…", "south beach vibe" – on the ballpark. I bet they got a phone call or two. :-)

  89. NatsNow - Apr 5, 2012 at 2:15 AM

    Yeah, both Marlins fans probably called them.

  90. natsfan1a - Apr 5, 2012 at 12:00 PM

    Thanks, I think I remember the dad now. He was always making with the aphorisms. Yeesh.Section 3, My PFB Sofa said… 1a, she was a townie. Not to speak ill, but let's just say, you know what they say about preacher's daughters? Her father was a diplomat. Girl talked some crazy [stuff]. April 04, 2012 8:17 PM

Archives

NL EAST STANDINGS

W L GB
WASHINGTON 55 44 --
ATLANTA 55 46 1.0
NEW YORK 48 53 8.0
MIAMI 47 52 8.5
PHILADELPHIA 43 57 12.5
Through Wednesday's games

UPCOMING SCHEDULE
THU: OFF
FRI: Nats at Reds, 7:10 p.m.
SAT: Nats at Reds, 4:05 p.m.
SUN: Nats at Reds, 1:10 p.m.
MON: Nats at Marlins, 7:10 p.m.
TUE: Nats at Marlins, 7:10 p.m.
WED: Nats at Marlins, 12:40 p.m.
Full season schedule

Mark joins Rob Carlin and Joe Orsulak every Thursday at 4 p.m. on Comcast SportsNet for a half-hour show on the Nats, Orioles and rest of MLB. Re-airs Thursdays at 11:30 p.m., Saturdays at 9 a.m. and Sundays at 11:30 a.m.

ON THE RADIO

As ESPN-980 AM's Nats Insider, Mark makes daily appearances on the station's various shows. Here's the 2014 schedule (subject to change)...

MON: 12:45 p.m.
TUE: 2:30 p.m.
WED: 4:30 p.m.
THU: 2:30 p.m.
FRI: 1:30 p.m., 5:30 p.m.
SAT: 10:30 a.m.

*All times Eastern. You can also listen to the station on 94.3 FM, 92.7 FM and online at ESPN980.com. Click here for past audio clips.

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