Category Archives: MLB

Ranking Each MLB Team’s Best Walk-up Song

Let’s talk about walk up music in the Major Leagues. We’ve all had the discussion, possibly at the local watering hole, possibly while waxing poetic about how great your terrible bar-league softball team is going to be: “If you were in the big leagues, what would your walk-up music be?” My answer, for the record, is “Blockbuster Night Part 1” by Run The Jewels. Your walk-up song should not only serve to work up the hometown crowd, it’s also a reflection of yourself. Do you have the Heart of a Lion? Is there perhaps some Bad Blood between you and the opposing team? You’ve got about 13 seconds to let the crowd know. What follows is a scientific evaluation of the player on each team that currently uses the medium best.

For this study I obtained most of my information from MLB.com’s Ballpark Music site (http://mlb.mlb.com/fan_forum/ballpark_music.jsp?c_id=mlb), to identify each player’s walk up music. So if you have anecdotal evidence that one of these songs is no longer in use by a particular player, or if you feel there’s one I’ve unfairly excluded that isn’t listed on MLB.com’s site, you’ll have take it up with them. I did what fact checking I could, but short of visiting each team’s ballpark every night, there’s only so much I can do.

Each song was scored according to three highly scientific measures on a scale of 1-100: “Is It Good Song”; “Do A Lot Of Folks Know The Song”; and “The Dope Beats and Catchiness Index (DBCI)”, a proprietary statistic of my own devising that seeks to define the level to which a particular song can raise the spirits of 35,000 baseball fans. Those scores were then averaged, with a bonus score of -5 to 5 applied to some songs whenever I felt like it, to find each songs final score.

But First! The Bottom Five:

5) Josh Donaldson, Toronto Blue Jays: In The Air Tonight by Phil Collins 29.3

I don’t know, maybe I’m wrong about this, because Josh was not alone here; he was only the most well-known player to use this as his theme. Phil Collins is fine if you’re trying to set the mood with your guy or gal, folks. But to set the mood with 35,000 strangers? I’m just not too sure about that, Josh.

4) Alex Rodriguez, New York Yankees: International Love by Pitbull and Chris Brown

What a great troll move from A-Rod, the most universally despised baseball player, to use a song from the two most universally despised rap artists as his walk-up music. A-Rod’s hilarious victory lap wouldn’t be the same without being soundtracked by this awful song. He really missed an opportunity to cement his legacy by failing to retire after hitting his 666th home run.

3) Jake McGee, Tampa Bay Rays: My Way by Limp Bizkit 19.0

I’ve got to be honest with you guys, I used to jam to this song too, folks. I think my friends and I probably requested it at our 8th grade dance.

2) A.J. Pierzinski, Atlanta Braves: Bullets by Creed 10.7

A.J. has to be the least surprising entry on this list, right?

1) Shaun Marcum, Cleveland Indians: Burn It To The Ground by Nickleback 9.0

Why, Shaun. Why? I will never forgive Marcum for losing the 2011 NLCS to the C***inals, so it greatly pleases me to rank him as having the single worst walk-up song in the Major Leagues.

Honorable Mention:

A few teams had so many great songs that these just have to be mentioned, although I wasn’t able to include them in the final rankings since the rule is one song per team. Know that most of these would be in the top ten if teams were allowed multiple entries.

Zack Grienke, Los Angeles Dodgers: Careless Whisper by George Michael

Zack Grienke was created in a lab in New Mexico by scientists charged with developing the most entertaining professional sports player of all time. George Michael? Never change, Zack.

Todd Frazier, Cincinatti Reds: Fly Me To The Moon by Frank Sinatra

This is a dope choice, not only because it’s a great song in and of itself, but because of the subtle baseball reference from the newly-crowned Home Run Derby champion who hits moonshots on the regular.

Jesse Hahn, Oakland Athletics: Hit ‘Em High (Monstar’s Theme) by B-Real feat. Method Mad, Coolio, LL Cool J and Busta Rhymes

“Travis, would it be a good idea to use a dope track from the undisputed greatest live-action/animated sports movie of all time as my walk-up song?” Yes, Jesse, “I Believe I Can Fly” by R-Kelly would be an excellent choi–ooooh. Well that works too I guess.

Bryce Harper, Washinton Nationasl: The Best is Yet to Come by Frank Sinatra

If that’s true it is utterly terrifying. Got help us all.

And now, finally, on to the rankings. Please note that these are definitive and above reproach.

30

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P Jonathan Schoop

Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae) by Silento

50

Look, whatever. If it’s good enough for Queen Riley Curry, it’s good enough for all of us. Other players that use this song: Ryan Howard, Philladephia Phillies

29

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OF Torii Hunter

Heart of a Lion by Kid CuDi

59

Listen, there’s nothing wrong with this song. It’s a dope track, kind of a deep cut from Cudi’s first studio album that was never released as a single. It’s fine, but someone’s got to be down here in the bottom five, and Heart of a Lion really took a hit in the song popularity section.

28

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3B Garin Cecchini

Good Vibrations by Marky Mark

and the Funky Bunch

59

The Red Sox didn’t give me a lot to work with, so the ultimate vanilla party song came back as their top song. Everyone in the world knows this song, and all of those people think it’s okay. It’s the kind of song that you forgot you heard 12 seconds after it ends. Meh. Other players that use this song: Alex Gordon, Kansas City Royals; Anthony Rizzo, Chicago Cubs

26

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P Chad Billingsley

TNT by AC/DC

66.7

Whatever, this is fine. It’s just lazy, you know? This is the kind of walk up song choice that just says you didn’t invest any time in the decision at all. But the rest of the Phillies were horrid (Carlos Ruiz is one of the players that shares Phil Collins with Josh Donaldson), so they’re stuck with this.

26t

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SS Jed Lowrie

Tom Sawyer by Rush

66.7

I don’t know if the middle of a baseball game is the right time for it, but this is an objectively great song. TNT got here just by being a classic Jock Jam, Tom Sawyer lands here on the strength of being awesome.

25

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P Tom Koehler

X Gon Give It To Ya by DMX

67

24

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P R.A. Dickey

Game of Thrones (Theme) by Ramin Djawadi

67.3

I had to look up video of this to see if it was real/how cool it was. It is really cool. Other players that use this song: Noah Syndergaard, New York Mets

23

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P Wade Davis

Ackrite by Dr. Dre feat. Hittman

68.3

Dr. Dre is all over this list, because he’s a noted creator of sick beats and because his songs generally lend themselves to being stadium anthems. This is the lowest on my list, simply because it was never released as a single and isn’t as well known.

22

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OF Mark Canha

7/11 by Beyonce

68.7

This one’s for the ladies. Canha was the only instance I could find of a player using Queen Bey for his walk-up music. I am not overly familiar with this song, but my girlfriend assures me that it is a very good song and that I like it a lot.

21

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OF Jaun Lagares

Hot in Herre by Nelly

69

Nice

20

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OF Mike Trout

Started From the Bottom by Drake

71.7

Toronto’s favorite son, fresh off his annihilation of Meek Mill, makes his only appearance on our countdown with what I can only assume is an over-our-heads subversive joke from the American League MVP, who has been the best baseball player in the league since his debut in 2011.

19

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P Mike Foltynewicz

My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark by Fall Out Boy

72

Man, this name must have SUCKED in high school. Half of my teachers couldn’t pronounce my last name right, and mine sounds exactly like it’s spelled. One time, someone just threw an M in there for no reason. What is wrong with you lady? Anyway my point is, I’m sorry, Mike Fontywantynickles. This song is fine, great safe choice.

18

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P Cody Allen

God’s Gonna Cut You Down by Johnny Cash

72.1

Pretty good song, and feels like an especially good choice for a closer, which is a made-up position based on the baseball community’s fascination with a meaningless stat that was created in 1969. It’s so good for closers, in fact, that the Yankees’ Andrew Miller uses it as well. Other players that use this song, Miller, Nate Eovaldi, New York Yankees

17

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OF Ryan Braun

All Day by Kanye West

72.2

Yeah, yeah, yeah. Just save your steroids jokes, they’re old enough to attend kindergarten now. Let them live their lives, you’re smothering them. Braun is basically the Kanye of MLB. Braun is probably MLB’s douchiest player, and Kanye is pop culture’s douchiest human. Have either they done anything really awful? Nah – one kinda cheated at a children’s game, and the other was mean to Taylor Swift once. But they’re annoying, and it’s only magnified by having to constantly acknowledge that they are indeed quite good.

16

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2B Tim Beckham

So Fresh, So Clean by Outkast

76.3

The early aughts were sort of a weird time for hip-hop. For instance, Chingy existed, Mike Jones made an entire album where he just recited his phone number (281-330-8004, hit Mike Jones up on the low, ‘cuz Mike Jones about to blow) and Lil’ Jon and the Ying Yang Twins made like 12 chart-toppers that were basically them just screaming the same 9 words all y’all were like, “….that’s dope as hell, bruh.” Offsetting this nonsense was the brilliance of Andre 3000 and Big Boi, and this track is one of their best.

14t

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SS Ian Desmond

Alright by Kendrick Lamar

77.7

To Pimp A Butterfly is such a good album, and for me right now, this is the best track on the album (this is subject to change at any time). “Alright” is a banger.

14t

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OF Adam Eaton

This Is How We Do It by Montell Jordan

77.7

So at this point, you’re starting to see how quickly the songs on this list get great. Listen, being in the bottom half of this list still puts you among the greats. It’s like being one of the worst players in the Hall of Fame. Literally, I would say, the honor of making this list is pretty much on par with being elected into Cooperstown.

13

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C Kyle Schwarber

No Diggity by Blackstreet feat. Dr. Dre

79.8

Fun fact: 39% of all song released from 1995-2001 ended with “feat. Dr. Dre”, the most notable of which was of course the timeless 1999 classic, “MmmBop (G-funk Remix)” by Hanson feat. Dr. Dre.

12

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OF Peter Bourjos

Still D.R.E. by Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg

81.3

The only reason this song isn’t in the top ten is my own pure, unadulterated hatred for the Cardinals. I mean no disrespect to the good doctor and the D-O-double-G. Let me be very clear about this: this song is great, and the Cardinals are the worst.

11

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OF Andrew McCutchen

Bad Blood by Taylor Swift feat. Kendrick Lamar

81.7

This is the most entertaining combination of dope song-great player in my opinion, but this list ranks only how good the song is, not how well it lines up with the player. It’s difficult for me to admit that you can add Kendrick Lamar to something and make it slightly worse, but just like Star Wars and the National League, the original is better.

10

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P Josh Collmenter

Blank Space by Taylor Swift

83.0

I’m not sorry about this at all. Everyone that says they don’t like Taylor Swift is a liar. If you’re one of those people, let me tell you something, guy: It’s not that you don’t like Taylor, it’s that you don’t like the part of yourself that loves her. You’ve got to look inside of yourself and just come to terms with exactly who you are.

9

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1B Mark Teixera

It’s Tricky by Run DMC

83.3

Once upon a time, the Yankees signed Tex as a free agent, formerly of the Los Angeles Angels of Anahiem, a couple of weeks after signing C.C. Sabathia, most recently of the Milwaukee Brewers. Based on a completely-not-transparent ranking system, Elias ranked Teixera as a slightly better player than Sabathia, who almost won the dang NL Cy Young even though he didn’t join the league until mid-July (they were the top two ranked free agents that year). Based on those rankings, the Angels received the higher compensatory round pick from the Yankees in the 2012 MLB Draft. The Brewers, rumored to be interested in Mike Trout, watched the reigning MVP go to the Angels at No. 25. Scrambling to find a plan B, the Brewers ended up taking Indiana senior Eric Arnett, who was released in 2013 and finished his career with a 5.18 ERA while failing to ever progress past A ball. What does this have to do with Run D.M.C.? Not a damn thing. But it has haunted me for years, and I needed to get it off my chest.

8

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SS Brad Miller

Big Poppa by The Notorious B.I.G.

84.7

Obviously, I have a thing for dorky looking white dudes using gangsta rap as their walk-up songs. This is one of Biggie’s best and most famous bangers. Dope choice.

7

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P Ian Kennedy

I Knew You Were Trouble by Taylor Swift

87.7

In 2011, Kennedy, then with the Diamondbacks, led the league with 21 wins, tallied a 2.88 ERA with 198 strikeouts, and finished 4th in Cy Young voting. It was the only year that he posted a sub-3.60 ERA, and he’s basically been pretty pedestrian otherwise. He’s struggled with surrendering home runs his entire career, allowing an average of 25 per 162 games (source: Baseball Reference). So, he’s certainly trouble when he walks in, but more so for the hometown fans than opposing batters. Yes, it was a long walk to that one. Thanks for sticking around. Reading this column was a voluntary act.

6

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OF Hunter Pence

Circle of Life by Sir Elton John

88.0

This is the most Hunter Pence walk up song of all time. If you don’t love Hunter Pence then I don’t love you. It is my belief that all Hunter Pence Signs are made out of love and respect. Sort of like when you’re pallin’ around with your mates, just funnin’ with them. More players should be using Disney songs as their walk up jams.

5

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OF Charlie Blackmon

Your Love by The Outfield

89.6

VH1 really donked this one up when they ranked what was easily a top three one-hit wonder of the 80s FIFTY NINTH on their highly suspect rankings. “Mickey” at #9? MICKEY!? That song is wet garbage. “Your Love”, on the other hand, is a masterpiece, and has the benefit of a tangential baseball reference. Other players that use this song: Gordon Beckham, Chicago White Sox; Grant Green, Los Angeles Angels

4

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3B Nick Castellanos

Ignition (Remix) by R. Kelly

89.7

Oh man, oh man, oh man. This song is FOURTH?! The top of this list is basically just a collection of the world’s greatest bangers then. The only reason you would hear this song come on at the club and not immediately start dancing would be if you literally had died.

3

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OF Jay Bruce

Shake It Off by Taylor Swift

90.0

Not only is this one of Tay’s greatest and catchiest songs, it is universally recognized, and everyone who isn’t a liar loves it. I wonder if Jay chose this song so his manager would stop saying “Shake it off” to him after his at-bats, since he’s never had a season in which he didn’t have more strikeouts than hits. The only issue here is Jay breaking my number one rule: never trust a man with two first names. Other players that use this song: A.J. Ellis, Los Angeles Dodgers

2

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P Kenley Jansen

California Love by TuPac

90.5

While doing research for this piece, I noted early on, because of how the alphabet works, that Baltimore Orioles outfield Adam Jones was using this banger, one of hip hop’s greatest collaborations. Answering my silent prayers, Jansen allowed me to give this song to a player from the correct state, which added five bonus points to the score and nearly lifted the Dodgers’ closer to the top spot. Other players that use this song: Jones

1

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3B Joey Gallo

Pony by Ginuwine

91.3

Look, I know he was optioned down to Triple-A Round Rock a couple of weeks ago and I do not care. He represents the Rangers and tops this list anyway because A) This is a top-five all time song and B) the rest of the Rangers have truly awful taste in music (basically have the league is vibing dang Fetty Wap right now, including Rangers rookie Delino DeShields Jr.). I couldn’t leave Ginuwine off the list and I apologize for nothing. Hurry back, Joey.

The 2014-2015 Brewers: A Tale of Two Aprils

Let’s run the clock back a year. It’s July 21st, 2014, and the Brewers are frantically trying to hold off the storming Cardinals, having regained a half game lead in the division with a 5-2 win over the Reds. Brewers fans, nervously scoreboard watching as the Pirates sit just 2.5 games back as well, are wondering what sort of moves Doug Melvin plans to make to bolster the pitching staff and find a left handed hitter to plug holes that have allowed the rest of the NL Central to climb back into the race. Brewer Nation is nervous, having watched what once seemed to be a healthy division lead evaporate, but fears of missing the playoffs haven’t yet begun to take hold for even the most cynical fans; the shade of the horrors of the oncoming September collapse is creeping but remains in the shadows, just beyond our peripheral visions.

Now bring it back to the present. The surging Brewers have won 16 of their last 22 games, but at 41-52 still find themselves decidedly out of the playoff picture, and are one of a small handful of teams universally regarded as sellers at the trade deadline. After a decade-long commitment to winning now that resulted in only two playoff appearances and only one series victory, the farm system is weak, and the Brewers are expected to make a big push to trade most of their veteran players for whatever they can get in an effort to further bolster a recovering minor league system.

The Brewers rather famously got off to a 20-7 start last year, the best start in team history and one that put them in the driver’s seat for most of the year in the NL Central race. This season began just slightly worse, when they all but obliterated their playoff hopes with a disastrous 8-19 start over that same span.

But what about after those aberrational starts? Let’s take a look:

2014 Milwaukee Brewers 2015 Milwaukee Brewers
First 27 Games: 20-7 8-19
Next 66 Games: 32-34 33-33
Final record: 82-80 ???

So the difference between a solid World Series contender looking to buy at the deadline and one of the worst teams in the league due for a fire sale is … a month’s worth of games in April? It seems silly to judge these teams based on a number of games that amounts to about 16% of the season. More likely, last year’s team was significantly worse than we may have thought early on, this year’s version is quite a bit better than their record has shown to date, and the true talent level for both years is right around that 82-80 mark that the 2014 squad wound up with.

None of this is to say that the Brewers were wrong to go for it last year, or that they shouldn’t be sellers at the deadline this year. Often, all it takes is for an average team to get hot for a month to find your way into the playoffs. Remember the 2007 Colorado Rockies? They sat just four games over .500 on September 15th  and were just another NL West also-ran, but went on to win 20 of their next 21 games, including a walk-off win over San Diego in game 163, to find themselves in the World Series. On the flip side of that coin, as we’ve seen this year, a disastrous stretch of bad play like the Brewers experienced this April is more than enough to knock a borderline team out of contention.

That being said, if you thought the Brewers were a legitimate threat to win the World Series in 2014 (and we did), then there is little reason not to believe that going forward under the right circumstances, because it’s essentially the same team. For that reason, and especially given the Brewers recent surge, do not be shocked if the Brewers hold on to their assets that could help them win in the very near future at the trade deadline. Jonathan Lucroy, Carlos Gomez, Mike Fiers and Adam Lind – the Brewers’ four most valuable trade chips outside of the blistering-hot Gerardo Parra – are all under team control next year in one way or another: Gomez and Lucroy are on team-friendly contracts that run through 2016, Lind’s $8 million club option next year is almost certain to be picked up by whatever team he’s playing for at year’s end, and Fiers won’t even be eligible for arbitration until 2017. All of this give Mark Attanasio and Doug Melvin the flexibility, if they so choose, to make one last run with this core in 2016, and should the fall flat again, trade them next July for a smaller but still substantial bounty.

There are holes that would need to be filled if the Brewers’ meant to compete as early as next year. Matt Garza remains under contract through 2017 (with a vesting option for 2018 that bears discussing sometime soon if he remains with the team), but he isn’t likely to offer a ton of value to a contender going forward, and his contract will make him difficult for the Brewers to move. Kyle Lohse is a free agent after this season, and he’s clearly outstripped his usefulness as a major league starting pitcher. The Brewers have some young talent in Wily Peralta, Jimmy Nelson and Taylor Jungmann in addition to Fiers, but that’s certainly not the kind of rotation that wins you a playoff series. The Brewers will also have to find a third baseman Ramirez retiring after this season, a position at which their farm system is totally bereft of talent. This is neither an endorsement nor a denouncement of a potential effort by the Brewers to try to reload for next year; I present this as a mere statement of fact. If they wanted to fill those holes, they would need to do so through free agency – to gut the already thin system again for an outside shot at a wild card spot in a spectacularly tough division would be a franchise-crippling mistake that I’m willing to trust Attanasio won’t make, no matter how great his drive to produce a team that can fill seats on a yearly basis.

Are the Brewers really, truly done this year? Probably, yeah. They were sitting at about the same spot they are now back in 2012, when a seven game losing streak left them 10 games under .500 and 10 games back of the second wild card spot. That late July slide forced Melvin’s hand toward selling, and Zack Grienke was dealt to the Angels. The Brewers, however, would rally all the way back to get within a game and a half of the Cardinals for that last playoff spot on September 21st before finally fading away. So there’s a slight gasp of hope if you feel like holding onto something, but the NL Central was a lot weaker in 2012, when the both the Cubs and Astros lost 100 games and the Pirates were still a year away from breaking their long streak of losing seasons. So the best case scenario, if you’re the impatient type, is a quick reload (though the free agent third baseman class for next year looks downright brutal) for next year.

What will the Brewers do at the deadline this year? At this point, who knows. It’s been a slow starting trade season across the league this year, but with so much parity throughout the league, the Brewers man be one of a very small amount of teams willing to toss in the towel and sell assets over the next week and a half. If you were hoping for a home run return for the likes of Gomez or Lucroy, the promising signs the Crew has shown over the past month has probably wiped that possibility out, if it ever really existed at all. Parra is the Brewers best and most obvious piece, and were he to still be on the team on August 1st, it would not only be shocking, it would be a grievous mistake on the team’s part. Ramirez may be traded, if he wants to be and if they can find a buyer. The Brewers would love to offload Lohse and/or Garza, but will find it difficult to find a contender that believes either can offer value down the stretch. For anyone else on the roster, the Brewers would really need to be blown away to consider moving pieces with multiple years of team control left. Whatever the Brewers choose to do, I would expect the big league team to look substantially different come August 1st.

Chris Heston, And Other Strange No-Hitters

Good afternoon folks,

Many of my friends here know that I’ve just recently started writing with Crooked Scoreboard, a sports and humor website. I’ll still be posting some of my own stuff here, but when I write for them, I’ll still post links here so you can find anything I’ve written in one spot. Below is my debut there, about Juan Nieves, the only Brewer to ever toss a no-hitter, and the pack of jokers that have done so for other teams since:

Crooked Scoreboard – Chris Heston, and Other Strange No-Hitters

NostaTravis’ 2015 MLB Preview

Hey there pals. Yup that’s right it’s me, appearing before you for the first time, NostaTravis. Well, you know, I heard that baseball season was coming up soon, what with it bein’ April and all, and I thought maybe you all would like to know what was going to happen this year, since the baseball season is pretty long and the games are considered “boring” by some of you less dignified mortals, and you might just not have the patience to stick around and find out who the winner will be come October. So, consider this your **SPOILER ALERT** because if learning the winners of all the games before they happen will upset you, you better just go ahead and check out now.

Some things to note before we get started:

  • I am not very good at this. Last year I predicted that the Diamondbacks would make the playoffs as a Wild Card team (they finished in last place with a record of 64-98) and that the Tampa Bay Rays would win the World Series (at 77-85, the Rays finished 11 games out of the race for the second Wild Card spot). If you make gambling decisions based on my predictions, you will probably lose all of your money.
  • “Travis you big idiot the Brewers aren’t very good you are being a homer.” Read the name of this blog ya chucklehead.
  • Everything written here is exactly as true as you want it to be. Bucky’s Beer Cheese Co. is a magical vehicle powered only by your imagination. Let it run wild.

AL East

1) Baltimore Orioles
2) Boston Red Sox
3) Toronto Blue Jays
4) New York Yankees
5) Tampa Bay Rays

A lot of folks are down on the Orioles this year, which doesn’t make a dang lick of sense; they didn’t do much in the off-season, but they won this division by 12 games last year without Manny Machado and Matt Wieters, they didn’t need to do much … The Rays will have one of the best starting rotations in the league once Alex Cobb and Matt Moore are healthy, but their lineup is abysmal … A-Rod will play this year, which is pretty funny.

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Cleveland MVP candidate Michael Brantley, in happier times.

AL Central

1) Cleveland Indians
2) Kansas City Royals*
3) Detroit Tigers
4) Chicago White Sox
5) Minnesota Twins

A couple of years ago, this division was a laughing stock outside of Detroit. Now it’s probably the best division in baseball: I could easily see any one of the four top teams taking it, and the Twins are only a year or two away from contention … The White Sox made a big splash in the free agent market, but a lot of times you don’t see a team click into contention after moves like that until year two … Sure the Tigers are getting old, but they’re not the Yankees yet, and David Price and Miguel Cabrera are still the best pitcher and best hitter in this division.

AL West

1) Los Angeles Angels
2) Seattle Mariners*
3) Oakland Athletics
4) Texas Rangers
5) Houston Astros

Mike Trout is the best player in baseball and it isn’t close. The Angels have a bunch of other nice pieces as well … Oakland was very busy this off-season and made a couple of moves many considered questionable, but they haven’t lost too much … Yu Darvish will miss the season after having Tommy John surgery, which is an absolute tragedy … The Astros still aren’t close. Was the possibility of contending in the nebulous “next year” worth the half decade they’ve put their fans through?

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The Phillies

NL East

1) Washington Nationals
2) Miami Marlins*
3) New York Mets
4) Atlanta Braves
5) Philadelphia Phillies

A lot of people have dismissed the Nationals’ division championship as a foregone conclusion, which I think is as much an indictment of the rest of the division as it is a crowning for Washington. Everyone else is terrible … That being said, holy cow is Washington’s starting rotation good. Gio Gonzalez is their FIFTH starter — he is better than every pitcher currently employed by the Milwaukee Brewers … The Phillies are sitting at the intersection of really old and really bad. It’s an interesting approach.

NL Central

1) Milwaukee Brewers
2) Pittsburgh Pirates*
3) St. Louis Cardinals
4) Chicago Cubs
5) Cincinnati Reds

“Travis you can’t put the Brewers in first place you are being ridiculous” Oh yeah well guess what idiot I just did, shows what you know … The Brewers are a better team this year than the team that spent 150 days in first place last year. It’s not a stretch to think Jimmy Nelson can produce at the same level Gallardo did last season, Braun is healthy again, they employ an actual first baseman for the first time in three years, and the bullpen is deeeeep … “Travis you can’t put the Cardinals in third place you are being ridiculous” Yes I can fuck the Cardinals … The Cubs are going to be good. Really, really good. But I think they’re still a year away.

NL West

1) Los Angeles Dodgers
2) San Diego Padres
3) San Francisco Giants
4) Colorado Rockies
5) Arizona Diamondbacks

I mean, the Dodgers can afford to outbid everyone for anyone, and they just went on got one of the best penny-pinchers in the game in Andrew Friedman. I’m not sure how well that’s going to play out: he just shelled out 4/$48 for Brandon McCarthy … The Padres were involved in basically every off-season deal all winter, and they’ve obviously improved a league-worst offense immensely. I’m a big fan of their 100% new and improved outfield … The Diamondbacks have about nine major league players on their team, which is pretty good, because there aren’t any on the baseball team that I own. But since most of the other teams in the league have 25, I don’t think they’re gonna have a really nice time.

Playoffs:

Wild Card Games
NL: Marlins over Pirates
AL: Mariners over Royals
Divisional Series
NL: Nationals over Marlins, Dodgers over Brewers
AL: Angels over Mariners, Indians over Orioles
Championship Series
NL: Dodgers over Nationals
AL: Angels over Indians
World Series
Dodgers over Angels

The smirk of a man who knows he's the best in the world.

The smirk of a man who knows he’s the best in the world.

Awards:

MVP
NL: Giancarlo Stanton, Miami
AL: MIke Trout, Los Angeles
Anyone who picks someone other than Trout for MVP is grasping for headlines. Get real.
Cy Young
NL: Clayton Kershaw, Los Angeles
AL: Felix Hernandez, Seattle
Little bit of chalk here, but these are the two best pitchers in the game, health permitting.
Rookie of the Year
NL: Kris Bryant, Chicago
AL: Rusney Castillo, Boston
Boy, I SURE AM EXCITED for the Cubs future.

Well, thanks for taking a look, friend. Feel free to bookmark this post and tell me what an idiot I am during this year’s White Sox-Cubs World Series.