Make your pick - Which MLB team(s) will be the biggest flops & biggest surprises
Here is your chance to make your case for which MLB club will be the biggest flop and the biggest surprise this year.
Since I'm starting this thread, I'll step to the plate first.
My call for stinking up the joint - the Los Angeles Dodgers. If you listen to the likes of Peter Gammons, the Dodgers are likely set for a run at 90+ wins and could run away with the NL West. This is based on the vetern signings of new GM Ned Coletti and their strong bullpen. This will turn out to be a house of cards. Gagne is still nursing it, Brazoban is hurting, and Baez may have to do things on his own, closing games in a big market for the first time. Their new CF hasn't had 400AB in five seasons. Their RF is top flight when he's healthy, which is rarely ever. Their 1B has a glass groin and they are seriously considering giving the significant playing time at catcher to the soon to be 40 years old Sandy Alomar Jr. IMO - it's a trainwreck just waiting to happen.
As for who will surprise - I'll stick with the same division. My call is that this year's surprise team will be the Colorado Rockies. Before you call me a total quack, in the last 100 star games of the 2005 season the Rockies had the exact same record as the division winning Padres - 46-54 and had a team ERA of 4.80. Nothing earth shattering, but in that poor division, it could be just enough to make things interesting. Especially considering the Padres made a few puzzling subtractions over the offseason. In Jason Jennings, Jeff Francis and Aaron Cook they have three solid, home grown starters who all have respectable track records at Coors. Kim was also quite effective when he was put back in a starting role. Rumors are that the grounds crew is busy making sure the infield at Coors will resemble the rough at the US Open, which will further help for all those sinkerballers. Ryan Shealy could be another nasty bat out in RF this year, along with Matt Holliday who broke out last year, to go with rookies Clint Barmes and Garrett Atkins who both proved to be solid hitters and of course Todd Helton. That's a lineup that could put lots of runs away from Coors as well. The West again will be a dismal hole for winning baseball, and 82 wins again might net you the title. I'm not saying they will win anything of worth, but they could be close enough to .500 to at least be in the race or make things interesting.