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AL West Preview

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The AL West is up next on our MLB previews and this could be a good one. Last year the Rangers came alive and won the division and looking to go back to back. The Astros are next in line in the West and will look to upgrade from their wild card spot from last year. The Angels, A’s, and Mariners are all in this weird bunch, where anything can happen. Can the top two get back to the dance, maybe a third? Lets see what I have this division looking like in 2016

Astros

The Astros are looking to get back to the playoffs but this time as the AL West Division champs. Them and their rival Rangers are very similar in that their lineups are very top heavy. The differences where I see the Astros pulling away from Texas is the rotation and the bullpen. 1st off the rotation has tons of depth and are led by 2015 Cy Young winner Dallas Keuchel. The bullpen is now led by newly acquired Ken Giles who has the potential to be a top 3 closer with the stuff he has. Also they have guys like Gregerson, Neshek, Will Harris, and Tony Sipp who are all top-notch relievers. Thanks to Roto Champ again here are what the lineup and rotations should look like;

Projected Lineup

Player POS AB R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG OPS BB K
1 Jose Altuve 2B 601 87 12 58 35 0.311 0.349 0.443 0.792 32 61
2 George Springer OF 522 85 24 74 18 0.257 0.349 0.441 0.790 69 170
3 Carlos Correa SS 578 90 26 83 22 0.282 0.348 0.484 0.832 57 126
4 Carlos Gomez OF 485 73 17 65 24 0.268 0.327 0.441 0.768 37 118
5 Evan Gattis DH 450 61 23 68 0 0.249 0.290 0.456 0.746 24 101
6 Luis Valbuena 3B 418 60 18 56 1 0.225 0.316 0.416 0.732 53 100
7 Colby Rasmus OF 439 62 22 64 2 0.232 0.302 0.453 0.755 43 155
8 Jonathan Singleton 1B 225 30 10 28 1 0.196 0.296 0.373 0.669 32 77
9 Jason Castro C 335 42 12 40 1 0.227 0.296 0.388 0.684 31 109
Projected Rotation

Player POS IP W L ERA WHIP K BB SwStrike Fastball
1 Dallas Keuchel SP 204 13 9 2.87 1.12 177 48 10.3% 89.6 mph
2 Collin McHugh SP 193 12 10 3.82 1.23 168 51 10.3% 90.4 mph
3 Lance McCullers SP 184 12 8 3.23 1.18 189 63 9.8% 94.5 mph
4 Mike Fiers SP 165 9 9 3.49 1.18 169 51 9.8% 89.4 mph
5 Scott Feldman SP 145 7 9 3.85 1.30 88 39 7.1% 90.3 mph
6 Doug Fister SP 110 6 7 4.17 1.35 71 23 5.2% 86.2 mph

Rangers

The Rangers made the big splash at the deadline with trading for Cole Hamels and then they never looked back. They went on a crazy run at the end and caught the Astros. Their lineup is very good with sprinkles of crap with Ian Desmond and Robinson Chirinos. The major question is who will step behind Hamels until Yu Darvish comes back from Tommy John. The bullpen has a bunch of guys that are decent but not reliable. That lineup needs to mash out of the gates and wait for reinforcements like Darvish.

Projected Lineup

Player POS AB R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG OPS BB K
1 Delino DeShields OF 414 54 4 37 25 0.234 0.315 0.338 0.653 46 112
2 Shin-Soo Choo OF 518 83 18 68 6 0.270 0.368 0.434 0.802 74 138
3 Prince Fielder DH 545 82 21 82 0 0.284 0.361 0.448 0.809 61 83
4 Adrian Beltre 3B 415 59 15 58 1 0.299 0.353 0.463 0.816 34 51
5 Mitch Moreland 1B 459 63 20 64 1 0.261 0.321 0.448 0.769 36 110
6 Ian Desmond OF 505 68 18 64 15 0.250 0.304 0.412 0.716 37 152
7 Elvis Andrus SS 560 68 5 52 25 0.264 0.318 0.345 0.663 43 78
8 Rougned Odor 2B 525 72 17 70 8 0.267 0.312 0.432 0.744 28 92
9 Robinson Chirinos C 224 31 9 29 0 0.228 0.308 0.415 0.723 22 58
Projected Rotation

Player POS IP W L ERA WHIP K BB SwStrike Fastball
1 Cole Hamels SP 205 12 10 3.29 1.18 200 57 13.3% 92.6 mph
2 Colby Lewis SP 145 6 10 4.72 1.32 104 34 8.2% 88.0 mph
3 Martin Perez SP 128 7 7 4.43 1.45 83 42 7.5% 91.8 mph
4 Derek Holland SP 140 6 10 3.92 1.30 111 40 6.9% 92.9 mph
5 Chi Chi Gonzalez SP 101 4 8 4.37 1.38 57 43 6.8% 91.4 mph
6 Yu Darvish SP 125 9 5 3.24 1.18 129 45
7 Nick Martinez SP 105 3 3 4.29 1.47 63 40 7.4% 89.8 mph
8 Jeremy Guthrie SP 65 2 5 4.98 1.45 37 18 6.3% 91.7 mph

3. Mariners

 

I really don’t know what to think about Seattle. They have some big bats and big arms but just not enough to win this thing. King Felix and Prince Taij are the main stays there and need to carry that rotation. The health of Hisashi Iwakuma is a key here because when healthy is a solid #3. The lineup has got some pop in Nelson Cruz, Adam Lind, Cano, Smith, and Kyle Seager, but only really 2 of them strike fear into a pitchers heart. After those guys it’s a bunch of questions marks.

Projected Lineup

Player POS AB R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG OPS BB K
1 Norichika Aoki OF 468 61 5 48 16 0.286 0.347 0.363 0.710 40 36
2 Kyle Seager 3B 588 84 24 81 7 0.267 0.330 0.447 0.777 53 103
3 Nelson Cruz DH 532 89 36 96 3 0.289 0.354 0.539 0.893 51 137
4 Robinson Cano 2B 580 84 19 80 5 0.298 0.355 0.460 0.815 49 89
5 Adam Lind 1B 470 72 18 68 0 0.289 0.369 0.474 0.843 59 92
6 Seth Smith OF 383 56 11 49 0 0.253 0.342 0.434 0.776 49 89
7 Ketel Marte SS 522 62 4 48 21 0.266 0.311 0.351 0.662 34 93
8 Leonys Martin OF 475 57 8 46 27 0.248 0.297 0.345 0.642 31 104
9 Chris Iannetta C 313 43 10 35 1 0.214 0.329 0.361 0.690 52 95
Projected Rotation

Player POS IP W L ERA WHIP K BB SwStrike Fastball
1 Felix Hernandez SP 208 14 9 3.03 1.10 207 52 10.7% 91.8 mph
2 Taijuan Walker SP 184 12 10 3.57 1.23 171 51 10.0% 94.3 mph
3 James Paxton SP 122 5 9 3.84 1.37 102 52 7.2% 94.2 mph
4 Wade Miley SP 196 11 11 4.04 1.37 158 66 8.3% 90.8 mph
5 Hisashi Iwakuma SP 143 8 8 3.40 1.06 121 22 10.6% 88.4 mph
6 Nate Karns SP 155 6 11 4.06 1.34 144 61 9.2% 91.6 mph
7 Vidal Nuno RP 75 3 5 4.08 1.27 64 21 10.6% 89.2 mph

Angels

The only reason I’m going with LA over Oakland is because they have the best player on the planet. That lineup is literally two guys in Trout and King Albert the rest is just blah. Then you get to the rotation and there is only one true guy and he is still unproven in Garrett Richards. Oh yea and Jered Weaver’s blazing 78 MPH heater.

Projected Lineup

Player POS AB R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG OPS BB K
1 Yunel Escobar 3B 485 61 8 52 2 0.289 0.349 0.384 0.733 43 64
2 Kole Calhoun OF 580 77 22 77 4 0.264 0.317 0.428 0.745 43 138
3 Mike Trout OF 558 109 35 102 14 0.297 0.395 0.559 0.954 87 156
4 Albert Pujols DH 495 72 28 76 4 0.253 0.313 0.469 0.782 41 61
5 C.J. Cron 1B 371 48 16 52 2 0.264 0.301 0.451 0.752 17 83
6 Daniel Nava OF 225 28 3 21 2 0.244 0.330 0.333 0.663 25 55
7 Andrelton Simmons SS 525 58 7 50 5 0.259 0.309 0.349 0.658 36 50
8 Carlos Perez C 257 30 4 27 2 0.265 0.313 0.372 0.685 19 44
9 Johnny Giavotella 2B 445 52 4 43 6 0.265 0.317 0.366 0.683 33 52
Projected Rotation

Player POS IP W L ERA WHIP K BB SwStrike Fastball
1 Garrett Richards SP 198 12 10 3.50 1.21 169 67 11.1% 95.5 mph
2 Andrew Heaney SP 175 10 10 3.86 1.24 143 45 8.6% 91.4 mph
3 Jered Weaver SP 161 6 11 4.47 1.33 109 39 8.3% 83.3 mph
4 C.J. Wilson SP 125 6 8 4.03 1.34 107 51 8.6% 90.3 mph
5 Hector Santiago SP 165 6 12 3.71 1.32 145 68 8.5% 90.3 mph
6 Matt Shoemaker SP 135 7 8 4.20 1.23 119 32 9.1% 90.2 mph
7 Tyler Skaggs SP 125 7 7 4.03 1.29 103 39

A’s

 

The A’s always seem to surprise people every year so wouldn’t shock me if they ended up in 3rd in this division. This lineup will get on base and scor3 runs because that’s what Money Ball does. The rotation is the weakness besides Sonny Gray who might be playing else where is this season goes down the tubes. They don’t look like much but never underestimate good old Bill Beane.

Projected Lineup

Player POS AB R HR RBI SB AVG OBP SLG OPS BB K
1 Billy Burns OF 522 62 4 47 29 0.264 0.310 0.331 0.641 32 94
2 Jed Lowrie 2B 385 49 10 44 1 0.247 0.318 0.390 0.708 38 63
3 Billy Butler DH 540 70 14 63 0 0.267 0.333 0.398 0.731 51 97
4 Josh Reddick OF 485 69 19 66 8 0.266 0.328 0.439 0.767 44 71
5 Khris Davis OF 445 68 21 71 6 0.243 0.310 0.449 0.759 41 122
6 Danny Valencia 3B 428 60 17 62 2 0.278 0.330 0.472 0.802 32 96
7 Stephen Vogt C 407 56 15 54 1 0.265 0.334 0.430 0.764 41 79
8 Mark Canha 1B 445 59 16 56 5 0.252 0.312 0.413 0.725 35 108
9 Marcus Semien SS 520 67 14 61 10 0.248 0.312 0.385 0.697 47 128
Projected Rotation

Player POS IP W L ERA WHIP K BB SwStrike Fastball
1 Sonny Gray SP 201 12 10 2.82 1.12 167 61 9.7% 92.9 mph
2 Jesse Hahn RP 120 7 6 3.30 1.23 90 40 7.5% 92.0 mph
3 Rich Hill SP 150 9 9 3.72 1.31 142 68 11.3% 90.2 mph
4 Kendall Graveman SP 140 7 8 3.79 1.40 87 43 7.6% 90.7 mph
5 Henderson Alvarez SP 115 6 6 3.68 1.30 64 25 5.1% 90.7 mph
6 Chris Bassitt SP 100 3 3 3.78 1.32 77 37 8.5% 93.0 mph
7 Jarrod Parker SP 90 5 5 4.00 1.23 61 29

MVP: Carlos Correa-Astros

Cy Young: Cole Hamels -Rangers

ROY: AJ Reed-Astros

 


Credit all authors of images used in both article and as cover image : George

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