5 Bold Predictions for the 2019 MLB Season
The wait is almost over for the MLB season. After a nauseating off-season it is finally time to see who is ready to shine in 2019. It is almost a given that guys like Mike Trout and Christian Yelich will continue to impress. But who are we not expecting greatness from? The following are my 5 bold predictions for what should be a very exciting and unpredictable season
1. Chris Davis Will Bat >.230
The most chiseled jaw in professional sports made headlines last season for all the wrong reasons. He had, by far, one of the worst hitting seasons in recent history posting a .168 average with only 16 HR. This yielded a -2.8 WAR for the season (Vom!). So why should 2019 be any different? Well, the statistical chance that he has the worst ever MLB season two years in a row is highly unlikely and there is nowhere to go but up. I am not saying scoop this guy up on your fantasy team, but expect Davis to put up the kind of numbers he usually does. The Orioles as a whole were very bad in 2018 but I expect new manager Brandon Hyde to get the best out of his roster including this overpaid slugger.
2. Madison Bumgarner Will Not be a Giant at the End of the Season
It is very clear that the Giants championship window is all but closed. The Dodgers and Rockies have a stranglehold on the division and the boys by the bay did not add enough pieces in the off-season to stay competitive. With Bruce Bochy announcing his retirement at the conclusion of the season, it only makes sense for a clean start. The new head of baseball operations Farhan Zaidi will likely use 2019 as a tryout for his new regime and dealing Mad Bum at the deadline (or sooner) would be a great way to add a few key pieces. He is in the last year of his contract and teams in the hunt will love a rental with his kind of playoff experience. 2020 will be a new beginning for the Giants as they will likely hire a new GM and manager, but 2019 is going tough for the passionate fans out west.
3. Jurickson Profar Will Start in the All-Star game.
During his time in Texas,
4. The Brewers Will Have 4 Players with 10+ Saves
2018 proved to be the year of the bullpen. So much so that the Milwaukee Brewers won the division without a big name starter in their rotation. The depth they have makes the back end of their bullpen a revolving door and manager Craig Counsell is not afraid to play the hot hand. Last season the bullpen was consistently good except for the occasional speed bump by Knebel or the twitter history of Hader. I am expecting 2019 to not go as smooth given the strength of the NL central forcing Counsell to switch out his closer every month and a half or so.
5. Jordan Hicks will Throw an 106 mph Fastball
Aroldis Chapman currently holds the record for the fastest pitch ever thrown at 105.1 mph. A hot gun in Cincinnati clocked him at 106 but that is highly disputed. The newest fireballer in the MLB is Jordan Hicks from St. Louis who clocked 105 twice in his home park in the same at-bat. Additionally, Hicks logged the 5 fastest pitches in the MLB for the 2018 season. St. Louis in July would be the perfect swampy, humid cocktail to break the record that Chapman set in 2010. Say a quick prayer for the guy who has to dodge the pitch as accuracy will likely be an issue at 106.