The 2012 Home Run Derby will take place tonight in Kansas City’s Kauffman Stadium and should be a real crowd pleaser. For the 2nd time the derby participants were selected by a team captain from each league. This year’s captains are Matt Kemp for the NL and defending champion Robinson Cano for the AL. Cano selected Prince Fielder, Mike Trumbo and Jose Bautista to join him on the AL squad while Matt Kemp selected Giancarlo Stanton, Carlos Beltran and Carlos Gonzalez to represent the NL. However Giancarlo Stanton is unable to compete due to injury and has been replaced by Andrew McCutchen. The AL team looks like the better foursome to me but any of these 8 guys are capable of taking this thing. The derby will no doubt provide some great entertainment for every baseball fan tonight, but for those of you who want to make it a little more interesting here’s each slugger’s odds at victory…
I know I am a little late with this but considering almost every team still has 160 games left I still think it’s worth writing. I’m going to go through division by division, give my projected standings including win/loss records and give a short analysis on why I think that’s how they’ll end up. After that I’ll go through the playoff match-ups and give out my picks to win all the big regular season individual honors. Brace yourselves before reading O’s fans…
New York Yankees 99 – 63
Tampa Bay Rays 88 – 74
Pick to Win AL East: New York Yankees
I think that the Yankees will just have too much of everything for the Rays and Red Sox to keep up with them. They have great hitters back again with Alex Rodriguez, Mark Tiexeira, Cano, and Granderson in the middle of the lineup. On top of that they have a catcher who was an all-star last year in Russel Martin and a sure-fire hall of famer in Derek Jeter. One of their biggest holes last year was pitching, and they certainly knew that and made some big moves in free agency. They traded for Michael Pineda who had a great rookie year and signed Hiroki Kuroda who has a career 3.45 ERA. On top of that they still have an ace in C.C. Sabathia and another young star in Ivan Nova who went 16-4 last year. They have certainly improved their pitching and will win this division.
Each fantasy baseball season has its own unique spin to it. Subtle differences that change how the season plays out and what adjustments you need to make as a player to win this year. And that is the ultimate goal. To win this year. If you want to win a fantasy league, you have to take risks, make smart decisions, and sometimes painful decisions.