by EDWARD PINTO Section Editor
The smell of fresh cut grass, warm weather, and light breezes are finally upon us. With just one more week until the start of the season, teams have been getting prepared with spring training for pitchers and catchers, and lifting in the weight room.
Teams like the Detroit Tigers and Los Angeles Dodgers are two of the best teams in the American League and National League respectively. Both of them will be looking to win the World Series after the Boston Red Sox took it home last season. The Dodgers spent over $100 million in the offseason on contracts and new signings.
The biggest story of the offseason, however, was the fact that future Hall-of-Famer Derek Jeter will be retiring at the season’s end.
The Yankees spent $471 million on contracts, including the big signings of Jacoby Ellsbury and Japanese star Masahiro Tanaka. The Yankees missed the playoffs for the first time in 20 years, and plan to quickly rebuild themselves to hopefully take back the American League and even the World Series.
The World Series winners, the Boston Red Sox, did very little in the offseason, but still have the same all-star lineup that won them the trophy. The same situation happened with the Detroit Tigers as they signed Joe Nathan to a $20 million dollar deal, but that was it.
The Dodgers are still heavy favorites to win the World Series, and the Yankees are second favorites.
On opening day, the Tigers will play the Arizona Diamondbacks in the first ever game in Australia on Friday, March 21. Other teams will also play their first regular season game later in the day.
“I can’t wait until baseball season. I’ve been counting down the days and it’s almost here! Hopefully the Washington Nationals get far into the playoffs, but you never know,” said sophomore Ryan Brusick.
The Most Valuable Players last year were Miguel Cabrera and Andrew McCutchen from the AL and NL, respectively. Max Sherzer from the AL and Clayton Kershaw from the NL won the Cy Young awards.
This year, the race for both of the awards will be very close. Mike Trout from the L.A. Dodgers and Yu Darvish from the Texas Rangers are preseason predictions to win the MVP as both of them had an equally great season in 2013, and look to continue that form in 2014.
The Washington Nationals and the New York Mets are two teams that people sleep on. With young, great players on their teams, anything is possible, especially another potential MVP, Bryce Harper on the Nationals. The Mets plan to aim for a 90 win season and clinch a playoff birth. The Mets division does not seem as good as others, and hope to pounce on that.
“I feel like this year is going to be really competitive because Jeter is going to want to win (because of his last season) and the National League has always been competitive, so I guess we’re going to have a tremendous season,” said sophomore Carter Bach.
What are your preseason predictions? Do you think your favorite team is going to go far or will they fall short?