MLB Season Win Totals Predictions

MLB Season Win Totals Predictions

MLB Season Win Totals Predictions
by Mike Hayes - 03/06/2007

The 2007 baseball season is upon us and with it comes win totals on the futures board. Here's a look at which teams are most likely to exceed expectations and which aren't.

The Yankees of course have been assigned the highest number at 97 or better, well ahead of the second-choice Red Sox at 91, while the usual bottom-feeding Nats, Royals and Devil Rays are expected to have a tough time reaching reaching 70.

First lets look at four over plays beginning with the PIRATES, which Bodog has at 72. The Buc's record in one-run games is an abysmal 39-59 over the past two seasons including 15-28 in 2006. A 21-27 mark in those games last season would have given the Pirates 73 wins so we're not asking for much improvement.

In fact, if new closer Salmon Torres pitches like he did in notching a dozen saves in September, the Pirates might actually find themselves over .500 and within striking distance of the wild card. Consider that Adam Laroche will be joining Jason Bay, Freddy Sanchez and Xavier Nady in the everyday lineup and that the rotation will be anchored by solid young starters like Ian Snell and Zach Duke.

The BRAVES look to be another solid over play at 83, which would be a mere five-game improvement over the 79 wins posted last year, when the Braves remarkable run of 13 consecutive division titles came to a halt. Like the Bucs, the Braves had a tough time in one-run affairs, posting a league worst 19-33 mark in 2006. That should improve this season with the addition of new closer Mike Gonzalez, who frees up Bob Wickman and newcomer Tanyon Sturtz to serve as setup men. The starting pitching should also be much improved with Tim Hudson and Mike Hampton expected back from injury.

The TWINS always manage to exceed expectations and after winning 96 games in 2006 the 83.5 offered by Bodog for 2007 has me drooling. This is a young team with a stud in Johan Santana at the top of the rotation and a lot of talent in the likes of Joe Mauer and MVP Justin Monrneau in the line-up. Francisco Liriano, who would have given Santana a run for Cy Young honors had he not been injured at the All Star break, is out for the season, but the Twins played their best ball with him on the DL. Take away the 12 wins Liriano managed before the injury and the Twins still better the 83.5.

The DIAMONDBACKS managed to win 76 games last season and are listed at 78.5 by BetCris for 2007. You have to believe Randy Johnson alone should be good for a three game improvement in a division that looks to be pretty mediocre. Offensively this team remains suspect but Johnson and Brandon Webb comprise a formidable top of the rotation.

The YANKEES are the first of four under plays. The Yanks always seem to be the favorite and maybe they deserve such treatment but a ton of square money always makes the odds too low or in this case the win total too high. The Bombers did manage 97 wins in 2006, but the play here is under the 97.5 BetCris is offering. There is little doubt the Yankees will make the playoffs but a division crown is not a given due to the Red Sox starting pitching. The Yankees might also find that replacing Johnson's 17 wins is not a simple task.

The TIGERS shocked the baseball world last season with 95 regular season wins and a World Series appearance. As a result, books have set their total for 2007 at 89.5. While the pitching should be very good, Kenny Rogers cannot at the age of 42 be expected to repeat last year's performance and Todd Jones is still the closer. The Tigers didn't have enough in the way of offense last year and the addition of Gary Sheffield will only help so much so the recommendation here is under 89.5.

The ORIOLES were bad last year and I don't see where they improved much this off-season to better the 70 wins they did manage. Leo Mazzone learned that his genius has a lot more to do with the talent of those around him than anything he can actually do and while there appears to be some solid young pitching to build around, winning 74 games would get the Birds closer to the 500 mark than I think possible in what will be baseball's toughest division.

BetCris has the BREWERS at 81.5, which would be a seven-game improvement over 2006. Jeff Suppan will help, but the Brewers are in a very competitive division that will even be tougher with the likely inevitable improvement of the Cubs and the possibility of an improved Pirates team. A 500 mark could keep a team in the wild card hunt but I'm betting its more likely Milwaukee will have trouble staying out of the Central basement.

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Re: MLB Season Win Totals Predictions

Man the Yanks always get all the love but we've seen that having all the players doesn't equal a championship so I always hesitate before I bet on teams like the Yankees

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