For Baltimore sports fans 2012 will go down as the season the Ravens won the Super Bowl and the year baseball came back to town. The Orioles flipped the script from 93 losses to 93 wins, they eliminated the 2-time defending American League champion Rangers in the playoffs before losing a riveting 5-game series to the Yankees. The Orioles open Tuesday at Tampa Bay I’m ready to Buckle Up and enjoy another summer with my friend.
Hall of Fame broadcaster Ernie Harwell explained it best when he said “Baseball is continuity. Pitch to pitch. Inning to inning. Game to game. Series to series. Season to season. Baseball? It’s just a game-as simple as a ball and a bat. Yet as complex as the American spirit it symbolizes. It’s a sport, business-and sometimes even religion.”
And with that the annual “Garceau Guesses” for the 2013 season.
1. Tampa Bay – Lost Shields and Upton but still are loaded with great arms.
2. Toronto – Added Cy guy Dickey, Johnson, Buehrle, Reyes and Melky. Best on paper.
3. Baltimore – No ace but pitching depth, if the bullpen remains strong back to the playoffs.
4. New York – See old players get injured. If they make it to June could contend.
5. Boston – Ellsbury’s back Valentine isn’t but that combo may not be enough to get out of the cellar.
1. Detroit – Closer in question, but Verlander, Triple Crown Cabrera and Prince win Central by 5+.
2. Chicago – Starting pitching is good enough the rest nothing to get excited about.
3. Cleveland – Spending spree Swisher, Bourn, Stubbs, Reynolds (Sheriff). Nice bats, bad arms!
4. Kansas City – Show me Royals. Got their ace in Shields, can compete for 2nd place.
5. Minnesota – Baseball’s about pitching and the Twins don’t have it.
1. LA Angels – Trout, Pujols and Hamilton sick!! Pitching Weaver, Wilson and ??? Slight edge in 3 team race.
2. Oakland – They shocked the West in ’12. Pitching wins and I love their pen. Cespedes becomes a star.
3. Texas – Lost Hamilton and Young but still have clout.
4. Seattle – Moved the fences in. Getting better but still chasing top 3.
5. Houston – Welcome to the American League. House warming gift… minimum 100 losses.
1. Washington – 98 wins last year and they might be better in ’13. Seem to have it all. Good luck Davey!
2. Atlanta – Phenom Teheran added to a solid rotation and the Upton brothers. Playoff contender.
3. Philadelphia- Halladay spring ugly. Howard and Utley healthy, some fight but nothing special.
4. New York – David Wright and little else. No Johan Santana and no joy for Terry Collins club.
5. Miami – Giancarlo Stanton and last one out, turn out the lights.
1. Cincinnati – Joey Votto’s healthy and Shin Soo-Choo added. Aroldis Chapman lights out in the pen.
2. St. Louis – Kyle Lohse is gone the pitching is questionable but they’ll be back in the post-season.
3. Milwaukee – Lohse’s arm added and Ryan Braun’s bat a winner. Still a .500 team.
4. Pittsburgh- Have a shot to end their 20 year losing streak.
5. Chicago – They’ll miss playing the Astros. The Friendly Confines of last place.
1. San Francisco – MVP Posey leads the Giants, can Lincecum recover from a shaky spring?
2. LA Dodgers – The new Yankees with a $225 mil. payroll. Hanley Ramirez out for 2 months.
3. Arizona – Have a chance to be good but not great. Middle of the pack D-Backs.
4. San Diego- Decent starting pitching but not enough to challenge the Giants and Dodgers.
5. Colorado- Team ERA at home last season 6.70. More of the same for the Rockies.
ALCS- Detroit over LA Angels
NLCS- Washington over Cincinnati
World Series– Detroit over Washington