Philadelphia Phillies 62-100
Just a few short years ago, the Phillies were the envy of baseball with the best pitching staff and five straight division championships. However, in the 2011 NLDS as a squirrel crossed their path the air suddenly deflated from their tires. Roy Halladay's career came to a sudden end, as did Roy Oswalt. Cliff Lee is starting the season on the Disabled List and may not pitch again. Meanwhile the Phillies are looking to get rid of the big contracts of Ryan Howard, Chase Utley, Jonathan Paplebon and Cole Hammels and finding no takers. Meanwhile Ryne Sandberg might be one of the worst managers in the history of baseball, though the ire of Phillies fans is directed at GM Ruben Amaro Jr. who has watched the entire team crumble in four years.
2015 MLB PREVIEW
EASTERN DIVISION
LEAGUE LEADERS AND AWARDS
National League
Andrew McCutchen Pirates
Giancarlo Stanton Marlins    
Giancarlo Stanton Marlins

Billy Hamilton Reds
Dee Gordon Marlins
Giancarlo Stanton Marlins

Adam Wainwright Cardinals
Clayton Kershaw Dodgers
Stephen Strasburg Nationals
New York Mets
Pittsburgh Pirates
David Wright Mets
Matt Harvey Mets

Bryce Harper Nationals
Jarred Cosart Marlins
Matt Kemp Padres
Madison Bumgarner Giants
Dee Gordon Marlins
Nick Markakis Braves
Trevor Rosenthal Cardinals
Jorge Soler Cubs
Terry Collins Mets
Giancarlo Stanton Marlins
Adam Wainwright Cardinals
Giancarlo Stanton Marlins
Miami Marlins 87-75 (Wild Card)
The Miami Marlins are another team on the rise in the National League East. With Giancarlo Stanton locked up to a long term deal, the future is bright in South Florida. The Marlins have made significant upgrades to the lineup at the top and bottom, to help protect Stanton and set him up for a monster year. The only problem the Marlins may have is their pitching staff will have to do a lot of heavy lifting until Jose Fernandez returns in the middle of the season. If Fernandez comes back strong the Marlins could make a run in October, as no midseason pick up would have a bigger impact.
Atlanta Braves 67-95
Following a disappointing 79-83 season, the Atlanta Braves have decided to back the truck up and start rebuilding. With the Nationals the unquestioned team to beat and the Mets and Marlins on the rise, it sets up to be a very long season in Atlanta. Perhaps when they move into their new suburban stadium in 2017 they will be in position to return to the top of the National League East, but until then they will take their lumps. The Braves may have one of the worst starting rotations in the National League, but still have the best closer in Craig Kimbrel. Don't be shocked if Kimbrel is on the trading block as the Braves top 90 losses. 
Washington Nationals 102-60
The Washington Nationals are the clear favorites heading into the season and for good reason they have a strong starting roatation and a solid line up from top to bottom. The only question mark could be with the bullpen, but with five starters capable of pitching deep they will only need minimal bullpen support. They also have a surpluss in starting pitching which coild be key if they need another piece for the championship run. The one player to watch could be Bryce Harper, who has yet to really live up to the enermous expectations. However, he is still only 22 and after hitting three monsterous home runs in the NLDS he is due to become the player everyone expected as he battles Ginacarlo Stanton from the National League Home Run crown.
St. Louis Cardinals 94-68
Can success be boring? The St. Louis Cardinals are the unquestioned kings of the National League Central and once again should be the team to beat. The Cardinals are not one player, they are a system that has just been remarkable efficient over the last decade. No matter what happens the Cardinals prevail, injuries, tragedies or players lost to free agency. They have a legendary farm system that continues to churn talent and always seem to find away to not only make it into October, but to make a long run. The Cardinals have a strong pitching staff, and the addition of Jason Heyward should give them one of the best lineups in the National League.
Cincinnati Reds 75-87
The Cincinnati Reds are a team that can go either direction. They have a solid lineup, but full of players who do an awful lot of swinging and missing. They have some strong arms in the rotation, but often they are inconsistent. Aroldis Chapman in the bullpen should continue to light up the radar gun. However, the Reds are one of those team were the parts are there but somehow they don't fit into a championship puzzle. This is a team that could be prepared to move some of those pieces especially if they are non-factor in the playoff race.
Houston Astros 73-89
The Houston Astros are started to turn things around last season, ending their string of three straight 100 loss seasons, by posting a record of 70-92. The Astros do have some young raw talent and some of that is starting to show with players like George Springer and Jose Altuve. The pitching is also getting better led by Dallas Keuchel. It is likely still two or three years before the Astros are in the playoff picture, but they will no longer be an easy win on the schedule.
Chicago Cubs 80-82
Wrigley Field entering its second century is in the middle of a major face lift that will help modernize it but may rob it of some of its charm as they will be getting a video board and will soon have the noise pollution that is only there for the casual fans and the young kids who need something visual and loud every minute. The rebuild of the bleachers are not ready to start the season and neither are the Cubs, but as the season goes on the Cubs should start showing signs and by next year could be ready to make a big move as they are still a year away from a return to contending for October. 
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Milwaukee Brewers 73-89
The Milwaukee Brewers are hoping for a bounce back season from Ryan Braun who was bothered all season last year by a sore thumb. However, without Yovani Gallardo at the front end of the rotation, the Brewers are going to have their work cut out for them. The Brewers will be a team that can put some runs on the board, the problem is they do not have a reliable starting pitcher who can be called on to stop a losing streak or win a big game when they need it.  Under these circumstances, it is hard to see the Brewers being much of a factor in the playoff race.
Pittsburgh Pirates 84-78
The Pirates have been to the playoffs the last two seasons, and have the talent to return with Andrew McCutchen leading the way. McCutchen is one of the best players in baseball and should be able to carry the Pirates into contention again, but their pitching staff leaves some to be desired. They should get a boost from the return of A.J. Burnett and have a solid and deep bullpen. However, I have some concern over the loss of Russell Martin. The Pirates made the playoffs in each season that Martin was behind home plate, and while he may not be considered one of the best catchers he seems to help every pitching staff he catches and his loss could be the difference in a game or two that leaves them short come October.
San Francisco Giants 82-80
Since 2010 the San Francisco Giants have been playing a game of odds and evens, winning the World Series in even number years, and falling flat in odd years. This is an odd year, and the Giants run may be at an end. The loss of Pablo Sandoval will be a big one as Kung Fun Panda always played his best on the Autumn skies of October. In addition Hunter Pence will begin the season on the disabled list, further weakening a lineup that often needs to scratch out runs in order to back their pitching staff, which will be hard press to repeat the success of last season.
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San Diego Padres 79-83
The San Diego Padres really rolled the dice this off-season going on a winter long spending spree. The Padres are hopeful to build themselves into a contender overnight. However, that strategy typically does not work in baseball. The additions of James Shields, Wil Meyers and Matt Kemp will certainly make the Padres better, but can it make them a winner? Recent teams that have gone on off-season splurges like the 2012 Marlins have had disastrous results. I can't see the Padres being a complete bust, but I can't see them in the Wild Card picture either.
Los Angeles Dodgers 94-68
The Dodgers lineup underwent a major make over in the off-season as they got rid of some big contracts like Matt Kemp. The moves were made to help give the team more flexibility and more stability. The Dodgers are the team to beat in the West, as Clayton Kershaw winner of three of the last four Cy Young awards is nearly a lock to win near 20 games. The Dodgers just need Kershaw to figure out how to beat the Cardinals in October, but the biggest question is can this team go any further with Don Mattingly? Some of the Mattingly's moves in the postseason in the past two years have been head scratchers and when a team can't get over a certain hump changes are often made on the bench.
Arizona Diamondbacks 64-98
Other than slugger Paul Goldschmidt there is not much for fans of the Arizona Diamondbacks to look forward to in 2015. The team is full of young and unproven players, which are more likely just keeping the seat warm until some of the prospects in the farm system begin to work their way up. The Diamondbacks pitching staff is especially weak with Josh Collmenter and Jermey Hellickson at the front end of the rotation. The Diamondbacks may need to sweat it out in the final days just to avoid 100 losses. 
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Colorado Rockies 75-87
Once again the key for the Colorado Rockies will be the health of Carlos Gonzalez and Troy Tulowitzki. If the two All-Stars can erase their recent history of injury plagued seasons the Rockies can remain competitive. If not the Rockies will be fighting it out for last place again. The Rockies when Gonzalez and Tulowitzki are healthy have one of the best lineups in the National League, which is important as their pitching staff is as thin as the mountain air at Coors Field.
New York Yankees 74-88
The New York Yankees enter the season with a team full of ifs, as they hope they can put enough together to win the American League East after the retirement of Derek Jeter. However, this is a team held together by good wishes and chewing gum, This team is still very old at its core, as Carlos Beltran, Mark Teixeira and Alex Rodriguez are all well past their prime. Their pitching staff is relying on Michael Pineda who just can't stay healthy and Masahiro Tanaka who is one pitch away from Tommy John surgery, while CC Sabathia looks finished. The bullpen is now a question mark too with the departure of David Robertson. The Yankees can win the East if all "the ifs" come up yes, but that only happens in fantasies it is most likely the Yankees fizzle and finish in last place.
Boston Red Sox 84-78
In three seasons, the Boston Red Sox have gone from last place to World Champs back to last, now they are hoping to rise up like a yo-yo back to the top of the American League East. This is not your father's American League East, as the division is now probably the weakest in all of baseball and could be one by any of the five teams. The Red Sox had a busy off-season, revamping their lineup and adding arms to their pitching staff. However, some of the moves could be rather risky, as Pablo Sandoval's weight has already been an issue, beloved in San Francisco any early struggles and it could get ugly for Kung Fu Panda. The Red Sox will be in the race for the division title but will fall just short.
Baltimore Orioles 80-82
The Baltimore Orioles won their first division title in 17 years last season, but if they are to repeat they will need a lot of things to break right for them. The biggest problem will be replacing the home runs from Nelson Cruz, who led the American League with 40 home runs and signed with the Seattle Mariners. The O's also lost Nick Markakis. If they are to have any chance to win the Eastern Division again, Chris Davis needs to bounce back from a terrible season and Matt Weiters and Manny Machado must be healthy all season.
Tampa Bay Rays 75-87
The Tampa Bay Rays have been forced to part with much of their core talent and have even lost their Manager Joe Maddon. It is the price Tampa fans are paying for years of not being able to fill Tropicana Field, despite one of the best teams in the American League. The Rays still have Evan Longoria and a solid pitching staff, which will certainly get a big boost when Matt Moore returns in May or June. However, the lineup is going to struggle to score runs, and that will prevent them from having any chance at making a run at the playoffs.
Cleveland Indians 91-71
The Cleveland Indians enter the season full of optimism as Corey Kluber looks to follow up his Cy Young win, by taking the Indians into the playoffs. The Tribe have a solid lineup and the addition of Brandon Moss at DH should increase their power output. Michael Brantley is only getting better as the Indians have one of the best defenses up the middle in the American League. The big key is their Manager Terry Francona who gets the best out of his team, and that will help lift the Indians to the top of the Central Division.

Detroit Tigers 90-72 (Wild Card)
The window of opportunity may be about to close on the Detroit Tigers, who have yet to reach the Promised Land despite being one of the top teams in the American League over the last five years. The Tigers have the pitching and the hitting, but somehow they have yet to put it together in the October to win the World Series. Most years it has been the bullpen that has brought them down, and while David Price and Justin Verlander will each be big winners again, the Tigers real test will come in October again, and while winning the division will be tougher with the improved Indians, the Tigers should still easily make the playoffs.
Chicago White Sox 84-78
The Chicago White Sox had a big off-season improving their team in every department. The White Sox outfield and top of the lineup was improved with the pickup of Melky Cabrera, while Adam LaRoche should be able to provide protection in the lineup for Jose Abreu who won the American League Rookie of the Year. The starting rotation will be bolstered by Jeff Samadzja, while David Robertson gives them a reliable closer. The White Sox could be in position to make a run at the postseason if either the Tigers or Indians slip, but they are still likely a player away from being a true contender.
Kansas City Royals 78-84
It was a magical run for the Kansas City Royals last October, as they came up one game short of winning the World Series. Getting back to the Fall Classic will be a tall order for the Royals after losing their most reliable starting pitcher James Shields and one of their biggest bats in Billy Butler. Plus there is always a bit of a hangover when after a big postseason push. The Royals got a lot of big wins out of their bullpen which was nearly perfect with Greg Holland winning the Mariano Rivera Award; often bullpens fluctuate year to year and will make the Royals even more hard-pressed to make another postseason run.
Texas Rangers 67-95
Last year the Texas Rangers season was an epic disaster as they were plagued by injuries and slid into last place, narrowly avoiding 100 losses. Things have not got off any better this year for the Rangers as ace pitcher Yu Darvish has been lost to Tommy John surgery. Prince Fielder coming off a back injury must prove he can return to All-Star form if the Rangers are to have any chance of even making it back to .500. It looks like another long season for the Rangers, who have turned over their entire team from the one that went to back to back World Series in 2010 and 2011.
Seattle Mariners 94-68
The Seattle Mariners had a big season last year, falling just short of reaching the postseason, with a record of 87-75, as Robinson Cano had no trouble living up to his big contract. Now the Mariners have added another big name Free Agent with the signing of Nelson Cruz. Felix Hernandez may have lost a few miles off his fastball, but he remains one of the top pitchers in the American League. With Cruz behind Cano in the lineup, the Mariners should be one of the best hitting teams, plus Hernandez and Hisashi Iwakuma and the Mariners pitching is already one of the best and it could be a big year for baseball in the Pacific Northwest.
Oakland Athletics 85-77
Players have come and gone over the years for the Oakland Athletics, but the team still manages to remain in contention. The A's once again saw wholesale changes as the nearly entire lineup was remade in the off-season. The Athletics late season collapse following the trade of Yoenis Cespedes for Jon Lester changed a team that seemed to have great chemistry, now with players like Ike Davis and Billy Butler replacing Josh Donaldson and Brandon Moss. With the rising Mariners, and Angels ahead of them it will be hard for Oakland to get back to the playoffs in 2015.
NLDS
ALDS
                                   
Batting Crown

HR Leader 
RBI Leader 
SB Leader
Runs Leader
OPS
Win Leader
ERA Leader 
K Leader  
Surprise Team 

Disappointing Team
Comeback Hitter
Comeback Pitcher 
Breakout Hitter 
Breakout Pitcher 
Disappointing Hitter
Disappointing Pitcher
Best Acquisition
Worst Acquisition

Reliever Award
Rookie of The Year 

Manager of The Year
Hank Aaron Award

Cy Young
MVP
American League
Michael Brantley Indians
Jose Abreu White Sox
Nelson Cruz Mariners
Jarrod Dyson Royals
Mike Trout Angels
Mike Trout Angels

Felix Hernandez Mariners
Chris Sale White Sox
David Price Tigers
Toronto Blue Jays
Kansas City Royals
Manny Machado Orioles
Michael Pineda Yankees
Mookie Betts Red Sox
Hisashi Iwakuma Mariners
Pablo Sandoval Red Sox
Masahiro Tanaka Yankees
Russell Martin Blue Jays
Ervin Santana Twins
Fernando Rodney Mariners
Daniel Norris Blue Jays
Terry Francona Indians
Jose Abreu White Sox
Felix Hernandez Mariners
Mike Trout Angels
Managers to be Fired
Joe Girardi-Yankees
Freddi Gonzalez-Braves
Don Mattingly-Dodgers
Bryan Price-Reds

Ron Roenicke-Brewers
Ryne Sandberg-Phillies
Robin Ventura-White Sox
Walt Weiss-Rockies
 
 
 
2015 World Champions
Washington Nationals
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World Series
CENTRAL DIVISION
WESTERN DIVISION
EASTERN DIVISION
CENTRAL DIVISION
WESTERN DIVISION
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NLCS
ALCS
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POSTSEASON
New York Mets 89-73 (Wild Card)
The Mets may have lost Zach Wheeler, but their pitching staff may still be one of the best in all of baseball. The key is the returning Matt Harvey, who is a flat out winner and ready to unleash a monster year. Harvey in the spring picked up right where he left off when he started the 2013 All-Star Game before undergoing Tommy John surgery. The Mets big question is can they score enough to support their up and coming pitching staff. Curtis Granderson should benefit from the walls being moved in at Citi Field and David Wright looks like he has recouped his team. The Mets should be in the race for the Wild Card all season and get a taste of October as they could be set to take over the Big Apple.
Toronto Blue Jays 86-76
After the Royals postseason run last year, the Toronto Blue Jays are the only team to not make the postseason in the Wild Card era, having not sniffed October since the 1993 World Series; that all ends this year; as the Jays strengthened their lineup by adding Josh Donaldson and Justin Smoak. However, the biggest addition was Russell Martin, who always finds away to get the best out of the pitchers he catches. The American League East is going to be wide open as there is no clear best team, with Martin's leadership expect big years from R.A. Dickey and Mark Buehrle to get the Jays a division title.
Minnesota Twins 63-99
The Minnesota Twins were dealt a big punch to the gut before the season even began, as Ervin Santana; their big off-season signing for the starting rotation was suspended for 80 games for using Performance Enhancing Drugs. The Twins were going to have a tough time winning even with Santana at the front end of the rotation. Torii Hunter's return will be good for nostalgia but little else, as the former All-Star is near the end of his career, while the Twins are likely the worst team in the American League.
Los Angeles Angels 92-70 (Wild Card)
The Los Angeles Angels were the best team in the regular season last year, but fizzled in the playoffs as they were swept by the Kansas City Royals in the ALDS. The Angels again should be one of the top teams in the American League, as Mike Trout coming off his first MVP season is only going to get better. Jerted Weaver is one of the top pitchers and Albert Pujols is still able to drive in 100 runs when healthy. The health and well being of Josh Hamilton is the Halos biggest concern as the season begins, but if Hamilton can find himself and his game by the fall the Angels will be hard to beat..
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Predicions Made on 4/5/14 at 12:00 PM ET.

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