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Hot Stone League

Larry Stone gives his take on a wide array of baseball issues and weighs in about the Mariners, too.

September 21, 2010 at 2:55 PM

Looking back at 2010 predictions

In a pile of newspapers that I save for a variety of reasons, I just ran across the Friday, April 2, edition of Seattle Times. I saved this one because it contained the staff predictions by myself and my colleagues on how the 2010 MLB standings would turn out.

As usual, I did lousy. A prognosticator, I’m not. But I thought it would be fun (and humbling) to share my picks:

AMERICAN LEAGUE

AL West

My predictions:

Angels

Mariners

Rangers

A’s

Actual:

Rangers

A’s

Angels

Mariners

Comment: I feel so foolish…but I do remember agonizing over whether to go with Texas or Seattle at No. 2, and finally deciding that the still-fresh Ron Washington incident would be too big a distraction for the Rangers. I was flat-out wrong there, obviously, just as I was wrong in believing the Angels would prevail in this division. And I was really wrong in thinking the Mariners had a chance to finish anywhere by last. But I wasn’t alone.

Rest of staff: The whole gang (Geoff Baker, Jerry Brewer, Steve Kelley and editor Bill Reader) picked the Angels to win the division. Baker, Kelley and Reader went Rangers second, Mariners third, while Brewer went with me — M’s second, Rangers third.

AL Central

My predictions:

White Sox

Twins

Tigers

Royals

Indians

Actual:

Twins

White Sox

Tigers

Indians

Royals

Comment: I didn’t do so bad here. Until the White Sox collapsed the past two weeks — they’ve lost seven in a row, and 11 out of 13 — they were neck-and-neck with the Twins. But now the Twins are on the verge of clinching the division. I’ll doubt them again at my own risk. At the bottom of the division, just half a game separates the Indians and Royals, so that could go either way.

Rest of staff: Everyone else picked the Twins. See what you get for trying to be a maverick?

AL East

My predictions:

Red Sox

Yankees

Rays

Orioles

Blue Jays

Actual:

Yankees

Rays

Red Sox

Blue Jays

Orioles

Comment: I don’t feel too badly about this one, because I think the Red Sox would have been right there if they hadn’t been destroyed by injuries all season. I think everyone knew that the Red Sox, Yankees and Rays were the class of the division, in some order. The Yankees currently hold a game and a half lead over Tampa Bay, but it could stilI go either way. I under-estimated the Blue Jays and over-estimated the Orioles, but the way Baltimore has played under Buck Showalter shows me they’ve under-achieved greatly this year.

Rest of staff: Brewer, Kelley and Reader took the easy (and probably correct) road by picking the Yankees. Geoff picked the division exactly the same as I did.

NATIONAL LEAGUE

NL West

My predictions:

Rockies

Diamondbacks

Giants

Dodgers

Padres

Actual:

Giants

Padres

Rockies

Dodgers

Diamondbacks

Comment: I still have a shot with the Rockies, who are a mere 1 1/2 games behind the Giants, and one game behind the Padres. I don’t know for the life of me what I saw in the Diamondbacks. And I didn’t see the San Diego uprising coming one little bit.

Rest of staff: Then again, no one else saw the Padres coming, either. They were the unanimous pick for last. Geoff and Jerry picked the Dodgers to win it, Steve picked the Giants, and Bill agreed with me on the Rockies.

NL Central

My predictions:

Cardinals

Reds

Cubs

Brewers

Pirates

Astros

Actual:

Reds

Cardinals

Astros

Brewers

Cubs

Pirates

Comment: I give myself some credit for being the only one of us to foresee the Reds being a first-division team, though I succumbed to popular wisdom by picking the Cardinals. Then again, the Cardinals led the division not that long ago before collapsing down the stretch. I should have points taken away for believing the Pirates, who will end up with the worst record in baseball, would finish anywhere but last.

Rest of staff: It was unanimous for the Cardinals. As for the Reds, who will win the division barring an epic collapse, Geoff, Jerry and Steve all had them fourth, while Bill had them third behind St. Louis and Milwaukee.

NL East

My predictions:

Phillies

Braves

Marlins

Mets

Nationals

Actual:

Phillies

Braves

Marlins

Mets

Nationals

Comment: My one complete triumph. This pretty much says it all.

Rest of staff: Geoff, Jerry and Bill all picked the Phillies, while Steve, our lifelong Phillies’ fan, went with the Braves. And the Braves, technically, still have a chance, but the way the Phillies are playing — eight wins in a row to build a four-game lead — I’d say it’s a longshot.

AL WILD CARD

My prediction: Yankees

Actual: Rays

Comment: At least I found a way to get the Yankees into the postseason.

Rest of staff: Baker went Yankees; Brewer, Reader and Kelley went Red Sox.

NL WILD CARD

My prediction: Braves

Actual: Braves

Comment: Only one thing to say. Unless, of course, the Giants, Padres, Rockies or Phillies end up being the NL wild card.

Rest of staff: It was all across the board. Geoff went Cubs (oops), Jerry went with the Rockies (still possible), Steve went with the Philies (ditto) and Bill took the Marlins (wait ’til next year).

ALCS:

My prediction: Red Sox.

Comment: Never mind

Rest of staff: Geoff and Bill also took the Red Sox to win the AL pennant, and no, we did not consult. Jerry and Steve went with the Yankees, and could end up looking like geniuses (if it takes a genius to pick the defending champions with a $200 million payroll).

NLCS:

My prediction: Braves

Comment: You never know. Check back in three weeks or so. At least I’ve got a fighting chance.

Rest of staff: Kelley also picked the Braves to win the NL pennant, while Baker, Brewer and Reader all went with the Phillies. If I were in the Phillies group, I’d feel pretty comfortable with a Halladay, Hamels and Oswalt rotation.

WORLD SERIES

My prediction: Red Sox

Comment: Didn’t nail it, but I’d like to have seen them with Pedroia, Ellsbury, Youkilis, Beckett et al healthy all year.

Rest of staff: The Philiies were the consensus pick (Geoff, Jerry and Bill), while Steve went with the Yankees.

If you’ll excuse me now, I need to book my flight to Boston for the World Series celebration.

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