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December 24, 2014 at 1:07 AM

A look back at the not-so-great predictions for the 2014 season

So the other day on Twitter, a Mariners’ fan was breathlessly waiting for the team to sign Melky Cabrera. He mentioned that if it happened, part of the importance would be that the Mariners would definitely be the favorite to win the American League West. And I asked him, “why is that important?” It means nothing to their overall record or postseason hopes. It’s a meaningless moniker. And even without Melky, it’s possible to consider the Mariners the favorite in the AL West for the 2015 season.

When I was discussing the interaction with some friends, they reminded me of our preseason prognostications on here. I hadn’t went back and looked – mostly out of fear of how bad my picks were this season. Yep, I had the Dodgers beating the Red Sox in the World Series.

So with news light until the M’s make a trade for a left-handed hitting outfielder not named Michael Saunders, I figured we’d take a look back at that faithful blog post.

Here is the link to that very regretful blog post.

For refreshers the group included:

  1. Me — what the hell do I know? I can’t get the lineup right.
  2. Larry Stone — he left us all in the lurch when he stopped doing the weekly baseball power rankings
  3. Jerry Brewer — he’s from Kentucky, just like the Dukes of Hazzard.
  4. Geoff Baker — the master of run differential and the tasting of fine wines. It’s a similar mode of thinking
  5. Adam Jude — It’s clear he borrowed a chart from Chris Petersen to make that choice.
  6. Bob Condotta — Marshawn on his picks … “Thank you for asking ….” ….. “yeah” …… “Maybe”
  7. Jayson Jenks — he was like six years old in 1995.
  8. Bill Reader — He’s my boss … for now … I’m not saying anything bad.
  9. Tim Booth — apparently the AP stands for Awful Picks
  10. Mike Curt0 — well at least he knows the Rainiers and the PCL. His picks were better than Cal football’s DBs.
  11. Jeff Sullivan — well, at least I can say he doesn’t live in his parent’s basement.
  12. Jason Puckett — he also believed the Cougs were going to have a winning season.
  13. Steve Sandmeyer  — he should have asked Churchill for help. Or maybe he did?
  14. Alex Akita — Who? Why did I let him participate again?

Let’s start with the Mariners because, well, that’s part of the name of the blog.Here’s the breakdown of who picked the Mariners to finish where and with what record. Officially, they finished third with an 87-65 record.

  1. Divish — 4th, 80-82
  2. Larry Stone — 4th, 75-87
  3. Jerry Brewer — 4th, 77-85
  4. Geoff Baker — 4th, 77-85
  5. Adam Jude — 3rd, 80-82
  6. Bob Condotta — 4th, 75-87
  7. Jayson Jenks — 4th, 76-86
  8. Bill Reader — 4th, 76-86
  9. Tim Booth — 4th, 79-83
  10. Mike Curt0 — 4th, 78-84
  11. Jeff Sullivan — 4th, 82-80
  12. Jason Puckett — 4th, 77-85
  13. Steve Sandmeyer  — 4th, 77-85
  14. Alex Akita — 4th, 80-82

So Sullivan was the only person to have the M’s with a winning record, while Jude was the only person to get their third place finish correct. I guess our expectations, like most people’s, were not very high for Seattle. I’m thinking that will change this season.

Let’s get to the overall picks.

Here’s the AL final standings … 

Screen Shot 2014-12-24 at 12.44.35 AM

Here’s the final NL Standings … 

Screen Shot 2014-12-24 at 12.45.18 AM

Of the 14 distinguished minds, none of us picked the San Francisco Giants or the Kansas City Royals to be in the World Series. To be fair only Steve Wulff of ESPN, who had the Royals losing in the World Series, was one of the few “analysts” I could find that one of the two teams in the World Series.

I did have the Royals in the ALDS and Jude had them in the wild card game, while Stone, Baker, Brewer, Jenks, Sullivan had the Giants in the NLDS and Curto had them in the wild card game.

Want to see something funny? Here are our World Series picks …

  1. Divish — Dodgers over the Red Sox
  2. Larry Stone — Nationals over the A’s
  3. Jerry Brewer — Rangers over the Dodgers ….. yes, the Rangers, who finished 67-95 on the season.
  4. Geoff Baker — Tigers over the Dodgers
  5. Adam Jude — Cardinals over the Rays
  6. Bob Condotta — A’s over the Reds
  7. Jayson Jenks — Nationals over the Tigers — clearly Jenks kissing up to the bosses.
  8. Bill Reader –Nationals over the Tigers
  9. Tim Booth — Dodgers over the Rangers
  10. Mike Curt0 — Tigers over the Nationals
  11. Jeff Sullivan — Dodgers over the Tigers
  12. Jason Puckett — Pirates over the Tigers
  13. Steve Sandmeyer  — Rays over the Braves …. Rays finished 77-85 and the Braves 79-83
  14. Alex Akita — Dodgers over Boston.

Lots of people nad division winners and such, but none of us even sniffed the World Series. Seven of us had teams in the World Series that didn’t even make the playoffs. And Sandmeyer’s two WS picks  had losing records.

As for the awards …. those are pretty amusing too.

All but three of us had Mike Trout winning the AL MVP. Yeah, that was a tough choice. It’s like the email from Sports Illustrated asking if I want the swimsuit issue or not. No gold stars for that.

The three people who didn’t pick Trout? Reader had Miguel Cabrera – understandable. Sandmeyer had Evan Longoria – well he has that capability. And Puckett? He had Prince Fielder.  Because why? I have no idea.

As for the NL MVP? Obviously no one had Clayton Kershaw. Three of us — Myself, Brewer and Curto – chose Hanley Ramirez which might be the worst pick of them all. Three people selected Bryce Harper – runner up. Reader’s choice of Carlos Gonzalez was not so great either.

Of the group of 14, only six of us chose Kershaw to win the NL Cy Young, while five chose Stephen Strasburg. Jose Fernandez got two votes and Adam Wainwright got one.

Of course no one picked Corey Kluber to win the AL Cy Young award. For some reason, I thought picking James Shields would be a good idea. It wasn’t. Yu Darvish had five picks. Felix Hernandez had three picks. Justin Verlander had two.

As for rookie of the year …. No one picked Jacob De Gromm of the Mets in the NL and only Puckett – like a Coug safety making an interception – was the only person to pick Jose Abreu.

So what does this all mean? Besides an easy blog post mocking my friends as we go into the holidays? It’s just a look at what it means to be a favorite going into the season, at least according to “experts” or “analysts.” So the fact that if i had to make a choice tomorrow, I’d pick the Mariners to finish in the top 2 in the AL West and make the postseason and I’d still pick the Padres to finish third –  it means very little. But it’s a fun game to play.



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