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Better or Worse


Stradling

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Which teams in your opinion have improved and which have gotten worse as of today.  This obviously doesn’t mean that a team in the worse column has gotten worse to the point of not being the favorite.  I’ll start it off, off the top of my head.

Better:

Yankees, Mets, Nats, Rays

Worse:

Mariners, Astros, Red Sox, Dodgers

 

Of course all of these teams can still make moves, but as of now this is how I see it.  

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10 minutes ago, Stradling said:

Yea I missed the Reds but they have certainly gotten better.  

Are the Braves better with the addition of Donaldson.  They are also my pick to sign Kimbrel.

the braves lost Markakis and even if they bring him back, he had one of his best seasons at age 34.  They lost Kurt Suzuki who had a really good year and for McCann and Camargo has an excellent year at 3b so it's likely that Donaldson gets them even.  I guess moving Camargo to SS could improve them.  

They got a 2.83 era from Anibal Sanchez in 24 starts and a 2.87 from Gausman in 10 starts.  They haven't replaced that with anyone.  

If they grab Markakis, Gio and Kimbrel, they're improved.  Right now, they're worse than they were.  Honestly, I think they win 80-84 games this year.  

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9 minutes ago, Blarg said:

What have the A's done to improve their lot? 

they played over their head last year and have Profar in place of Lowrie.  Lowrie had a 5 WAR season last year.  Journeymen guys like Canha, Pinder had productive seasons for them.  Losing Lucroy is a big deal for that pitching staff.  He was a big part of holding them together last year.  

their rotation is a hodge podge.  Edwin Jackson and Cahill were very good for them last year and they're gone.  Manaea, Gossett, and Triggs are all either out or coming off surgery.  

and there's no way in hell Treinen has a sub 1.00 era again.  

They did add Soria who is likely to help.  And Rodney who likely won't.  

If they win 85 games, I'll be surprised.  

I also feel like they are one of those 'momentum' teams where they'll do well if things are going good but they don't have the talent to sustain a bad stretch.  If they start off slow, they'll be done early.  

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Perhaps what gives me the greatest hope entering 2019 is the fact that I think the A's are not going to be that good. I mean let's face it, on talent alone, there's no way that was a 97 win team. 87 I can believe, but not 97. That pitching staff simply threw out of their mind. Everyone they threw out there turned into gold, and I think that was due in no small part to two factors, momentum and Jon Lucroy. There isn't any momentum to begin the year and they aren't going to have Lucroy guiding that staff again. Plus Manaea is set to miss significant time and their top two pitching prospects, Luzardo and Paul, likely won't be impacting that team until June at the earliest. There was a fair amount of pitching depth on the market, and so far Billy Beane hasn't brought any of it in. Now obviously he will at some point, but when he does, it won't be the cream of the crop and if he manages to trade for a pitcher, it will cost him prospect capital that he doesn't seem to have currently. 

So take away luck, and I don't hunk that's a 92 win team. Take away Lucroy (mind you this has very little to do with WAR), and I think they're an 88 win team. Take away momentum and Manaea, and I think that is probably an 83 win team. And after whoever they add, I bet they'll be an 85 win team, right in par with the Angels more than likely. 

I don't see how the Angels will be unseating Tampa Bay as the second wild card, because they look like a 90-95, win team right now. But I think the Angels can finish second in the AL West. And I think we're beginning to see the change that's occurring in Houston. Theyir competitive window reached its pinnacle in 2018. They've got the prospect, personnel to extend and money to work with that the can maintain a competitive ball club permanently, but beginning in 2020, gone will be the days where it's Houston and then the rest of the West. 

And with Dipoto runnning the show in Seattle, I doubt they'll ever be a playoff team. And the Rangers are still a few years away from a return. 

Things are looking really good for the Angels 2020 and beyond.

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