The Washington Nationals are my pick to win the 111th World Series. Over a team from Chicago. Sorry Cubs fans: that would be your crosstown rival White Sox, who will ride the MVP bat of José Abreu and the left arm of Chris Sale to the Fall Classic.
But it will not be enough as after years of false starts, the Nationals will finally put it all together. Buoyed by the free agent addition of ace right-hander Max Scherzer—giving Washington one of the best starting rotations in the history of the game—and the maturity of Bryce Harper, the Nats will be the only team to win 100 games and steamroll through the playoffs, dispatching the Florida Marlins and Los Angeles Dodgers to reach the World Series.
Chicago, too, will have the best record in their league. In the divisional round they will take out division rival Cleveland before downing the Boston Red Sox in six games in the American League Championship Series.
The Fall Classic will be just that as Harper and Stephen Strasburg shine in seven scintillating games. The former will take home the World Series Most Valuable Player award while the latter will win Games 2 and 6 for the Nationals.
This time there is no need to hide the moonshine . . . it’s time to party like it’s 1924 D.C.!
Want to know how your favorite squad will fare? Check out my team-by-team predictions and get the first glimpse of a bananas 2015 postseason, including the score of Game 163 between the Marlins and Cardinals, both Wild Card contests, and to the game prognostications of all the playoff series.
As for my Bold Prediction of the Year: Eight teams will lose at least 90 games and one (the Arizona Diamondbacks) will lose 100.
And the award(s) goes to . . .
NL MVP: Giancarlo Stanton, RF, Florida Marlins
AL MVP: José Abreu, 1B, Chicago White Sox
NL Cy Young: Clayton Kershaw, Los Angeles Dodgers
AL Cy Young: Felix Hernandez, Seattle Mariners
NL Rookie of the Year: Joc Pederson, CF, Los Angeles Dodgers
AL Rookie of the Year: Rusney Castillo, CF, Boston Red Sox
NL Comeback Player of the Year: Ryan Braun, RF, Milwaukee Brewers
AL Comeback Player of the Year: Chris Davis, 1B, Baltimore Orioles
NL Manager of the Year: Bud Black, San Diego Padres
AL Manager of the Year: Robin Ventura, Chicago White Sox