Thursday, April 07, 2011

2011 MLB Over Unders

So another Major League Baseball season is upon us, and once again I am late in posting my over-under predictions based on the Vegas line for all 30 MLB teams. Before the season gets too far away from me -- we are what, four or five games in to a 162-game season at this point -- I want to get my predictions up here to memorialize them in stone heading into what I am expecting to be a very interesting season in one of the only professional big-money sports we have left in this country that is not currently or very soon to undergo a work stoppage of one form or another.

Unlike in past years, I just don't have the time right now with work obligations and all to do a detailed write-up of my expectations for every team, so instead I am going to simply cut and paste the list of teams and the Vegas over-under for each, along with a "U" for me picking Under, or an "O" for me picking over this numnber of total wins on the season. If I have a one-sentence thought on the team I will add it below, but otherwise it's just the teams and my over-under wins pick this time around. And, given that I actually made these picks a week ago before the season started, some of my picks and explanations will already look and sound pretty stupid, as a few teams are already way off the pace I am predicting below, but what can I do, the truth is the truth:

ARI 85.5 U I have no idea why this team is expected to win 86 games but I am not seeing it.
ATL 82.5 O I have no idea why this team is only expected to barely break .500, but I think they will with an improved roster from 2010.
BAL 70.5 O Buck Showalter comes in and makes this team the winningest team in the vaunted AL East for the final third of the season last year, and now we're looking at 71 wins? I'm taking Buck and the Over here.
BOS 94.5 O This team improved dramatically in the offseason and the number is a very makeable 95 wins.
CHC 81.5 U Anything near .500 and I'll take under with a depleted Cubs squad.
CHW 82.5 O I think this line is really quite close but I will go with the crazy coach and predict just a win or two over the line here.
CIN 79.5 O Again, this team comes out and wins the NL Central out of nowhere last year, and this year they're picked to go under .500 again in a weak division? Easy over two years in a row for the Reds.
CLE 83.5 U And somehow the Indians of all teams are picked to finish over .500? These numbers must be wrong.
COL 80 O I'm not huge on the Rockies after they disappointed last season, but I'm game to predict them to finish the year .500 or better.
DET 80.5 U Something tells me that the Tigers are looking at a bit of a down year in 2011.
FLA 79.5 U Usually a perennial "over" target, I am thinking the Marlins will finish just a hair under 80 wins this year in an NL East where mostly every team improved in the offseason.
HOU 76.5 U The Astros are always an Under these days, especially when they stink and their line is somehow in the mid- to upper 70s.
KAN 74.5 U The Royals are another team that is basically always an Under pick, no matter how low the number gets. When they trade away their best pitcher in the offseason in exchange for prospects, this is only made all the more true.
LAA 87.5 U I'm almost flipping a coin here and just going Under with the Angels, even though I respect the hell out of their coach. 88 wins just seems a tad too high for this team playing in a tougher AL West than in recent seasons.
LAD 84.5 U Somehow the Dodgers are still showing as needing 85 wins this season to cover, even though the team seems to me to be in breakdown mode, and will probably be looking to be sellers and not buyers around the trade deadline as it is.
MIL 81 O I think this line is pretty decent at .500 for the season, but I will put stock in the team's offseason improevments -- mostly notably adding Royals starter Zack Greinke to the rotation -- and look for a slight Over here.
MIN 85.5 O Always take the Over with the Twins. Rod Gardenhire remains probably the best manager in baseball today, and he is playing in a division without another great team like his is.
NYM 89 U This one I am convinced cannot be right, as this Mets squad was a lot closer to winning 60 games than 90 games last year. Although the replacement of an idiot GM and loser coach will likely signal the end of the Mets as the doormat of the NL East, no way I am picking them to win 90 games this year even if they do bounce back a bit from last year's embarrassment.
NYY 96.5 U I was surprised to see the Yanks ahead of the Red Sox in terms of predicted wins, but then I remembered how New Yorkers tend to bet these things into the stratosphere and I think I have my answer. I like the Yankees to make a solid run this year, but I can't in good conscience pick them to win 97 games.
OAK O 81.5 I expect the As to take a very good pitching staff and finish over .500 on the 2011 season.
PHI 89.5 U Here is a line I referred to in a post a week or two ago, but I think the Phils' injury problems combined with an increasing vulnerability on offense to keep this team from winning 90 games this year, even with the addition of Cliff Lee and the best starting pitching rotation ever assembled.
PIT 68.5 U This line is so low that it is laughable, after 19 straight losing seasons out of the yellow and black. I'm still going Under for this season as well.
SDP 68.5 O Did we not learn anything from last season? Now I know the Padres fell eventually and ended up missing the playoffs entirely, but 69 wins? Come on.
SFG 79.5 O Here is another ridiculous line that I am convinced must be an error. The Giants look to me to be the team to beat in the National League this year, and I expect them to ride that pitching staff to an easily over-.500 record by the time the smoke clears on this season.
SEA 79.5 U I still cannot explain what made this team play so bad with Felix Hernandex and Cliff Lee in their rotation to start the 2010 season, but with Lee gone now I am more comfortable taking the Under and expecting a similar outcome here in 2011.
STL 84 U I can't quite put my finger on it, but something tells me the Cardinals are looking at a down year in 2011. 84 is a bit low and ultimately I think is probably very close to where this team finishes the season, but since I think the team will have an off year I will take my chances with another Under pick.
TAM 87.5 U Everyone loves the Rays this season, but with the Yankees looking strong, the Red Sox clearly improved, and the Orioles coming on, I will take a slight Under with this number and expect to squeak one out in the final week of the season this autumn.
TEX 77.5 O This may be the worst line in the entire list, as I think the Rangers are looking to post a very strong year on the back of one of the most potent offenses in the league. Even without Cliff Lee -- who only pitched mediocrely for the team in 2011 -- 78 wins should be a shoe-in for the best team in that division.
TOR 78.5 U Every year the Blue Jays are predicted to wallow in the uber-tough AL East, and many years they end up surprising on the upside. Not this year though with all the improvement in that division.
WAS 65.5 O I'll take the Over here against an impossibly low number, as the Nats added Jayson Werth who will win a few games both behind the plate and in the field, as well as Brice Harper from Vegas who should join with Steven Strasbourg to bring some much-needed excitement to our nation's capital.

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Blogger Josie said...

We have a red sox office pool every year - wins, losses and final standing. I put them at 96 wins but jeez, now I'm just hoping for one win. 0-6 ugh.

4:52 AM  
Blogger l.e.s.ter said...

Hoy taking the over for the O's? I've waited 14 years for this!

9:38 PM  
Blogger Dr. Clarkus said...

I think your Texas line is wrong. Most places I saw had it at 88, IIFC. If 78 is really the line, you should bet your net worth.

9:38 PM  
Blogger davidmartin said...

Just wanted to let you know that almost all of the lines you got for this post are wrong. i wouldn't do a follow up because it just wouldn't make sense.

11:36 PM  

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