Source : Chatsports
We cannot really talk about the possible best teams without considering the defending champions, right? Things are looking good for the champs as most of their roster will remain intact during the season. There is also no significant reason for the team to engage in any potential trades.
The Chicago Cubs were definitely on top of the world as they reigned supreme in 2016 by capturing the World Series championship. Did you know that the last time this happened was in 1908? It’s already clear that Mark Grace, in 1990s, known for his catcher glove and his wooden bat, together with the best prospect of Chicago Cubs shortstop, SS Shawon Dunston, and the trustworthy catcher Joe Girardi became the most favorite as annual starters in the All-Star game. They became the highest paid player in baseball, retiring and then making a Jordanesque comeback. Can they do a repeat of the feat? Well, we will have to keep an eye out for that. For now, let us take a look at the list of the best baseball teams in 2017.
Kris Bryant, Jason Heyward, and Kyle Schwarber would be some of the key players that will be in focus. With an improving offense, winning at least 100 games should not be a problem. Keeping the rotation healthy would be the real challenge for the champions. Dipping too deep into the rotation can mean outscoring the opposition most of the time.
By the middle of the year, it can be established whether the Cubs are merely clinging to the division lead or a shoe-in for the NL Central. Retooling or rediscovering the swings of their hitters would be critical at this point. So in general, things are looking good for the defending champions.
Source : waitingfornextyear
This professional club has given us the best player, CC Sabathia, as Cleveland pitcher, also remained as Cleveland legend. Along with his catcher gloves, he has written his name as the lead of major leagues with 6 complete games. Known as the first left-handed pitcher, he started his career with six consecutive seasons of double digit wins. There are also Carlos Carassco, Fransisco Lindor, and Corey Kluber in 2017 Cleveland era.
The key factor for the Indians is to maintain a healthy team. Obviously, injuries will have tremendous impact on the team’s games, especially its offense. If they can clinch early on, then this will translate to a well-rested pitching staff that can deliver excellent results during the postseason.
The team cannot be complacent as any of its AL Central rivals can slip past it putting its standing at risk. The health of Brantley who was third in the MVP voting done in 2014 will be critical in the campaign. Playing just 11 games during the 2016 season, the Indians will need a great deal of help to get his baseball bat swinging ability back. If he remains in the lineup for the rest of the season, then the team from Cleveland is truly one of the best for 2017.
Boston Red Sox
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The Red Sox is definitely considered one of the best for 2016 especially with Betts (MVP), Benintendi (ROY), Sale (Cy Young), and the possibility of a healthy David Price. Price gathered 8-6 records with a 4.64 ERA in his early 18 starts. He completed the season at 3.99 ERA with a 17-9 record. Through his catcher gloves, he led the AL with 230 innings pitched and 227 hits. His 228 strikeouts also remained as his second best performance in his career so far, after his 2014 season split between Tampa and Detroit.
The big “If” for this team is for all of these key players to remain healthy so that it can retain its momentum during the season. In case Price remains injured, it is not that bleak for the team from Boston as it can still matchup competitively with other contenders. Fighting in the brutal AL East though can result is some disappointments for the team.
A tight battle would really be difficult if Price remains injured. Compensating for the production of David Ortiz should also be taken in to consideration. In an extended stretch, the Red Sox may just kiss its baseball bat or its catcher mitts if it can’t cope with these challenges.
Los Angeles Dodgers
Source : Lineupforms
Momentum-wise, there is good reason why the Dodgers have been considered as the favorites of the NL West. Corey Seager and Clayton Kershaw would be critical in ensuring that they lead the rest of the Dodgers in getting to 100 games won; something they have not done since 1974.
The true test for the Dodgers will be when they face the Giants, Cubs, and the Cardinals. To overcome this, the rotation depth and lineup spots should be carefully studied. The team will remain challengers though despite these possible problems.
However, The Dodgers are a part of baseball history, playing baseball is not only to be the best teams in baseball world but also be the best in California as well, which means, when it comes to swinging wooden bat, they really know how to handle with it.
The good thing for the Dodgers is that they have plenty of options. This can prove critical if they need to stretch during the postseason.
Source : baseballhotcorner
Considered as contenders, Bregman, Springer, Correa, McCullers, and Keuchel will be critical for the Astros to get away with the pennant. This can mean a showdown with the Cubs, which would be a huge treat for baseball fans. Astros is also good in team work, when they hold their wooden baseball bat, they are all one. Sport Illustrated even declared they need a great collaboration to win the game.
The offense of the team seems stable enough, but the pitching can raise some concerns so an impact starter from the bullpen can prevent the Astros from stumbling. A healthy Kuchel though has proven to be the difference between winning and losing for the team from Houston.
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