United Cardinal Bloggers March Project: 2012 MLB Season Preview

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National League East

  1. Philadelphia Phillies
  2. Atlanta Braves
  3. Miami Marlins
  4. Washington Nationals
  5. New York Mets

Despite, having Chase Utley and Ryan Howard on the shelf for considerable time, the Phillies score enough when the big three are on the mound. Cliff Lee wins 24 games to lead the charge. The signing of Jim Thome proves to be wise as he delivers with the bat and doesn’t do much harm in the field. The Braves ease into the wild card play-in game this year. The Marlins win 84 games and Ozzie Guillen is ejected from 8 overall. The young kids in Washington almost reach .500; the playoffs are on the horizon in D.C. Money is used as an excuse for the Mets who find themselves in full rebuild mode. Luckily they have Sandy Alderson instead of Omar Minaya for the process.

National League Central

  1. Cincinnati Reds
  2. St. Louis Cardinals
  3. Milwaukee Brewers
  4. Pittsburgh Pirates
  5. Chicago Cubs
  6. Houston Astros

The Reds win the three-way battle for the division title during the last week of the season. Losing Ryan Madson doesn’t factor in as the rest of the bullpen picks up the slack. The Cardinals edge out the Brewers for the right to face the Braves. Each club faces injuries throughout the season, but deep benches keep them in contention. The Pirates finish just short of .500, but play meaningful baseball through August. The Cubs and Astros are looking forward to 2013 from the moment 2012 begins.

National League West

  1. San Francisco Giants
  2. Arizona Diamondbacks
  3. Los Angeles Dodgers
  4. Colorado Rockies
  5. San Diego Padres

Tim Lincecum and Matt Cain post fantastic seasons validating extensions (Cain should get his soon). The Diamondbacks fall back a bit from 2011 due to inconsistencies at the plate. Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp fails to fulfill his 50/50 goal, by a lot. The Rockies and Padres never get it going.

See next page for playoff predictions.