Smell of the Green Grass, Sweet Crack of the Bat

Borrowing from the words of Supreme Leader Snoke, “Can you feel it? There’s been an awakening.” If you’re a little worried because you’re starting to have dreams of kidnapping James Earl Jones and taking him to Fenway Park to watch a game, or having Wendy Peffercorn give you CPR and then wave at you from the lifeguard stand, you’re not alone my friend. These things are normal this time of year. April. The rain doesn’t seem to want to quit and baseball has officially begun.

Already in this first week of action, we’ve seen great story lines emerge, historic rivalries rekindled, and screaming, absurdly sweaty, beer guzzling fans return with a vengeance—how fun! In all reverence, this season carries a lot of potential for the sport as a whole. Baseball is experiencing a changing of the guard so to speak as it saw a resurgence of historically bad teams last season, adding new and exciting drama to the game.

Several young players have also taken the spotlight, having proven that they’re worth of all the hype that surrounds them. Long story short, there’s a lot to talk about, so let’s get to it. Here are some bold and fairly mundane predictions for this upcoming season. Feel free to agree or disagree . . . or agree. We’ll see who's right in October.

  • NL MVP: Bryce Harper (Nationals)

I just don’t see how a healthy Bryce doesn’t run away with this award. Last season he put up absurd numbers for any player, especially for a player who was younger than the Rookie of the Year last year. I have a feeling he’ll have a few more of these before he’s done. Just a hunch.

  • AL MVP: Carlos Correa (Astros)

Just like the rest of the baseball world, I love Carlos Correa. I’m predicting that he has a 30/30 year (30 home runs and 30 stolen bases), wins a gold glove, and his Astros make another playoff run in 2016.

  • NL Cy Young: Clayton Kershaw (Dodgers)

The only reason the Dodgers’ ace didn’t win it last year was because Jake Arrieta came out of nowhere and had one of the greatest seasons for a pitcher in the Modern Era. I’m banking on Arrieta not repeating the same numbers he did last season and Kershaw doing what he does every year.

  • AL Cy Young: David Price (Red Sox)

It pains me to say this, but I think the veteran left-hander is going to have an excellent year for the BoSox. They’re starting to piece together a formidable team and I think Price will run with it and help the Sox make a legitimate push for their first playoff appearance since 2013.

  • NL Rookie of the Year: Henry Rowengartner (Cubs)

Joking. I just thought I’d have a little fun. My real choice is Corey Seager. I know Trevor Story has gotten off to a hot start for the Rockies, but I don’t see it lasting much longer. I predict that Corey Seager will move into the 3rd spot in the order permanently for the Dodgers by season’s end and exhibit the defensive and offensive prowess that has made him a top 3 prospect for the last two years.

  • AL Rookie of the Year: Byron Buxton (Twins)

The Twins have flaunted their minor league farm system in these past couple of years with young talent like Miguel Sano and Aaron Hicks. But Buxton, a Chattanooga Lookouts alum, and the reigning Top Prospect in all of baseball looks to have the best chance to win the Rookie of the Year in the AL at the outset.

  • Playoff Bound Teams:

National League

West: San Francisco Giants

Central: Chicago Cubs

East: Washington Nationals

Wild Card: Los Angeles Dodgers/New York Mets


American League

West: Houston Astros

Central: Kansas City Royals

East: Toronto Blue Jays

Wild Card: New York Yankees/Texas Rangers

Special thanks to Field of Dreams, and Rookie of the Year, and The Sandlot (just the first one, not the next two, the next two made me throw up in my mouth). And a shout out to my mom for teaching me how to throw a baseball.