Shane dives into the 30 MLB teams, analyzing their season win totals, forecasting whether they'll surpass them, and identifying dark horse contenders.

Wow, what an exhilarating season it was last year! The excitement continues to build as this team appears poised to embark on another thrilling postseason journey. They’ve bolstered their lineup by adding Eugenio Suarez to fortify third base and inject some extra power into their batting order. Joc Pederson brings not only a potent bat but also a wealth of championship experience and leadership qualities that uplift the locker room atmosphere.

Corbin Carroll, the reigning NL Rookie of the Year, epitomizes the burgeoning talent in Arizona and possesses the same electrifying potential as Ronald Acuña. Leading the youthful charge, Carroll is a genuine star in the making. Behind the plate, Gabriel Moreno shines as a legitimate catcher with the potential to earn All-Star honors.

Guiding this team are seasoned veterans like Ketel Marte, who already shines as a star player and serves as a mentor figure to the younger generation. The pitching rotation boasts a formidable duo in Zac Gallen and Merrill Kelly, whose combined prowess makes them a daunting challenge for any opposing lineup. With the addition of Jordan Montgomery, the Diamondbacks’ pitching arsenal becomes even more formidable. Paul Sewald emerges as a reliable closer, further solidifying the team’s depth and strength.

With such a stacked roster, it’s tempting to consider placing a wager on their chances to win the division, especially if the Dodgers encounter any unexpected setbacks this season.

The D-Backs begin the season with a win total over/under set at 84.5. I think betting on the over seems like a great choice. This team is well-prepared, with a blend of health, experience, and talent that positions them for success. Plus, as a passionate supporter of Corbin Carroll, I have high hopes for their season ahead.

The Phillies put a halt to the Braves’ postseason aspirations just before the NLCS, ultimately succumbing to the Arizona Diamondbacks. Atlanta’s offense faltered as the Phillies outpaced them by a margin of 17-8. However, amidst the disappointment, there were standout performances. Matt Olson showcased his prowess by unleashing a barrage of powerful hits, while Ronald Acuña Jr. secured the NL MVP title, delivering what many consider to be one of the most exceptional leadoff campaigns in history.

Armed with an abundance of talent, the Braves are poised to mount another championship challenge this season, aiming to surpass their NLDS exit from the previous year. Austin Riley’s defensive prowess makes him a strong candidate for a Gold Glove award and positions him as a dark horse contender for the NL MVP title, given his rare combination of hitting proficiency and stellar defense at third base. Additionally, Michael Harris appears primed for a breakout season in center field, further adding to the team’s youthful talent pool.

Enter Spencer Strider, a rising star who emerges as a frontrunner for the NL Cy Young Award. Strider, already renowned for his impressive strikeout record, has further bolstered his repertoire with the addition of a devastating curveball. With a formidable trio of pitchers in Strider, Max Fried, and Charlie Morton, the Braves boast an elite pitching staff primed for success.

The acquisition of Chris Sale, in exchange for Vaughn Grissom in a trade with Boston, bolsters the team’s pitching depth and enhances their prospects for a deep postseason run.

As for their win total over/under set at 101.5, seizing the opportunity to back this formidable Braves lineup is advisable. I am particularly bullish on Spencer Strider’s chances of clinching the NL Cy Young Award, as he demonstrated his dominance last season before succumbing to late-season fatigue, paving the way for consistent performances in the upcoming campaign, especially with his enhanced pitching arsenal.

What an intriguing sight to behold! The formidable Orioles are poised for a World Series charge following a highly promising showing last season, bolstered by the addition of pitching ace Corbin Burnes. Addressing the team’s glaring need for pitching depth was paramount, and with Grayson Rodriguez still finding his footing, there’s palpable potential on the mound. Meanwhile, John Means is gradually returning to top form after grappling with a significant injury that sidelined him for the majority of the previous season.

Dean Kremer’s performance was passable, though Bradish’s struggles were evident. The absence of Felix Bautista due to a season-ending injury was deeply felt, especially considering his prowess as one of the league’s premier closers before his untimely setback. With the pitching staff finding its rhythm, the rest of the lineup appears primed for success.

AL Rookie of the Year Gunnar Henderson is poised to anchor the lineup for years to come, while Adley Rutchsman’s exceptional talent behind the plate solidifies him as another cornerstone of the team. Justin Holiday and Heston Kjestad are on the cusp of securing starting roles, with seasoned veterans like Ryan Mountcastle, Anthony Santander, and Cedric Mullins adding firepower to the lineup.

The prospect of fortifying the bullpen further by addressing any potential shortcomings before the trade deadline looms large, but regardless, anticipation is high for what promises to be an exhilarating season.

With a win total over/under set at 89.5, it’s advisable to steer clear of one particular wager amidst this resurgence: betting on Corbin Burnes to clinch the AL Cy Young. While undoubtedly talented, Burnes faces stiff competition in this fiercely contested race, especially with the likes of Gerrit Cole in contention. However, considering the team’s youthful vigor, wagering on the over for their win total seems enticing, particularly given the relative stagnation of the Boston Red Sox and potential vulnerabilities within the Rays’ roster this season.

It’s a rough patch for a once-dominant franchise. Last season was riddled with injuries and demoralizing defeats, though the team managed to maintain some level of competitiveness to keep the fan base optimistic. However, any flicker of hope seems to have dimmed after an underwhelming offseason that signals a bleak playoff outlook.

Lucas Giolito, who struggled with a 6+ ERA across three teams last year, was signed by Boston to lead their rotation, but his season was cut short before the regular season even began due to injury. Justin Turner departed in free agency, while Chris Sale was traded to Atlanta, where he’s performing well, in exchange for promising infielder Vaughn Grissom, who is unfortunately expected to spend much of the season sidelined.

Brayan Bello has been entrusted to rise through the ranks in the bullpen, supported by Kutter Crawford and Nick Pivetta, among others. Meanwhile, Rafael Devers is determined to elevate his hitting to elite levels, Trevor Story is finally healthy, and Triston Casas aims to build on his impressive rookie season at first base.

As for their win total over/under set at 77.5, I’m leaning towards the under. Unfortunately, the Red Sox seem to be regressing, and with the competitive landscape of the AL East, securing wins will be an uphill battle. The Orioles have shown improvement, while the Rays, Yankees, and Blue Jays are formidable opponents. It’s shaping up to be a challenging season for Boston.

The Cubs are poised for a resurgence! Last season laid a solid foundation for a team that demonstrated playoff potential with its formidable lineup. Dansby Swanson and Nico Hoerner emerge as standout performers, while Christopher Morel and Seiya Suzuki bring power and prowess to the plate.

On the pitching front, the bullpen has bolstered its strength over the offseason with strategic signings. Among them is the addition of Shota Imanaga, a seasoned left-handed pitcher whose lethal arm promises a seamless transition. Justin Steele has showcased his potential to lead the rotation effectively.

With the roster primed for success, and perhaps a couple more key acquisitions in the rotation, the Cubs appear ready to make waves in the MLB.

Regarding their win total over/under set at 84.5, I’m inclined towards the over. The cohesion within the lineup is evident, and with continued health and potential additions, the team could easily surpass the 90-win mark.

Oh dear! Projections place this team among the bottom five, but a cursory glance at the roster might suggest otherwise. Luis Robert and Eloy Jimenez stand out as some of the most powerful hitters in the game, showcasing exceptional skills. Yoan Moncada also adds strength to the lineup, provided he remains injury-free this season. Oscar Colas, a touted prospect, is anticipated to shine in what could be his breakout season.

However, the bullpen presents a less promising picture. While Michael Soroka holds potential to excel, he’s surrounded by a roster of underwhelming options. Michael Kopech shows flashes of brilliance but struggles with consistency. Moreover, the closer position remains unsettled following Liam Hendricks’ departure.

With a win total over/under set at 64.5, I lean towards the under. It appears unlikely that this team will experience significant improvement this season, especially given the absence of standout talents poised to make an immediate impact. Tough times seem to be ahead for the White Sox.

We’re witnessing an exciting youth movement taking flight with the Reds. Elly De La Cruz emerges as a power-hitting, incredibly athletic standout. Matt McLain showcases his prowess as a genuine hitter while excelling defensively. Christian Encarnacion-Strand is touted as yet another top prospect contributing to the team’s promising future. It’s unfortunate that Noelvi Marte’s potential was hindered by a suspension due to PED use, especially considering his Rookie of the Year candidacy. However, Jonathan India is poised to perform admirably, maintaining his position despite the setback and appearing ready for a full workload.

In the pitching rotation, young talents like Hunter Greene, a hard-throwing right-hander, and Nick Lodolo, a reliable lefty, have faced challenges but continue to persevere. Graham Ashcraft adds to the solidity of the rotation. The key now lies in cultivating consistency; once achieved, this team possesses formidable potential.

The win total over/under is currently set at 83.5 and Cincinnati boasts a strong lineup, even with Noelvi’s suspension weighing on the team. His return midway through the season will only bolster their strength. While relief pitching could see improvement, other facets of the team show promise for growth and success in the near future. I predict the over in wins, especially if the team maintains its health in the initial months. Additionally, with the Cardinals and Brewers facing uncertainties and the Pirates remaining consistent in their struggles, the Cubs may be the Reds’ primary competition for clinching the NL Central title.

Two years ago, this team appeared poised to be a formidable contender for the postseason, boasting both strong hitting and pitching capabilities. However, recent seasons have seen them struggle to maintain competitiveness, experiencing fluctuations in performance. The hope for the upcoming season is a return to form. Jose Ramirez consistently shines as a standout player and remains a perennial dark horse candidate for the AL MVP title. Josh Naylor proves his prowess as a designated hitter, while his younger brother, Bo, shows promise as a catcher, potentially surpassing average expectations as he matures. Andres Gimenez and Steven Kwan have demonstrated their ability to excel at the plate against top competition, aiming to bounce back from a lackluster previous year.

The team faces a crucial need for a reliable starter at shortstop, with Gabriel Arias or Brayan Rocchio being viewed as potential solutions for this pivotal position. Kyle Manzardonis is seen as a top prospect and hopeful successor at first base. On the pitching front, the rotation has seen an infusion of youth with Triston McKenzie and Tanner Bibee emerging as capable starters. Supported by a solid bullpen, anchored by top closer Emmanuel Clase, the team possesses the potential to secure numerous victories. The key challenge lies in transforming this potential into tangible success to compete for greater rewards.

Regarding win predictions, the win total over/under stands at 78.5. Despite recent struggles, Cleveland typically fields a strong team, and this year appears to be no exception. With a balanced lineup and capable pitching staff, they are poised to achieve more wins than losses. Improved health augurs well for their consistency, a factor that hindered their performance last season. Considering the weakened state of the AL Central division, which presents opportunities for any team to rise, I lean towards the over, anticipating Cleveland’s ability to capitalize on this favorable landscape.

There haven’t been significant improvements in Colorado over the offseason, but there have been a few positive developments. Kris Bryant appears to be in good health at the moment, displaying enthusiasm in interviews and indicating that he still has plenty of passion for the game. Edwin Diaz’s arrival has provided a much-needed boost behind the plate, earning him All-Star honors for his contributions. Ezekiel Tovar has proven his worth and looks set to be a key player in the team for the foreseeable future. Nolan Jones continues to impress with his powerful hitting abilities. However, Charlie Blackmon, while still maintaining a .270 batting average, is showing signs of slowing down as he ages. Pitching remains a concern, with the starting rotation coming off seasons where they posted ERAs of over 4. Justin Lawrence and the bullpen have been inconsistent, creating additional challenges for the team.

The team’s win total over/under is set at 60.5 and expectations lean towards the under, but there’s a potential silver lining in home games. Despite the team’s struggles, the bullpen’s tendency to give up hits could create a favorable environment for both teams, leading to higher-scoring games. So, while victories may be hard to come by overall, the Rockies might still put up a fight and deliver entertaining performances, particularly in their home games.

Here we find the Detroit Tigers, a team on the rise, with Miguel Cabrera gracefully exiting to retirement after a storied career. Spencer Torkelson showcases exceptional baseball talent, while Riley Greene shines as an All-Star caliber player when fit. Kerry Carpenter has stepped up as a reliable hitter, and there’s hope Zac McKinstry will contribute significantly if he stays healthy. Although Javier Baez’s spring performance has been underwhelming, there’s anticipation around Colt Keith, a promising prospect aiming for the major leagues. The Tigers’ pitching staff has vastly improved, boasting a strong bullpen. Tarik Skubal is eyed for Cy Young potential, with Reese Olson and Casey Mize showing promise as starters. Veterans Kenta Maeda and Jack Flaherty are expected to make an immediate impact. Given Detroit’s upward trajectory and the relatively open AL Central, there are opportunities for wins. The Tigers could surprise us this season, especially if Baez and Keith evolve. Betting on the Tigers for a playoff spot and especially their home performance seems like a smart move, expecting some standout moments at their home games. With a win total over/under of 81.5, the potential for surpassing expectations is there, especially in a division that seems up for grabs.

The Houston Astros, with their core powerhouse intact, are set to dominate once more. Altuve and Bregman are in prime condition, while Yordan Alvarez is poised for a home run-hitting spree, healthier than before. All-Stars Kyle Tucker and Jeremy Peña, along with Chas McCormick’s reliable outfield skills and batting, round out a formidable lineup. Jose Abreu’s potential return to All-Star glory only adds to the team’s depth. On the mound, Justin Verlander is ramping up, with Framber Valdez as a Cy Young contender in tow. Christian Javier’s consistency, supported by the promising talents of Hunter Brown and JP France, makes their pitching lineup formidable. With Ryan Pressley shifting to a setup role for new addition Josh Hader, their bullpen looks unbeatable.

Despite the division’s competitive edge, the Astros’ loaded roster is well-equipped for a stellar season, eyeing another title. With the Angels and Athletics likely notching easy victories, the only uncertainty remains whether injuries will challenge their campaign. With a win total over/under of 92.5, the Astros are well-positioned to maintain their dominance in the division, making the over a compelling option.

Praise be to Bobby Witt Jr., last season’s sensation, earning his stripes with a performance that brought him a lucrative deal. Witt Jr.’s sheer talent and athleticism have been a game-changer. Vinnie Pasquantino, gearing up for a comeback, is ready to launch balls into the stands once more. Salvador Perez remains a powerhouse at the plate, a true force to be reckoned with. Maikel Garcia adds a spark as the team’s leadoff, setting the stage. Consistency in power from MJ Melendez and Nelson Velazquez could elevate this team’s offensive game to match any opponent. However, the pitching department is less reassuring. Cole Ragans ended last season on a high note, emerging as the bullpen’s standout. Beyond him, stability wanes, with Michael Wacha and Jordan Lyles being unpredictable, Brady Singer struggling last year, and Seth Lugo’s role as a starter a gamble. Will Smith, having vanished in the latter part of last season, leaves room for concern. Yet, if Singer finds his groove, he could be the support Ragans needs. The win total over/under of 74.5 suggests limited expectations, but key performances could make the Royals an interesting team to watch, especially in home games.

It’s a bleak scene in LA, unless your name is the Dodgers. Regardless of their prospect talent, this Angels team is in decline. Mike Trout, now healthy, has been left without the support he needs, and it’s unlikely that free agents are lining up to join. Anthony Rendon seems disinterested in the game, far from his peak performance. It feels more like a minor league squad, given the number of prospects on the field. Carlos Estevez stands out as a solid closer, and the starting rotation is decent, but that’s where the positives end. Without significant contributions from Nolan Schanuel, Logan O’Hoppe, and Zach Neto, expectations are low. The win total over/under of 71.5 leans more towards the under, reflecting the team’s struggles to compete effectively.

The Dodgers stand atop the MLB elite, with the acquisition of star pitcher Yoshinobi Yamamoto from Japan signaling their all-in approach for a championship. While Shohei Ohtani won’t be taking the mound this year, his bat adds significant firepower alongside NL MVP contenders Mookie Betts and Freddie Freeman. Despite rumors swirling around his translator’s gambling allegations, it’s unlikely MLB will disrupt this powerhouse team. James Outman emerged impressively last season, proving his worth in the starting lineup. Gavin Lux is on a quest to reclaim his form after a period of struggle, and a healthy Max Muncy is known to deliver powerful hits. With Tyler Glasnow leading the pitching roster followed by Yamamoto, and with the hopes that Walker Buehler and James Paxton can contribute significantly, the Dodgers remain formidable. Yet, as they currently hold a win total over/under set at 103.5, I lean towards the under. This exceptional team is poised for a playoff run but faces a challenging division and some vulnerabilities, particularly in pitching. Yamamoto may need time to adjust, and finding a reliable third ace could be their Achilles’ heel this season.

Amidst controversy with Jazz Chisholm expressing his discontent with the new management following Kim Ng’s departure, despite her historic tenure as MLB’s first female GM, the Miami Marlins roster still shows promise. Jake Burger brings power and hustle, Luis Arraez consistently hits well, and Josh Bell has been sending balls out of the park. On the mound, Jesus Luzardo emerges as the ace, with Eury Perez and Edward Cabrera showing potential in their roles last season. AJ Puk and Tanner Scott provided reliable relief and are poised for growth. While the Marlins can hold their own in tight matchups, their lineup needs strengthening to truly contend. Despite the competitive nature of the NL East, the current lineup may lead to stretches of losses. While Kim Ng was laying the groundwork for an exciting team, the Marlins’ direction post-Ng will be critical, potentially positioning them as sellers by the trade deadline. Given these dynamics, betting on the Marlins to fall short of their win total over/under of 78.5 seems prudent, especially in a division that’s growing increasingly competitive.

Kicking off with the noticeable shifts in the Brewers’ roster: Corbin Burnes has departed for the Orioles, and Brian Woodruff is sidelined for the entirety of 2024, eyeing a strong return in 2025. This leaves Freddy Peralta, Wade Miley, and Colin Rea at the helm of the starting rotation. Peralta shows promise with consistency, but Miley and Rea are expected to have their struggles. Devin Williams will be absent for three months due to back stress fractures. The team is counting on newly acquired DL Hall and others to fill these gaps. Despite these changes, the lineup has potential, with Christian Yelich aiming for a comeback, Wilson Contreras starting his major league journey, and Willy Adames looking to improve his batting average. Sal Frelick adds a fresh bat and solid defense, while teenager Jackson Chourio brings high expectations and talent, needed by the Brewers for a boost of elite skills. With a win total over/under set at 76.5, it’s challenging to predict the Brewers’ direction given their bullpen challenges. Nonetheless, Jackson Chourio is my pick for NL Rookie of the Year, especially if he outperforms Jing-Woo Lee of the Giants as he adjusts to the majors, offering great value for this award.

The Minnesota Twins face a season full of questions, positioned to excel in a division that seems ripe for the taking, yet consistently struggle to tap into their full potential. The focus is on key players like Byron Buxton and Royce Lewis, whose health and performance could be game-changing. Carlos Correa, battling through plantar fasciitis last season, aims to return to his All-Star form. The team also has reliable contributors like Alex Kirilloff, Matt Wallner, and Max Kepler, with newcomer Manuel Margot expected to add some much-needed power. However, the pitching staff faces its own set of hurdles. The effectiveness of Joe Ryan and Pablo Lopez in securing wins beyond the sixth inning remains to be seen, and there’s a clear need for an additional arm for a deep postseason push. Despite the potential, skepticism prevails regarding the Twins’ ability to overcome these challenges, especially with the threat of injuries to key players. The forecast is an under on their win total over/under of 86.5, as securing victories beyond their division could prove difficult unless Joe Ryan embarks on a standout season.

Once again, the Mets are assembling a team that aims to be competitive, facing challenges right from the start with Kodai Senga experiencing some shoulder issues. On a positive note, All-Star closer Edwin Diaz is making a return, a crucial addition as veteran Jose Quintana seeks to notch victories. Sean Manaea and Luis Severino are looking to bounce back from less-than-ideal previous seasons. The Mets are hopeful that Jeff McNeil and Pete Alonso will regain their All-Star performance levels after a year marred by injuries and inconsistency. Francisco Lindor’s future with the team is uncertain due to his inconsistent performances, and a mid-season trade wouldn’t be shocking. Brandon Nimmo provides reliable leadoff capabilities and solid defense in the outfield. Young catcher Francisco Alvarez emerged as a promising talent last year, showcasing his power at the plate. The team is also crossing fingers for the health of Harrison Bader and Starling Marte, whose presence is vital for the Mets’ success. The win total over/under is not specified, but the team’s success will depend on key players returning to form and new additions making an impact.

The New York Yankees boast an impressive lineup with the addition of Juan Soto to an already potent mix including Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton, and Anthony Rizzo, creating a formidable power-hitting combination. DJ LeMahieu is aiming to return to form after showing promise towards the last season’s end, while the young talent Jasson Dominguez has displayed potential, although injuries may limit his playtime. Gleyber Torres contributed significantly with his power hitting last year, hinting at a promising future in New York. The acquisition of Alex Verdugo could be pivotal for the postseason, depending on his impact. Gerrit Cole, last year’s AL Cy Young winner, is eyeing a consecutive win, supported by Carlos Rodon and Nestor Cortes, who are looking for comeback seasons. With Marcus Stroman returning from injury and Clarke Schmidt’s inconsistent performances, the bullpen’s effectiveness remains a critical factor. This season is a crucial one for the Yankees, especially with the possibility of Juan Soto moving on, making it a make-or-break scenario. Judge’s recovery from plantar fasciitis will be key, as will the performance of Cortes and Rodon in determining the team’s success. The win total over/under is not specified, but the team’s depth and talent make them serious contenders.

Oakland, amidst uncertainty about its future location, is seemingly poised to be at the bottom of the league standings. With Paul Blackburn and JP Sears leading the pitching efforts as a notable duo, the Athletics are looking to secure a few respectable victories. The batting lineup showcases promising talents like Zach Gelof, Esteury Ruiz, and Lawrence Butler, alongside catching prospects Shea Langeliers and Tyler Soderstrom. However, it’s unlikely the team will be active buyers at the trade deadline, yet they might manage to secure wins for about a third of their games. I was surprised to see their win total over/under at 57.5 because, realistically, the Athletics could end up performing worse than last season. Betting on them to achieve over 57 wins could be intriguing, but expectations are low based on current projections. Don’t be surprised if they lean towards selling at the deadline and finish with fewer than 52 victories.

The Philadelphia Phillies, with their notorious flair, are gearing up for another shot at the World Series, largely relying on the same core lineup. The trio of Bryce Harper, Trea Turner, and Zach Wheeler continues to bring their A-game, while JT Realmuto remains a top contender behind the plate. Last year, Bryson Stott proved his worth with outstanding performance, and Alec Bohm emerged as a key player. Aaron Nola joins Wheeler in leading the pitching efforts, supported by a promising bullpen lineup. Jose Alvarado is expected to dominate as the closer, with Orion Kerkering as an exciting prospect to watch. -The Phillies win total over/under is set at 89.5 and I’m betting on this team to go all the way. Had it not been for a slump in batting two years ago, they might have clinched the championship. With the core team intact and potential additions at the trade deadline, the Phillies are poised to be one of the top contenders in the NL this season.

Mitch Keller takes on the role of Pittsburgh’s leading pitcher, a move that came just after The Athletic highlighted owner Bob Nutting’s frugality. Despite this, the team’s young talent, including Endy Rodriguez, Jack Suwinski, and the power-hitting O’Neil Cruz, shows promise. Henry Davis, however, hasn’t quite met expectations as the standout catcher the Pirates had envisioned. The team’s bullpen boasts a formidable closing duo in Aroldis Chapman and David Bednar, though it’s unlikely Pittsburgh will be active buyers as the trade deadline approaches. They’re more inclined to recapture the early momentum they had last season. With a win total over/under of 75.5, I’ll be leaning towards the under. The Pirates kicked off last year on a high note, surpassing expectations, but replicating that success seems improbable this season. With consistent challenges on the field, Pittsburgh may find it tough to secure wins in the competitive landscape of the league.

While Slam Diego may have lost some of its former luster, the Padres are expected to have a solid season thanks to their current lineup. Fernando Tatis Jr. is emerging as a potential dark horse for the NL MVP, capturing the MLB’s attention. Manny Machado may not be in his Golden Glove prime, and Xander Bogaerts remains a formidable force, likely to adapt even better in his second season with San Diego. The team’s pitching dynamics have shifted, with Josh Hader and Blake Snell moving on. The Padres now lean on Joe Musgrove and Yu Darvish as their leading pitchers, complemented by newcomer Dylan Cease. Additionally, the acquisition of standout Japanese reliever Yuki Matsui, known for his impressive arsenal, is promising. However, for a real shot at postseason success, the team needs to beef up its lineup and find consistency if they want to surpass their win total over/under of 81.5. The Padres are unpredictable, swinging from slumps to competing with top teams. A consistent pitching performance could leverage their powerful lineup to contend for a playoff spot in the competitive NL West. If prospect Cal Mitchell steps up as a starter, the Padres could soar even higher.

This team could be a surprise contender for the playoffs after a promising off-season. With the addition of NL Cy Young winner Blake Snell and the talented Japanese hitter Jung Hoo Lee, who appears poised for an NL Rookie of the Year bid, there’s a lot to be excited about. Veterans like Wilmer Flores and Lamonte Wade Jr. provide stability to the lineup, while Logan Webb and Blake Snell lead a strong pitching staff. Closer Camilo Doval rounds out a solid bullpen. This team has potential, but it will require consistent contributions from its core players to truly make waves. With a win total over/under of 81.5, I’m leaning towards the under for many of their games, yet I wouldn’t be surprised if they snag a wild card spot, especially with some strategic additions. Casey Schmitt had a promising start but faded as the season progressed. The Giants have the right elements; it’s now a question of whether they can harness them to create some playoff magic.

The Mariners look to be red hot this season! Julio Rodriguez is an undeniable talent, and I’m tipping him as an underdog for the AL MVP. His skills rival those of Ronald Acuña. Luis Castillo is a top-notch pitcher who stands a chance at the AL Cy Young, especially if Gerrit Cole doesn’t perform up to par. While they might not be the flashiest team, their hitting ability is undeniable. Cal Raleigh hits home runs left and right, and with Jorge Polanco joining from the Twins, our second base looks solid. Ty France and JP Crawford are reliable players, creating a well-rounded team capable of causing an upset this season. If Logan Gilbert and George Kirby manage to exceed expectations, the Mariners will possess a formidable lineup. The win total over/under is set at 87.5 and I’m all in on betting over for wins and backing Julio for MVP. This team is bursting with potential, boasting a healthy lineup and a pitching rotation envied by many in the league. With their batting prowess matching their pitching strength, the Mariners are poised for a playoff berth.

Last season was challenging for the Cardinals, starting off promisingly with Jordan Walker’s impressive 25-game hitting streak, only for him to be demoted. This downturn was unexpected, especially with Paul Goldschmidt and Tommy Edman underperforming. Brendan Donovan emerged as a key player, highlighting the need for his presence. Nolan Arenado continued to shine as a top third baseman, despite being the subject of trade rumors. Willson Contreras showed his potential as a powerful catcher. The addition of Sonny Gray significantly bolstered the pitching lineup, though Lance Lynn struggled in the Spring League. Ryan Helsley and Giovanny Gallegos proved to be a formidable setup-closer duo. The Cardinals are primed for success, but achieving it remains the question. With their win total over/under set at 84.5, the expectation is for an over. Given their resilience, it’s hard to envision the Cardinals faltering two years in a row, especially with Milwaukee’s current form. With Goldschmidt’s expected return to form and the pitching staff’s cohesion, this year should see them surpass expectations.

The Tampa Bay Rays, refreshed with slight changes, aim to surpass their first-round playoff hurdle. Despite a challenging season for pitchers due to injuries, Shane Baz is on the mend, and Taj Bradley has proven his worth. Aaron Civale joins the team, hoping for a career resurgence, while Zac Eflin seeks to regain his top form. The batting lineup, featuring power hitters like Randy Arozarena and Yandy Díaz, remains formidable. Isaac Paredes also had a standout season at the plate. Traditionally, the Rays manage to outperform expectations in the AL East, but with the Yankees in good health and the Orioles showing promise, the competition looks tougher this year. With a win total over/under at 84.5, I’m leaning towards the under. Despite the Rays’ knack for exceeding expectations, the intensified rivalry within the AL East makes me question the strength of their lineup and their ability to secure wins in this competitive division.

The defending champions are set for another title run, boasting a formidable lineup. Corey Seager and Max Scherzer are finally in peak condition, and Jacob DeGrom remains a key player, poised to contribute this season. Adding to their strength, they have rising stars Wyatt Langford and Evan Carter, with Langford’s impressive batting and Carter’s speed enhancing the team’s dynamics. Josh Jung was a close contender for AL Rookie of the Year before his season was cut short by injury. With Nathan Eovaldi’s pitching prowess and Jose Leclerc stepping up as closer after the departure of Aroldis Chapman and Will Smith, the team’s bullpen looks robust. The win total over/under is 88.5 and I’m all in on the over! With a roster this rich in talent and strategic bullpen enhancements, it’s hard to see them facing difficulty in their quest to repeat. Corey Seager’s health and leadership are pivotal for the team’s steady performance.

The burning question every season: Is this the year Vladimir Guerrero Jr. breaks through to win an AL MVP and propels his team into the playoffs? Bo Bichette is back in form after injury setbacks interrupted his outstanding season. The team boasts determination and talent with players like George Springer, Kevin Kiermaier, and Justin Turner. Should Cavan Biggio and Davis Schneider elevate their game, this lineup will be formidable. The burden of success falls heavily on their pitching roster, loaded with MLB stars like Kevin Gausman, Jose Berríos, and Chris Bassitt. Although Jordan Romano will start the season on the injured list, he’s expected to return as one of the league’s top pitchers. The win total over/under of 87.5 reflects optimism for a successful season, dependent on pitching performance.

Focused on building for the future, the team boasts the promising CJ Abrams, complemented by mid-level talent. Joey Meneses offers a reliable bat, while Stone Garrett frequently delivers powerful hits. Their lineup, filled with rotational players, is set to be competitive each game. However, pitching presents a significant challenge, with Josiah Gray standing out amid a backdrop of underperforming teammates and a lack of upcoming prospects. Patrick Corbin and Jake Irvin have struggled significantly. Meanwhile, promising outfielders James Woods and Dylan Crews are expected to join Lane Thomas, indicating active developments in Washington, especially as the trade deadline approaches. The overall win total stands at over/under 67.5. Despite their struggles, the team is expected to remain competitive in many games, hindered mainly by a weak pitching lineup and only slightly better-than-average fielding.

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Shane gives his predictions for who he believes could win the 2024 MLB player awards as we approach a month of regular season baseball.