MLB 2014: City Of Champions Staff Predicts Pittsburgh Pirates Results & Rest Of Baseball Season

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Apr 1, 2014; Arlington, TX, USA; Texas Rangers third baseman

Adrian Beltre

is lifted on first baseman

Prince Fielder

(84) shoulders as shortstop

Elvis Andrus

(1) celebrates following his game winning single against the Philadelphia Phillies at Globe Life Park in Arlington. Mandatory Credit: Jim Cowsert-USA TODAY Sports

NL East: Washington Nationals. The East comes down to two teams, the Nationals and the Atlanta Braves. They both have a dominant bullpen but the edge goes to the Nationals in the starting rotation as the Braves will enter the season with no Kris Medlan and no true number one starter.

NL Central: St. Louis Cardinals: The Cardinals never rebuild they reload. They develop their players the right way and when someone leaves they just plug another young piece in. The Pirates didn’t do anything to upgrade upon last season. It will be a tight race but until someone can prove that they can beat the Cardinals the Central Division goes to them.

NL West: LA Dodgers. The safe bet here is the Dodgers with all the big name talent, but look out for the San Francisco Giants. If they can get Tim Lincecum to return to the CY Young candidate that he used to be, then they will have a great rotation with the addition of Tim Hudson.

NL Wild Card: Pirates over Giants. The Pirates have proven the past two years of making trades to help the team at the deadline and this year is no different. They make enough upgrades to win the Wild Card and advance to the NLDS.

AL East: Boston Red Sox: The AL East always gives us an interesting race and really any team could come out the winner here. The New York Yankees spent big in the offseason and with this being Derek Jeter’s last year you know he wants to go out a winner. The Tampa Bay Rays and Baltimore Orioles are in the mix but can they get consistent offence and pitching all year round.

AL Central: Kansas City Royals. This is my bold prediction this year. The Royals have a perfect mix of veteran leadership and young talent. The question has always been consistent starting pitching and they receive that this year. Too much change for the Detroit Tigers in the offseason costs them their fourth straight AL Central title.

AL West: Texas Rangers. The addition of Prince Fielder gives them the big bat in the lineup they need. Oakland, as always, goes as far as their pitching. It will be interesting to see if they can fill the holes left by Bartolo Colon and Grant Balfour. Seattle made a big splash in the offseason with the Robinson Cano signing, but they have big problems else where that need attention.

AL Wild Card: Yankees over Tigers. While I think the Tigers are the better team, there is something about being Jeter’s last year that I think the Yankees can make a playoff run.

Pirates Record 89-73. The Pirates just fall short of 90 wins because Wandy Rodriguez stays healthy and fills A.J. Burnett’s role. First base and right field remain a concern for the Bucs but Gregory Polanco should be up by July and give the Pirates a needed boost and one of the best outfields in baseball. While I think it is almost impossible for the Bucs to overthrow the Cardinals as the best in the Central, they do have enough talent to hold of the Reds.

NL MVP: Bryce Harper takes the next step in his career and becomes the best in the National League as he helps the Nationals to one of the best records in baseball.

AL MVP: Mike Trout is one of the best, if not the best, player in baseball and this year he beats Miguel Cabrera for the MVP Award.

NL CY Young: Clayton Kershaw. This guy is the best pitcher in baseball and as long as he stays healthy I don’t see anyone dethroning him of that title. Stephen Strasburg, Gerrit Cole and Jose Fernandez will be in the mix for the award. But the Marlins aren’t going to have a winning record and Kershaw is better than Strasburg.

AL Cy Young: David Price. Last year of contract. He is going to pitch great to get that big money contract in the offseason. Only question is: Will he be pitching the entire season for the Rays?

NL ROTY: Gregory Polanco comes up and takes the baseball world by storm, much like Yasiel Puig did last year.

AL ROTY: Xander Bogaerts. You got to see a glimpse of what this kid can do in the playoffs last year. Now that he is going to get playing time everyday he will show the baseball world what he really can do.

NL Manger of the Year: Matt Williams, leads the Nationals to best record and to the World Series.

AL Manger of the Year: Ned Yost. You can never over look Joe Maddon because he always has the Rays in the thick of the playoff race, but Yost receives it because the Royals make it to the playoffs.