As the US moves steadily towards some kind of stability this summer, a lot of us are counting on MLB to contribute greatly to that sense of well-being which we all crave so much now. Most of all, everyone wants to see some good baseball games, hear some great calls. Many MLB fans are anxious to see just what kind of a difference this newly modified baseball is going to make in the game. April first is still some weeks off, so it might be a bit early to predict Opening Day rosters, but everyone is anxious to get the season started.
Blue Jays Fly High In The New Season
The Toronto Blue Jays are stuck down in Dunedin, Florida until further notice. Of course, there are worse places to be than Florida in the wintertime. Toronto boasts one of the best looking lineups in the major league baseball preseason this year.
Starting at catcher for Toronto will be Alejandro Kirk, then at first base the veteran Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Second base will again be Marcus Semien and the shortstop, who else, but Bo Bichette. The starting third baseman looks like it will be Cavan Biggio and the Blue Jays outfield will consist of George Springer, Teoscar Hernandez and Lourdes Gurriel. The starting pitcher on Opening Day could be former Dodger pitcher Hyun Jin Ryu.
O’s Looking For A New Era
The Baltimore Orioles starting catcher will be Pedro Severino and at first base we will find Trey Mancini. Second baseman Yolmer Sanchez is back, as well as Orioles top shortstop Freddy Galvez. Third base will be Rio Ruiz again, with the Baltimore outfield made up of Ryan Mountcastle, Cedric Mullins and Anthony Santander. The O’s starting pitcher will be the great Flex Hernandez.
For the Boston Red Sox, Opening Day catcher should be Christian Vazquez and still at first base we will find Bobby Dalbec. Second base is held down by Enrique Hernandez and, of course, the shortstop will be Xander Bogaerts with third base manned by Rafael Devers. The Red Sox outfield looks like Franchy Cordero, former Dodger Alex Verdugo and the ever popular Hunter Renfroe. The Opening Day starting pitcher may well be Nathan Eovaldi.
Yankees Get The House In Order
The New York Yankees come loaded again this year, starting with catcher Gary Sanchez, then first baseman Luke Voit and, at second base, DJ LeMahieu. The Yankees have an excellent shortstop in Gleyber Torres and at third base is Gio Urshela. New York’s outstanding outfield will be made up of Clint Frazier, Aaron Hicks and strongman Aaron Judge. The Yankees are likely to start with Corey Kluber on the mound.
Tony La Russa’s Chicago White Sox will feature former Dodger catcher Yasmani Grandal, first baseman Jose Abreu and, at second base, Nick Madrigal. Shortstop Tim Anderson will get the nod as well as third baseman Yoan Moncada. The White Sox outfield will consist of Eloy Jimenez, Louis Robert and Adam Eaton. Starting at pitcher will be the veteran Dallas Keuchel.
Angels Expect Ohtani To Overachieve
Over in the National League, the LA Angels will be starting Max Stassi at catcher, Jared Walsh at first base and David Fletcher at second. The Angels shortstop is Jose Iglesias and the great Anthony Rendon is back once again at third base. Outfielders this year are perennial MVP Mike Trout with Justin Upton and Dexter Fowler. The starting pitcher could be the long-awaited start of Shohei Ohtani.
The Philadelphia Phillies will start catcher JT Realmuto. Then, at first base will be Rhys Hoskins. At second base Jean Segura is likely to start, and the Phillies shortstop this year will be former Yankee Didi Gregorius. At third base will be Alec Bohm and the outstanding Philadelphia outfield is to be made up of Bryce Harper, Andrew McCutchen and Odubel Herrera; Opening Day starting pitcher for the Phillies pegs Aaron Nola.
Brewers Stir The Pot
The Milwaukee Brewers will be starting catcher Manny Piña. At first base is Keston Hiura and at second we find Kolton Wong. The Brewers shortstop will be Orlando Arcia and Travis Shaw will be at third. Milwaukee’s excellent outfield is back and featuring Christian Yelich, Lorenzo Cain and Tyrone Taylor. Starting pitcher for Opening Day is a toss-up, but could well be Brett Anderson.
The San Diego Padres have been spending a lot of money lately on some long-term contracts calculated to bring the sleeping Padres back into serious MLB competition. The Opening Day catcher will be Austin Nola, first base is manned by Eric Hosmer and second base will be held down by Jake Cronenworth. Newly re-signed to a 14-year deal at shortstop will be Fernando Tatis Jr. and the Padres third baseman for the foreseeable future will be Manny Machado. The San Diego outfield consists of Tommy Pham, Trent Grisham and Will Meyers. The Padres’ starting pitcher could well be Blake Snell.
The defending World Series Champions, the LA Dodgers, will be splitting catching duties between Austin Barns and Will Smith. Their first baseman is still Max Muncy, with Chris Taylor at second base and Corey Seager at shortstop. Third base will once again be anchored by Justin Turner and the Dodgers’ outstanding outfield will again feature Mookie Betts, AJ Pollock and Cody Bellinger. The starting pitcher for the team is, of course, Clayton Kershaw.