2009 ESPN Prediction Questions

I stumbled across this article in ESPN’s fantasy baseball section (we hold our dynasty league in ESPN as I feel they do the best job of the “free” sites) where fantasy columnist Jason Grey answered a list of questions, fill in the blanks and predictions for the upcoming season (click here for his answers). While I do have a fantasy baseball segment on this site, I figured I would center this more on baseball predictions than fantasy predictions (those will come closer to the season).

So below is my answers to the exact questions he was asked. If you have time, I’d love to see your answers to these same questions in the comments section or comments regarding mine. Here goes…

(click here to continue reading this article…)

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9 Responses to 2009 ESPN Prediction Questions

  1. This was a lot of fun doing and I’m looking forward to what others think.

  2. Mike says:

    Your name:
    Mike Washburn

    But you wish to be referred to as:
    Washey

    You’re a shameless, unabashed fan of:
    Hanley Ramirez

    But we shouldn’t hold it against you because:
    While he beats up on my Braves, and is suppost be a poor defensive player. He is the most exciting player in the game, and was better than Reyes in the field in 2008.

    Your fondest sports wish for 2009 is:
    To see a Rays-Marlins WS just to see the high payroll teams lose again.

    Why will this happen/not happen?
    The Rays will win 100 games, while the Marlins have a very good pitching staff, a solid bullpen, and good hitting to knock off the Mets and the regressing Phillies.

    Any sport, what is your biggest sleeper pick for 2009?
    Justin Upton .295 .360 .550 32 HR 105 RBI, while I am not the biggest Upton fan(reminds me too much of a younger Andruw Jones), he could breakout big next year.

    How high would you reach for that sleeper in a standard ESPN draft?
    Maybe in the 6th or 7th round.

    Which player are you buying into but will most likely disappoint you?
    Any pitcher early, something tells me that CC Sabathia is going to pull a 2006 Beckett or 2005 Randy Johnson in NY for 2009.

    Which player are you not buying but will likely disappoint everyone else?
    Geovany Soto, he will regress to a .265 .330 .430 with maybe 18-20 HR’s. He will not breakout into a superstar catcher.

    Any sport, who will be the best rookie to emerge in 2009?
    David Price, he will go 18-6 with a 3.40 ERA and 185 K’s.

    … but everyone is going to think it’s going to be?
    Wieters.

    Who will be …
    … the first player drafted in fantasy baseball leagues? Albert Pujols
    … the first pitcher? Tim Lincecum
    … the first rookie? Matt Wieters
    … the player who’ll start the season in Triple-A to everyone’s frustration? Wieters

    Hanley Ramirez: 2009 NL MVP 40-40 season

    Fill in the blanks any which way you want to create 10 more predictions for 2009.
    1. In 2009, Hanley Ramirez will win the MVP for the National League .318 43 HR 100 RBI’s 40 SB.
    2. Indians will win the AL central.
    3. The Florida Marlins will be this year’s NL Champions.
    4. Grady Sizemore will be the AL MVP .290 44 HR’s 115 RBI’s 35 SB, and GG.
    5. A.J. Burnett will be hurt by May 1st.
    6. No one in baseball hits over 45 HR’s
    7. C.C. Sabathia goes 15-12 with a 4.60 ERA
    8. Evan Longoria hits .285 36 HR 110 RBI’s
    9. Tim Lincecum pitches the Giants into October with a 22-6 2.36 ERA 280 K’s.
    10. 2009 will forever be remembered as the year young players become superstars in baseball.

    The Name Game
    A-Rod or Hanley Ramirez? Hanley. A-Rod will not have his odd year monster year.
    Tim Lincecum or Johan Santana? Lincecum. He will become the best pitcher in baseball while Santana continues to lose leads due to F-Rod breaking down and Putz being a Putz.
    Evan Longoria or Garrett Atkins? Longoria hands down, Atkins will be traded.
    Chase Utley or Dustin Pedroia? Utley but not by much, due to the injury.
    Manny Ramirez or Mark Teixeira? Ramirez.

    Playing with Numbers
    Francisco Rodriguez saves: 26
    A.J. Burnett wins: 9
    CC Sabathia’s ERA: 4.60
    Yovani Gallardo wins and strikeouts: 14, 160
    Manny Ramirez home runs and RBIs: 38, 120
    Matt Holliday home runs and RBIs: 22, 90
    Mark Teixeira home runs and RBIs: 35, 110
    Jay Bruce batting average and home runs: .260, 26
    Rafael Furcal average and steals: .295, 25
    Rafael Furcal average and steals against the Braves: .280, 2

  3. Matt says:

    Your name:
    Matt Twedell

    But you wish to be referred to as:
    Matt? My nickname has always been Tweeter though.

    You’re a shameless, unabashed fan of:
    Nolan Ryan

    But we shouldn’t hold it against you because:
    If people hold over 5700 Ks, 7 no-hitters, and one royal beatdown of Robin Ventura against me, they have some serious issues.

    Your fondest sports wish for 2009 is:
    To see the Rangers make the playoffs and, heaven forbid, the World Series.

    Why will this happen/not happen?
    Our young pitchers still need time to grow and the veterans on the staff just can’t seem to put it together like they used to. I genuinely believe we’ll be a force within two seasons with our potent offense once our young arms get some experience.

    Any sport, what is your biggest sleeper pick for 2009?
    Justin Masterson.

    How high would you reach for that sleeper in a standard ESPN draft?
    After I have 2, maaaybe 3 reliable starters.

    Which player are you buying into but will most likely disappoint you?
    Phil Hughes. I like to think last season was a reaction to the pressure on him. With CC and A.J., I would like to think he’ll recover and succeed but you never know. All this from a Yankees hater.

    Which player are you not buying but will likely disappoint everyone else?
    K-Rod, only because he’s going to be the top closer taken, but I don’t believe his stats are going to be far and away above his peers.

    Any sport, who will be the best rookie to emerge in 2009?
    Cameron Maybin. I know, technically he turned heads at the tail of last season so he presses the definition of “emerge” but he will take off in ’09. Just watch.

    … but everyone is going to think it’s going to be?
    David Price. Pretty sure he still qualifies as a rookie. If he’s not, then Wieters.

    Who will be …
    … the first player drafted in fantasy baseball leagues? Hanley Ramirez
    … the first pitcher? CC Sabathia
    … the first rookie? Price, but not by me
    … the player who’ll start the season in Triple-A to everyone’s frustration? Travis Snider

    Fill in the blanks any which way you want to create 10 more predictions for 2009.
    1. In 2009, the San Francisco Giants will post the worst record in the league.
    2. There is no way that Huston Street will end the season with the Rockies.
    3. Eric Hurley will be this year’s David Price.
    4. The Kansas City Royals will continue to make head-scratching trades.
    5. If the Rangers make the playoffs then I will send a written apology to Tom Hicks.
    6. There will be 3 big name players that are signed by the Yankees this offseason
    7. … but only 1 player that finishes the season healthy (hint: he’s a 1B).
    8. Matthew Berry will quit with the awkward swinging camera bits on all TV segments he’s involved in
    9. This is the year that Pittsburgh finally finishes with at or above .500.
    10. 2009 will forever be remembered as the year Barry Bonds officially retires from baseball.

    The Name Game
    A-Rod or Hanley Ramirez? A-Rod. Odd year plus renewed motivation.
    Tim Lincecum or Johan Santana? Johan mostly because Lincecum will get no real run support… yet again.
    Evan Longoria or Garrett Atkins? Longoria. How is this a question?
    Chase Utley or Dustin Pedroia? Utley. Pedroia needs to prove to me he can do it again.
    Manny Ramirez or Mark Teixeira? Teixeira.

    Playing with Numbers
    Francisco Rodriguez saves: 27
    A.J. Burnett wins: 9
    CC Sabathia’s ERA: 3.95
    Yovani Gallardo wins and strikeouts: 14, 178
    Manny Ramirez home runs and RBIs: 38, 135
    Matt Holliday home runs and RBIs: 30, 105
    Mark Teixeira home runs and RBIs: 47, 150 (he sets a personal record)
    Jay Bruce batting average and home runs: .265, 20
    Rafael Furcal average and steals: .286, 22
    Rafael Furcal average and steals against the Braves: .210, 1

  4. Wow those were great to read!

    Mike –
    I see we are on the same page when it comes to the Marlins and Hanley Ramirez. He is such an incredible player and will help lead the Marlins to the playoffs.

    Matt –
    I see we are on the same page about the Rangers. They have so many good young players ready to burst that I hope they all mature into what they can be.

    I have to ask you Matt, which of the three Rangers catchers do you like best Saltalamacchia (didn’t feel like looking up the spelling), Teagarden or Ramirez? Personally I think Teagarden will be the best as I like his power the most.

  5. Matt says:

    I definintely like Teagarden’s defense as much as his offense. He, like Salty, just needs to learn how to call an ML game.

    I’m excited about Teagarden overall, but Salty should get his chance to shine this season. We lost Teixeria to get him (along with others) and that potential didn’t disappear overnight. I want to see what he can do.

  6. Matt says:

    Oh and as for Ramirez, I think he and Teagarden are similar enough that one becomes expendable either this season or next.

  7. Fletch says:

    Your name:
    Billy Martin

    But you wish to be referred to as:
    Irwin Fletcher

    You’re a shameless, unabashed fan of:
    Veronica Mars

    But we shouldn’t hold it against you because:
    It’s the most underrated TV show of all time.

    Your fondest sports wish for 2009 is:
    For the Cardinals to make the World Series

    Why will this happen/not happen?
    Starting rotation…might happen if Carpenter throws 180 innings.

    Any sport, what is your biggest sleeper pick for 2009?
    Delmon Young

    How high would you reach for that sleeper in a standard ESPN draft?
    After Curtis Granderson before Chris B. Young

    Which player are you buying into but will most likely disappoint you?
    Cole Hamels – 77 inning jump from 07-08

    Which player are you not buying but will likely disappoint everyone else?
    Kevin Youkalis – I see 08 as career year not career average year moving forward.

    Any sport, who will be the best rookie to emerge in 2009?
    Does David Price count? If not I’ll go Tommy Hanson…also big, big fan od Fowler.

    … but everyone is going to think it’s going to be?
    Matt Wieters

    Who will be …
    … the first player drafted in fantasy baseball leagues? Hanley Ramirez…Who should be? Albert Pujols

    … the first pitcher? Tim Lincecum

    … the first rookie? Price or Wieters

    … the player who’ll start the season in Triple-A to everyone’s frustration? Matt Wieters

    Fill in the blanks any which way you want to create 10 more predictions for 2009.
    1. In 2009, Buster Posey will be starting catcher for the Giants by the end of the season.

    2. There is no way AJ Burnett will start 30 games.

    3. Brandon Webb will be this year’s CC Sabathia.

    4. Clayton Kershaw will continue to frustrate Dodger’s fan with his inconsistency.

    5. If The D-Backs get off to a slow start then Brandon Webb will be dealt for prospects.

    6. There will be 10 players that start the season for the Marlins making 1,000,000…
    7. … but only 5 players that will finish the season with them.

    8. Matthew Berry is a hack.

    9. This is the year that Jacoby Elsbury finally gets exposed as being very overrated.

    10. 2009 will forever be remembered as the start of the Ray’s dynasty.

    The Name Game
    A-Rod or Hanley Ramirez? A-Rod. He’s such a douche, but if it’s possible for a 3 time MVP to be underrated it’s A-Rod.

    Tim Lincecum or Johan Santana? Johan – Timmy’s fun, but Johan is Johan

    Evan Longoria or Garrett Atkins? Really, Garret Atkins was best comp they could come up with? I’d rather have Zimmerman or Gordon then Atkins.

    Chase Utley or Dustin Pedroia? Utley even in half season. Brings different set of skills to 2nd base then anyone in the game.

    Manny Ramirez or Mark Teixeira? I’m going Tex cause he’s younger…but I think the Manny chemistry issues are way overplayed.

    Playing with Numbers:
    Francisco Rodriguez saves: 50
    A.J. Burnett wins: 10
    CC Sabathia’s ERA: 3.60
    Yovani Gallardo wins and strikeouts: 14, 148
    Manny Ramirez home runs and RBIs: 34, 108
    Matt Holliday home runs and RBIs: 25, 95
    Mark Teixeira home runs and RBIs: 35, 120
    Jay Bruce batting average and home runs: .260, 35
    Rafael Furcal average and steals: .280, 30
    Rafael Furcal average and steals against the Braves: .280, 1

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