As we approach the MLB All-Star break, also referred to as the halfway point of the season, postseason talk gets more serious. Many teams have proven they deserve to be in the playoffs, while some hope that the second half of the season will fuel them to stealing a wild card spot. Here’s my predictions for the teams who will be playing in October.
National League East: Washington is going nowhere. Baseball’s little brother, the Philadelphia Phillies, give the Nationals a sense of security moving forward, and they should take advantage of having the worst baseball team in their division. They have some tough games ahead of them after the break, but I see them holding their current lead in the second half to win the division.
National League Central: Milwaukee is playing great baseball right now, but the Cubs have finally steered back on track after a rough start to the 2017 season. Their starting rotation is finally heating back up after the worrisome three-month wait for Chicago fans. I see the division running down between these two, however, I think the Cubs will pull through to win.
National League West: Currently they’re the best division in baseball, hands down. Honestly, I wouldn’t be surprised if Arizona or Colorado took the crown, but the Dodgers are the hottest team in baseball right now. Whether it’s rookie Cody Bellinger or some of the more seasoned vets, such as Yasiel Puig and Clayton Kershaw, this team has the potential to win their division and make a deep run in the playoffs.
National League Wild Card(s): I see the west taking both wild card spots. Both the Arizona Diamondbacks and Colorado Rockies are playing phenomenal baseball right now. So good that the next best team in the wild card race currently is 7.5 games behind. Unless these teams don’t show up in the second half, I fully expect them to make the postseason.
American League East: This is definitely one of the more competitive leagues in the MLB. The whole league is within 5-7 wins of each other. While the Yankees and Red Sox have been stealing headlines, none of these teams should be counted out completely. At the end of the day, I see Boston taking this division and heading into the postseason with the same momentum they’re carrying right now.
American League Central: Despite a recent losing streak heading into the break, I see Cleveland taking the division. They finished the 2016 season with a chip on their shoulder and will look to head back into postseason play come October.
American League West: There is something special going on in Houston. FiveThirtyEight.com has the Astros listed with the highest percentage to win their division, and it makes complete sense. They’ve been dominant since the beginning of the season, despite many injuries, and show no signs of slowing down.
American League Wild Card(s): Aaron Judge and the Yankees will be taking one of the wild card spots. The other is up for grabs, and saying that I feel confident in one team having an advantage over others would be a lie. I think this comes down to the Minnesota Twins and Kansas City Royals for the second wild card depending on who shows up to play during the second half. For now, I’m seeing double with the Twins taking the final wild card spot in the American League.