Friday, May 2, 2008

AL West Preview (Courtesy of jarazix)

AL West

Expected Divisional rankings:

1. Oakland Cardinals

2. Salem Beavers

3. Seattle Huskies

4. Los Angeles Bruins

Oakland Cardinals - Jung Lee ( 24yr old 2B, 87/90ovr ) , Candy Thomas ( 22yr old CF, 81/90 ovr) and leadoff hitter Aaron Downing ( 24yr old LF, 82/87ovr ) should anchor this teams potent and young lineup for years to come. Other strong players include Max Pineda ( 29yr old 84/84 ), Rafael Nieves ( 24yr old 80/83 ), Hamish Reynolds ( 22yr old 77/86 ), Torey Bonds ( 29yr old 80/80 ) Starting pitching is strong, but the bullpen has holes that will need addressing. If this team can somehow acquire some relief pitching ( its system is thin in this area ) it should not only win this divison this year but for the next several.

Salem Beavers
- Salem is an old team with most starters at or around 30 years of age. It however should compete if its pitching holds up, which is a big question mark. The lineup is anchored by Chad Shelby ( 29yr old, 82/82ovr RF ) and Darin Mercedes ( 33yr old, 76/763B ). Not much is coming through the pipeline for this team and it could fall on hard times quickly.

Seattle Huskies
- Seattle is a hard team to judge. At the ML level there is currently only one starter. My guess is the owner is resting its starters in spring training. The team has a fairly youthful lineup, though it lacks much star power. The best player in the line up is Edwards Edwards ( 33yr old 76/76 3B). The bullpen has several quality arms, which the team may need due to its starter situation. Closer Nicky Drew ( 25yr old 70/74 LH ) is in the mold of a great closer, but throws some odd stuff including the knuckleball

Los Angeles Bruins - This team is old and lacks talent at the ML level as far as position players go. Its top rated position player at the ML level is Darrell Martin ( 32yr old 71/71 ovr DH ). The team has decent pitching, as far as pitching goes there is a good mix of young and old players. The most notable is starter Pascual Carrasco ( 24yrs old 75/81 RH ). On the positive side this team has a lot of nice talent that should come up in a few years. That in addition to what is likely a few high draft choices should help this team have a bright future, but not for a few years.

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