By Dan Richeal
NL Team to Watch: Philadelphia Phillies
The Phillies were the winner of the Bryce Harper sweepstakes, the Philadelphia Phillies. In 2018, the Phillies finished in third place of the National League East going 80-82. The record was under .500, but with the addition of the aforementioned All-Star OF Bryce Harper, SS Jean Segura, and C J.T. Realmuto to go along with young players like 1B Rhys Hoskins, 3B Maikel Franco, and OF Odúbel Herrera that record is bound to get better. On the mound the Phillies are led by Aaron Nola who posted a 17-5 record, 2.37 ERA and 224 strikeouts in 212.1 innings in 2018. The Phillies are for real, look for them to win the NL East and make a deep run into the postseason.
AL Team to Watch: New York Yankees
The New York Yankees are always loaded and 2019 will not be any different. The team is full of power hitters with OF Aaron Judge, C Gary Sanchez and OF/DH Giancarlo Stanton. The Bronx Bombers didn’t make any huge moves in the offseason, but they did acquire shortstop Troy Tulowitzki to add some depth off the bench and RP Adam Ottavino from the Colorado Rockies. They have the talent to best the reigning World Series Champion Boston Red Sox, but if there is one problem with the Yankees it is their pitching staff. Their pitching staff is getting older and piling up injuries. They will make the playoffs undoubtedly, but is it enough for a World Series title?
Team to look out for: New York Mets
The New York Mets have the potential to shock the baseball world this season, and exceed the expectations that come with their recent run of mediocrity. New General Manager Brodie Van Wagenen went out this offseason and acquired 2B Robinson Cano and RP Edwin Díaz from Seattle. He went out and signed former Mets killer Wilson Ramos to be the starting catcher this season, they also added veteran utility play and all-star Jed Lowrie. The Mets still have NL Cy Young winner Jacob DeGrom, who posted one of the best seasons in MLB history, and Noah Syndergaard coming back after a 13-4 year, starting pitching for the Mets this season should not be an issue. The Mets have the pitching to make a run and they added some much-needed veteran bats. If the Mets starting pitchers can stay healthy and they have consistent production from the veterans look for the Mets to be playing in October.