|Brand New Padres Outfield (NY Post)|
We are about two months away from baseball season and there have been a number of offseason moves that will impact Major League Baseball. From the likes of Jon Lester to the Cubs, Max Scherzer to the Nationals, this season will be quite an interesting one. Our hometown Phillies will likely still be one of the bottom feeders as it is probably time to blow that team up as they began to with trading Jimmy Rollins and Marlon Byrd. They still have a decent one, two punch with Cole Hamels and Cliff Lee in the rotation, but the offense will probably struggle this year. With that being said, other than the Phillies it’s time to take a look at a few teams who made big moves this offseason.
San Diego Padres. It will fun to watch how this team does this year with the offseason moves they made. Trading for Justin Upton, Matt Kemp and Wil Myers, the Padres have a whole new outfield this year and they will be a good offense. It will be interesting to see how much stronger the offense is with these three commanding their outfield. They play in a big ballpark but making all three of these trades show they want to be more offensive minded. Last year, they were pretty weak on offense so it made sense to go get a few potent offensive players. I doubt anyone expected them to make all three of these trades, but it will definitely improve the team this year. The rotation still needs some work behind Andrew Cashner, but at least pitchers will not feel as uncomfortable after giving up a few runs with the lineup behind them this year.
Chicago Cubs. Will the drought end? It will be tough, but with the addition of Jon Lester they become that more dangerous. The offense is led by Anthony Rizzo and they have a number of up and coming stars. One player to keep an eye on this year is Kris Bryant who absolutely destroyed the minor leagues last year. It will not surprise anyone if they start the season with him in the minors but he will likely be in the big leagues by midseason. They also acquired Dexter Fowler who will make an impact at the top of that lineup. By season’s end, the Cubs will have a very dangerous lineup. Jon Lester will also have help with Jake Arrieta who came out of no where last year and dominated for a large portion of the season. The Cubs will be a dangerous team, will it be enough to end the drought?
Boston Red Sox. The Red Sox may have had an awful season last year, but they will try to correct that this season by signing Hanley Ramirez and Pablo Sandoval. The real question of this team isn’t the offense, but it will be the pitching. They traded Jon Lester to the Oakland Athletics last season and they have been searching for consistent pitching ever since. They did sign Justin Masterson, but he struggled mightily last season. They also acquired Rick Porcello and Wade Miley to help bolster their rotation. There doesn’t seem to be that ace on the team that all dominant teams have, so a lot of their success will be dependent on their offense.
It’s likely going to be another rough year for us Phillies fans, but just being a baseball fan in general is getting me excited for the baseball season already. We are a little less than a month before pitchers and catchers report to camp, so if you’re not in baseball mood…get ready.
Alan Liang is a senior Drexel Sport Management major with minors in Marketing, Business Administration, and Communication from West Windsor, NJ. Alan scores baseball games for Baseball Info Solutions and was on co-op with the Philadelphia 76ers in the camps department. Follow Alan on Twitter @AlanLiang29.