By Garrett Athey
Baseball is officially back with spring training coming to an end and Opening Day starting on March 29th. The offseason was full of interesting moves by teams looking to improve from last year and make the playoffs. Spring training gave teams the opportunity to assess all the
players they had and decide who makes the team. Players are gearing up for the long season ahead as teams will have 162 games to play in order to see who will make it to the playoffs. With only the five best teams from both the American and the National League will make the playoffs.
The biggest offseason moves were made by the New York Yankees, who traded for All Star outfielder, Giancarlo Stanton, to a huge contract of 13 years worth $325 million. Stanton is one of the best home run hitters in all of baseball and was the best player on his previous team, the Miami Marlins. The acquisition of Stanton gives the Yankees batting lineup a huge boost, and the combination of Stanton and last year’s rookie sensation, Aaron Judge, makes New York destined for many home runs this season. The Yankees are looking to make a deep run in October to make up for last season where they lost in the American League Championship to last year’s World Series victor, the Houston Astros.
Another big move in the baseball world during the offseason was by the Los Angeles Angels, who signed Japanese superstar Shohei Ohtani. The MLB has limits on how much the young Japanese player can earn, stating that he can not make more than $545,000 for the next three years and a bonus is limited to $3.5 million. Ohtani is one of the most heavily scouted baseball prospects ever due to his ability to pitch and reach speeds of triple digits, hit home runs, and play the field. The Angels will definitely be able to put the versatile athlete to use and improve their lineup that already has arguably the best player in baseball, Mike Trout. Los Angeles is looking to do a lot better from last season when they did not even make the playoffs.
Everybody has their own opinion of who will be World Series Champions this year. Some feel that a team from the National League will be champions this year. Like Junior Darren Cleary, who said, “The Dodgers will win the World Series this year because they have a great hitting lineup as well as a very strong pitching rotation.” The Los Angeles Dodgers have ace pitcher Clayton Kershaw who has been lights out over the past couple season. They also have some really good hitters in Corey Seager and Cody Bellinger who both had great seasons last year. The Dodgers have all the makings of a great team and definitely will be a contender this year.
Others have differing opinions about who will be champions this year, like those who believe the American League will bring home the World Series. Senior Jordan Taylor feels this way saying, “The Yankees will win the World Series this year because of their addition of Stanton and because of how close they got last year.” It seems that New York is always in the playoffs because of their consistency and rich history of winning championships.
In conclusion, fans are in for a treat this MLB season because of all the competition ahead. Teams will be doing all they can to reach the playoffs and players will be doing all they can to win personal awards. Time will tell who will have success this season and who will come up short.