The best baseball in the world adjusted its calendar due to the coronavirus, and now, it starts its activities in the second half of May.
Major League Baseball has also seen its 2020 schedule affected. / Photo: Pxhere
LatinamericanPost| Onofre Zambrano
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Leer en español: MLB 2020: Dodgers rival a vencer, White Sox revelación
As has happened with all the world sports events scheduled for this year 2020, the organization of the Major Leagues was forced to postpone the start of its calendar for the second half of May, delaying the traditional voice of playball for almost two months.
At LatinAmerican Post we offer a brief look at what this unusual season - if it is played - can bring with it, in which the Los Angeles Dodgers are emerging as the team to beat, while the Chicago White Sox seem to be the team that will improve the most in relation to the most recent season.
Everything indicates that the Yankees and the Dodgers are the candidates to face in the classic of autumn in October. Two franchises of great tradition that have only been in a World Series, in 1981, and there, the Californians prevailed in six games after losing the first two.
Why the Dodgers?
Seven consecutive victories in the National League West are no small feat, but there are no World Series rings yet in that span (they lost those of 2017 and 2018) and therefore, the LA Dodgers are coming together to earn their eighth pennant in a row, but above all, to win their first World Series since 1988.
Players that have been almost invincible in the west have reached a team that was already armored and had few weak flanks. They are Mookie Betts and David Price (former Boston Red Sox) and possibly Kris Bryant of the Chicago Cubs. Thus, the Dodgers have on their roster three winners of the Most Valuable Player award (Betts, Clayton Kershaw and Cody Bellinger) and two more who have earned the Cy Young award (Kershaw and Price) together with a very talented group led by Justin Turner.
The consensus is that Californians will again be the great contender in 2020. The projection indicates that they will be close to 100 wins in the regular round and with a 97% chance of advancing to the postseason.
And the rest?
We must not forget the current monarchs, the Washington Nationals, who are favorites to at least fight the flag of the Eastern Division, against the Philadelphia Phillies. The best-case scenario for them is for the trio of Max Scherzer-Stephen Strasburg and Patrick Corbin to propel them into their sixth postseason presence since 2012.
Will Harris, John Kieboom, Victor Robles and Juan José Soto are the interesting names that can contribute on offense after the hard loss of Anthony Rendón. The is appearing to be the evenest group in all of baseball, and also the most unpredictable with up to four teams with similar characteristics: San Luis Cardinals, Cincinnati Reds, Chicago Cubs and Milwaukee Brewers, in that order.
In the West, the analyzers bet on the San Diego Padres, as the team with more options to at least annoy the favorite Dodgers with the presence of Fernando Tatis and Eric Hosmer, two postseason veterans who undoubtedly place them as a candidate to beat the Dodgers.
After falling in the Championship Series against the Houston Astros (2017 and 2019), the Yankees opened the checkbook and gave their victimizer a hard blow, by removing the ace pitcher from their rotation, Gerrit Cole, who signed for nine years and $ 324 million dollars.
Cole's contract is currently the highest in history for a pitcher and gives more strength to a rotation that already had Luis Severino (he could miss much of 2020 due to injury), James Paxton, Masahiro Tanaka, JJ Happ, and as iconic hitters the fearsome duo of Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton, bulwarks of an offense that hit 306 home runs last season.
The Los Mulos bullpen will be led by Cuban closer Aroldis Chapman , who is among the best of both major leagues. The image that Houston left with the departure of Price and Betts, points to the New York squad as the great favorite on the new circuit.
The White Sox
Chicago accumulates 11 years without playing in the postseason. Today, they are close to ending that lousy streak by making ambitious moves during the offseason, which does not guarantee them anything, but gives them hope. The players they are looking for? Cuban Yasmani Grandal, Dallas Keuchel, and Dominican Edwin Encarnación, among others.
Cubans Yoan Moncada and Luis Robert, and MLB Pipeline's top 20 best prospect in all of baseball, Michael Kopech (who returns after a Tommy John operation), are the trump cards that must respond to help new acquisitions and achieve the campaign that many expect. Undoubtedly, talent and youth to spare for manager Rick Renteria.
Expert analysis suggests that the Toronto Blue Jays in the East, the Cleveland Indian in the center and the Astros and Anaheim Angels in the West are the other a priori favorite teams to keep at least one spot in the wild card for October.
Los #Yankees anunciaron hoy que enviaron al PD Brooks Kriske al equipo de Triple-A, PD Albert Abreu y el OF Estevan Florial enviados a Doble-A, PD Luis Gil y Luis Medina enviados a Clase-A Tampa. PD Domingo Acevedo y Alexander Vizcaíno reasignados al campamento de las menores.— Yankees de Nueva York (@LosYankeesPR) March 9, 2020
For now, Yankees legendary former third batter Derek Jeter will be the only Hall of Famer inductee in 2020. Curt Schilling and Larry Walker are the next most likely.
Finally, and depending on how the Major League Baseball (MLB) adjusts its calendar after the world quarantine due to the coronavirus, it is expected that official matches will be played in Mexico and Great Britain.