With Opening Day just hours away, prediction season is in full swing across the interwebs. The experts have weighed in on where they see the Orioles finishing. Below is a collection of those predictions.
Though Sports Illustrated’s predictions won’t be released until tomorrow, a few writers have gotten previews of their previews including MASN’s Roch Kubatko. In a tweet posted on Tuesday, Kubatko posted that SI predicts that Baltimore will finish with a 78-84 record, fourth in the American League East. We’ll have to wait until Thursday to get the order of the East.
Matt Vensel of the Baltimore Sun also got a sneak peak of SI’s 2011 MLB preview. Vensel writes that SI has the Red Sox beating the Giants in the World Series and confirmed Kubatko’s tweet of the 78-84 record for the O’s. “It wouldn’t be a winning season, but it’s a 12-game improvement,” Vensel wrote. He added that staff writer Ben Reiter gave a “best case scenario” of Baltimore winning 91 games. “Buck Showalter’s aggression-instilling magic persists, and the O’s ride a top-five offense and an improving young staff to a 25-win improvement — though 91 is only good for third in the AL East,” Reiter wrote according to Vensel’s blog post.
Yahoo’s Big League Stew previewed the A.L. East last Friday and wasn’t as optimistic as Reiter. Both David Brown and ‘Duk at BLS have the O’s finishing fifth in the Division. ‘Duk thinks the Red Sox will win the East, followed by the Yankees, Rays, Jays and Orioles respectively. Brown thinks the Yankees will win it, followed by the Rays, Red Sox, Jays and Orioles. ‘Duk did predict that Zach Britton will with A.L. East rookie of the year.
Baseball Prospectus has the Orioles finishing just at .500 with 81 wins and 81 losses. They predict that the Red Sox win the East followed by New York, Tampa Bay, Baltimore and Toronto.
Ken Rosenthal at FoxSports.com doesn’t give a record, but has Baltimore finishing ahead of Toronto and behind the Red Sox, Yankees and Rays. ” Young starting pitching, injuries to older players could sink them lower,” Rosenthal wrote. He also thinks that the Blue Jays have lost too much talent from last year’s club to finish ahead of the Orioles in 2011.
Full predictions are expected to be released later today and tomorrow, but that’s an early round up of predictions for the O’s this season.
With all that said, what’s your prediction for the Orioles in 2011?