Three members of Covers’ editorial team – namely Andrew Avery, Andrew Caley and Justin Hartling – continue their tour around the bigs to take a stab at where oddsmakers will open win totals for each club.
The next stop is the National League East.
Click here for the AL East, AL Central, AL West.
National League East
2014 record: 96-66
2014 win total: 90.5
Andrew Avery: Potentially the best team in the bigs. The starting rotation is ridiculous and the lineup is looking good too. Books have them as the World Series faves for a reason. The team is loaded. I think oddsmakers will tab them with 92.5 wins. The only real question for the Nats is whether or not Anthony Rendon is the best third baseman in the show or not.
Justin Hartling: If I am to guess right now, this is the best team in baseball this year. A rotation that already ranked first in the majors last season gets Max Scherzer and the team ranked in the top 10 in almost every offensive category. Part of me loves saying this knowing that this team used to be the Montreal Expos too. 94.5 is high, but I think a safe bet to catch money.
Andrew Caley: I hate agreeing with you guys, but as long as they don’t move anyone in the rotation, this should be the best team in baseball this season. Doug Fister is currently slated as their fifth starter. He went 16-6 with a 2.41 ERA and a WHIP of 1.08. I think a team with 96 wins last year got better this offseason. Prediction: 95.
New York Mets
2014 record: 79-83
2014 win total: 75
Justin Hartling: There may be no rotation I’m more interested in seeing than the Mets. If you remove Bartolo ‘the most memed player in the bigs’ Colon, the average age of the rotation is 25. And those pitchers combined for a 3.01 ERA and 730 K’s. I’m not expecting a huge jump in wins though thanks to the rest of the lineup. Total should float around 78.5.
Andrew Avery: Totally agree about the Mets’ rotation. Looking forward to see if Noah Syndergaard makes his mark this season and, of course, the return of Matt Harvey. They did win 79 ball games last season so I don’t think there’s any reason they won’t get that 78.5 number. Looking forward to watching this team.
Andrew Caley: Don’t hate Bartolo Colon memes! They are the lifeblood of the internet! Seriously though, the Michael Cuddyer signing is uninspiring, but like you have mentioned, the rotation is full of promise as long as Matt Harvey can return to form. I still think this team is a year away. Prediction: 78.5.
2014 record: 79-83
2014 win total: 86
Andrew Caley: It could be another down year for the Braves, with question marks in the rotation and the Jason Heyward trade still puzzles me. I like the Nick Markakis signing once he gets fully healthy, but they still trot B.J. Upton out there every day. Prediction: 77.
Andrew Avery: The Braves did some house cleaning in the offseason but yeah, could be a long season in Atlanta. They do boast some good ball players – it’s always fun to watch Andrelton Simmons play SS – but this team feels destined for fourth in the division. I like where Caley is with 77, but I suspect oddsmakers to post 75.5 wins for this team.
Justin Hartling: I’ll be honest, I am an Atlanta Braves fan and I am far from excited for the season. The rotation could be fantastic with Julio Teheran and Shelby Miller forming a potentially elite top-2. The infield is young, but has some high points with Freddie Freeman and the aforementioned Simmons. But we lost the best defensive outfielder in baseball when Heyward left and we get to watch Upton strikeout on 91 percent of his plate appearances. The total number will be around 74.5, but a more interesting number is Upton’s season average: Over/Under .200.
2014 record: 77-85
2014 win total: 70.5
Andrew Avery: I like this team and I think they may very well turn some heads and open some eyes. They’ll miss the great Jose Fernandez but their rotation without him is still decent. Giancarlo “Mike” Stanton got paid in the offseason, so will his production to take a hit? I hope not. Would love to see Marcell Ozuna progress as well. A respectable 77 wins last season and I feel like oddsmakers might give them a bit of an uptick. How about 80.5 wins?
Justin Hartling: The Marlins of 2015 remind me of the Marlins of 2003. No I don’t mean they are going to win the World Series. A young team entering the prime of their careers with a marquee slugger in Giancarlo Stanton. The pitching staff should be better than expected, with youngsters Jarred Cosart and Henderson Alvarez looking like good pitchers. I think oddsmakers can get away with a lower number because the Marlins are far from a team in the public eye, I expect a total of 78.5.
Andrew Caley: I would feel more confident about this team if Jose Fernandez were available all season, that being said there is finally reason for optimism in Miami. They boast a young lineup and rotation with some veterans sprinkled in and of course the $300 million man Giancarlo Stanton. Prediction: 80.5.
2014 record: 73-89
2014 win total: 74.5
Andrew Caley: This is the team that just refuses to accept the fact they need to go into full rebuild mode and it is hurting their team. They desperately need to unload Ryan Howard with his team-drowning contract and get what they can for Cole Hamels. It could be a long year in Philly. Prediction: 72.5.
Andrew Avery: Yeah this team will be firmly planted in the NL East basement once again. At the time of writing, Cole Hamels is still a member of the Phils, but is surely on his way out. On the bright side, we might be able to see Maikel Franco who did hit well in AAA last season. That said, I think oddsmakers will hit ’em with 71.5 wins this season.
Justin Hartling: The average age of the Phillies’ projected starting lineup is 30 and the average age of their rotation is 31. Not bad if this was a team that was remotely competitive last season, but this team has won 46 percent of their games over the past three seasons. Unless you can find your own Tardis and travel back to 2005, this team will be hard to watch. After notching 73 wins the past two season, the number should be 72.5.
What do you think? Leave your thoughts on win totals for the NL East clubs in the comments section.