Major League Baseball 2017 Season Predictions

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Don’t count out the Chicago Cubs this season! (Photo Credit: Rolling Stone/Getty Images)

By Matt Noonan (@MattNoonan11) 

In honor of a brand new Major League Baseball (MLB) season, here are a few thoughts and predictions, including what team will celebrate a World Series victory.

Care to share your thoughts on this season’s Major League Baseball season? Send me a tweet at @MattNoonan11 or an email to NoontimeSports@gmail.com

American League Predictions

American League East

Toronto Blue Jays

American League Central

Cleveland Indians

American League West 

Houston Astros

American League Wild Card

Boston Red Sox

American League Wild Card

Texas Rangers

National League Predictions 

National League East 

Washington Nationals

National League Central 

Chicago Cubs

National League West

Los Angeles Dodgers

National League Wild Card

San Francisco Giants

National League Wild Card

Pittsburgh Pirates

 

American League & National League Champion Predictions

American League Champion

Cleveland Indians

National League Champion

Chicago Cubs

 

World Series Champion Predictions

World Series Champion

Chicago Cubs

Sunday Column: Why We Should All Root For Cleveland In The N.B.A. Finals

LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers are two wins away from winning the franchise's first N.B.A. Finals. (Photo Credit: Bleacher Report)
LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers are two wins away from winning the franchise’s first N.B.A. Finals. (Photo Credit: Bleacher Report)

By Matt Noonan 

The 2015 N.B.A. Finals have been a real treat.

Unlike past years that have pitted squads with championship resumes, this year’s finals features two teams representing cities desperate for hardware.

Cleveland hasn’t celebrated a championship since 1964, the year the Browns defeated the Baltimore Colts in the N.F.L. Championship.

Golden State – winners of the 1975 N.B.A. Finals – have come close to winning its fourth championship in franchise history, but have only appeared in the final round twice since defeating the Washington Bullets in four straight games.

Unlike Cleveland, Golden State, which plays its games in Oakland, has seen neighboring professional squads win titles. The Oakland Raiders and San Francisco 49ers have won Super Bowls since the 1970’s, while the Oakland A’s captured the 1988 World Series, sweeping the San Francisco Giants in four game. The Giants have won a trio of championships since 2010, including their franchise’s eighth World Series crown last fall.

The San Jose Sharks, however, are the lone Bay Area team without a championship. San Jose has appeared in the Western Conference Finals three times since the turn of the century, but suffered setbacks to the Calgary Flames (2004), Chicago Blackhawks (2010) and Vancouver Canucks (2011).

So, who needs this title more? The answer would be both Cleveland, right?

If Cleveland wins the title then it will probably call-off school, work and everything else the following day. Yet, if the series does go the distance, I guess school would be cancelled the following Monday, right?

The Bay Area has celebrated multiple championships. So, while Oakland and San Francisco would rejoice in the Warriors’ fourth franchise crown, it may not feel as special as Cleveland finally getting over the hump and winning a title.

Cleveland has seen its baseball team come close to winning a World Series title since capturing the 1948 World Series.

In 2013, the Indians attempted to extend its campaign to the round of eight, but lost to Tampa Bay in a play-in-game, 4-0. Cleveland concluded the game with nine hits – one more than the Rays – but could not muster a single run.

In 2007, the Indians fell to the Boston Red Sox – remember when they were good? – in the American League Championship Series and dropped a pair of American League Division Series in 2001 and 1999.

Cleveland did, however, appear in 1995 and 1997 World Series, but did not win.

The Indians saw its best chance to end the city’s championship drought in 1997 when they prolonged their championship series with Florida to seven games following a 4-1 victory in the sixth game. Yet, despite an early two-run lead in the final game of the Series, the Marlins rallied to even the game at 2-2 before plating the final run in the bottom of the 11th to win their first-ever crown.

As for the Cleveland Browns, they haven’t earned a postseason victory since 1989 after defeating Buffalo, 34-30. The Browns advanced to the Conference Championship following their win against the Bills, but fell to the Denver Broncos for the second time in three seasons by a score of 37-21.

Cleveland outscored the Broncos, 21-14, during the third stanza, but did not register a single point during the final 15 minutes. John Elway connected with Sammy Winder for a 39-yard touchdown strike, while David Treadwell kicked a pair of field goals during the final session to send the Broncos to the Super Bowl.

Since the turn of the century, the Browns have posted a pair of winning seasons, including a 9-7 mark during their 2002 campaign. Yet, similar to past years, the Browns fell in the playoffs, losing to rival Pittsburgh. Cleveland registered a 10-win season in 2007 – their most wins in a single-season since 1994 – but did not qualify for the postseason.

Let the debate rage on, who needs this championship? Cleveland or the Bay Area? I guess you would say, Cleveland, right?

Initially, I chose to Golden State to hoist the Larry O’Brien Championship Trophy, but after rattling off Cleveland’s frustrating postseason setbacks, I guess I have to root for the Cavaliers.

Enjoy the remainder of the N.B.A. Finals and consider rooting for Cleveland, so they can finally celebrate a championship for the first time since “Can’t Buy Me Love” by The Beatles was a chart topper.

Daily Noontime – November 8, 2011

The Chicago Bears defense held Michael Vick in check on Monday quite well!

It’s Tuesday, which means, we should all breakout into song and dance, right? OK – in all seriousness, here’s the latest edition of the Daily Noontime, enjoy! 

Headlines: 

* The Chicago Bears defense somehow slowed down Michael Vick en route a 30-24 victory against the Philadelphia Eagles on Monday.

* After his team’s fifth loss of the season, Eagles head coach Andy Reid explained why he elected to attempt a fake punt, which wasn’t successful.

* The Kansas City Royals acquired former San Francisco Giants left-hander Jonathan Sanchez in exchange for Melky Cabrera.

* Early Tuesday morning, sources confirmed that former boxer Joe Frazier passed away after his battle with lung cancer.

* Apparently Yahoo! Sports confirmed that the University of Notre Dame’s football program wants to change their helmets.

* In the Golf World — Tiger Wood‘s former caddy Steve Williams recently apologized for an inappropriate racial slur he said last week.

Games to Watch: 

* Dallas at Washington (NHL) – 7:00pm eastern 

* Minnesota at Calgary (NHL) – 9:30pm eastern 

Video of the Day: 

Listen to the fans in this video – did they care about that touchdown? 

Daily Noontime – September 5, 2011

Meriweather is no longer a New England Patriot, but instead, a Chicago Bear!

Happy Labor Day! We’re here to kick-off the final day of this awesome three-day weekend, so without further ado, here’s the headlines and news of the day, enjoy! 

Headlines: 

* The Chicago Bears made an interesting move on Sunday, as they acquired former New England Patriots safety Brandon Meriweather.

* Once again, the Boston Red Sox lost another series to a division leader, which isn’t a good sign. The Texas Rangers beat up the Sox on Sunday, which leaves some fans wondering, what’s going on with the “nation?”

* Well, the defending San Francisco Giants are in trouble, as yet again, they lost to the Arizona Diamondbacks on Sunday and now trail them by seven games in the standings.

* Apparently Aaron Rodgers‘ mustache gives him “extra” exposure, yet, why would the Green Bay Packers quarterback need it?

* Derek Jeter recoded 5 RBIs on Sunday, while CC Sabathia picked up his 19th win of the season against the Toronto Blue Jays.

* This past weekend, the NCAA struggled against Mother Nature, who caused quite a stir in South Bend, Indiana during Notre Dame’s home opener.

Games to Watch: 

* Baltimore at New York Yankees (MLB) – 1:05pm eastern 

* Boston at Toronto (MLB) – 1:07pm eastern 

* Texas at Tampa Bay (MLB) – 1:10pm eastern 

* Arizona at Colorado (MLB) – 3:10pm eastern 

* Miami at Maryland (NCAA Football) – 8:00pm eastern 

Video of the Day: 

Notre Dame got slammed this past Saturday by heavy rain, as well as a few delays too! 

Daily Noontime – August 22, 2011

Are you ready to watch Plaxico Burress lead the Jets to victory?

It’s a brand new week, which means, yes, it’s officially Monday! Howdy and welcome to yet another Daily Noontime! Here’s the headlines and news of the day, so enjoy, friends! 

Headlines: 

* The New York Jets played their second preseason game on Sunday, but also, they welcomed Plaxico Burress back to the gridiron, who made an immediate impact on the first team offense.

* The Dallas Cowboys defense didn’t look too impressive on Sunday, which is why defensive coordinator Rob Ryan took the blame for their first poor play against the San Diego Chargers. Doesn’t this remind you of former head coach, Wade Phillips?

* According to the Philadelphia Eagles defensive coordinator Juan Castillo, he expects his linebackers to be in prime shape and “ready to win the Super Bowl.”

* Apparently the Los Angles of Anaheim Angels dished out a great deal of money recently to sign Jered Weaver to a five-year, $85 million contract extension.

* Sadly, the defending World Series champion San Francisco Giants recently suffered a set back, as their closer, Brian Wilson was placed on the 15-day disable list with inflammation in his right elbow.

* Kyle Busch held onto earn his fourth win on Sunday at the Michigan International Speedway.

Games to Watch: 

* Detroit at Tampa Bay (MLB) – 7:10pm eastern

* Chicago Bears at New York “Football” Giants (NFL Preseason) – 8:00pm eastern 

* Boston at Texas (MLB) – 8:05pm eastern 

Video of the Day: 

Here’s a look at Plaxico’s first touchdown with the New York Jets!