MLB Spring Training Preview: American League Central

Written by: Coleman Bahr – Staff Writer (@ColemanBahr)

The Cleveland Indians are fresh off their first American League pennant since 1997, and they will look to build off their momentum from 2016. The Detroit Tigers are heading into rebuilding mode, but it looks like they are going to give it one more go before they officially begin the rebuilding process. Meanwhile, the Kansas City Royals look to get back into the playoffs for the third time in the past four seasons. Let’s take an inside look at what to expect from the American League Central in 2017.


| Cleveland Indians

2016 Record: 94-67

2017 Projected: 98-64

The Cleveland Indians have improved upon their 2016 squad with the addition of Edwin Encarnacion from the Toronto Blue Jays, topping off the most fearsome lineup in the American League. They also retained all of their key pitching options, which will supplement a loaded lineup. The Indians will be one of the top teams in the American League, and they will be aiming for a second straight American League pennant.


| Kansas City Royals

2016 Record: 81-81

2017 Projected: 89-73

I really like what the Kansas City Royals did in the offseason. They bolstered their starting rotation, adding Jason Hammel, Nathan Karns, and Travis Wood, and they all should make an immediate impact. On the offensive side, they added Brandon Moss and Jorge Soler to complete their lineup, and I think this team can make a run if all the pieces come together. While it will be difficult to knock off the Cleveland Indians, a wild card spot is certainly not out of reach.


| Detroit Tigers

2016 Record: 86-75

2017 Projected: 82-80

The Detroit Tigers will throw out basically the same lineup as they did in 2016. It looks like they are trying to make one last push before entering rebuilding mode, after only signing one free agent in the offseason, and making two minor trades. While their lineup can prove to be lethal at times, the starting pitching lacks the firepower to make a serious run in the postseason. It will be a challenge to beat out the Indians for the division title, so they will have to settle for a wild card spot at best, but I do not expect them to even make it to the playoffs.


| Chicago White Sox

2016 Record: 78-84

2017 Projected: 70-92

The Chicago White Sox are officially rebuilding after dealing out Chris Sale and Adam Eaton in the offseason for top prospects. The starting pitching will be interesting to watch after acquiring a few young prospects who simply throw gas, for lack of a better word. However, they don’t have a true contact hitter, and I would not be surprised to see any hitters above .300 for this team.


| Minnesota Twins

2016 Record: 59-103

2017 Record: 62-100

The Minnesota Twins set the tone for their season in the first week of spring after losing to the Tampa Bay Rays 19-0. This team is still a few years away from being competitive as they are waiting for some of their top prospects to develop. At the end of the day, they still have some fun players to watch, and the offense will show flashes of excellence, although, the pitching will be among the league’s worst.


0 comments on “MLB Spring Training Preview: American League Central

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: