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Double G Sports MLB Analyst Jared Smith Offers Second Half Predictions

We’ve reached the midway point of the MLB season and with all 30 teams getting ready to begin up the second half on Friday here are my five bold predictions for the rest of the year and into October:


(AP Photo)

(AP Photo)


  1. Both the Mets AND Yankees will miss the playoffs. The latter seems to be almost a certainty at this point, regardless of what the aging Bombers did to the first-place Indians last weekend. The Mets also seem to be leaking oil in all the wrong places. Including the middle of their already depleted lineup and at the top of their battered rotation. If Logan Verrett has to be anything more then a 5th starter for the remainder of the season, the Mets have issues. Not to mention keeping Syndergaard, Cespedes and Matz healthy for the entire second half at this point is a must for the team even having a chance at playing October baseball. All 3 have questions surrounding their durability. I’m selling on the Mets and Yankees in the 2nd half.
  1. The Marlins will make the playoffs as the 2nd wild card. Nobody is talking about the fish, but they should be. They have arguably the best combo of two young players in the game today (Jose Fernandez, Giancarlo Stanton), a young and emerging lineup with Marcell Ozuna and Christian Yelich providing power and speed, a veteran guy at the back end of the bullpen who has pitched in the postseason for three different teams including in the World Series for the Tigers back in 2006 (Fernando Rodney), they will be getting Dee Gordon back very soon from a PED suspension, Don Mattingly has transformed the culture in the dugout and Barry Bonds is having a noticeable impact as the hitting coach. Lookout for the Marlins, they will contend in the 2nd half.
  1. The Giants will NOT win the World Series. I know it’s an even year, and I know they have the best 1-2 punch in baseball at the top of their rotation right now in Madison Bumgarner and Johnny Cueto. But they also have a very unreliable bullpen and are missing key pieces to their lineup (Joe Panik, Hunter Pence). Granted they could improve both at the trade deadline, but taking into account the way this team is currently constructed, I’m selling in the 2nd half.
  1. Neither will the Texas Rangers. Texas has the same issues the Giants do, but none of the postseason experience. They’ve been a very impressive team over the first 3 months of the season, but I just don’t see them carrying it through to October. If the World Series began today, Cole Hamels would be the team’s number one starter. Sorry it’s not 2009, just not buying it. I love their lineup, and I love what Ian Desmond has done for their team, same goes for Prince Fielder and Adrian Beltre. But all three of those guys have a track record for October failures. Fielder went 9-for-52 (.173) during the Tigers run to the World Series in 2012 and 9-for-40 (.225) the following year when Detroit lost to the Red Sox in the ALCS. He doesn’t have an October swing, and the Rangers have the second-worst bullpen ERA in baseball (5.10). That’s not how you win games in October. The Royals proved that to us. In the post-steroid era, you make it to the fall classic by being a good at situational hitting and protecting leads on the back end, neither of which Texas does well. Sell the Rangers.
  1. The Cleveland Indians WILL win the 2016 World Series. Or as I like to call them, the Cleveland WINdians. This team has been beautifully constructed by GM Mike Chernoff, who is in his second season on the job. I love what this team has done with their lineup. Got a chance to watch them closely this past weekend when the Yankees were in town, and despite the results, I think this team is ripe for a deep October run. There is no weak spot in their lineup, and the parts are very interchangeable. Their leadoff man Carlos Santana could be a cleanup hitter in some lineups. Francisco Lindor is one of the best young players in baseball that nobody is talking about. Jason Kipnis and Rajai Davis are steady hands both at the plate and in the field. The pitching staff has some of the best stuff in baseball including the guys at the top (Kluber, Carrasco, Salazar) and their bullpen is very consistent. They remind me a lot of the Royals from last year. There isn’t a “star” on their team, but all 25 guys on their roster can put up “star” numbers on any given night. Then throw in the most underrated manager in baseball (Terry Francona) and you’ve got a recipe for success. Yes they need to add a power bat at the deadline (maybe Carlos Beltran), but for now I think their team is ready. Buy now on the Indians.

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Jared is a Sports Gambling Columnist for

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