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View Poll Results: Who will win the NL East?
Atlanta Braves 5 71.43%
Philadelphia Phillies 0 0%
New York Mets 2 28.57%
Montreal Expos 0 0%
Florida Marlins 0 0%
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Old 03-18-2002, 06:36 PM   #1
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Default [MLB Preview] NL East

Since we just have about 1.8 weeks left until the season begins, I'm going to post the NL Division threads right now, or else we'd run out of time.

Who do you think will finish top in the NL East out of Atlanta, Philly, New York, Montreal, and Florida?

Be sure to check out Peter Friberg's NL East preview, featuring in depth analysis and team-by-team breakdowns.

Last edited by Marc; 03-18-2002 at 09:25 PM.
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Old 03-18-2002, 07:06 PM   #2
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Well, if my answer isn't obvious enough!

My theory is that the Braves won the division last year. The Mets and Braves both improved, so the Braves are still the team to beat. And I have questions about that Mets pitching staff and their fragile health as a whole team.

Florida is still a year or two away if they can find another bat. And Philadelphia has some young players on the horizon, just not as talent packed as Florida, and they won't be any better than they were last year.

And the Expos. Enough said.
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Old 03-18-2002, 09:07 PM   #3
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I agree with Brandon here on all counts. The Braves picking up Shef gives Chipper a bit of protection in the line-up. Furcal and Giles give them a good double-play combo and Jones is still there in CF to take runs away from the opposition. It might have been nice to have picked up a 1B, but they have Helms nearly ready to play. Pitching is solid as ever with Maddux, Glavine and Millwood giving them a great start to every series. Smoltz is learning to close and is becoming one of the better ones in the NL.
The Mets will have a great offense and their defense is improved with the additions of Alomar, Cedeno and Vaughn (yes he can play D), but their pitching will be the big question mark.
Philly has some great young players and their pitching is good, but they lack experience and depth.
The Marlins are very talented and have a chance to surprise teams.
Montreal is Montreal. They have little chance to win anything and Mr. Selig would be quite upset if they do so.
The NL East is a tough division and should go right down to the wire again.
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Old 03-18-2002, 09:39 PM   #4
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Catman... Did you say "improved" w/ Vaughn and Cedeno? Alomar yes. And yes you're right he can play defense, but not as well as it was played in Shea last year. And Rodger is known for being a bad defensive player dispite his speed...
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Old 03-19-2002, 12:07 AM   #5
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I went with the Atlanta Braves. Since they acquired Gary Sheffield they now have the best outfield in all of baseball. The only reason they won't win the NL East is if their starting pitching falters. Greg Maddux has problems pitching past August and Glavine is one year older. Kevin Millwood is iffy. Jason Marquis could develop into a good pitcher and Albie Lopez has a lot to prove.
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Old 03-19-2002, 12:37 AM   #6
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What happened to the NL Central thread?
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Old 03-19-2002, 01:06 AM   #7
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This, like the other two NL divisions, will be a tough one. The Braves and Mets both look strong, there's some great talent down their in Florida, the Phills are gonna be dangerous and the Expos will surprise everybody, their not as bad as people think.

Lets start with Atlanta. There's definatley gonna be some dingers hit down there in the dirty south. I do agree with Bama, they will have the best outfield in baseball. Two 40-home run guys, and a thirty- home run threat who has the potential to be a multiple MVP. And they'll all knock in over 100 runs. They added Vinny Castilla, a veteren and leader who still has some gas left in the tank. Rafael Furcal should be a .300 hitter, Javy Lopez will ive em' at least 20 HR's and Marcus Giles is a solid defensive player who is still learning with the bat. So we know the offense is not a problem, it's the pitching that's a concern. They don't have to worry about Maddux and Glavine, they'll do fine, they'll each win at least 16 games, Maddux 20, it's the other three I'm not so sure about. Kevin Millwood is done in my book, Albie Lopez has not proven he can be a winner and it's still up in the air if Jason Marquis can win in the MLB. They'll need Smoltzy to be healthy if they wanna really contend. All and allm it's a pretty good braves team. The only concern the Mets have is can their 3,4 and 5 starters hold up? Their bullpen is also a question and Armando Benitez is inconsistent.

I like the Mets to win the division, Florida will make a run at teh wild card but will be the first to drop out. It's still a question if Atlanta can beat out LA, SF, ST. Louis and Houston for teh wild card.
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Old 03-19-2002, 03:28 AM   #8
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Peter, I think that, when properly motivated, Cedeno can be a decent defensive outfielder. He will have something to play for in New York and should play well. Vaughn is not as bad a defensive 1B as many people think he is. He offers a big target and is quite agile for a man of his size. Plus, he won't have the errant arms throwing balls to him that he's had in the past.
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Old 03-19-2002, 09:25 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by The J
What happened to the NL Central thread?
I wanted to post them with longer intervals, not all at once. They go along with Peter's preview articles, so your post will be saved and opened back up each Monday until the end of the month.
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Old 03-19-2002, 09:28 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by The J
What happened to the NL Central thread?
Marc desided that he wanted to continue to staggar their release.
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Old 03-24-2002, 12:21 PM   #11
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Well, I see this as a two-team race between the Braves and Mets. There is a slight chance one of those falls from their throne and possibly the Phils could surprise, but besides that, the lowly Expos and Marlins are destined for the cellar. This division is really a tale of two good teams, an average one, and two poor ones.
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Old 03-24-2002, 12:59 PM   #12
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Catman, I don't argue with, in fact I agree with you when you say that Cedeno can be "decent" in LF. But in your first comment you said, "defense is improved with the additions ... Cedeno."

Cedeno and Burnitz will not form the bookends to a good outfield defense. But fortunately for the Mets and their fans, and despite what people say, pitching and offense not "pitching and defense" wins championships. Defense just helps.

So the Mets do have a chance, I just don't think Cedeno was brought to Flushing for his glove-work. For that matter, Vaughn, Burnitz, and even Alomar weren't brought in to reduce team errors, they were brought in to score runs. And they'll be an improvement over last year's Mets offense, the question, is will it be enough.

In my book, no, it won't... But as you said (I think it was you) in another thread, "that's why they play the games..."
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Old 03-24-2002, 01:31 PM   #13
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No one's mentioned this yet -- here's a link to SC's Preview on the NL East.
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Old 03-24-2002, 02:16 PM   #14
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Actually, Lee, it was mentioned in the first post of this thread. It is listed as your post, but I belive Marc edited it and put the link to Peter's preview.
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