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2014 MLB Rankings from Baseball Babble

As we are set to start the 2014 MLB season we did a poll at Baseball Babble among our contributors to do an official pre-season 2014 MLB ranking. It is always a fun exercise to try to predict what might happen before the season begins. We had 6 contributors give their predictions, as well I used Fangraphs team Projections as a 7th vote and I have totaled each teams score in the 3rd column.

 

1 Cardinals 15 Defending NL Champs are the best run organization from top to bottom.  They earned the clear #1 spot with only 15 total points & 3/7 first place votes.
2 Dodgers 20 Most Complete team on paper with an ownership that will not shy away from adding payroll at the deadline. They were an easy NL West pick in a competitive division.
3 Tigers 29 The Tigers made some changes this offseason but still are the clear favorite in the AL Central. Despite their division they never seem to dominate but playing the Twins & White Sox always helps.
4 Nationals 29 Most disappointing team in the MLB in 2013, we are picking them for a big rebound in 2014. They had a nice offseason with the Dough Fister steal.
5 Red Sox 46 WS Champs could be really, really good or drop off a cliff. They got ranks between 2-14 as its hard to know exactly how good they are; there is an element of this team thats hard to fully trust.
6 Rays 50 By not trading David Price, they return with what may be the best rotation in AL. The Rays are always sneaky good and that Joe Maddon might have cut a deal with the baseball gods. If only fans would show up to watch this great team.
7 Athletics 59 The Athletics are a risky pick with some of their recent injuries but along with the Rangers its a beat up division right now.
8 Braves 60 The Braves looked to be right at the top of the MLB but a series of recent injuries might be hard to overcome.
9 Angles 60 Mike Trout is locked up for the next 6 years and if Hamilton & Pujols can return to form the Angels will have a solid offense. However the pitching is still weak though the Angels could surprise.
10 Rangers 74 It will be interesting to see how Prince Fielder does in the Texas heat in July and August. Recent injuries have piled up on what looked to be a promising starting rotation.
11 Giants 77 Tim Hudson will be a stabilizing influence in the rotation, but ultimately the success of this season will be tied to a return to form for Matt Cain and Tim Lincecum.
12 Pirates 87 The Pirates could be good again in 2014, they are a bit of a wildcard but some of our writers ranked them as high as 9th while others were more skeptical.
13 Yankees 95 The Yankees have potentially the worst infield in baseball after a massive offseason spending spree. Still their starting pitching could be great with the addition of Masahiro Tanaka
14 Diamondbacks 112 Mark Trumbo and Paul Goldschmidt might combine for over 75 HR. The pitching is underwhelming but Archie Bradley might almost be ready to step in and be a big contributor.
15 Reds 116 If Billy Hamilton can hit .250, he may end up with 100 steals. Lots of solid players but not quite complete right now.
16 Blue Jays 119 The Blue Jays had the highest variation in our rankings from 10-26 showing just how many ways 2014 could go for the Blue Jays. They might just surprise or land in the AL East cellar yet again.
17 Orioles 119 Late offseason moves (Cruz and Jimenez) could help make the Orioles relevant again but their pitching might not be good enough in the AL East.
18 Indians 120 Its a little confusing what exactly is going on in Cleveland after a solid 2013. Tough to call the AL Central but the Indians could again find their way to the postseason or buried in irrelevance.
19 Royals 120 Kansas City has promise and a balanced team going into 2014, in a weak division this might be the year they return to the postseason.
20 Padres 125 Could be the best team made up of guys you have never heard of lost in a competitive division.
21 Mariners 128 Cano can thank Jay-Z for the extra month of vacation each year in October. Adding Cano was a huge add for the Mariners but the build is not yet complete and they face a tough go with 3 solid teams ahead of them.
22 Brewers 136 What will we see from Ryan Braun in 2014? Better yet Lyle Overbay made the team at 37!
23 Rockies 157 Pitching is probably a year away.  Look for Cuddyer to have the single biggest drop off in production in MLB from 2013-2014
24 Phillies 164 Aged, injury prone team, could be better than expected thanks to a solid rotation of Lee, Hamels and Burnett.
25 Mets 176 A transition season without Matt Harvey could go better than expected if we see improvement from Zack Wheeler, Ike Davis and Travis d’Arnaud.
26 White Sox 183 The White Sox are going to be a bad team but have to like the re-build and international signing of Abreu.
27 Twins 185 The Twins have some amazing prospects coming up but right now they are a bad team after a strange offseason which saw them spend on marginal players for little reason.
28 Marlins 190 The Marlins have received some praise from National Sports writers for their recent trades and rebuild. Jose Fernandez is a dream on an interesting team that could move up a few spots with some luck and development.
29 Cubs 192 What can you really say about the Cubs? Maybe Jeff Samardzija finds a new home he has a solid start to 2014 or the Cubs lower their asking price. 
30 Astros 210 $5 for anyone who can name the 25 man roster. The Astros are not playing around on this rebuild and could find anther 100 loss season in 2014 but they have a beautiful farm system in the making.