Spring training is upon us which means it’s time to start seeing how teams will fare in the regular season. We’ll be ranking all 30 teams and looking at one thing that each team’s fans can get excited about for this upcoming season.
#30: Oakland Athletics
The only reason the Oakland Athletics are even able to be on this list is because the MLB is not like the Premier League and the bottom team does not get relegated. If that was the case, the Athletics would have zero chance of staying. They cleared house and didn’t get anything in return. The whole organization is in a state of chaos with not much hope for the future and have already thrown in the towel before this season even begins.
What Athletics Fans Can Get Excited About: The franchise might be moving cities in the near future as their stadium lease expires in 2024. A new city could bring new life to the laughing stock of the MLB. .
#29: Washington Nationals
After the Athletics, the Nationals are arguably the next worst team in the MLB. They have one of the weakest pitching rotations in the league which is led by Patrick Corbin who went a whopping 6-19 last season with an insane 6.31 ERA. This team is a figment of the World Series Team that won just a couple seasons ago.
What Nationals Fans Can Get Excited About: Mackenzie Gore & CJ Abrams were acquired in the Juan Soto trade and both could end up becoming starters for the Nationals this season.
#28: Cincinnati Reds
Similar to the Oakland Athletics, the Cincinnati Reds have traded away a lot of their staple pieces without much of an explanation on why. The Reds don’t seem to keep players around for very long and move them once they become good with the exclusion of Joey Votto. Hopefully the Reds don’t make the same mistake with some of their young talent like Nick Lodolo & Hunter Greene.
What Reds Fans Can Get Excited About: The debut of Elly De La Cruz.
#27: Colorado Rockies
Being in a division with two top contenders like the San Diego Padres & Los Angeles Dodgers just is a tough draw, but when you have no chance of even putting up a fight against them, you know you’re in for a long year which is the case for the Colorado Rockies.
What Rockies Fans Can Get Excited About: They get to play the Padres on opening weekend without Fernando Tatis Jr.
#26: Pittsburgh Pirates
The Pirates got McCutchen added back to the roster, but it’s been 10 years since his NL MVP form. The Pirates don’t have anyone on their roster now who is even remotely in contention for any award. Oneil Cruz and Ke’Bryan Hayes might get there someday, but there is a long way to go.
What Pirates Fans Can Get Excited About: Andrew McCutchen is back. He might not be the superstar he was 10 years ago, but he was a fan favorite that should bring some positivity in what’s set to be another rough season.
#25: Kansas City Royals
One team that has flown under the radar this offseason is the Kansas City Royals. The Royals brought on a new head of baseball operations and manager in JJ Picollo and Matt Quatraro. It’ll be up to them to establish the future of this team which has a solid young core to build around in Bobby Witt Jr. and MJ Melendez. Hopefully, with this new management, they can establish these 2 as the future of the franchise.
What Royals Fans Can Get Excited About: Bobby Witt Jr. is turning into a superstar.
#24: Detroit Tigers
One of our personal biggest disappointments from the 2022 MLB season was the Detroit Tigers. The Tigers have been bad for the last 10 years, but with their stronger farm system, we thought 2022 was going to be a year on the up & up but instead they regressed from their 77 win 2021 campaign. The Tigers have a lot of young players on the roster and hopefully can get something going to hit 80 wins this year.
What Tigers Fans Can Get Excited About: Getting Casey Mize back from Tommy John Surgery should help bring a strong arm back into the rotation. Hopefully, Mize can return in the first half of the season as he last pitched in the majors in April of 2022.
#23: San Francisco Giants
The San Francisco Giants made an aggressive attempt at getting Aaron Judge as the all time AL home run in a season leader was weighing his decisions in the off season. The Giants failed to get the hometown kid as Aaron Judge decided to stay with the Yankees. After that failed attempt, the Giants made a move to get Carlos Correa which was also a swing & a miss as that fell through in a matter of days. The Giants still have a lot of gaps to fill and this offseason was one to forget.
What Giants Fans Can Get Excited About: Beer Prices at Oracle Park are going down so now Giants Fans have one thing they can all get together on.
#22: Boston Red Sox
The Boston Red Sox went from World Series Champions in 2018 to the bottom dweller of the AL East. The Red Sox have even been surpassed by the Baltimore Orioles and Toronto Blue Jays who are making this division a very competitive one outside of the Red Sox. 3 teams from this division have made the playoffs and the Red Sox are nowhere near a spot of contention right now for a spot.
What Red Sox Fans Can Get Excited About: Dustin Pedroia has made an appearance at Spring Training to hype up the players. This was a success and we think a position on their coaching staff is coming in the near future.
#21: Arizona Diamondbacks
The Arizona Diamondbacks are one of our top sleeper teams of the 2023 season. We’re expecting them to exceed expectations and be within a few games of a wild card spot. The Diamondbacks pitching seems to have made a big turnaround last year and we expect that to improve more. Zac Gallen was 5th in CY Young voting and could make a good argument to win it this year.
What Diamondback Fans Can Get Excited About: The future in Arizona looks very promising with 3 players ranked in the top 15 prospects and young players on the team like Zac Gallen who are making a name for themselves amongst the league’s top talent.
#20: Texas Rangers
The Texas Rangers made a huge move in the off-season by signing the 4 time All Star & 2 time CY Young award winner in Jacob DeGrom to a 5 year-$185 million deal. DeGrom is the best pitcher the Rangers organization has seen since the days of Nolan Ryan. DeGrom is still at the top of his game and should help turn the 68 win team in 2022 to an 80 win team in 2023.
What Rangers Fans Can Get Excited About: Two words, Jacob DeGrom.
#19: Los Angeles Angels
The Los Angeles Angels have two of the best players in the entire league, yet fail to make the playoffs season after season. Mike Trout is going to go down as one of the top baseball players of all time despite his lack of postseason success. Trout has been consistent for his entire career. The other highly valuable player is Shohei Ohtani who is the best two way player we’ve seen since arguably Babe Ruth. Shohei Ohtani has revolutionized the game of baseball over the last several years which was a big reason why he was the 2021 AL MVP. Will this year be the year that Ohtani & Trout can do enough to carry the Angels into the playoffs?
What Angels Fans Can Get Excited About: Anything and everything about Shohei Ohtani. He is the most exciting player in all of baseball to watch whether he’s dominating at the plate or drilling home run balls, it’s exhilarating to watch Sho-time in action.
#18: Miami Marlins
Our biggest surprise of the 2023 season is going to be the Miami Marlins. The Marlins haven’t broken 80 wins in a season since 2010 but they are destined to do it in 2023. The Marlins finished with less than 70 wins last year, but had the NL CY Young award winner in Sandy Alcantara. The Marlins have some very talented players blossoming like Alacantra, Chisholm Jr. and Sanchez which should make for an interesting 2023 season.
What Marlins Fans Can Get Excited About: Sandy Alcantara has a legitimate chance of repeating as the NL CY Young award winner.
#17: Chicago Cubs
The Chicago Cubs landed two of the top free agents in Jameson Taillon and Dansby Swanson. Swanson will be with the Cubs for the long term as they locked him down for a 7 year deal. A signing that went under the radar was Cody Bellinger who showed promise in Los Angeles, but ultimately it wasn’t the best fit for him. Hopefully Bellinger can get his career back on track in the windy city. The Cubs are looking to get back on track themselves and break away from the middle of the pack which they seem to be stuck in.
What Cubs Fans Can Get Excited About: Having Dansby Swanson in the long term plans is something for Cubs fans to be hopeful of making a deep playoff run over the next several years.
#16: Baltimore Orioles
The Baltimore Orioles finished the 2022 season with their first winning record since the 2016 season in which they had Manny Machado at his prime. The Orioles were only 3 games out from making the playoffs last year and could very well make it this year. The Orioles have a young roster with lots of talent and are going to be dangerous within the next couple years.
What Orioles Fans Can Get Excited About: 3 Prospects in the Top 15 Best Prospects. With two of them making our top 5 list in Grayson Rodriguez and Gunnar Henderson.
#15: Minnesota Twins
The Minnesota Twins had arguably the biggest whirlwind of an offseason of any team. With the Carlos Correa saga lasting for weeks, the Twins fans went through a roller coaster of emotions. The Twins are now in a much better spot than where they were and are going to make it tough for Cleveland to repeat as AL Central Champions.
What Twins Fans Can Get Excited About: Somehow, someway, the Minnesota Twins were able to keep Carlos Correa.
#14: Chicago White Sox
Right ahead of the Minnesota Twins in what’s going to be a more competitive AL Central is the Chicago White Sox. The ceiling for the White Sox is as high as World Series Champions but it’s as low as a 70 win team. Predicting what the White Sox will do is one of the toughest tasks as the range of talent they have is wide. We believe this year they’ll do better than last year’s total and fight for one of the last wild card spots.
What White Sox Fans Can Get Excited About: Having bragging rights over who’s the best team in the windy city.
#13: Milwaukee Brewers
The Brewers are similar to the White Sox in that they have a very high ceiling but haven’t capitalized on it in recent years. The Brewers have the 2021 CY Young winner in Corbin Burnes and have a former NL MVP winner in Christian Yelich. After an underwhelming 2022 campaign, the Brewers should be one of the top comeback stories of the 2023 season.
What Brewers Fans Can Get Excited About: The state of Wisconsin plans to give the Brewers nearly $300 million to repair the stadium and have the Brewers extend their contract through 2043.
#12: Cleveland Guardians
The Guardians exceeded expectations in 2022 on their way to winning the AL Central. The Guardians have a young roster that is led by Jose Ramirez that should repeat as AL Central champions in 2023. The next step for the Guardians is trying to compete with the other AL teams in the playoffs.
What Guardians Fans Can Get Excited About: MLB assuring that Guardians games will still get aired on TV.
#11: Seattle Mariners
The longest playoff drought between the big 4 sports leagues came to an end as the Seattle Mariners made the playoffs for the first time since 2001. A key reason that the Mariners were able to be so successful in 2022 was in large part due to the AL rookie of the year Julio Rodriguez. J-Rod was incredible and earned himself a massive contract. J-Rod and company will have some tough competition against the AL East teams in fighting for the final wild card spot.
What Mariners Fans Can Get Excited About: Not having the longest playoff drought in sports anymore.
#10: St. Louis Cardinals
The 2022 NL Central Champions should have no problem repeating as their division winner in 2023. The Cardinals had a 7 game lead last year over the Cubs and that should remain steady despite the Cubs off-season acquisitions. The Cardinals have the best offensive unit led by 2 of the best players over the last decade in Nolan Arenado and Paul Goldschmidt with Goldschmidt winning NL MVP in 2022. The Cardinals added Contreras at catcher which brings more power to their already strong offense.
What Cardinals Fans Can Get Excited About: Watching the final days of Adam Wainwright in the MLB. If Wainwright can keep his arm in check, it’ll make for an amazing way to end a career of a Cardinals great.
#9: Tampa Bay Rays
The Tampa Bay Rays are one of the youngest teams in the MLB with a strong farm system. One of the older players on the Rays, starting pitcher Tyler Glasnow is going to miss 6 to 8 weeks to start the season, which is a big setback. Thankfully, their schedule is on lighter end for the first month of the season until they face the Astros in late April. The Rays have a promising pitching rotation of Shane Baz, Shane McClanahan, & Taj Bradley who should help offset the Glasnow loss. The biggest area the Rays need to work on this year to take their game to the next level is their offense which should hopefully improve with another year under everyone’s belt.
What Rays Fans Can Get Excited About: Wander Franco. The once #1 prospect in baseball, Wander Franco hasn’t been the superstar that MLB fans have been hoping he would be as he’s had to live in J-Rod’s shadow this past year. Franco has been better than the average player and now with his injuries fully recovered, he should be on his way to a monster season for the Rays.
#8: Los Angeles Dodgers
The Los Angeles Dodgers have an important year ahead of them as their best players don’t have all the time in the world to stay playing at the level they are playing. Kershaw, Betts, Muncy, Freeman, & Syndergaard are all 30+ and are still competing well but this might be one of their last years to prove they still have something left in them to compete for a ring. For a couple of their younger players, they’re struggling with injuries such as Gavin Lux who will miss the entirety of the 2023 season. The Dodgers are nearing an all or nothing point here soon.
What Dodgers Fans Can Get Excited About: The Los Angeles Dodgers are retiring fan-favorite Fernando Valenzuela’s jersey number this season.
#7: Toronto Blue Jays
The Toronto Blue Jays are sitting with the Dodgers on two teams who are very good but sitting outside of the upper echelon of the top teams in the MLB. It feels like the 6 teams ahead are in a category of their own and the group the Blue Jays are in are trying to sneak into one of those spots. The Blue Jays did a lot this offseason but also nothing at the same time. They parted ways with players like Teoscar Hernandez and Lourdes Gurriel Jr. but made up for it with arrivals of Kevin Kiermaier and Daulton Varsho. They didn’t win or lose those additions, but the rest of their team led by future all stars like Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Bo Bichette are hopeful to take their game to the next level.
What Blue Jays Fans Can Get Excited About: Vlad Jr. & Bo Bichette are the future of the franchise and the Blue Jays need to do everything in their power to keep those two happy. Good years for the Blue Jays are on the horizon.
#6: Philadelphia Phillies
The 2022 World Series runner-ups are hopeful for a return to the championship but it won’t be an easy path to get there as they have teams like the Braves, Mets, Padres, and Dodgers to pass to get there. The Phillies can make it again in 2023 if the team can survive through the first chunk of the season without star Bryce Harper. Harper will miss time with Tommy John surgery, but once he’s back, this franchise is one of the best in the league. The Phillies need to do enough to make it in the playoffs and not rush Harper’s timeline and let him fully heal to be at his best in the playoffs.
What Phillies Fans Can Get Excited About: Pitching prospect Andrew Painter has been throwing absolute heaters in spring training and been getting a lot of attention from across the league as a result.
#5: Atlanta Braves
The Atlanta Braves are looking to get back to the World Series after winning it all in 2021 but losing in the NLDS in 2022. The Braves roster is just as talented to win the World Series again in 2023. It hurts losing Dansby Swanson, but where the Braves truly thrive is on their pitching. They have Spencer Strider, Max Fried, & Ian Anderson who are all playing exceptionally well. Strider was 2nd in voting for NL rookie of the year, the only player who edged him out last year was his teammate on the other side of the field in Michael Harris. The Braves are talented all around and will be a contender for several seasons to come.
What Braves Fans Can Get Excited About: Spencer Strider was 2nd in voting for rookie of the year last year without playing a full season. Strider is now a starter and we can only imagine what he’ll be able to accomplish this year.
#4: New York Mets
Not many teams can lose a player of Jacob DeGrom’s caliber and still be ranked within the top 5 teams to start the season, but the New York Mets can. DeGrom followed the money, but the Mets quickly swooped in and grabbed Justin Verlander who is a little bit older but still playing at a phenomenal level winning another CY Young award in 2022. Verlander will make a very strong 1-2 punch with Max Scherzer as the 2 are both future Hall of Famers. The Mets are in a tough division, but we expect them to come out on top in the NL East and pull off another 100 win season.
What Mets Fans Can Get Excited About: Getting to watch 2 future Hall of Fmers as your #1 & #2 pitchers is something many fans can only dream of.
#3: San Diego Padres
The San Diego Padres have some of the best players in the MLB with Juan Soto, Manny Machado, and Fernando Tatis Jr, but the talent doesn’t stop there. They have a very strong pitching rotation with Joe Musgrove, Blake Snell, and Yu Darvish with the latter 2 having revived their careers in San Diego. The Padres are going all in to win now and they certainly have the talent to make a run at it.
What Padres Fans Can Get Excited About: Counting down the days until Fernando Tatis Jr returns from suspension.
#2: New York Yankees
The New York Yankees accomplished their #1 goal of the offseason and that was keeping Aaron Judge in New York. The all time AL Home Run leader has been a focal point on the Yankees offense. The offense that already has been so strong is set to get even better this year as they anticipate the arrival of top 5 prospect Anthony Volpe to debut. Once Volpe is in, this offense will be tough to beat.
What Yankees Fans Can Get Excited About: Aaron Judge will be a Yankee for life.
#1: Houston Astros
The Astros are the team to beat in the AL. They’ve made the World Series 2 years in a row, 3 of the last 6, and won it all last year. The Astros are trying to become the first team since the New York Yankees in 2000 to win the World Series back to back. A lot of pressure is on the Astros to succeed and make it back to the championship. The Astros enter the season as the favorites to win it all and for good reason.
What Astros Fans Can Get Excited About: The chance to win back to back World Series.
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