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30 bold predictions for the 2020 MLB season

A bold prediction for each MLB team (plus a few bonuses).

Getty Images/Pete Rogers Illustrations

We made it! The MLB season is set for Opening Day 2.0 this week! Which means we get a fantasy baseball season. This will be a crazy one. Only 60 games means we will get some wild sample size madness.

Now, a bold predictions article is often just a sleepers, breakouts, and busts article in disguise. Some of these picks will come as no surprise considering how high or low I am on a particular player. Be sure to sound off in the comments and even throw in a few bold predictions of your own if you feel the need to. Let's get bold!

  1. For the first time in his career, yes really, Madison Bumgarner has an ERA over 4.00. In fact, he is the worst fantasy option among the five starters in the Diamondbacks current rotation. Both Ketel Marte and Starling Marte finish as top 20 hitters.
  2. Marcell Ozuna wins the NL MVP, hitting .295 with 18 home runs, 55 RBI, and a 1.015 OPS. Mark Melancon leads the league in saves. Dansby Swanson is a top 15 shortstop.
  3. I tried, Baltimore, I really did. But, no Orioles players finish inside the top 300 in 2020. The team is a mess and they lose 50 games.
  4. Rafael Devers finishes as the top third baseman in fantasy. J.D. Martinez is a top 5 outfielder but loses OF eligibility and heads into 2021 as DH only.
  5. Craig Kimbrel loses the closer's job and Rowan Wick leads the Cubs in saves. Ian Happ has 10 home runs, five steals, and a .900 OPS en route to becoming a top 150 overall fantasy option.
  6. The White Sox are a fantasy gold mine with a top five offense in the AL. Luis Robert wins AL Rookie of the Year with a 11-homer, 16-steal season. Dylan Cease breaks out with a 3.20 ERA and 12.1 K/9 over 10 starts. Yasmani Grandal helps the pitching staff combine for a 4.00 ERA. The Sox make the playoffs.
  7. Eugenio Suarez leads the NL with 22 home runs. Nick Castellanos makes everyone who drafted him happy by turning in a top 50 hitter season.
  8. Both Shane Bieber and Mike Clevinger finish with an ERA under 2.75 and a K/9 over 11.0, making them each top five fantasy starting pitchers. Bieber wins the AL Cy Young. Franmil Reyes hits 19 home runs, (including the longest of the year at 510 feet) but with a .230 batting average.
  9. Nolan Arenado hits .250 with a .735 OPS and just five home runs. Wade Davis is terrible but never loses the closer's role. The Rockies finish at the bottom of the NL West.
  10. Cameron Maybin is top five in the AL with 12 steals. Matthew Boyd has a 4.10 ERA and 11.7 K/9 but gets just two wins. Miguel Cabrera is traded to the Yankees.
  11. The Astros are big, stinky cheaters but they are still really freaking good at baseball. Carlos Correa has a Gleyber Torres like season and becomes a top 50 pick in 2021. Kyle Tucker finally gets playing time and is the Astros’ best outfielder over the final 30 games. Tucker is a top 15 outfield option in 2021.
  12. Both Adalberto Mondesi and Jorge Soler hit under .240 and are major busts for their fantasy owners. Whit Merrifield steals just four bases.
  13. Tommy La Stella, who is currently projected to bat leadoff for the Angels, is a top 10 second baseman for fantasy and leads the league in runs scored.
  14. Walker Buehler is NOT a top 30 starter due to lack of innings pitched. Alex Wood, Ross Stripling, and Dustin May all finish inside the top 50 at SP. Justin Turner is the NL batting champ.
  15. Jon Berti leads the NL in steals. Ryne Stanek is the best Marlins reliever but never records a save.
  16. Zero Brewers starting pitchers finish inside the top 150 overall. Corey Knebel gets five times as many saves as Josh Hader.
  17. Nelson Cruz wins AL MVP, slashing .325/.400/.625 with 23 home runs. Mitch Garver is the No. 1 catcher in fantasy. Yes, even better than J.T. Realmuto.
  18. Jacob deGrom wins his third straight NL Cy Young. J.D. Davis hits .300 with a .900 OPS and 12 home runs. Davis is a top 30 outfielder and top 15 third baseman.
  19. Gio Urshela is a top 10 third baseman. James Paxton is a top five finisher in AL Cy Young voting. Aaron Judge plays all 60 games.
  20. Matt Olson hits 26 home runs and ties for the league lead. Mark Canha is a top 25 outfielder. The Athletics pitchers lead the league in strikeouts.
  21. Both Jean Segura and Didi Gregorius are top 15 fantasy shortstops. Vince Velasquez is finally a top 50 starting pitcher.
  22. Both Joe Musgrove and Mitch Keller finish as top 40 starting pitchers. Josh Bell is traded to the Rangers and finishes the year as a top three first baseman.
  23. MacKenzie Gore wins the NL Rookie of the Year with a 3.05 ERA and 12.3 K/9 over 10 starts. Manny Machado finishes outside the top 20 at both shortstop and third base. Trent Grisham is a top 50 outfielder.
  24. Mike Yastrzemski is a top 200 overall player. Jeff Samardzija has an ERA under 3.50 and a WHIP under 1.10 but fails to record a win. No Giants reliever gets more than four saves.
  25. Seattle has nothing to play for so Mallex Smith steals 35 bases just for fun. Tom Murphy is a better fantasy catcher than Sean Murphy. Jarred Kelenic, sadly, doesn't debut in 2020.
  26. Jack Flaherty finishes second in NL Cy Young voting. Dakota Hudson is a top 50 starting pitcher. Kolten Wong is a top 15 second baseman. Dylan Carlson is a top 40 outfielder. Paul Goldschmidt finishes outside the top 30 at first base.
  27. Nick Anderson leads the AL in saves and is the No. 1 fantasy closer. Brendan McKay makes at least eight starts and finishes with an ERA of 3.50 and K/9 of 10.7. McKay is a top 40 SP for 2021 drafts.
  28. Joey Gallo hits 26 home runs to share the home run crown with the previously mentioned Matt Olson. Danny Santana is a top 75 hitter. Nick Solak is a top 100 hitter. Corey Kluber, Lance Lynn, and Mike Minor all finish as top 30 starting pitchers.
  29. Lourdes Gurriel Jr. is a better fantasy option than Bo Bichette, Vladimir Guerrero Jr., and Cavan Biggio. Nate Pearson challenges for AL Rookie of the Year honors with a 3.43 ERA and 48 strikeouts over 41 innings. Matt Shoemaker is a top 50 starting pitcher.
  30. Carter Kieboom is a top 20 third baseman and a top 15 shortstop. Daniel Hudson finishes with 10 saves. Sean Doolittle gets nine saves. Patrick Corbin is the top fantasy SP for the Nationals.

Bonus bold!

  1. No pitcher records a complete game.
  2. However, there will be three combined no-hitters.
  3. No qualified hitters will have a batting average over .350.
  4. Finally, the Rays beat the Nationals in the World Series.

Let's play ball!