I’m not sure if there’s an official Spring Training Lull –it’s not the kind of thing people generally like to celebrate, anyway- but either way, we’re in it. We’re less than a fortnight away from Opening Day, and while there are a few clear questions marks (Hart and Marcum’s health, Braun’s bat) the lineup and rotation are pretty much set. As I’ve been a little too busy to write anything serious and well-researched lately, I decided to make a few off-the-cuff predictions for the upcoming season.
Incidentally, if more than five of these actually happen, I’m pretty sure that will prove that I have mutant abilities of some kind.
1. Nyjer Morgan will swear on television.
2. Nyjer Morgan will swear on national television.
3. Nyjer Morgan will swear in front of a child on national television.
4. Nyjer Morgan will swear at a child on national television, but in his defense, the kid will be wearing a Cardinals cap. And he will be Chris Carpenter’s son.
5. Zack Greinke will win a Cy Young award.
6. Someone else will win rob Zack Greinke of a Cy Young award.
7. Yovani Gallardo will win a Cy Young award.
8. Zack Greinke will rob Yovani Gallardo of a Cy Young award. Literally. He will break into Yovani’s home, drunk, pretending he’s just stopping by to say ‘Hey,’ then slip the award into his pants when no one is looking. Greinke will be found two days later, passed out in a ditch in Merril, mumbling something vague and threatening about Chris Carpenter and Greinke’s favorite WoW avatar, his arms wrapped protectively around the award.
9. Zack Greinke will give a press conference where he just stares and blinks in response to every question. More strangely, everyone will understand exactly what he means.
10. The Brewers will finally give away a Yovani Gallardo bobblehead, but it won’t have a chinstrap beard, and Yovani will demand a trade. Turns out he was a prima donna all along.
11. Mat Gamel will exceed his ZiPS projection of .264/.341/.433
12. Mat Gamel will fall short of his ZiPS projection of .264/.341/.433
13. Mat Gamel will exactly reproduce his ZiPS projection on purpose, because he’s some kind of madman genius.
14. Mat Gamel will gain one hundred pounds in an attempt to literally look more like Prince Fielder. When Roenicke explains that they just want him to be the best Mat Gamel he can be, Gamel will begrudgingly take off his afro wig, shave his full beard, and start eating meat again.
15. Instead of catching a slightly overthrown ball from Ramirez, Gamel will cover his face with his glove and crouch down in fear. After the ball sails into the Brewers dugout, he’ll run his hand through his hair and try to strike a cool pose, but absolutely no one will buy it.
16. Mat Gamel will hit more triples this year than Prince Fielder hit last year. That has to happen, right?
17. Marco Estrada will start more than three games.
18. Marco Estrada won’t start any games.
19. Manny Parra will steal Marco Estrada’s uniform to trick Roenicke into letting him start a game.
20. Bob Uecker will accidentally swear on air.
21. Bob Uecker will purposefully swear on air, and the FCC will just let it go, because you know, come on…
22. Someone will steal the Bob Uecker statue. It will turn up along the Milwaukee River, basically crushing the Fonz statue into bits.
23. Someone will steal the Bud Selig statue. It will turn up in front of Wrigley Field, twisted into an unspeakable pose.
24. Ryan Braun will repeat as NL MVP.
25. The Dodgers will win the West, and Matt Kemp will win the MVP -even though Ryan Braun will really deserve it- because the voters arbitrarily favor guys on teams that make the postseason. But the Brewers will also make the postseason, so basically everyone’s head will explode.
26. Aoki will play every outfield position at some point in the season.
27. Aoki will lead the team in getting-thrown-out-trying-to-stretch-a-double-into-a-triples (“GTOTTSADIATs”). Nyjer will be a close second.
28. I’m trying really hard not to make a Major League 2 joke here, but it kinda writes itself, so please just fill in the blanks for me. (Something about Aoki running into the center field wall going after a long fly, or whatever. You don’t need me for this.)
29. Logan Schaefer will technically play more innings in center than Carlos Gomez, Nyjer Morgan or Norichika Aoki, but only because the Brewers will adopt a controversial five outfielders/two infielders defensive scheme. Carlos Gomez will mainly run back and forth along the warning track, a position henceforth referred to as “the rabbit.”
30. None of these will happen. (Even the Gamel stuff. Which kind of sounds like a threat, but it’s not. I wish him the best in all his endeavors!)
If you’ve got more in this vein, please add them in the comments. Something about a Randy Wolf/Jonathan Lucroy Odd Couple sitcom, maybe?