2016 World Series Contenders

Boston+Red+Sox+starting+pitcher+David+Price+%2824%29+throws+warm+up+pitches+before+the+first+inning+of+a+spring+training+baseball+game+against+the+New+York+Yankees+on+Tuesday%2C+March+15%2C+2016%2C+in+Fort+Myers%2C+Fla.+%28AP+Photo%2FTony+Gutierrez%29

Boston Red Sox starting pitcher David Price (24) throws warm up pitches before the first inning of a spring training baseball game against the New York Yankees on Tuesday, March 15, 2016, in Fort Myers, Fla. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)

Max Wice’s list of likely World Series Winners

Boston Red Sox

The Boston Red Sox may be coming off one of the worst seasons they’ve had in the past decade, but they have patched up their roster’s weaknesses. In 2015, despite their lack of success, the Red Sox had 5 players finish with a batting average over .280 with shortstop Xander Bogaerts finishing top 5 in the MLB. Last year, pitching hurt the Sox more than anything and that’s what they tried to fix this offseason. After obtaining Cy Young winner David Price, relievers like Carson Smith, and closer Craig Kimbrel, the Boston Red Sox seem to be in a good position to pitch well and then back it up with strong hitting. If David Price can be the ace the Sox have been looking for, then they are surely World Series contenders.

 

San Francisco Giants

It is an even year after all. The Giants have won the World Series 3 times in the last 6 years, proving that they are never out of contention. The Giants established strong batting in their last World Series appearance against the Royals with hitters like outfielder Hunter Pence and catcher Buster Posey. Posey and second baseman Joe Panik finished their 2015 season hitting well above .300, showing the NL that they are a threat. Then again, the Giants aren’t complete without pitching. Madison Bumgarner led the Giants to several victories in both 2015 and 2016 with an ERA of about 3 and an astonishing 18 win season. San Francisco also cemented their starting rotation by adding Johnny Cueto and Jeff Samardzija, who will greatly help San Francisco in the 2016 season.

 

Chicago Cubs

Could this be the year they break the curse? I say, “Definitely!” The Cubs haven’t won the World Series since 1908 and this could be their year. Last year, the Cubs finished their season as Division Champs but fell short against the Mets in the NLCS. The Cubs’ pitching was a dominant force in the National League in 2015, with Jake Arrieta tearing it up on the mound. Arrieta had an ERA of 1.77 and racked up  22 wins in 2015. To solidify the rotation the Cubs have pitchers like John Lackey and Jon Lester who can get some wins of their own. The only concern for the Cubs is hitting. The Cubs finished last season with all of their hitters slashing below .300; first baseman Anthony Rizzo averaged .278, good for the team’s best batting average. Luckily, Chicago added the #1 free agent of the 2015-2016 offseason, Jason Heyward. This pickup will add a much-needed power boost to the team’s lineup, and will help the Cubs contend for a World Series title.