Box-Toppers predicts Dodgers as 2013 champs

2013 PICKS  
1*Blue Jays*Tigers*Angels
3YankeesWhite SoxAthletics
4Red SoxIndiansMariners
* Division winner, **Wild card
ALCS: Blue Jays over Tigers
NLCS: Dodgers over Reds
World Series: Dodgers over Blue Jays

Box-Toppers predicts the Los Angeles Dodgers as 2013 Major League Baseball champions, defeating the Toronto Blue Jays in the World Series.

These predictions are based on Box-Toppers point totals of each individual player on their 2013 teams. So for example, Zack Greinke took his 12.7 Box-Toppers points he earned as a Brewer and an Angel in 2012 and brought them to the Dodgers for 2013, helping push his new team to win the Box-Toppers prediction, for what it’s worth.

What is the prediction worth? Well, in 2009, I correctly and pre-seasonally predicted the Yankees over the Phillies in the World Series. But to be fair, so did just about everyone else.

Sometimes my picks (I hesitate to even call them “my” picks, since I base them entirely on statistics) are a little off the mark. For example, in 2012, Box-Toppers picked the Phillies over the Angels in the World Series. Both teams finished third in their division and did not even qualify for the playoffs. Granted, the Phillies and the Angels SHOULD have been in the playoffs and the World Series in 2012 based on their Box-Toppers results in 2011 and recent previous seasons. The Phillies had strong pitching, the Angels picked up Albert Pujols and C.J. Wilson. But neither team performed up to expectations in 2012.

And since my picks are based entirely on past statistics, it doesn’t account for players who are young prospects and expected to perform well. For example, in 2012, it didn’t foresee the rise of rookie sensation Mike Trout of the Angels, who scored 11 Box-Toppers points in 2012. Had I anticipated his totals, I probably would have picked the Angels over the Phillies in the World Series—and been just as wrong.

Here are an overview of my picks:

Here are the divisional winners in the American League:

  • East: Toronto
  • Central: Detroit
  • West: Anaheim
  • The two wild cards: Baltimore and Kansas City

Here are the divisional winners in the National League:

  • East: Washington
  • Central: Cincinnati
  • West: Los Angeles
  • The two wild cards: Atlanta and Arizona

So, Box-Toppers predicts that for the first time since 1993, neither the Yankees nor the Red Sox will appear in the postseason. Both teams will finish behind the resurgent Blue Jays and the Orioles, who also finished as a wild card in 2012.

And yes, Box-Toppers does actually predict the Kansas City Royals will make the playoffs for the first time since 1985. They’ve picked up pitchers Ervin Santana from the Angels and James Shields from the Rays, picking up enough Box-Toppers points to earn the second wild card.

Toronto will beat the Detroit Tigers for the American League pennant.

Only two National League teams won’t return to the playoffs in 2013: Wild-card St. Louis replaced by wild-card Arizona Diamondbacks. And defending champs San Francisco will finish third in the west, with the Dodgers winning the division.

Los Angeles will beat the Cincinnati Reds for the National League pennant.

In 2012, the Dodgers made a lot of seemingly great mid-season trades, picking up a lot of talent as the Magic Johnson-inspired new ownership group planted its flag. The Dodgers picked up players such as Josh Beckett, Adrian Gonzalez and Carl Crawford from the Red Sox, Hanley Ramirez from the Marlins, and Joe Blanton and Shane Victorino from the Phillies. And when they arrived in Los Angeles, Box-Toppers automatically gave the points these players had accumulated with their previous teams to the Dodgers. However, none of these players lived up to their previous potential, scoring only 6 Box-Toppers points combined after they became Dodgers. And though the 2012 Dodgers were out of the playoff picture, their combined team Box-Toppers point total was by far the highest of any team, mostly because of what the players on the team had done in 2012 BEFORE they became Dodgers.

So again, looking at the numbers after the Dodgers made their mid-season trades, they were the strongest team in baseball and should have run away with the World Series in 2012. But in reality, they weren’t even close.

But the off-season addition of Zack Greinke, the continuing dominance of pitcher Clayton Kershaw and the mid-season additions of 2012 have them topping Box-Toppers in 2013. If they can avoid the late-season slump they had in 2012 and live up to their potential for 2013, the Dodgers will win the World Series.