The 2019 MLB All Star break has come and gone. Each team has gotten their much needed rest and are ready to make a push for the playoffs with the hopes of playing in the Fall Classic. Major shifts in each division, massive trades, and heartbreaking losses will all occur with the regular season dwindling down. Here are some of my predictions for the second half of the 2019 MLB season.
Mets will trade both Zach Wheeler and Noah Syndergaard?: With very minimal chances to reach the playoffs, it may finally be time for the Mets to unload their young pitching rotation. Both Syndergaard and Wheeler have been mentioned as potential trade targets for several teams. Wheeler has drawn interest for most of the season from the Red Sox and Yankees. Syndergaard has been linked to the Astros and Brewers. With the demand for a starting pitcher so high, this may be the perfect time for the Mets to ship guys like this to other teams. I predict that the Mets will trade Wheeler to the Yankees for a middle tier prospect. Wheeler is a free agent at the end of the year and arguably in his prime years. The Mets asking price for Syndergaard may be too high for teams. However, if he were to get dealt by July 31st, I believe Houston will be the landing spot. They have a top 10 farm system and it may require two of their prospects to acquire "Thor".
Bellinger will dethrone Yelich as NL MVP: The race for National League MVP is neck and neck between Christian Yelich and Cody Bellinger. Most experts predict that Yelich will repeat, but I believe that Bellinger will take home the regular season hardware. Bellinger leads all players in Wins Above Replacement (WAR), Total Bases, Runs Scored, Times on Base, and Adjusted On Base % + Slugging %. He is second in Batting Average, Home Runs, RBI, On Base %, and Slugging %. He is ranked third in Hits, and Base on Balls. Yelich may lead Bellinger in certain categories, but Bellinger is also the star player on the MLB best 60 win Dodgers. Yelich has led the Brewers to a 47-44 start fighting for a division title. Bellinger and Yelich are pretty even when it comes to statistical categories, but Bellinger has the best WAR and has led his team to a much better season than Yelich has so far.
Mike Trout will unanimously win AL MVP: As close as the NL MVP race is, the American League MVP race is as good as wrapped up. Mike Trout leads the league in Home Runs, RBI, On Base %, Slugging %, WAR, Base on Balls, Runs Created, and Offensive Win %. Per usual, Trout has dominated the MLB without receiving all of the notoriety that Yelich and Bellinger have received. The only race Trout has to worry about is a race for the second Wild Card spot.
The Red Sox will miss out on the Playoffs: The defending World Series champs find themselves in an unfamiliar scenario, two games out of the second Wild Card spot. Boston has gotten their bats to wake up, but their pitching, both rotation and bullpen, have been their demise to a subpar season. Boston won't catch the Yankees for the division, and the way that the Rays and Indians have been playing of late, it's going to be tough to dethrone either team for a Wild Card spot. After a historically dominate season in 2018, Boston very well may miss out on the opportunity to be one of the few teams to repeat as World Series champions.
The Dodgers will get their revenge against Houston: For Los Angeles, third time is indeed a charm. With a combination of a deadly lineup and stellar pitching rotation, the Dodgers will return to the Fall Classic for the third straight year. They will face a familiar foe in the Houston Astros, but this time, they will get their revenge and finally bring a championship back to the city of angels. Holding an MLB best 60-32 record, they will get back both Corey Seager and A.J. Pollock from injury and add them to an already dangerous lineup that has a great compliment of power and speed. They potentially have both the NL MVP and Cy Young on their roster as well, along with a very deep lineup and bench. They may add an arm of two to the bullpen by the trade deadline, but this team looks poised to make a deep run in the playoffs with a championship on their minds.