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MLB Bold Predictions 2024

Last Updated: Mar 28, 2023

Four of The Game Day’s MLB writers made their MLB predictions earlier this offseason for the World Series, divisions, and MLB awards.

Now, MLB writers Matt Williams, Frank Ammirante, Pat Pickens, and Scott Engel make their bold predictions for the upcoming season.

Read their 2023 bold predictions below, including some surprise playoff teams and standout performers.

MLB Bold Prediction of the Day

Read below to find out why one of our MLB analysts believes that the Arizona Diamondbacks might surprise this season.

MLB Team Bold Predictions 2024

Los Angeles Angels Win AL West

The Angels did a great job filling some holes this off-season. They bolstered their lineup with the additions of Brandon Drury and Hunter Renfroe.

Veteran Tyler Anderson will help provide stability to the starting rotation.

We could even see Carlos Estévez emerge as a dependable closer. However, the Astros are vulnerable with injuries right now, so look out for Mike Trout and company.

Frank Ammirante

Arizona Diamondbacks Make the Playoffs

After a dismal 2021 season, the Diamondbacks posted a win increase of 22 games last season en route to a 74-88 record.

However, they did so without the services of a healthy Ketel Marte and a full-season of NL Rookie of the Year candidate Corbin Carroll.

Arizona has an exciting outfield led by Carroll, Jake McCarthy, and Alek Thomas, in addition to an underrated lineup consisting of breakout first baseman Christian Walker, Lourdes Gurriel Jr., Josh Rojas, and catcher Gabriel Moreno.

In addition, the Diamondbacks have Zac Gallen to anchor a rotation that, in addition to Merrill Kelly, could be in for a surge of talented prospects such as Brandon Pfaadt, Drey Jameson, and Ryne Nelson.

There are three Wild Card spots available. So if the Phillies tumble without Rhys Hoskins and Bryce Harper, and the Brewers offense fails to support Corbin Burnes and Brandon Woodruff, it’s possible that Arizona could back their way into the postseason.

— Matt Williams

Astros Will Not Win the AL West

I picked Houston to win the sixth division title in seven seasons, but there are suddenly huge question marks surrounding the Astros given Jose Altuve‘s broken hand sustained in the World Baseball Classic.

Couple that with Justin Verlander‘s departure to the Mets, and the Mariners’ potential leap, and you have a team that could be playing in the wild-card series in October.

— Pat Pickens

A Sub .500 Team Will Make The Playoffs

The Phillies were the last team in last year with 87 wins, and given the volume of super-teams in the National League and how each loaded up even further in the off-season, there could be as many as four 100-win teams in the postseason from the NL.

But six teams from each league still need to get in, which means a low-80-win team could be the No. 6 seed. It would be historic, but not stunning, to see the No. 6 seed get in at 80-82 since baseball is the only of the four major team sports to not have a sub-.500 team in the playoffs.

— Pat Pickens

Check out our full MLB pennant previews:


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MLB Hitter Bold Predictions 2024

Ronald Acuña Jr. Steals 50+ Bases

The pitch clock and larger bases will increase steals throughout the league this season. Acuña’s career-high is 37 steals, and he stole 29 bases in only 533 plate appearances last season.

That’s a pace of 32 steals in 600 plate appearances. While 50 is a high bar to clear, Acuña has the tools to hit this number.

— Frank Ammirante

Kris Bryant hits 40 Home Runs

After signing with the Colorado Rockies last offseason, injuries limited Bryant to just 42 games during his first year at Coors Field.

However, the former MVP looked solid during his time on the field, slashing .306/376/.475 with five home runs and 14 RBI.

There is little to no pressure on Bryant on a Rockies team with no postseason expectations, which could open up a stress-free power bonanza this summer.

Look for some eye-opening home splits in 2023.

— Matt Williams

Pete Alonso Hits 55+ Home Runs

Alonso’s career-high in home runs is 53, set in his rookie season. The Mets’ slugger has put up a .240+ ISO each of the following seasons.

He’s also improved his strikeout rate, trimming it from 25.5% (2020) to 18.7% last year.

Alonso is the rare power hitter who can hit 40-plus homers while striking out less than 20%. Look for a career year in 2023.

— Frank Ammirante

J.D. Martinez Leads the NL in RBIs

Martinez gets a significant upgrade in team context with the move to the Dodgers.

There’s a chance that he’ll be hitting cleanup behind Mookie Betts, Freddie Freeman, and Max Muncy or Will Smith. There will be several RBI opportunities for a veteran who has been a major contributor in that category throughout his career (130 RBI in 2018).

— Frank Ammirante

Francisco Lindor Wins NL MVP

The Mets are determined as an organization and a team to succeed in a championship quest.

Lindor, who led all shortstops in fWAR last season, will take over as an offensive and team leader. Meanwhile, Max Scherzer and Justin Verlander confirm that the Mets will be the best in a loaded NL East.

— Scott Engel


Read our full 2023 MVP predictions


MLB Pitcher Bold Predictions 2024

Hunter Greene Leads NL in Strikeouts

After a scintillating rookie season, Hunter Greene may be ready to put MLB on notice in 2023.

Last year, the Reds right-hander posted 39 pitches over 100 mph in a single game against the Los Angeles Dodgers while posting a 0.78 ERA and 14.5 K/9 over a four-start stretch in the second half.

Once Greene started elevating his fastball, it was curtains for the opposition.

— Matt Williams

Shohei Ohtani Wins AL Cy Young

Ohtani has become the perennial heavy favorite for AL MVP, but I’m betting on him getting some different hardware this year.

The Angels’ superstar took another step as a pitcher last year, posting career-highs in SIERA (2.73) and K-BB% (26.5%). He racked up 219 strikeouts in 166 innings, and we could see more volume during his contract year this season.

— Frank Ammirante

Emmanuel Clase Leads AL in Blown Saves

Clase had a historic season as Cleveland’s closer last season, on the heels of an other-worldly 2021, but for some, repeating those years is hard to do. One need only look at Jordan Romano‘s exceptional 2021, which was followed up by a six-blown-save season in 2022, as proof that bullpen success is year to year.

The Guardians will likely be playing a number of really close games again this season. Would it stun anyone to see Clase blow some of the ones he locked down last year?

It wouldn’t surprise me.

— Pat Pickens

George Kirby Will Win the AL Cy Young

Kirby had a 24.5 K percentage last year, and that is going to rise. He features six pitches, and his four-seamer had an xBA of .208 last season.

This is the breakout season where it all comes together.

— Scott Engel


See our full 2023 Cy Young predictions


MLB Rookie Bold Predictions 2024

Esteury Ruiz Steals 50+ Bases

If you know nothing else about this 24-year-old outfielder, know this: Esteury Ruiz stole 85 bases over 114 games in the minor leagues last season.

Ruiz has legit 80-grade speed, and he is not afraid to put it on full display.

Add in larger bases and a limit to pickoff attempts, and you could see some fireworks on the basepaths in Northern California.

— Matt Williams


Explore our full 2023 Rookie of the Year predictions

Author

Matt Williams

Matt Williams is the Lead MLB Editor for The Game Day, formerly of The Athletic and NBC Sports. Matt is the former host of the Turn Two Podcast and champion of both Tout Wars and the Kings Classic fantasy expert leagues. He has been nominated for an FSWA award and is known for his analytical breakdown threads on Twitter.

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