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Early MLB playoff predictions

MLB playoff-clinching season is here. The Los Angeles Angels snagged a playoff spot Monday and are close to sealing the AL West. The Baltimore Orioles and Washington Nationals cemented their respective division titles Tuesday. Meanwhile, it appears the wild-card races are the most competitive, with each league seemingly embroiled in a three-way scrape for two spots. How will it all play out?

How will the Angels fare in the playoffs?

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    17%
  •  
    35%
  •  
    23%
  •  
    25%

Discuss (Total votes: 88,232)

  • How will the Nationals fare in the playoffs?

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      33%
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      39%
    •  
      17%
    •  
      11%

    Discuss (Total votes: 37,036)

  • How will the Orioles fare in the playoffs?

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      32%
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      43%
    •  
      11%
    •  
      14%

    Discuss (Total votes: 38,246)

  • Which of these teams will win the AL Central?

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      65%
    •  
      35%

    Discuss (Total votes: 11,510)

  • Which of these teams is most likely to miss the playoffs?

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      17%
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      62%
    •  
      21%

    Discuss (Total votes: 11,799)

  • Which of these teams is most likely to miss the playoffs?

    •  
      62%
    •  
      13%
    •  
      25%

    Discuss (Total votes: 11,064)

  • Which team will win the AL?

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      16%
    •  
      38%
    •  
      22%
    •  
      17%
    •  
      7%

    Discuss (Total votes: 11,394)

  • Which team will win the National League?

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      18%
    •  
      44%
    •  
      8%
    •  
      22%
    •  
      8%

    Discuss (Total votes: 11,131)

  • Which team will win the World Series?

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      21%
    •  
      25%
    •  
      8%
    •  
      15%
    •  
      31%

    Discuss (Total votes: 11,661)

Comment »

Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Royals in 1st; playoffs next?

Do not adjust your Internet settings. The Kansas City Royals really are in first place on Aug. 11, after beating the Oakland A's for their eighth straight win -- their 16th win in the past 19 games -- while the Detroit Tigers lost their third in a row. The Royals, in first at the latest point in a season since 2003, once again are aiming to end their nearly three-decades-long playoff drought. The Tigers, meanwhile, were eight games ahead of the Royals less than a month ago and saw their onetime ace leave after just one inning Monday. What will happen?

Will the Royals (64-53, 1/2 game up on Tigers in AL Central) make the playoffs?

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    33%
  •  
    48%
  •  
    19%

Discuss (Total votes: 165,047)

  • How worried should Tigers fans be about their team's recent struggles?

    •  
      55%
    •  
      41%
    •  
      4%

    Discuss (Total votes: 18,975)

  • Is Justin Verlander done as an elite pitcher?

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      57%
    •  
      43%

    Discuss (Total votes: 26,461)

  • Which is more surprising?

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      51%
    •  
      49%

    Discuss (Total votes: 17,849)

  • Which would be better for baseball?

    •  
      78%
    •  
      22%

    Discuss (Total votes: 39,525)

Comment »

Jim Rogash/Getty Images

Are Royals a sleeper in AL?

As pointed out on SweetSpot, the past five World Series winners missed the playoffs the previous season. One team dreaming of a sixth straight such occurrence: the Kansas City Royals. Of course, K.C. must get past division rivals Detroit and Cleveland first -- and MLB's longest postseason drought (the Royals last reached it in 1985). But with some savvy additions, many believe this could be the franchise's year. Is it?

  • How many games will the Royals (86-76 in 2013) win this season?

    •  
      16%
    •  
      43%
    •  
      41%

    Discuss (Total votes: 14,093)

  • Which team will finish with the better record?

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      32%
    •  
      68%

    Discuss (Total votes: 14,050)

  • Will the Royals make their first playoff appearance since 1985?

    •  
      42%
    •  
      58%

    Discuss (Total votes: 37,113)

  • Who is the Royals' best everyday player?

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      50%
    •  
      26%
    •  
      15%
    •  
      9%

    Discuss (Total votes: 12,610)

  • The Royals allowed the fewest runs in the AL in 2013. Where will they rank this season?

    •  
      7%
    •  
      38%
    •  
      40%
    •  
      15%

    Discuss (Total votes: 11,975)

  • Which team will win the AL Central?

    •  
      11%
    •  
      11%
    •  
      67%
    •  
      5%
    •  
      6%

    Discuss (Total votes: 36,008)

Comment »

The Pittsburgh Pirates won the 2013 headlines. The Boston Red Sox won the 2013 World Series. But neither -- at the moment -- figures to be among the biggest stories of 2014. Not with the AL West packed, Alex Rodriguez's appeal still up in the air and the new commissioner to be chosen -- among many other things. Check out Buster Olney's top 10 storylines for the new year Insider and rank them according to your interest level. Simply click on the images to submit your ballot!

More Top 10 Rank 'Em's: Lineups | Rotations | Bullpens

Top 2014 MLB Storylines

AL West race

AL West race

Will the A's repeat? Will the Rangers bounce back? Or will the Angels and Mariners have something to say about it?

A-Rod resolution

A-Rod resolution

Will his 211-game suspension be upheld?

Expanded replay

Expanded replay

How much will it change the game?

Jeter's future

Jeter's future

How much does he have left?

Kershaw, Scherzer

Kershaw, Scherzer

Will the Cy Young winners and free-agents-to-be stay in their respective cities?

Mattingly's job status

Mattingly's job status

Is Don Mattingly a Dodger for good?

Milestones

Milestones

Albert Pujols could reach 500 HR (he's at 492), 1,500 RBIs (1,498) and 1,500 runs (1,425). Alex Rodriguez is closing in on 3,000 hits (2,939) and 2,000 RBIs (1,969).

New MLBPA head

New MLBPA head

What will the future be like under new leader Tony Clark?

Selig's successor

Selig's successor

Is Rob Manfred the man?

Tipping points

Tipping points

Will the Phillies, Royals, Diamondbacks and Orioles trend upward or downward?

Your Rankings

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Over the next week, Buster Olney will be ranking the 10 best in MLB in a variety of categories. He starts with the top 10 lineups. As one executive noted to Olney, "When you start looking at the projected lineups for 2014, there are not many dominant lineups. Most clubs have a couple of spots that have young players, or players returning from injuries. So almost all have a couple of questions." Click here to see Olney's top 10 Insider and submit your own ballot by clicking on the images below.

Baseball's top 10 lineups

A's

A's

Pictured: Yoenis Cespedes

Angels

Angels

Pictured: Mike Trout

Cardinals

Cardinals

Pictured: Allen Craig

Indians

Indians

Pictured: Nick Swisher

Rangers

Rangers

Pictured: Prince Fielder

Red Sox

Red Sox

Pictured: David Ortiz

Rockies

Rockies

Pictured: Carlos Gonzalez

Royals

Royals

Pictured: Alex Gordon

Tigers

Tigers

Pictured: Miguel Cabrera

Yankees

Yankees

Pictured: Jacoby Ellsbury

Your Rankings

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