Cardinals to Rule the Roost in the NL Central

Al Dannity | Updated Oct 04, 2017

Everyone’s first choice in Fantasy Baseball will help the Cardinals claim yet another divisional crown in 2010

Horribly lop-sided The NL Central race may seem more competitive than the NL East from afar but upon closer examination it becomes apparent that this is the most top heavy division in all of Baseball. In short the St Louis Cardinals are going to win the NL Central. When it comes to MLB bets the only question is if one of the chasing pack can compete for a wild-card spot.

By AL standards the Cards may not seem overly loaded, indeed in the NL East even the Redbirds would be far from a lock, but St Louis doesn’t play in that division. St Louis competes with a Pittsburgh team looking at an 18th straight losing season, a re-building Houston Astros, a Cubs team that has missed its window, a defensively fragile Milwaukee and a Cincinnati team that pundits seem to believe in but for no logical reason.

Just let the starting line-up and the rotation do the talking. Albert Pujols, a one-in-generation talent, at first base. His supporting crew are far from shabby, including Yadier Molina at catcher, and an outfield with the surnames Holliday, Rasmus, and Ludwick. Don’t forget the pitching staff which includes Chris Carpenter, Adam Wainwright and Brad Penny. This one won’t be close, the Cards to win by a distance.

Is there wild-card contender? There’s no point in evening pretending the chasing pack can compete with St Louis for the divisional title. The National League Wild Card race on the other hand is far more open. Of the other five teams in the Central, two stand out as potential contenders for the last slot in the play-offs.

The Milwaukee Brewers stand out as the hot pick with the most potent offense in the National League. Unlike their counterparts in this regard over in the American League, the Yankees, the Brewers don’t complement this attacking force with a competitive defense. After Yovani Gallardo and Randy Wolf at the top of the rotation, the Brewers fall apart as too will their play-off hopes most likely.

Cincinnati present an odd case. The Reds are getting plenty of respect as a dark horse but it’s hard to see why. Joey Votto is a proven hitter but the pitching rotation at the start of the season features five right handers with Aaron Harang as the ace. Aroldis Chapman is in the organisation and the Cuban promises plenty but he’s starting the season in the Minors and even when he does arrive, it’s hard to see how he turns the Reds into a contender immediately. In 2011 Cincinnati may be playing in October but not this year.

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