The National League East was a two team race last season. The Mets and Nationals battled back and forth, with the Nats finally running away in the end. Miami and Atlanta held their own until the middle of the season, but ultimately ended up falling off the edge. Here is how the East will end of this season.
National League East Projections
5. Philadelphia Phillies
Philadelphia is still a couple of years away from contending. Their rotation is young and talented led by Aaron Nola. Third baseman Maikel Franco and centerfielder Odubel Hererra lead their offense. With plenty of young prospects on the horizon, it won’t be long before the Phillies are competing in the East again.
4. Miami Marlins
Miami has a very solid lineup. Dee Gordon is a speed threat at the top and Giancarlo Stanton is one of the biggest power threats in the game. The most underrated pieces in their lineup are outfielder Christian Yelich and catcher J.T. Realmuto. Their rotation is average, but not great. Their bullpen is very solid as they added many pieces this offseason, including setup man Brad Ziegler.
3. Atlanta Braves
The Braves are still one or two years away from really competing, but they will make some noise in the division this year. They are a young and exciting ball club on the rise. Ender Inciarte is a Gold Glove caliber centerfielder. Freddie Freeman is very low-key an MVP candidate every year. Rookie of the Year candidate Dansby Swanson and veteran Brandon Phillips are an outstanding up the middle duo. Their rotation is filled with a lot of veteran depth, as they are led by Bartolo Colon.
2. Washington Nationals
The Nationals made a “win-now” move this offseason when they traded a handful of prospects for centerfielder Adam Eaton. Eaton is a guy who puts the ball in play consistently. He will provide some base runners for MVP candidates Daniel Murphy and Bryce Harper. Washington’s rotation is a very strong one. They are led by one of the best pitchers in baseball, Max Scherzer. Their bullpen will prove to be an issue for them, as they do not have an established closer to begin the season.
1. New York Mets
The Mets are their own worst enemies. The only thing that keeps the Mets from running away with the division is their own injuries. For the Mets to win the NL East, the rotation has to stay healthy. Matt Harvey, Steven Matz, and Zack Wheeler need to stay on the field for a full season. Their offense has the potential to be very solid led by Yoenis Cespedes. This will be the year the Mets run away with the NL East.