MLB Teams That Could Surprise Us In 2017

MLB Teams That Could Surprise Us In 2017 
There are many MLB teams that might surprise us this year because of the changes that they are making to their teams and the way they are playing now with new team members and managers. I never would have guessed ahead of time that the Cubs would win the 2016 World Series, after 108 years without a win, and this year is going to be just as surprising. Here are a few of the teams that have some real potential for 2017.

The Atlanta Braves
The past three seasons have been very hard on the Atlanta Braves, but they might surprise us this year. They have a new manager, and that might make all of the difference for them. The manager was around for a bit of the season last year and he did a good job with the team while he was there.

The Colorado Rockies
Another team that could surprise is the Rockies. They have some tough competition where they are at in the country, but they just might break through the competition and surprise everyone thanks to one key player. They have Nolan Arenado on their side, and he is a third baseman who is catching all of the headlines, and they also have many more people on their team who are destined to do good.

The Tampa Bay Rays
This team has seen many loses in recent years, but this year could be different for them. They have a good starting lineup going on this year, and they also have strong players overall. They aren’t a shocking team, but they just might be put together well enough to start winning again.

The Minnesota Twins
This team had a really rough season in 2016. Their fans were disappointed by that, but everyone in baseball is going to take notice of them in 2017. They are going to surprise the world because of Brian Dozier and all that that man can do.

The Seattle Mariners
The reason the Mariners might surprise this year? They have one of the best starting rotations in all of baseball. And since that is an important aspect of every team there is no reason why they shouldn’t do well. They aren’t a team that we have heard a lot from recently, but that could all change as we get started with the 2017 season.

Every season of baseball is so different and there are breakout stars from each team every year. But this year I believe these teams could surprise us all. I think that this year could be the most shocking one yet because of all that these teams have to offer. The Chicago Cubs won the 2016 World Series and shocked the world, and now it is time for another team to do the same. Any one of the five above teams has the potential to take it all the way to the World Series, and it will be interesting to see how each of those teams does as we get into the MLB season.

Knocking Off The Golden State Warriors

The Larry O’Brien trophy might as well be handed over to the Golden State Warriors already. The Warriors stand a bigger chance against the rest of their NBA rivals already, with Kevin Durant moving into the Bay Area. This may well be the player they needed.

So, we might as well just give the Golden State Warriors the Larry O’Brien trophy for next season, right? With Kevin Durant making his move to the Bay Area, the Warriors stand far above the rest of their NBA competition.
This may well be the best set of offensive play we have seen on a basketball court ever, but it doesn’t make the Warriors impossible to beat. They still have to firstly slice up the team to even make some space for Durant, as well as deal with the space left behind by Andrew Bogut, not to mention the fact that both Festus Ezeli and Harrison Barnes will be gone.

The Golden State Warriors, unfortunately, still have to put in massive amounts of effort throughout the 82 games of the season, after which they must make it through another three rounds of the ‘best of seven’ playoffs. The best shot other teams have of beating the Warriors involves maximizing their advantage of the warrior’s reserves rather than going for the head on.

The Warriors are likely to rely dangerously on fringe players and rookies next season off of the bench. The Warriors do have great rookies though, and if they do manage to beat the other team, or play them to a halt, there isn’t much hope left. Durant mentions that the best way to beat the rookies is to punish them for not playing up a good game. You shouldn’t let them out-rebound you on any of the floor sides, especially the offensive glass, as a big part of the defensive strategy requires having the Warriors stay out of the lane.

It’s the gameplay and change for scoring when inside the arc that lets the Warriors shine, rather all the attention they’ve garnered for 3-point shots. Their focus on 3 pointers, especially in the presence of Durant, makes for a lot of missed shot opportunities by the Warriors; the inevitable trade-off that they accept for the extra point the 3-pointer earns them. They attempt to offset this by placing people on the rim to capitalize on easy rebound shots and layups. That sacred space of the Golden State Warriors can be stolen with good protection on the rim using a single big guy who needs the little help as well as good perimeter control. If done effectively, this can stop a lot of shot opportunities of the Warriors.

If you get an open grab during pass-throughs, it’s best to grab it, and this wrecks havoc with a team as emotional as the Golden State Warriors who will waste no time in finger pointing when given a taste of their own icky medicine. It’s never a good idea to underestimate the power of the Warrior’s transitions, having scored more points in the area than all other than the one team ‘The Kings.’ Thompson and Curry play a major role in this success with their many ways of getting a shot off. The two of them scored 20% of transition points, and Green adds to the danger with his ability to not only grab the rebounds but push forward himself.

The Jazz makes for one of the best examples on how to stop the Warriors in their tracks, giving them the biggest scare so far. Opting to go hard in the 4th Quarter with players like Rodney Hood, Derrick Favors, Gordon Hayward and Rudy Gobert, the Jazz placed a big player with broad reach on every inch of the backcourt, playing against the Warrior’s weakness.

Bill Belichick: Super Hero or Super Villain

Love him or hate him, Bill Belichick has impacted the NFL over the years in the way few professional coaches can rival. Finding himself in the center of ‘the Ballghazi’ scandal, Belichick is no stranger to public scrutiny, with the New England Patriots being accused of cheating and the Spygate issues.

 

Belichick has earned himself the role of a sociopath who will win at all costs. As seen by him taciturn press conferences, he is incapable of relating to other humans beyond the need to further his goal and has proven to be someone willing to push the bar at any given opportunity.

 

It’s quite apparent in his manipulations mid-game that Belichick will do whatever it takes. The group’s triumph over the Baltimore Ravens two ends of the week back brought another round of allegations of cheating, by the use of a wonky formation of the offensive line. Those who’ve known Belichick will also be aware of the joy he took in that deviously legal play, simply because it hadn’t been thought of or done before. Being the deviant he is, Belichick now attempts to see what else he can get away with, something to keep the novelty of the game fresh for him. The last minute release of a dropkick by Doug Flutie back in 2006 on an extra point was a play that hadn’t successfully been executed in over 60 years, in part because modern kickers negate the need for it and also because it comes across as just a bit goofy. But that won’t stop the ever-thinking Belichick.

 

Ever since the time the Baltimore Colts hired Billy Belichick as practically a glorified gofer, he’s found himself called by every name in the dictionary. Since his next stints, in Detroit and Denver, Belichick’s mental dominance of the gameplay – and brash approach – got him the titles Boy Genius and Punk. Bill Parcells nicknamed the guy Doom and Gloom in New York, for his abrasive style and stubborn nature as well as his monotone like delivery. Called a lame duck in the 1990’s, he saw the saddest years of the game in Cleveland and later handed in his resignation after having served the Jets as the coach for less than one day.

 

Belichick considers it endearing when his friends understandably call him an A-hole. Don Shula, a Hall of Fame coach, labeled him Beli-cheat. But this hasn’t stopped him from winning 13 division titles which include seven wins in a row, breaking records. As well as 23 wins post the season, which is in fact, the most ever head by an NFL head coach. Bill has also won 4 Super Bowls and six AFC Championship games earning him labels ranging from Hoodie, Misanthrope, and just plain Genius.

 

Bill may be hated for his over-analytical approach to the game, but he was raised in a culture of football scrutiny, with his dad, Steve, bringing him up to football films, having him observe each play from a young age. Steve also lost his coaching job twice, which is where Bill learned earlier in life how fickle the sport can be as a career.

 

Bill brought with him his brand of calculating precision driven football coaching to the Colts, where he was quickly given more responsibilities due to his skills scouting talent that was so effective, that the players felt it was like having a spy around. Belichick switched to Detroit post that where he got himself a new Ford, ten grand a month and a perfect playbook score which all coaching candidates take like a pop quiz. He has always shown signs of a perfectionist, and I don’t see the need to shy away from skills like that. Think what you may of him, Bill is the Villain the NFL needs and the Hero that modern gameplay innovation has lacked.