I love baseball almost as much as I love gaming. I got my start in online writing with &..."/> I love baseball almost as much as I love gaming. I got my start in online writing with &..."/>

Our MLB 2015 Predictions Simulation From MLB 15: The Show

12 of 32

AL West

2015 MLB Standings

  1. Athletics 88-74
  2. Astros 85-77
  3. Mariners 81-81
  4. Angels 75-87
  5. Rangers 72-90

Somehow, the Rangers not losing 100 games was not the biggest story out of the AL West. No, but it was a Texas-based team that shook things up, even though they did not qualify for the playoffs this year. Don’t fret, though, for the Athletics defying the odds to win the division is an expected unexpected now, even if the Angels finish 4th in the division this year. Things were interesting this year until September, which is when things got wacky.

Oakland Athletics

Billy Beane continues to Moneyball the world, scraping 88 wins together to take the division. It was done so with a middling pitching staff, with all starters pitching to a 3.97 ERA or higher. It was the shutdown game of Sean Doolittle, Tyler Clippard and Eric O’Flaherty that kept the A’s in the hunt, with each reliever pitching an ERA lower than 2.40 and striking out more than 50 batters each. Sonny Gray was just okay, surprisingly, with a 1.39 WHIP and 4.02 ERA.

In an unprecedented move, Brett Lawrie not only played a full season, he had the most at-bats of the year for his team. His 636 AB’s gave him more opportunities to score and drive in runs, yet he only scored 58 times and drove in 64. He also got caught once more often than he actually stole bases (8 SB to 9 CS), showing the brutal side effects of staying fully dimed throughout a full MLB season.

I’m not quite sure how the Athletics won so many games, as their offensive output was decidedly milquetoast, too. Marcus Semien batted .179 over 435 at-bats, which is just getting to 90’s Royce Clayton levels of “how is this still happening?” Meanwhile, Ike Davis’s .262 BA was a team high, as well were his 23 home runs. Stolen bases did come at a premium, with Ben Zobrist, Sam Fuld and Craig Gentry providing 17, 25 and 31 for the team, respectively. They must have nickeled and dimed (pun intended) their way into the postseason.

Next: Houston Astros