MLB predictions for 2024: Expert picks for full baseball standings, playoff fields and World Series champions



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Sure, two games of the 2,430 scheduled games have already been played for the 2024 Major League Baseball season, but everything else is still to come. Plus, MLB is sticking with the Opening Day branding for Thursday, so we’ll continue to act as if the season hasn’t actually started. Yet it is nigh. That means we can roll out our annual predictions. 

As is the case every single season, there will be plenty of surprises. None of us had the Diamondbacks winning the NL pennant last season nor the Rangers taking home their first World Series title. Having unpredictable occurrences unfold during the course of our marathon season is part of the fun. If everything was as much a sure thing as the Rockies finishing last in the NL West, we wouldn’t bother watching.  

Here at CBS Sports, our MLB staff has put together our 2024 season predictions. Here are our individual attempts to nail it down. Again, we’ll get plenty right and plenty wrong. Let’s do it. 

Explanations

R.J. Anderson: Player health is the great unknown in public analysis. All we can do with that mystery is go off what we know and make our best guesses from there. As such, if you told me the Dodgers, Yankees, or some of these other teams made my World Series picks look silly by staying healthier than I expected … well, fair enough. Not that those teams (or others) have any reason to be ashamed if we do end up getting the Astros-Braves prediction. I think most everyone would agree both of those teams are at or near the top of their leagues. That it would be a rematch of the 2021 World Series is just a coincidence.

Mike Axisa: Other than the two Central divisions, I think the favorites in each division are pretty clear cut, then once you get to the postseason, things are more subject to randomness. The Astros were one win away from their third straight pennant and fourth in the last five years. That team is still really good, and I think there’s enough talent there to beat out the Orioles and Rangers in a short series. I see Baltimore and Texas as the best non-Astros teams in the AL. As for the NL, the Phillies are built so well for the postseason with high-end starters, a bullpen full of bat-missers, and a lineup with at least six plus hit tool players. Philadelphia as the team to beat in 2024 for me.

Kate Feldman: I think the AL East and NL Central are going to be the most interesting divisions, but for very different reasons. Everyone but the Red Sox should be in the hunt for the AL East title and I wouldn’t be surprised if at least two of them creep close to 100 wins. The NL Central is nowhere near as competitive but I think most of those five will be in the race late too, just closer to something like 85 wins. Maybe picking the Dodgers to win the World Series is cheating, but that’s what you get when you put as much money into the lineup as they have.

Dayn Perry: Explanation? I picked the team I considered to be the best in each division to win that division. Then I picked the teams I considered to be the best among the non-division winners as the wild-card entrants. In the postseason, the outcomes of which are in large measure determined by randomness, I picked teams that sounded reasonable to me at the time for reasons sufficient unto myself. That is my explanation for that which is self-explanatory. 

Stephen Pianovich: The title window remains yanked open in Philly by the hands of a dinger-happy lineup that still has room on their ring fingers. Can this team really sneak in through the wild card and then knock off an NL juggernaut (or two) in the playoffs again? For whatever reason, half of us believe. As do the hardworking trash collectors of western Florida.

Matt Snyder: There is absolutely no doubt that the Dodgers are going to win the NL West, but I thought it would be boring to take them to win the NL. Plus, the best regular-season team hasn’t come out of the NL in a full season since 2017. I’ve said each of the last two postseasons that the Phillies are much more built for a playoff run than for the regular season and I’ve got that coming fully to fruition this time around with them winning it all. On the AL side, once the Orioles traded for Corbin Burnes (who hits free agency after this season), I was sold. It’s not necessarily just with the roster at present, it’s that Mike Elias will have the ability to be aggressive in adding anything they need in front of the trade deadline. 





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