On New Year's Eve, the FanDome featured a post concerning a crystal ball the Fan found in the basement. Since it is now almost two and a half months later, it's time to look at those predictions after a month of Spring Training games and see if those still look good. Of course, the Fan has since learned that this crystal ball was the Fan's old bowling ball. A mental block must have prevented the Fan from believing he used to wield such a sissy ball. Anyway, the original post is in regular text and revised comments are in italics:
The Fan was cleaning out his basement and tripped over a round object covered by a felt sheet. Upon further inspection, it turned out to be a long forgotten crystal ball. After dusting it off, the Fan was amazed to see the following images:
- President Obama will throw out the first pitch at the Washington Nationals' home opener to enthusiastic crowds. Security at the game will make El Al look like amateurs.
This one will come true.
- Manny Ramirez will sign with the Dodgers and have the following numbers: .312/33/115/.400/.550/.950, the Dodgers will win the NL West and Ramirez will be back in Buster Olney's good graces.
Not sure Mr. Olney has good graces in him for Ramirez, but so far, this seems dead on.
- Kerry Wood will save 38 games after a slow start.
This one still looks good. Wood is throwing 95 MPH gas this spring.
- Sabathia will end up with a 17-12 record for the Yankees.
Still sounds about right. Most Yankee fans should take this kind of performance from the big guy. Since the original post, PECOTA came out and projects a 16-8 record for Sabathia, so the Fan is in the ballpark.
- Raul Casanova of the Mets will have a chance meeting with Romeo Crennel and they will discuss their strategy with women.
The Fan wasn't even drinking on New Year's Eve. Honest!
- Ben Sheets will sign with the Texas Rangers and will later credit Nolan Ryan with conditioning tips that helped him overcome his history of injuries.
Uh. Well. It was a bowling ball after all.
- Rickey Henderson will be voted into the Hall of Fame, but some bone-headed writers will leave him off their ballot so he won't be unanimous.
This one came true already.
- Dan Shaughnessy will write a 10,000 word diatribe when Jim Rice fall short of the votes needed to gain entrance to the Hall of Fame. The diatribe will include at least one Rob Neyer reference.
Rice didn't fall short as we all know. Only the bowling ball fell short.
- Jayson Stark will actually write another baseball post for ESPN.com and finally remove his headline that the Braves have the best chance of signing A. J. Burnett.
Stark did finally come back from vacation and is back to writing very fine posts. However, the Fan doesn't get this "Three Strike" thing he is using as a writing device.
- David Wright will win the National League MVP.
Sticking to this one. Write it down.
- Alex Rodriguez will win the American League MVP and bloggers from coast to coast will complain about the New York media bias.
The bowling ball wasn't hip to A-Rod's medical condition. It's still a long shot to be possible.
- Randy Johnson will win his 300th game by June 15.
This one sounds good.
- Five more minor league pitchers from the Dominican Republic will be suspended for doping and yet the major story of how draftees from that country are mistreated will stay as dead in the headlines as they are now.
There have already been two suspensions, but the major story woke up a little bit with the Jim Bowden thing. But the story has died again...for now.
- The American Team will be bounced early from the WBC and American baseball fans will yawn and pop open another coke.
The American Team has hung around for a while, but most American fans still don't give a hoot.
The standings at the end of the year will be:
- AL East: Yankees, Red Sox, Rays, Orioles, Blue Jays
Sticking with this one.
- AL Central: Indians, Twins, Tigers, Royals, White Sox
Still sounds good. But the Tigers might be where the White Sox are listed and vice versa.
- AL West: Rangers, Mariners, A's, Angels
Yeah. Sticking with this one. Nobody is impressive in the West at this point. But Seattle should finish in last place.
- NL East: Mets, Marlins, Phillies, Braves, Nationals
This one sounds good except the Braves might be better than both the Marlins and the Phillies. Depends on how much Chipper plays.
- NL Central: Astros, Reds, Cardinals, Cubs, Brewers
What? Fan? Are you a lunatic? Oh yeah, it's not the Fan's fault. It was a bowling ball.
- NL West: Dodgers, Giants, Diamondbacks, Rockies, Padres
Yup. Sounds good.
- The Wild Card teams will be the Red Sox and the Marlins
Yes on the Red Sox. Doubtful on the Marlins.
- At least ten homers or non-homers will be overturned by replay.
Can we count the one we already had in the WBC?
- There will be two no-hitters thrown during the year. One will be against the Padres.
- Phil Hughes will win more games than Chien-Ming Wang
Nope. Not going to happen unless you count AAA statistics.
- Jon Lester will win more games than Beckett.
Still buying this one.
- Mike Hampton will win fourteen games and win comeback player of the year.
This one is looking better all the time.
- Adam Dunn will hit 40 homers.- No one will hit 50 or more homers.
Yes and No. Dunn will hit is 40. Howard will probably hit 50.
- Barry Bonds will finally be convicted and the story will finally be over.
It will NEVER be over. This story will hang over our heads until at least until the Republicans win the White House again.
- Ozzie Guillen will have at least four major meltdowns.
Can still see this happening. Also pencil in that Pierzynski will get into at least one fight.
- Russell Branyon will play for at least two more teams in 2009 and hit home runs for both of them. He's played for eleven teams in the last six years and had at least one homer in every stop.
If Branyon starts well and a contender needs a bat, this very well could happen.
All in all, not bad for a bowling ball.