RevLocal's 2014 Major League Preview

RevLocal's 2014 Major League Preview

Content Writer: Cory Miller Cory Miller Marketing Program Manager

At the beginning of every baseball season, hope springs eternal for 30 major league teams and their fans. This is the year. Baseball can be as unpredictable as Google search results, but some teams just seem to show up year after  year. Why? These teams do things the right way. To pay tribute to the beginning of the 2014 Major League Baseball season, we're offering a unique preview of all 30 teams. If these teams were our clients, these are the buckets they would probably be in.

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These teams are the captains of consistency. Year after year they find themselves in playoff contention. Why? Because they build from their organizations from the ground up. From the farm system all the way to the big leagues, these are the organizations that don't overlook any details.

St. Louis Cardinals: Is there a better run organization in all of sports? The Cardinals seem to run out a World Series caliber team every year. Who needs Pujols or La Russa? Expect the Cardinals to be in contention down the stretch.

Tampa Bay Rays: Whatever Joe Maddon is drinking, I’ll have two. How long before he becomes the official spokesman for Google Glass? This isn’t your older brother’s Rays squad. Now, if they can do something about that stadium.

Joe Maddon

Photo Credit: Keith Allison, Flickr

Atlanta Braves: Only rivaled by the sustained success of the Cardinals, the Braves are one of baseball’s most consistent winners. They won the NL East 14 out of 15 years. The official dance of the 90s was the tomahawk chop. After a couple of sub par seasons, it looks like the Braves are back to their winning ways.

San Francisco Giants: The Giants have quietly won two of the last four World Series. Perhaps it’s a little premature to throw them in the category of “most consistent” major league squads, but we’ll give them the benefit of the doubt. Championships talk. The NL West is usually one of the weaker divisions, so the Giants can contend even in a down year.

Cincinnati Reds: The Reds have righted the ship after a long playoff drought. They’ve made the post season three out of the last four years. The Reds were the first professional baseball team in the United States, so if nothing else they’ve consistently played baseball in the Queen City since 1869.

Cincinnati Red Stockings

Texas Rangers: 
The Walker Texas Rangers have made the playoffs each of the past four seasons including two World Series appearances. Ron Washington is back for another year and once again the Rangers have championship aspirations. Can Prince lead them to the promise land?

Oakland Athletics: The dark horse! Despite the worst stadium in all of professional sports and a meager payroll, the Oakland A’s find a way to win. Since moving to Oakland, the A’s have had a 100-loss season only once (1979.) When you combine that with 17 post season appearances and four championships, you have a pretty successful organization. Moneyball!

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These teams have the biggest budgets. They have no problem spending money to win. They live by the motto, “you have to pay to play!” Will their big spend payoff?

Los Angeles Dodgers: For the first time since 1998, the Yankees don’t have the most expensive payroll in Major League Baseball. With a payroll of $235 million, the Dodgers run away with the title. Since purchasing the Dodgers for a cool $2.15 billion in 2012, the Gugenheim Group, (led by Magic Johnson) has been a non-stop spending spree. They better hope that leads to rings.

New York Yankees: Finally, someone beat the Yankees! The Yankees cheaped out this year and penny pinched their way to a $203 million payroll. How much do World Series titles cost? Just ask the Yankees. They have 27. Love them or hate them, you have to pull for Derek Jeter to go out on top.

Philadelphia Phillies: They spent $180 million on who? The Phillies are old. The top five players on this year’s payroll have an average age of 34.2 years. These five players also account for $103 of their $180 million payroll. Only Cole Hamels (30) has an extended future with the club. Chase Utley has been on fire to start the season.

Boston Red Sox: Everyone knocks the Yankees for outbidding the small-market clubs on the premium talent year after year, but the Red Sox do it too. If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em. After going 86 years without a World Series crown, the Sox bid farewell to the Curse of The Great Bambino and have won three championships in the last 10 years. Apparently you just had to pay Babe off.

Detroit Tigers: It looks like the Tigers are finally spending that Little Caesars Pizza money! Mike Ilitch, the 84 year old owner of Little Caesars Pizza and the Detroit Tigers is signing off on some big deals. The Tigers just signed superstar, Miguel Cabrera, to a record $292 million contract over the next 10 years. ESPN’s Darren Rovell put it in perspective, “Cabrera will earn $49,423 per at bat over the next decade.”

Darren Rovell

Los Angeles Angels: No, these aren’t Danny Glover’s Anaheim Angels, these are deep-pocketed Los Angeles Angels. They’ll spend about $40 million this year on their three and four hitters alone. This doesn’t include the $144.5 million contract extension they just gave 22–year-old, Mike Trout, which goes on the books next year.

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There is a lot of buzz surrounding these teams, but can they live up to the hype? There are a lot of reasons to like them, but then again, every team leaves spring training with the glass half full.

Kansas City Royals: Wait, the Kansas City Royals have some preseason buzz? Is that George Brett pine tar video circulating again? The Royals haven’t made a playoff appearance since they won the World Series in 1985. However, after their first winning season since 2003, the Royals are legitimate playoff contenders.

Washington Nationals: After winning the division crown in 2012, the Nationals followed up with a disappointing 2nd place finish in 2013, despite being picked by many as World Series favorites. A new season brings a fresh start, and once again the Nationals are pegged to make a late October run.

Seattle Mariners: The only way you could name a member of the 2013 Mariners (other than Félix Hernández) is if you lived in Seattle. Now you can probably name two. In an uncharacteristic move, the Mariners made the biggest off season acquisition by signing All-Star second baseman, Robinson Cano. The Mariners’ lineup hasn’t featured a smooth swinging lefty since “The Kid” was hitting third.

Baltimore Orioles: The Fighting Showalters are ready to prove to everyone that they’re not a flash in the pan. With a talented core of, Adam Jones, Chris Davis and Manny Machado, the Orioles look to contend in the dominant AL East.

Pittsburg Pirates: After 20 consecutive losing seasons, the Buccos are back! After a magical 2013 post season run, the Pirates are hoping to be a mainstay atop the NL Central. Led by MVP Andrew McCutchen, the Pirates are a leading contender in the National League. The also play in PNC Park, which is one of the best ballparks in all of baseball.


These are the teams with some of the biggest story lines entering this year. They will give people something to write about, but it’s not necessarily good news. We’ll have to wait and see.

Milwaukee Brewers: Well, this is awkward. Slugger, Ryan Braun, returns for the Brewers following his 65 game PED suspension and public relations nightmare. Braun and the Brewers look to put the whole thing behind them, but only winning will do that. The always optimistic Brewers’ faithful will continue to show their support by drowning themselves in brats and beer.

Chicago Cubs: This is the year! The Cubs are fresh off of back-to-back World Series titles (1907, 1908) and look to keep the good times rolling. There are rumors that young phenom, Henry Rowengartner, may see the big leagues this year. If nothing else, the Cubs have unveiled 10 new uniforms for the 2014 campaign.

New York Mets: The Yankee's little brother looks ready for another tumultuous season. Matt Harvey, the best thing to happen to the Mets in years, underwent Tommy John surgery last October and will miss the entire 2014 season. David Wright will do his best Captain America impression, but the Mets won't be playing meaningful baseball after the All Star break.

Cleveland Indians: Cleveland was one of the true surprise teams of 2013. They increased their win total by 24 from 2012. After being eliminated in the Wild Card game last year, Cleveland is hungry for a return trip to the post season.

Toronto Blue Jays: The Blue Jays played an exhibition game in front of 46,121 fans at Olympic Stadium in Montreal on March 28th. It was first professional game at Olympic Stadium since 2004 when the Montreal Expos played their final home game before relocating to Washington, D.C. to become the Nationals.

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Some teams just can't be helped this year. These are the teams that will likely need a completely new strategy to get things turned around.

Miami Marlins: Their reviled president, David Samson, appeared on the 28th season of Survivor. He was the first person voted off.

Houston Astros: The Houston Astros are spending a major league low $44 million on their payroll this year. You get what you pay for. They also just earned a 0.0 television ranking. (It doesn't get any lower).

Minnesota Twins: Target Field will host the 2014 Major League Baseball All-Star Game. Good thing it’s not played in October.

Chicago White Sox: Can they finish with a better record than the Cubs?

San Diego Padres: Despite the wins and losses, San Diego is a wonderful place to live. Even if the Padres struggle, the San Diego Zoo will never disappoint.

Colorado Rockies: The Rockies store their baseballs in a humidor because of the thinner, drier air at Coors Field (5,183 feet above sea level).

Arizona Diamondbacks: Arizona is hot! Which is why the Diamondbacks allow fans to rent private pool suites located behind the right field wall.