With awards season now over, we can take a look back and examine how well we did as a staff when it came to predicting the 2021 season. Let’s review everyone’s picks, and see how things played out, step by step.
(For some reason, when I made screen shots of our picks, I left our last picker, Luke Smailes, out. I can’t go back and re-do it now, but sorry Luke, you were in great shape until awards season!)
Rather than just awarding points for everything folks picked correctly (that would be boring, right?), points were awarded by degree of wrongness, so if you picked the Angels to win the AL West, you did worse than those picking the A’s.
Luke Smailes got out of the box fastest here, picking four of six division winners and only missing on the Yankees and Dodgers, both of whom made the playoffs. Nello Rubio, Chrystal O’Keefe and James Fox were all in the running early. The worst division picking was done by yours truly, followed closely by Trevor Lines and Jeremy Karll.
Luke, by virtue of picking Atlanta for the pennant and World Series, managed to stretch his lead some at this point. No writer picked the NL best (Giants) or worst (Diamondbacks) clubs, and no one had the stomach to pick the Astros for the AL pennant, either. James was running second at this point, Nello third. By this time, Lurker Laura had secured 16th place, with The Big Blurt duo of Rob Colletti and Bill Meincke right behind her.
Luke was one of eight SSS writers to get shut out of the awards picks, which saw him falling back into the field. This, on the other hand, is where Darren Black got back in the game, as the only writer to pick three awards winners and hitting pretty well on five of six. At this point, it was Fox, O’Keefe, Black in the running, with Karll having an outside chance at a Cinderella win. Trailing the pack were Laura, Colletti and Trevor Lines.
Bringing it home, things didn’t get shuffled up too much. Chrystal and Bill picking Carlos Rodón as the worst White Sox pitcher probably qualifies as the worst pick in this whole exercise, yet Chrystal did not let that deter her en route to a runner-up finish. Again, Darren crushed it here, as the only writer to pick the White Sox final record and both player and pitcher MVPs.
So, here’s how it ends up, with our best coverage record this season, O’Keefe, finishing second, and our worst coverage record this season, Black, in third.
Maybe the White Sox will win the World Series if James covers some games next season.