10 bold predictions for 2012

With Chase Utley and Ryan Howard out indefinitely, the Phillies' playoff streak is in jeopardy. Jeff Curry/US Presswire

With the season beginning today in Japan, it's that time of year when everyone is making predictions. I figure it's about time that I get in on the act.

1. The Philadelphia Phillies will not make the playoffs.

With Roy Halladay, Cliff Lee and Cole Hamels fronting the game's strongest rotation, how can I go against them? Well, here's why: Last year the San Francisco Giants failed to make the playoffs with a rotation just as an impressive at the top with Tim Lincecum, Matt Cain and Madison Bumgarner. However, injuries and lack of offense led to their downfall. The Phillies will have the same problem with injuries to Ryan Howard and Chase Utley, not to mention aging veterans all over the diamond. The Miami Marlins and Washington Nationals are much improved and it looks like the Phillies are heading back toward the pack.

2. Neftali Feliz will save more games than Joe Nathan.