Where They'll Finish: American League
Last week I laid out my winners and longer odds pick for each division, league, & the World Series. I even included my MLB TV All-Stars as a fun bonus. If you haven’t checked out that piece yet, I highly recommend it.
Today I’m taking it a step further, laying out exactly where everyone is going to finish this year, and why. Starting with the AL, where no division is too deep, but the Central & East look to provide potentially down-to-the-wire finishes in September.
All odds provided by Oddschecker as of 3/21/19
1. Boston Red Sox (+130)
Betts, Benintendi, Bogaerts; have faith in the B’s. Maybe some questions on the mound, but that lineup is going to rake, and that OF is going to play great defense.
2. New York Yankees (-117)
Stanton & Judge could combine for 80 homers this year. Full year of Gleyber plus the addition of James Paxton in the offseason, the Yankees could end up winning this division by five games. However I think they’ll come in second and be a Wild Card Team
3. Tampa Bay Rays (+1000)
Hey, look at the Rays spending money on some extensions! The Rays are going to compete strongly for a division crown very soon….just maybe not THIS soon. However, the rotation could keep them competitive even into September.
4. Toronto Blue Jays (+3300)
This team is going to be really fun. Not good, but fun, because hopefully they end up fielding both Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Bo Bichette for a decent amount of the season. Great young talent in the system, but this is where the AL switches to non-contenders.
5. Baltimore Orioles (+15000)
The Orioles stink. Back to back #1 pick potential.
1. Cleveland Indians (-303)
Barring a trade of Corey Kluber, the Indians are still the pick to win the Central. However, the Twins are going to make it a hell of a fight.
2. Minnesota Twins (+300)
Surprise AL team of the year this year. Brought in a lot of productive vets in the offseason, and apparently Martin Perez could be the pitching steal of the winter. If Buxton/Sano bounce back, they could win the division.
3. Chicago White Sox (+1600)
So, they missed on Manny Machado, but still have a lot of young talent that will hopefully take steps forward and produce. They essentially just gained a big bat for the entire year by signing Eloy Jimenez to an extension and saving him an April in the minors to “work on his defense.”
4. Kansas City Royals (+4000)
Flip a coin for who finishes in the AL Central cellar. Both of these teams have thrown in the towel. The Royals best arm, Danny Duffy, is already hurt, and there’s not a whole lot of reliability behind him in the rotation. Only reason to watch this team is Adalberto Mondesi & Whit Merrifield at the top of the order.
5. Detroit Tigers (+4000)
I mean, maybe Miguel Cabrera has a small resurgence? Maybe Casey Mize comes up in August and is fun? This team is a whole bunch of meh.
1. Houston Astros (-600)
They’ll be on cruise control by the first week of September. Biggest points of suspense for their season are when Forrest Whitley will debut and if they’ll add pieces at the deadline.
2. Oakland Athletics (+900)
I love the A’s this year. Plug in Profar to a young team that can hit and (mostly) play defense? I’m in, buy the A’s.
3. Los Angeles Angels (+800)
Kudos to the Angels for locking up the best player of his generation for over a decade. Now make another big move and release one of the best players of the past fifteen years in Albert Pujols, because he’s a black hole in their lineup. This team also can’t pitch.
4. Seattle Mariners (+3300)
Feels like a completely different team than last year. They got a bit younger, bit more exciting, but are still at least a year away from competing.
5. Texas Rangers (+5000)
They might have the worst starting staff ERA in the AL this year. But hey, you can see Joey Gallo hit a 750ft home run every now and then, so that’s fun as hell.
By Kyle Bandujo