The AL East is going to be one of the most talked about divisions in 2018. The Yankees are back on the map and are looking to make a serious push after the development of their young talent in 2017 and the addition of Giancarlo Stanton this offseason. However, if there is one team in the division that could take down the Yanks in their pursuit of the AL East title, that would be the Red Sox. Everyone seems to forget they won the division last season. As for the rest of the division, there isn’t much. The Blue Jays and Orioles aren’t close to the playoff teams they were a few years ago and the Rays are about to go in a full-blown rebuild.
Tampa Bay Rays
It’s hard to expect much out of the Rays after they traded their franchise player in Evan Longoria and DFA’d Corey Dickerson, but they will definitely be better than the Marlins. They Rays still have a nice combo at the top of their rotation with Chris Archer and Blake Snell. In the field, the name to know is center fielder Kevin Kiermaier. He is one of the best at his position and provides speed when he gets on base.
Bold Prediction: Blake Snell goes to his first All-Star Game.
The Orioles have a decent offense, but this season seems to be the farewell tour of Manny Machado in Baltimore. Of course, besides Machado, the Orioles do have some young talent in Jonathan Schoop and Trey Mancini. However, their downfall will be their starting pitching. There is not one starter who they can count on to get them a win when they need it.
Bold Prediction: Manny Machado will be traded at the trade deadline.
Toronto Blue Jays
The Blue Jays have a solid team, but they are far from the exciting playoff teams in 2015 and 2016. They brought in Curtis Granderson and Randal Grichuk to fill their holes in the outfield, but the team will still go through their former MVP in Josh Donaldson. Also, their pitching should be improved this season. Aaron Sanchez made just eight starts last season and if he returns to his 2016 form, the Jays will be able to pair him with Marcus Stroman.
Bold Prediction: Marcus Stroman and Aaron Sanchez combine for 30 wins.
Boston Red Sox
The Red Sox have in a way, fallen under the radar this offseason. All offseason we were waiting for J.D. Martinez to sign and it finally happened. However, that wasn’t enough due to all the excitement surrounding the Yankees. The Red Sox are still one of the best teams in baseball and will got the power bat they desperately needed after the retirement of David Ortiz.
Bold Prediction: Mookie Betts wins AL MVP
New York Yankees
When is the last time the Yankees have had this much hype going into a season? It has been a while, but they are back and it’s good for baseball. The Yankees have one of the best young cores in baseball and were basically handed Giancarlo Stanton. However, their starting rotation is the one spot that could hurt them. Luis Severino looks like their ace, but he needs to show he can do it again. Masahiro Tanaka and C.C. Sabathia are the two pitchers who make me the most nervous. Tanaka hasn’t been as productive as he was hyped up to be and Sabathia struggled mightily before his comeback season in 2017.
Bold Prediction: Giancarlo Stanton and Aaron Judge combine for 100 home runs.
AL East 2018 Predicted Standings
- Boston Red Sox (95-67)
- New York Yankees (93-69)
- Toronto Blue Jays (82-80)
- Baltimore Orioles (78-84)
- Tampa Bay Rays (71-91)