2013 Preview- AL East
Yesterday I wrote about my predictions for the NL East (click HERE in case you missed it). This is my prediction for the AL East Division. It will be followed by the NL Central. I hope you like it so much!
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5.Tampa Bay Rays
The 2008 AL champions had a disappointing 2012, and probably an even more disappointing year in 2013, due to star B.J. Upton being leaving for the Braves. The dome on Tropicana Field makes it not a good hitter’s park. On the positive, they signed Evan Longoria to a long-term deal. I still think this is a very tough division, and the other teams will come out ahead.
4. Baltimore Orioles
It may surprise you that my hometown AL team is not my favorite. (My favorite AL team is the Oakland A’s). So I don’t really have any problem saying that I don’t think the O’s will do well this year. The “Bash of Birdtown” took place in 2012, with them making a surprise appearance in the post-season. Most people expected them to finish last. Even with Adam Jones and Manny Machado leading the way in 2013, I do not think the Orioles will not have the bash rerun. Jason Hammel, Wei-Yin Chen will dominate hitters across the AL, and Jim Johnson had a terrific year with the best save record in the AL. However, the Sox had a bad year last year and the Yankees had a lot of injuries, which I think let the O’s sneak into the wild card last year. It probably won’t happen again.
3. Boston Red Sox
The plus about Boston is that they have all-around good players. Jarrod Saltamacchia, David Ortiz, Joel Hanrahan, Mike Napoli, and Will Middlebrooks, to name a few. The teams seems to not come together early in the season, but they they rally just all of a sudden in September and end up in third. (Wink, wink to new manager John Farrell). I don’t know why that always happens, but I guess Bostonians have their own way of doing things. The Sox lost a lot of good players like Adrian Gonzalez, Kevin Youkilis, Carl Crawford and Josh Beckett. That may hurt them this year.
2. New York Yankees
Everyone always expects the Yankees to do well because they have a huge payroll that allows them to buy some of the best talent in the majors. You can always pretty much guess that the Yankees will enter the post-season as the Division winner or wild card. This year I’m picking them to come in second. The Captain, Derek Jeter, suffered an injury during the playoffs and it’s not certain that he will be in best shape, or even come back, this year. Alex Rodriguez had a very disappointing year in 2012, especially in the post-season. They also lost Nick Swisher to the Indians, Raul Ibanez to the Mariners and closer Rafael Soriano to the Nationals. Still, the Yankees have Curtis Granderson, Robinson Cano and Mark Texeira. I think they will do well enough to get the Wild Card.
1. Toronto Blue Jays
Jose Bautista is probably sitting in Lakeland, Florida saying to himself “We are going to have a fantastic year!” I don’t blame him. The Blue Jays acquired stars like R.A. Dickey, Jose Reyes, Mark Buehrle, and Melky Cabrera. They also acquired J.A. Happ, Josh Johnson, Emilio Bonofacio, Josh Thole, Brad Lincoln, Esmil Rogers, Henry Blanco, Maicer Izturis, and Mark DeRosa. Even if they don’t all start, they are good trade bait for future talent. Since many of these players were acquired from the Marlins and they didn’t play well on the Marlins team, should we expect them to do any better if they are wearing a Blue Jays uniform? They have enough talent to be #1 in the AL East if they can come together.
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CHECK OUT THE NATIONALS VS. METS ON MLB NETWORK AT 12:00! And remember to SET YOUR DVRs to FOX 5 DC MORNING NEWS on WEDNESDAY FEB. 27 at 8:30AM TO CATCH MY FIRST EVER LIVE TV INTERVIEW!