AL East Division Preview for MLB 2022
Baltimore Orioles – The Orioles are projected by most to finish with a win total in the low-60s. Baltimore only won 52 games last season and will again be one of the worst teams in the majors. This team has been so focused on player development and the farm system that they continue to struggle to put together a competitive team. It is particularly tough because they play in such a strong division with each of the other 4 teams likely to have winning seasons this year!
Boston Red Sox – Boston is projected to finish a little above .500 this season with a win total in the mid-80s. The Red Sox won 92 games last season but are stuck in a division that, outside of Baltimore, is filled with top competition. The concern for the Red Sox is with their bullpen but they are still a strong team in terms of their lineup and I will be looking for overs when the right pitching match-ups present themselves involving Boston and their opposition.
New York Yankees – The Yankees are expected to challenge win this division and get to a win total in the low-90s but the Rays and Jays are likely to have something to say about that. One of the two could emerge as a challenger to the Yankees absolutely. What would be a weakness with the big bankroll Yankees? It just seems that health issues creep on key players for the Yankees almost always. I do like their bullpen and overall this is a stacked team once again so I will be looking for value line spots to back them but those will be few and far between because they are usually a popular choice in the betting markets.
Tampa Bay Rays – The Rays should get into the upper-80s for a win total this season. Amazingly so often one of the lower payrolls in baseball but Tampa Bay still finds a way. They are so competitive. A small market team that is easy to like based on the competitive level they bring despite not having a lot of star power. The Rays won 100 games last season but the key arms of their 2021 rotation (Baz, Patino, McClanahan, Rasmussen) were guys without starting pitching experience at the MLB level and yet the Rays survived that. I am expecting a sophomore slump of sorts in that regard. This is still a strong team but they will ended up in the mid to upper 80s for win total rather than near the century mark.
Toronto Blue Jays – The Blue Jays are expected to get into the low-90s for their win total this season. I like the fact that this team is so strong and continues to trend upwards and the young corps is growing up together in Toronto and it is building a solid clubhouse. That counts for sure and this team will challenge the Yankees for the top spot in the division. By the way, a quirky stat but certainly worth noting as this was over the course of the entire season last year: the Blue Jays were actually 2 games below .500 in night games but won 70% of day games last season on their way to a 91-win season. Keep an eye on that trend possibly continuing early on in 2022 as you look for spots to back or fade the Jays.