AL East Division Preview for MLB 2023
Baltimore Orioles – A lot of people are down on the Orioles and really expecting them to drop this season. While I do have concerns about this pitching staff, if they surprise then the Orioles can again surprise because they have some good young players and also added some veteran pieces. This team strong up the middle including behind the plate which is so important and helps pitchers too.
Boston Red Sox – This is a team continuing to trend the wrong direction and it looks like it could get worse before it gets better. For starters, this is a tough division. But then the loss of Bogaerts and the overall roster turnover and it really feels like the Red Sox organization is entering a transitional period. If they get miracle health with their pitching staff they might surprise but I doubt that. Too many question marks with position players and with the pitching staff. This team likely to finish in the cellar and struggle.
New York Yankees – The Yankees look stacked. New York looks so strong and there is just not much more to say here. Love ‘em or hate ‘em, they have used their resources to build quite the formidable team now and seem to be set in all the key facets of the game. Their farm system has been pillaged due to trades, etc. but that will affect them a little further down the line. Right now it is a “win now” mentality and that should continue to pay dividends this season.
Tampa Bay Rays – The opposite of the Yankees, the small-market Rays continue to get it done and could challenge for the #2 spot in the division behind New York. Tampa Bay has a solid pitching staff and, if healthy, they could be a key catalyst for a rather strong season again more similar to the 2021 and 2020 results than the 2022 season. I am not crazy about their batting lineup but pitching, including bullpen, is a real strength in Tampa with the all-important health factor being a key of course. Glasnow is a top pitcher that is going to be out until sometime in May it appears. That is a key injury issue for sure but as long as it does not go far beyond the current early May projection things should be fine overall for Tampa.
Toronto Blue Jays – Blue Jays continue to be so close. Solid club that is just not quite elite yet and you wonder if they can push over the top this season. Maybe is a veteran leadership issue as this team has some young stars but I do expect another solid season for them but just don’t think they are going to be able to unseat the Yankees this season. Pretty solid pitching staff though and a lineup with dangerous sticks again means they challenge the Rays for playing 2nd fiddle to Yankees this season.