The American League had a productive off-season, in which they added two of the best players in the game, Albert Pujols & Prince Fielder. If you rank the best teams in the Majors, most of the best teams are in the AL. You have the mainstays like the Yankees, Red Sox, and Rangers, but you have up-and-coming teams like the Royals and Blue Jays. This league has a nice combination of young talent and established veterans. The teams are deep and can pick guys out of their farm system to fill any holes, which is a huge luxury. The AL isn’t all great, since the Orioles and Twins expected to have bad seasons. Which teams will make the playoffs? Who will win the AL Cy Young and MVP awards? Will a mid-season call-up win the Rookie Of The Year?
AL Cy Young – Jared Weaver
AL Rookie Of The Year – Jacob Turner
AL MVP – Robinson Cano
New York Yankees – 97-65
Boston Red Sox – 95-67
Toronto Blue Jays – 85-77
Tampa Bay Rays – 84-81
Baltimore Orioles – 60-102
The biggest surprise here is that the Rays are in 4th place. I think the Blue Jays are a better team this year and will be able to win close games. This is not a knock on the Rays, it is more about how much I like Toronto. The Red Sox will bounce back and contend with the Yankees for the division crown.
Detroit Tigers – 99-63
Kansas City Royals – 82-81
Chicago White Sox – 80-82
Cleveland Indians – 74-88
Minnesota Twins – 59-103
The Tigers are going to be a beast this year and they will run away with the division. There will be a crowded middle of the division, in which I like the Royals young roster to finally start to peak. The Indians will come back to life and fall down a few spots. The White Sox and Twins will end up about where they were at the end of 2011 season.
Texas Rangers – 94-68
L.A. Angels – 92-70
Oakland A’s – 76-86
Seattle Mariners – 70-92
The Rangers and Angels made some moves this off-season and this race will be cut-throat. Pujols and C.J. Wilson will help the Angels, but the Rangers return a great team that nearly won the World Series. Yoenis Cespedes will help Oakland, but they are still a work in progress. I expect the Mariners to sell off a few pieces at the trading deadline and keep adding young talent.
AL Wild Card – Red Sox & Angels
AL Champions – Los Angeles Angels
They don’t have the best rotation 1 thru 5, but I really like a short 3-man rotation in the playoffs. This is one of the many cases where a wild-card winner will make the World Series.
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