2013 Season Preview: American League East

rays

The East is kind of a mess. Boston is coming off a terrible year and a payroll reset. The Orioles had a magical 2012 and did nothing to bolster their club. The Yankees are dropping like flies. The Rays retooled. The Blue Jays got a makeover. Everything is different, but everything also looks kind of similar.

Like, I mean, could any of these teams win 90 and any of them win 75? I think so.

As always, here is how STT sees it. [Division Rank. Team (2013 W/L Prediction, 2013 Preseason Power Ranking)]

5. Boston Red Sox (77-85, 20)

If everything goes right for the Sox, I can totally see them making a run at a wild card spot, I just don’t feel as confident that they can put it all together as I do about the other teams in the division. They added a lot of players who could provide value, but they didn’t add a lot in terms of difference makers. Dempster and Victorino and Napoli will make the team better, but there are a lot of injury question marks and starting pitchers who I just don’t know how to project. The Sox have talent, I’m just not sure how it’s going to manifest. They won’t be an embarrassment but I don’t expect them in the playoffs.

4. Baltimore Orioles (82-80, 17)

The O’s had a great run in 2012 but 93 wins is a tough act to follow and some modest regression is bound to happen. They also failed to do anything to upgrade the roster that might have given them a shot to repeat last season. This is an average club in a deep division.

3. New York Yankees (85-77, 12)

The Yankees are pinching pennies ahead of the 2014 luxury tax threshold and it’s showing on their 2013 roster. They got outbid by the Pirates on a catcher and can probably only count on superstar performance from Robinson Cano. But that doesn’t mean they don’t have good players like Jeter, Teixeira, and Sabathia or good supporting pieces like Ichiro and Brett Gardner. The Yankees aren’t what they once were, but they’re still a very good team.

2. Toronto Blue Jays (87-75, 8)

The Jays added a ton of talent this offseason including Melky Cabrera, Jose Reyes, Josh Johnson, Mark Buehrle, and R.A. Dickey. That’s a lot of wins added to the roster in addition to hopefully an additional half season from Jose Bautista and a bounce back from Rickey Romero. If everything goes right, the Jays could be one of the best teams in the AL. But I’m a bit more conservative on my prediction for them because they added a lot of talent, but it isn’t without question marks. If they play to their potential and stay healthy, they’re a force, but there is fragility among these players. The Jays should be contenders, but I’m not buying them as favorites.

1. Tampa Bay Rays (91-71, 3)

The Rays have insane pitching depth, the best manager and front office in the game, and have a history of replacing players who have become too expensive. I see no reason why that won’t work out for them again in 2013 as they ride one of the game’s best five staffs to a division title and a playoff berth.

AL East Cy Young: Matt Moore

AL East MVP: Evan Longoria

Most Potentially Pivotal Player: Josh Johnson

Storyline that Will Surprise Us: Ichiro will return to form

Boldest of the Bold: The Yankees will seriously listen to trade offers for either Cano or Granderson in July.

3 responses

  1. […] listed MVP’s of each division which included Evan Longoria, Justin Verlander, and Mike Trout. Logic dictates that I have to pick one of those three players […]

  2. Hey there! This is kind of off topic but I need some help from an established blog.
    Is it hard to set up your own blog? I’m not very techincal but I can figure things out pretty fast. I’m thinking about creating my own but I’m not sure where to start. Do you have any points or suggestions? Thank you

  3. […] I thought would go wrong with the Blue Jays did early in the season, but they’ve started to get healthy and get back […]

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