MLB Predictions: American League


Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Chris Sale holds the ball during a mound conference in the third inning of the team’s baseball game against the Seattle Mariners, Thursday, March 28, 2019, in Seattle. Sale was pulled from the game after the inning.

By Jayce Eustice

It’s been almost five months since the Boston Red Sox downed the Los Angeles Dodgers in game five of the World Series and were crowned world champs. Since then many players have changed uniforms as the league kicks off a fresh season.

Former National Bryce Harper is now a Phillie. Former Dodger Manny Machado is now a Padre. Former Diamondback Paul Goldschmidt is now a Cardinal. The list goes on and on.

For some teams the feeling is World Series or bust while others are set up to contend for a playoff spot. For most fans the feeling of optimism is in the air.

With opening day in the rearview, here are my predictions for the 2019 Major League Baseball American League divisions.



American League East Champions: Boston Red Sox

The defending world champs seem like a lock for the postseason once again. After extending Chris Sale’s contract and suring up their bullpen Boston will take the division once again.

Reigning AL MVP Mookie Betts is just entering his prime as he looks to lead his team to a chance at back-to-back titles.

The AL East is a strong division but the Red Sox may just be the best team in baseball once again.


Second – New York Yankees: The Bronx bombers proved that they are a great team in 2018 by earning a postseason spot after putting up 100 wins.

In any other division the Yankees would be seen the leader, but they should be looking up at the Sox just like last season.

They swung and missed on Harper and Machado, put expect to see these sluggers back in the postseason looking for another title for their trophy case.


Third – Tampa Bay Rays: The Rays finished third in the AL East last year with 90 wins. The only problem is that two other teams in their division reached the century mark.

While Tampa Bay was sneaky good in 2018, opposing teams have a year of film to look at in hopes of beating their unique pitching situation.


Fourth – Toronto Blue Jays: It’s hard to get excited for a new year knowing that the best player in the franchise hasn’t played an inning of major league ball yet.

For Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and the Blue Jays this is the case.

Luckily for Toronto the historically bad Orioles should save them from a last place finish in keep them in the same spot as last year.


Fifth – Baltimore Orioles: Last year the Orioles were bad and this year they will probably be even worse.

Baltimore’s new Head Coach Brandon Hyde has his work cut out for him with a minor league roster at the big league level and almost no prospects close to contributing.

They were worst in the MLB last year and they haven’t made any moves to increase their standing.



American League Central Champions: Cleveland Indians

Cleveland is be back in the playoffs but not because of their continued improvements, but rather the lack of competition in the division

The Indians have strong pitching staff but their lineup’s inconsistency should be a cause for concern.

The White Sox will look to challenge them soon but they are still very young.


Second – Chicago White Sox: The young White Sox are another year closer to their potential. After finishing fourth in the division last year, they will jump up two spots to the second slot.

While they are still shy of actual contention, the White Sox have a huge upside and must continue to be patience with their developing prospects.


Third – Minnesota Twins: The Twins finished second in 2018 but should be passed by the up-and-coming White Sox.

Minnesota made some under the radar moves is picking up Nelson Cruz and Jake Odorizzi but the holes in their rosters are increasingly apparent.


Fourth – Detroit Tigers: Detroit has been stuck in mediocrity for a while now and that doesn’t look to be changing.

Even in the overall weak AL Central the Tigers will have trouble winning divisional games with a below-average pitching staff and an okay lineup. They should fall to the fourth spot.


Fifth – Kansas City Royals: Starting the season already knowing your best player is out for the year in Salvador Perez means is could be a long season in Kansas City.

The Royals are long removed from the 2015 World Series Champions and most the players on that roster are long-gone as well.

Kansas City struggled last season grabbing just 58 wins and that total may be hard to reach in 2019.



American League West Champions: Oakland Athletics

Oakland surprised pretty much everyone last season when they won 97 games and grabbed a wild card spot.

The Athletics have a very underrated roster and shored up their pitching staff by picking up veterans Mike Fiers and Joakim Soria.

Look for the Astros to take a step back after multiple deep playoff runs as Oakland takes the division title.


Second – Houston Astros: Houston’s roster is full for all-stars and cy young candidates. While they are a fantastic team, all the extra baseball they’ve had to play will eventually catch up to them.

The Astros will still end up in the playoffs, probably playing at home in the wild-card game. But for this year a second place finish will have to do.


Third – Los Angeles Angels: The Angels made a big splash of their own, extending the contract of baseball’s best, Mike Trout, by 12 years and $430 million.

Having Trout roaming the outfield won’t be enough for Los Angeles as their roster lacks a strong pitching staff and their lineup is full of bloated contracts and aging stars.


Fourth – Seattle Mariners: Seattle tends to keep themselves relevant for the majority of seasons, but after losing Cruz and signing aged all-stars in Jay Bruce and Edwin Encarnacion they will struggle in the top heavy division.

Felix Hernandez leads an underwhelming pitching staff and even he isn’t what he used to be. The Mariners look stuck in the middle of the division much like the Angels.


Fifth – Texas Rangers: The Rangers roster lacks star power. After Adrian Beltre retired, Texas filled his position with veteran Asdrubal Cabrera.

They finished last in the AL West in 2018 and with serious development from young players and an incredibly surprising pitching staff, they seem destined for the bottom once again.