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View Full Version : I wanna talk about the AL East


blandman
01-25-2013, 02:34 PM
Jim Bowden had an article up today about the AL East saying it was essentially anybody's division to take.

I think the most interesting thing to look at this year is how the whole division seems to have turned upside down. It's entirely possible (maybe even likely) that the Yankees and Red Sox have to duke it out for last place. The Red Sox are relying on guys like Ryan Dempster and John Lackey in their rotation and the Yanks lost tons of offense with Arod's hip injury, Swisher departing, and Russell Martin saying bye (and worse options at catcher than even we're toting). They have no power in their corner outfield (Ichiro and Gardner) and a ton of injury prone guys they're counting on for big years (Texiera, Youk, Granderson). I can't remember the last time the Yanks were this vulnerable.

Meanwhile, Tampa is still throwing out some of the best prospects and second year guys in baseball every year, and Baltimore seems primed to follow that exact path. And Toronto....we all know how much they've improved this offseason. Should be a tremendous race out east.

doublem23
01-25-2013, 02:41 PM
My pre-Spring Training gut says:

Tampa Bay
New York
Toronto
Boston
Baltimore
The Rays pitching is legit. I think the Yankees hang around because that's just what they do. I like Toronto, but I have to see how they play as a team. The Red Sox, I don't know. And the Orioles were +11 wins over their Pythagorean W-L last year and only +7 in run differential. They're due to come back to Earth hard. But I could see them finish last in the division and still potentially win 80 games.

DumpJerry
01-25-2013, 02:45 PM
I can't remember the last time the Yanks were this vulnerable.
Were you around in the early 1990's? They were trying their hardest to give King George a coronary. 1990 is when we had the game (http://www.baseball-reference.com/boxes/CHA/CHA199007010.shtml) where Andy Hawkins no hit the White Sox, but the Sox won 4-0. Pretty embarrassing stuff.

From 1987-1992, the Yankees finished no higher than fourth place and as low as seventh.

DumpJerry
01-25-2013, 02:46 PM
My pre-Spring Training gut says:

Tampa Bay
New York
Toronto
Boston
Baltimore

The Rays pitching is legit. I think the Yankees hang around because that's just what they do. I like Toronto, but I have to see how they play as a team. The Red Sox, I don't know. And the Orioles were +11 wins over their Pythagorean W-L last year and only +7 in run differential. They're due to come back to Earth hard. But I could see them finish last in the division and still potentially win 80 games.
The Yankees will find a way to buy stud players from crap teams in July if they are within five games of .500.

doublem23
01-25-2013, 02:50 PM
The Yankees will find a way to buy stud players from crap teams in July if they are within five games of .500.

Maybe, but money isn't as valuable any more as prospects and the Yankees have an average to slightly-above average farm system.

http://riveraveblues.com/2013/01/yankees-rank-11th-in-baseball-americas-preliminary-farm-system-rankings-81273/

With the new Wild Card rules it further opens up the playoff races, there are more buyers and less sellers. We'll see how it plays out.

blandman
01-25-2013, 02:52 PM
My pre-Spring Training gut says:

Tampa Bay
New York
Toronto
Boston
Baltimore

The Rays pitching is legit. I think the Yankees hang around because that's just what they do. I like Toronto, but I have to see how they play as a team. The Red Sox, I don't know. And the Orioles were +11 wins over their Pythagorean W-L last year and only +7 in run differential. They're due to come back to Earth hard. But I could see them finish last in the division and still potentially win 80 games.

The thing about Baltimore is they're so young at so many positions, which could be good or bad, but the talent is undeniable. And they've got a bevy of guys coming up. And don't forget Manny Machado. They only got a bit of him at the end of last year. At the end of this year, he might be the best SS in baseball. Dude can flat out rake.

The Yankees will find a way to buy stud players from crap teams in July if they are within five games of .500.

Their system is a lot more dry than it used to be. They don't have any MLB ready talent waiting for the first time in a long time.

RKMeibalane
01-25-2013, 03:01 PM
Were you around in the early 1990's? They were trying their hardest to give King George a coronary. 1990 is when we had the game (http://www.baseball-reference.com/boxes/CHA/CHA199007010.shtml) where Andy Hawkins no hit the White Sox, but the Sox won 4-0. Pretty embarrassing stuff.

From 1987-1992, the Yankees finished no higher than fourth place and as low as seventh.

Actually, they were trying to give Gene Michael a coronary, as King George was suspended for much of that time.

Lip Man 1
01-25-2013, 03:27 PM
I don't know if Baltimore is as good as they played last year or not. My gut tells me they aren't. How many extra inning games did they win in a row? Something like 18?...that's so far beyond normal as to make me think that simply won't happen again.

Lip

SoxNation05
01-25-2013, 05:00 PM
Baltimore has to be consensus number 5 in the East based on pitching alone.

I think the Rays are the best team in that division. The team that is really messing up my picks is the Jays. They have all these new pieces and I liked a lot of their moves but you can't be sure how those players will play together.

I really believe this divsion will just beat the puss out of eachother and prevent anyone from really running away with it.

While I don't think the Orioles will finish over .500, it will be very interesting knowing every one of these teams have the talent to finish over .500.

palehozenychicty
01-27-2013, 12:33 AM
It's definitely a lot more evenly matched than in the past. I think either the Rays or Jays will come out on top. Tampa has the best pitching on paper and Toronto has the most balanced team, barring injury.

The Yankees still have lefty power for that right field porch. They also have a great bullpen. Teams don't fear ARod. He can no longer turn a good inside fastball around. I see them hanging around, but I would be stunned if they win the division again.

The Carmines will be a little better. I think Bobby Valentine was poison from the second management considered him for the job. But their pitching staff is not good enough. I see a fourth consecutive year with no playoffs for the Local 9.

Baltimore is that one team which I thought should have overpaid for a top starter like Greinke. Then once you bring up Bundy, I think the entire staff would have rounded out. They have enough hitting to contend. I think they'll be tough again. People are doubting them. Buck has the players' respect. That goes a long way for their young talent.

WLL1855
01-27-2013, 09:51 AM
For what it is worth, I just got back from Vegas and some sports books had Toronto at 4/1 for the World Series.

The same place had the Sox at 22/1 and the Cubs at 20/1 so who the heck knows.

Viva Medias B's
01-27-2013, 11:37 AM
For what it is worth, I just got back from Vegas and some sports books had Toronto at 4/1 for the World Series.

The same place had the Sox at 22/1 and the Cubs at 20/1 so who the heck knows.

We've got worse odds than the Cubs? Or are the Cubs at 20-1 because their fans keep foolishly putting money on them in Vegas?

WLL1855
01-27-2013, 12:50 PM
We've got worse odds than the Cubs? Or are the Cubs at 20-1 because their fans keep foolishly putting money on them in Vegas?

I'd guess it is because Cubs fans will put money down regardless of how terrible their team is expected to be.

blandman
01-27-2013, 02:27 PM
We've got worse odds than the Cubs? Or are the Cubs at 20-1 because their fans keep foolishly putting money on them in Vegas?

Their division is like 50 times easier to win. Sure, we have a much better team. But because of the Tigers we're essentially competing with the Rangers, A's, Angels, and all five teams out east for two playoff spots. There's probably a dozen teams in the AL better than anyone in the NL Central. Their odds and our odds are both pretty close to even because of this.

BleacherBandit
01-27-2013, 03:04 PM
As someone who hasn't been following this offseason with any particularity, please tell me how the Rays have more offense and/or pitching than the Blue Jays?

I thought the Marlins trade / picking up RA Dickey made Toronto the clear pick for '13.

DSpivack
01-27-2013, 04:17 PM
As someone who hasn't been following this offseason with any particularity, please tell me how the Rays have more offense and/or pitching than the Blue Jays?

I thought the Marlins trade / picking up RA Dickey made Toronto the clear pick for '13.

We were talking about the Jays a bit last night after Soxfest, and I completely forgot that they traded for the knuckleballer. Johnson-Dickey-Buehrle. Not bad.

SoxSpeed22
01-27-2013, 04:45 PM
Tampa has the best pitcher in David Price. They also have more upside in their starters with Moore, Hellickson Niemann, and Cobb. They also manage to get a lot out of no-name relief pitchers, while the Jays pen may be suspect. Injuries will have a pretty big say in the division. Baltimore was the healthiest team last year, but that could change. I think Tampa is the team to beat in the division.

SCCWS
01-27-2013, 04:49 PM
As someone who hasn't been following this offseason with any particularity, please tell me how the Rays have more offense and/or pitching than the Blue Jays?

I thought the Marlins trade / picking up RA Dickey made Toronto the clear pick for '13.

Don't forget, Red Sox stole Toronto's manager. They replaced him with a retread in John Gibbons who was .500 in his first 4 years.

mahagga73
02-08-2013, 05:17 PM
For what it is worth, I just got back from Vegas and some sports books had Toronto at 4/1 for the World Series.

The same place had the Sox at 22/1 and the Cubs at 20/1 so who the heck knows.
No way. The Cubs ahead of the Sox at 20/1, wow. I would take 20/1 odds the Cubs don't make the playoffs much less the series. The Rays will win the division at 95 wins, the Jays second with 93, Yankees 91 wins, Boston 89, Orioles 84. A very good division. I really think the White Sox are going to finish with about the same record as the team currently stands. Maybe a few more wins if the pitching holds. Maybe contend for the wild card and get it done this time. 4 to 1 odds might be a little high for the Jays.

PKalltheway
02-08-2013, 10:33 PM
There's probably a dozen teams in the AL better than anyone in the NL Central.

I'm not so sure about that. The Reds won 97 games last year, and have improved themselves (offensively, at least) by adding Shin-Soo Choo. Sure, they fell flat in the Division Series, but anything can happen in a short series. As it stands right now, I wouldn't take many AL teams over Cincinnati. Honestly, I'd say only Detroit and Washington have more complete teams in all of baseball at this point.

As far as the AL East goes, I wouldn't be surprised if only the division winner went to the playoffs. I can see three playoff teams coming out of the AL West, if only for the presence of the abysmal Astros. The A's, Angels and Rangers will all feast on them since they'll play them 18 times each.

DumpJerry
02-08-2013, 10:41 PM
There's probably a dozen teams in the AL better than anyone in the NL Central.
Last time I checked, a dozen=12. There are 15 teams in the AL.

A little over the top there, no?:rolleyes:

blandman
02-08-2013, 11:24 PM
I'm not so sure about that. The Reds won 97 games last year, and have improved themselves (offensively, at least) by adding Shin-Soo Choo. Sure, they fell flat in the Division Series, but anything can happen in a short series. As it stands right now, I wouldn't take many AL teams over Cincinnati. Honestly, I'd say only Detroit and Washington have more complete teams in all of baseball at this point.

As far as the AL East goes, I wouldn't be surprised if only the division winner went to the playoffs. I can see three playoff teams coming out of the AL West, if only for the presence of the abysmal Astros. The A's, Angels and Rangers will all feast on them since they'll play them 18 times each.

They had 36 games against the Cubs and Astros, and the teams in their division on the whole weren't all that good against the rest of the league.

Last time I checked, a dozen=12. There are 15 teams in the AL.

A little over the top there, no?:rolleyes:

Can't someone make a slight exageration and people still get the point? It's the weakest division in baseball, and the good teams are pretty average.

CoopaLoop
02-08-2013, 11:41 PM
Tampa has the best pitcher in David Price. They also have more upside in their starters with Moore, Hellickson Niemann, and Cobb. They also manage to get a lot out of no-name relief pitchers, while the Jays pen may be suspect. Injuries will have a pretty big say in the division. Baltimore was the healthiest team last year, but that could change. I think Tampa is the team to beat in the division.

I don't think there is a whole lot of upside in Hellickson and Niemann

Domeshot17
02-09-2013, 07:48 AM
No way. The Cubs ahead of the Sox at 20/1, wow. I would take 20/1 odds the Cubs don't make the playoffs much less the series. The Rays will win the division at 95 wins, the Jays second with 93, Yankees 91 wins, Boston 89, Orioles 84. A very good division. I really think the White Sox are going to finish with about the same record as the team currently stands. Maybe a few more wins if the pitching holds. Maybe contend for the wild card and get it done this time. 4 to 1 odds might be a little high for the Jays.


This is simply because the odds are influenced by the way people bet. It's trendy to throw a bet on the Cubs to win it all while in a Vegas. It will be atleast 40:1 by the all star break

DumpJerry
02-09-2013, 08:35 AM
Can't someone make a slight exageration and people still get the point? It's the weakest division in baseball, and the good teams are pretty average.
An argument losses credibility when there is hyperbole used to make the main point. If you said something along the lines of you think the NL Central is the weakest division, your point would not lose credibility. Keep in mind that before the season ends in October, proclamations of how "weak" one division is relative to another is 100% subjective. Most of the big teams are one injury away from mediocre season (lose the stud starter or best hitter, etc.). That cannot be predicted.

blandman
02-09-2013, 11:30 AM
An argument losses credibility when there is hyperbole used to make the main point. If you said something along the lines of you think the NL Central is the weakest division, your point would not lose credibility. Keep in mind that before the season ends in October, proclamations of how "weak" one division is relative to another is 100% subjective. Most of the big teams are one injury away from mediocre season (lose the stud starter or best hitter, etc.). That cannot be predicted.

The Central was the weakest division last year, not only because of the bottom, but because the top teams were pretty average. The Cards got obviously worse this offseason, and the division lost the Astros to beef up their records with. Both the Cards and Milwaukee have serious pitching problems, and the Reds have serious injury concerns in their rotation. Not to mention they're letting Broxton close now so that Chapman gets a shot at the rotation. It could work, but they are far from a sure thing (which is significant considering the dropoff in division talent after the Reds).

As for what you said about exaggeration, that's pretty dismissive and says a lot more about you than me. It was an obvious exaggeration. It didn't need to be called out. :rolleyes:

mzh
02-09-2013, 11:42 AM
The Central was the weakest division last year, not only because of the bottom, but because the top teams were pretty average. The Cards got obviously worse this offseason, and the division lost the Astros to beef up their records with. Both the Cards and Milwaukee have serious pitching problems, and the Reds have serious injury concerns in their rotation. Not to mention they're letting Broxton close now so that Chapman gets a shot at the rotation. It could work, but they are far from a sure thing (which is significant considering the dropoff in division talent after the Reds).

As for what you said about exaggeration, that's pretty dismissive and says a lot more about you than me. It was an obvious exaggeration. It didn't need to be called out. :rolleyes:
Hold on- the Reds rotation, which missed a total of 1 start last year, has injury concerns? And serious ones? Yeah there are concerns about how Chapman will hold up as a starter. At this point I'm surprised that you haven't been hired by any Major League teams given your apparently incontrovertible knowledge of who is a lock to get hurt. :rolleyes:

DumpJerry
02-09-2013, 12:47 PM
The Central was the weakest division last year, not only because of the bottom, but because the top teams were pretty average. The Cards got obviously worse this offseason, and the division lost the Astros to beef up their records with. Both the Cards and Milwaukee have serious pitching problems, and the Reds have serious injury concerns in their rotation. Not to mention they're letting Broxton close now so that Chapman gets a shot at the rotation. It could work, but they are far from a sure thing (which is significant considering the dropoff in division talent after the Reds).

As for what you said about exaggeration, that's pretty dismissive and says a lot more about you than me. It was an obvious exaggeration. It didn't need to be called out. :rolleyes:
When you buy Lottery tickets you pick your numbers, right? After all, that crystal ball of yours is amazingly accurate!

blandman
02-09-2013, 01:05 PM
Hold on- the Reds rotation, which missed a total of 1 start last year, has injury concerns? And serious ones? Yeah there are concerns about how Chapman will hold up as a starter. At this point I'm surprised that you haven't been hired by any Major League teams given your apparently incontrovertible knowledge of who is a lock to get hurt. :rolleyes:

:rolleyes: yourself. I didn't say anyone in particular was a lock to get hurt. I said they have injury concerns. Based on injuries to the rotation last year. Between Latos having a dead arm for half the season and Cueto having back spasms, I didn't think this would be quite as controversial.

When you buy Lottery tickets you pick your numbers, right? After all, that crystal ball of yours is amazingly accurate!

The Lotto asks me to divine the numbers before the drawings, actually.

PKalltheway
02-09-2013, 07:10 PM
:rolleyes: yourself. I didn't say anyone in particular was a lock to get hurt. I said they have injury concerns. Based on injuries to the rotation last year. Between Latos having a dead arm for half the season and Cueto having back spasms, I didn't think this would be quite as controversial.

"Injuries to the rotation last year?" Nobody in the rotation got hurt last year! They only missed one start! The only time someone got hurt was when Cueto went down with back spasms in Game 1 of the Division Series.

HomeFish
02-09-2013, 07:47 PM
The Yankees seem to always catch lightning in a bottle when it comes to old veterans: remember the year that Aaron Sele worked out for them?

Don't count them out.

doublem23
02-10-2013, 05:21 AM
The Yankees seem to always catch lightning in a bottle when it comes to old veterans: remember the year that Aaron Sele worked out for them?

Don't count them out.

Aaron Sele never pitched for the Yankees

DumpJerry
02-10-2013, 08:45 AM
Aaron Sele never pitched for the Yankees
He finished with the Mets, close enough.

The lightning the Mets caught was real bright. 3-2, 5.37 ERA in 53.2 innings.

TaylorStSox
02-10-2013, 02:05 PM
I don't know if Baltimore is as good as they played last year or not. My gut tells me they aren't. How many extra inning games did they win in a row? Something like 18?...that's so far beyond normal as to make me think that simply won't happen again.

Lip
You really hate Baltimore for some reason. They have a ton of young talent on that team. Their pitching is excellent. They're legit.

tstrike2000
02-10-2013, 04:15 PM
The Blue Jays were hanging around .500 last year and were close to leading the league in runs scored until Lawrie and Arencibia hit the DL. Soon after, they took a real nosedive when Bautista was lost for basically the rest of the season in July. If the offense can stay healthy, they're even more potent this year. The rotation looks good, but their bullpen was awful last season. That's the big question mark. Right now, I think it'll end up:

New York
Toronto
Tampa Bay
Baltimore
Boston

So hard to tell though because that division is stacked.

WLL1855
02-10-2013, 05:17 PM
You really hate Baltimore for some reason. They have a ton of young talent on that team. Their pitching is excellent. They're legit.

I don't hate Baltimore and I'm willing to concede they are an up and coming team in that division. I don't see them as the favorites though. They could catch lightning in a bottle but I think a wild card is more likely as their potental than anything. They could be anywhere from 2nd to 4th in that division though.

blandman
02-10-2013, 08:05 PM
"Injuries to the rotation last year?" Nobody in the rotation got hurt last year! They only missed one start! The only time someone got hurt was when Cueto went down with back spasms in Game 1 of the Division Series.

Oh come on, that's semantics. Just because someone doesn't go on the DL doesn't mean they're not hurt. Latos admitted to pitching hurt for half the season!

DumpJerry
02-11-2013, 07:11 AM
Oh come on, that's semantics. Just because someone doesn't go on the DL doesn't mean they're not hurt. Latos admitted to pitching hurt for half the season!
Breaking news: 99% of the starting pitchers in MLB and MiLB play hurt after the first month or so of the season.

I guess all 30 teams are in trouble.

CoopaLoop
02-11-2013, 07:26 AM
Breaking news: 99% of the starting pitchers in MLB and MiLB play hurt after the first month or so of the season.

I guess all 30 teams are in trouble.

Weren't you the guy campaigning against hyperbole in this thread?

mahagga73
02-12-2013, 10:31 AM
Their division is like 50 times easier to win. Sure, we have a much better team. But because of the Tigers we're essentially competing with the Rangers, A's, Angels, and all five teams out east for two playoff spots. There's probably a dozen teams in the AL better than anyone in the NL Central. Their odds and our odds are both pretty close to even because of this.
How is their division easier to win? They have the Cardinals and Reds, 2 of the best teams in baseball in it.You must be out of your mind to say their are a dozen team in the AL better than the Reds and Cardinals. I don't know if you have noticed but the NL has pretty much won the World Series every year lately , and the Cardinals have as potent a lineup as just about anyone , and good pitching. Oh yeah, just won the series over Texas a couple years ago.

mahagga73
02-12-2013, 11:19 AM
I'm not so sure about that. The Reds won 97 games last year, and have improved themselves (offensively, at least) by adding Shin-Soo Choo. Sure, they fell flat in the Division Series, but anything can happen in a short series. As it stands right now, I wouldn't take many AL teams over Cincinnati. Honestly, I'd say only Detroit and Washington have more complete teams in all of baseball at this point.

As far as the AL East goes, I wouldn't be surprised if only the division winner went to the playoffs. I can see three playoff teams coming out of the AL West, if only for the presence of the abysmal Astros. The A's, Angels and Rangers will all feast on them since they'll play them 18 times each.
The Cardinals have a great lineup and solid pitching as well, and they have defeated the AL twice recently in the series. How a team like that gets no respect, with 2 rings, is mystifying.

SoxSpeed22
02-12-2013, 11:56 AM
I think the Reds might be one of the favorites to take it all this year, depending on the pen and how Chapman does as a starter. The Cardinals will have a tougher time without Carpenter, but they are still capable of making a run. Neither team has the Astros to pound on and build their record anymore, but can still do damage.
As far as our division goes, the Tigers will still be tough. They get Martinez back, but I think they might miss Young's bat more than they think, even if they won't miss his glove one bit. Nothing changes until we figure out how to beat those guys. KC might be tougher now that they finally have some starting pitching, but I'll believe it when I see it. Cleveland set themselves up with some nice pitching improvements, as did the Twins, so they could be spoilers. I think the NL Central is more top-heavy with WS contending teams, but top to bottom, I think the AL Central might be a little tougher.
Back to the topic, it was surprising to see that the Yankees didn't make any drastic moves, but Girardi knows how to handle those guys, they need their young pitchers to step up, but can still be dangerous.