2010 AL East Preview, Betting Odds and Predictions
New York Yankees (-190 Odds to win American League East Division)
New York returns most of its key parts from last year’s title club. Veteran mainstays Hideki Matsui and Johnny Damon were not resigned. The Yankees are hoping that younger bats Curtis Granderson and Nick Johnson can offset the losses of Matsui and Damon. A deep rotation should be even better in 2010 with the addition of veteran right-hander Javier Vazquez.
Boston Red Sox (+210 Odds to win American League East Division)
After its biggest rival walked away with a championship in 2009, Boston promptly went out and became one of the most aggressive teams on the hot stove circuit during the winter. The Red Sox landed the top free agent starting pitcher on the market. John Lackey has joined Josh Beckett and Jon Lester to form an elite trio of starting hurlers. The everyday lineup has also been tweaked. Mike Cameron, Adrian Beltre and Marco Scutaro have been brought in. The Red Sox are hoping that this trio will be able to compensate for the loss of top slugger Jason Bay.
Tampa Bay Rays (+500 Odds to win American League East Division)
After posting consecutive winning campaigns for the first time in the history of the franchise, Tampa Bay should be a winner again in 2010. Few teams can approach the outstanding young talent of the Rays franchise. The rotation has plenty of depth. The hurlers at the back of the starting staff aren’t too far behind the top pitchers in the rotation. The front office addressed the weakness of the pitching staff from last season by bringing in Rafael Soriano to become the new closer. Evan Longoria, Carols Pena and Carl Crawford lead a strong offensive attack.
Baltimore Orioles (+7500 Odds to win American League East Division)
Baltimore fans have suffered through 12 straight losing seasons. The club has made some progress heading into 2010 but the strength at the top of the division could make it difficult for the Orioles to avoid another sub .500 season. The offense is capable behind young outfielders Nick Markakis and Adam Jones. Veterans Miguel Tejada and Garrett Atkins have been added to the lineup this season. The pitching staff is the main problem area. The unit has allowed more than 850 runs in each of the last four years. Solid veteran hurler Kevin Millwood should boost a rotation that has some question marks.
Toronto Blue Jays (+10000 Odds to win American League East Division)
After putting together three straight winning seasons from 2006-08, Toronto stumbled to a 75-87 mark last season. The offseason deal of franchise pitcher Roy Halladay to Philadelphia now leaves Toronto in an official rebuilding stage. The rotation is suspect heading into 2010 without its longtime ace. The offense appears to have a little more promise after the breakout years for 2B Aaron Hill and DH Adam Lind in 2009. The duo combined to hit 71 homers while driving in 222 runs last season.
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