Sweet crack of the bat, baseball’s back! Smell the fresh cut grass! The MLB kicks off its grueling 162 game season Sunday with three thrilling matchups: Yankees-Rays, Diamondbacks-Giants, and the 100000000th opening day version of Cubs-Cardinals. Seriously, who picks these games? Anyways, this is one of the most anticipated seasons ever, with the Cubs and Indians no longer perennial losers, the Astros looking ready to roll, and perennial powers like the Yankees and Red Sox looking ready to make the AL East Great Again.
AMERICAN LEAGUE EAST:
This may be the strongest division in baseball, with three teams capable of winning the pennant and another capable of at least a wild card spot. The Papi-less Red Sox made the move of the offseason pulling the trigger on the Chris Sale deal, and while the Blue Jays lost Edwin to free agency, they still have plenty of pop in their bats. Down in Baltimore, the O’s should crush enough homers to stay competitive, and the Baby Bombers should give the Yankees a push towards contention. Sorry Rays. Maybe some other time.
AMERICAN LEAGUE CENTRAL:
The defending AL Pennant holders should have no problems handling this division again, provided their star pitching stays healthy. Kluber, Carrasco, Salazar, Miller, Allen are all integral; where they go, the Indians go this season. The White Sox look to be primed for the future, acquiring Moncada and Kopech to begin what seems like a painful rebuild. The Tigers should compete for a Wild Card as long as Verlander pitches like he did last year, while the Royals look real far off from two years ago, especially with Wade Davis onto greener pastures. Who knows with the Twins; they just kinda suck.
AMERICAN LEAGUE WEST: