Are the Tampa Bay Rays the betting favorite to win the AL East?

by Clayton Richer | Posted on Tuesday, April 23rd, 2019
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The American League East division wears down opponents as the Boston Red Sox and New York Yankees continually bully the opposition into remission with their robust offenses and lucrative payrolls. However, after 24 games it the Tampa Bays Rays sitting atop the division attempting to assert themselves as contenders.

The Rays are an unorthodox, well-coached squad that think outside the box to secure victories on the diamond. Tampa Bay was the first team to employ the “opener” to shore up their rotation coupled with the talents of Blake Snell and Tyler Glasnow.

On the offensive, Austin Meadows and Tommy Pham have been beasts in the east stirring the Rays proverbial drink. Even the most seasoned gambler at Chumba Casino would not have predicted the success the Rays are enjoying thus far in the 2019 campaign.

The New York Yankees are three games out of first place which is a small miracle considering the onslaught of injuries they have experienced. The likes of Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton, and Luis Severino are just a few of the dozen or so starters shelved on the disabled list.

The Boston Red Sox are actually in fourth place in the division behind the Toronto Blue Jays in the standings. The World Series hangover has been in full effect early-on as Chris Sale and company have struggled mightily to find their mojo. Mookie Betts is hitting a meager .239 with 16 strikeouts, that is not a typo folks. Betts has stumbled out of the gate and has struggled to find any consistency thus far.

The Red Sox are actually just a half-game ahead of the cellar dweller Orioles for dibs on the basement in the AL East. Absolutely nobody saw that coming prior to the season commencing as the squad is essentially the same from last season minus closer Craig Kimbrel.

Time will tell if the Rays can keep it up, but for now, they look like the real deal as they attempt to prove they are contenders, not pretenders.

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Clayton Richer
About the Author

Clayton Richer is an MLB scribe from north of the border with a slight bias for the Toronto Blue Jays. Clayton has also been the shop-keeper at Baseball Hot Corner since the sites inception in 2012. Follow and interact with Clayton on Twitter @MLBHotCorner or @ClaytonRicher

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