We continue our predictions for the current MLB season by taking a look at the potential pennant winners. The last time out, we picked out the winners for each division. Now let’s take a look at who wins the bigger picture.

The American League is one of the two leagues that comprise the MLB. The winner of the American League Championship Series or the ALCS will go on to represent it in the World Series, facing off with the champions of the National League.

The AL champions have won 66 out of the 114 World Series since 1903, with the New York Yankees winning 27 of those. The Yankees have won a total of 40 AL titles while Philadelphia, Kansas City, and Oakland each have 14. The current AL champions are the Boston Red Sox who won their 14th AL pennant last season.

The Red Sox and Yankees were tied with the best odds to win the AL early in the year. But after a slow start and their continued struggles, the Red Sox have dropped significantly in the odds board.

Here are the odds to win the American League in 2019. Odds were taken from Titanbet as of 6/26/19:

Team Odds
New York Yankees +210
Houston Astros +240
Minnesota Twins +375
Boston Red Sox +750
Tampa Bay Rays +900
Cleveland Indians +2000
Texas Rangers +2000
Oakland Athletics +3300
Los Angeles Angels +6000
Chicago White Sox +7500
Seattle Mariners +100000
Toronto Blue Jays +100000
Kansas City Royals +200000
Detroit Tigers +200000
Baltimore Orioles +200000

Baseball Who Are The Favorites?

No team has been more successful than the New York Yankees who have won a total of 40 American League pennants since 1921.  The Yankees last won in 2009 when they defeated the Los Angeles Angels 4-2 in the 2009 American League Championship Series. This season, the Yankees have survived (?) a series of key injuries and have kept themselves in a position to still win the National League this season. New York has just gotten bombers Giancarlo Stanton and Aaron Judge back from injury and may be the deepest team in the Majors when complete. There is some concern on Stanton, again, as he suffered a knee injury during the Yankees’ game against the  Toronto Blue Jays on June 25th. An MRI has been scheduled and the Yankees’ hope that it’s not a serious injury.

As of June 25th, the Yankees are 51-28 and just one-half game behind the league-leading Minnesota Twins. New York and their rival Boston Red Sox went neck to neck in the early odds boards but with the Red Sox still struggling right, the Yankees are the top baseball betting favorites to win the American League in 2019.

The Houston Astros won a franchise record 103 games last season, their second straight 100-win season. They also won their second straight AL West Division title in 2018 while making it to the ALCS where they lost to the eventual champions Boston Red Sox in five games. This season, the Astros currently have the 3rd best record in the American League at 50-30 as of June 25th. Houston has a couple of key players currently on the injured list: George Springer and Carlos Correa. Despite that, they are 20 games above the .500 mark and have allowed the second-fewest runs in the AL so far at 311 which is only behind Tampa Bay’s 283. The Astros’ run differential of +99 runs is also the second highest in the league behind Tampa Bay.

Last year, the Minnesota Twins finished the season with a record of 78-87 and that’s the main reason why Manager and Hall of Famer Paul Molitor got the pink slip. Minnesota was 23rd in the majors with only 166 home runs for the entire season but they have turned it around by hitting already 147 homers in just 77 games, the best in the Major League so far this season. Nelson Cruz has been a nice free agent find with 13 home runs and 36 RBIs on the year while Mitch Garver has one of the best offensive catchers with 12 home runs and 31 RBIs this season. Minnesota’s pitching staff has a sub-4.00 ERA which is ranked 4th in the American League. The Twins’ 304 earned runs is also the 4th fewest allowed this season. As of June 25th, Minnesota has the best record in the AL at 51-27 and that’s even after going just 5-5 SU in their most recent 10 games.

The Boston Red Sox are the defending World Series champions but they have struggled to pick up win this season. The Red Sox are just 7th in the American League team standings and are 8.5 games behind the leader. The Boston offense hasn’t been much of a problem as their 435 runs scored this year ranks 5th in the AL however, the Red Sox are just in the middle of the AL pack in runs allowed at 380. The season is still far from being over but Boston’s odds are fast-fading in the sportsbooks.

Baseball Who Wins?

There is still plenty of baseball to be played and when you look at the current AL standings as of June 25, 2019, there is no clear leader in this League right now. The Twins are currently the league leaders followed by the Yankees and Astros. These three teams are separated by just two games and given the quality of these three squads, any one of them can win the American League.

But when you take a look at the teams right now, I think it’s Minnesota who is playing well up to this point in the season. Some would look at total runs scored while some others would look at runs allowed or ERA. But to me, the better gauge of a team’s performance during the season would be the run difference or the difference between runs scored and run allowed. That’s because this particular stat looks at the net performance of a team from both sides of the field.

Having said that, the Twins have the best run difference right now in the American League at +110. In fact, they are the only team in the AL to have a run difference of 100 or more runs and only the Twins and Dodgers in the whole of Major League baseball have a run difference of over +100. Also, the Twins have been Road Warriors this season with only 14 losses on the road, tied with the Yankees for fewest in the majors.

I still like the Yankees because as I said earlier, they may have the deepest line-up in the entire Majors. Their offensive potential is really very dangerous. But the most recent ( June 25th ) knee injury suffered by Giancarlo Stanton may be a problem for the Yankees in the long run. Prediction Minnesota Twins.

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