MLB AMERICAN LEAGUE CONTENDERS

Title: MLB American League contenders
Author: David Marotta
Date: April 6, 2022

Apr 2, 2022; Tampa, Florida, USA; New York Yankees center fielder Aaron Hicks (31) is congratulated by New York Yankees right fielder Aaron Judge (99) as he scores a run s2i against the Atlanta Braves during spring training at George M. Steinbrenner Field. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Here are the leading contenders for the American League Pennant, along with the odds according to BetMGM.

Toronto Blue Jays +450
Last season Toronto won 91 games but ended up being the team with the best record to not qualify for the postseason. Even though the Blue Jays lost some key players from last year’s squad, including Marcus Semien, Randal Grichuk, and Robbie Ray, the roster still has plenty of offensive firepower, led by triple crown threat Vladimir Guerrero. They also upgraded their bullpen, which was a weakness last season. Only time will tell if Toronto is worthy of being the AL favorite.

Houston Astros +475
The Astros are favored to win the American League West and will be in contention again for the AL crown. Houston lost Carlos Correa and Zack Greinke in free agency, but this team is still loaded. Houston led all of MLB in runs scored last season and returns seven of their top eight position players. Houston also re-signed Justin Verlander, who was impressive in Spring Training after missing the entire 2021 season.

New York Yankees +550
Every season is World Series or bust for the Yankees, and with the current roster built to win now, the trend of five straight playoff appearances should continue. The lineup is loaded, and the Bronx Bombers will head into the opening day with 16 pitchers, led by their ace Gerrit Cole.

Chicago White Sox +550
After losing their opening playoff series in consective years, the White Sox are favored to repeat as AL Central Division Champions, but with the current roster, the expectations are to win contend for the World Series crown. The White Sox are probably the most balanced amongst all the contenders. Chicago finished second in the AL in ERA last season.

Although they lost Carlos Rodon in free agency, with a rotation led by Dylan Cease, Lance Lynn, and Lucas Giolito, the White Sox will be a tough matchup for any team in the AL playoffs. Chicago’s offensive depth also rivals any team in the league,

Tampa Bay Rays +650
Regardless of what the roster looks like on paper, the Rays always find a way to contend. The Rays won 100 games during the regular season in 2021, and, with their young core still intact, Tampa Bay is a great value bet in what should be a competitive AL race.

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