AMERICAN LEAGUE WEST (in projected order of end)
Mar 22, 2019; West Palm Seashore, FL, USA; Houston Astros 2nd baseman Jose Altuve (27) throws to first base and retires New York Mets catcher Wilson Ramos (no longer pictured) in the second one inning of a spring coaching recreation at FITTEAM Ballpark of the Palm Seashores. Necessary Credit score: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports activities
To check: 103-59 in 2018, first in AL West, misplaced in ALCS
What’s new: Additions come with OF Michael Brantley, C Robinson Chirinos and LHP Wade Miley. Long gone are C Brian McCann, UT Marwin Gonzalez, DH Evan Gattis, LHP Dallas Keuchel and RHP Charlie Morton.
Reason for worry: Flexible RHP Lance McCullers Jr. is out for the 2019 season after desiring Tommy John surgical treatment, and previous most sensible right-handed pitching prospect Francis Martes is suspended 80 video games after checking out sure for a performance-enhancing substance. Ace RHPs Justin Verlander and Gerrit Cole are every on course to develop into unfastened brokers after the season.
Projecting 2019: The Astros are as soon as once more a few of the favorites within the AL, returning a star-studded roster that may have the benefit of the addition of three-time All-Big name Brantley. With Verlander main the team of workers, pitching stays a energy, and most sensible right-handed pitching prospect Forrest Whitley isn’t some distance from including himself to the combo. Outfield prospect Kyle Tucker may stick within the majors after making his debut final season, including to a core that won a long-term spice up within the type of 3B Alex Bregman’s six-year, $100 million extension.
LOS ANGELES ANGELS
To check: 80-82 in 2018, fourth in AL West
What’s new: Additions come with C Jonathan Lucroy, 1B Justin Bour, RHPs Matt Harvey, Cody Allen and Trevor Cahill and new supervisor Brad Ausmus. Long gone are RHP Garrett Richards and previous skipper Mike Scioscia.
Reason for worry: DH Shohei Ohtani (Tommy John surgical treatment) gained’t be in a position for Opening Day along with no longer having the ability to pitch all season. LHPs Tyler Skaggs (forearm) and Andrew Heaney (elbow) stay injury-prone this spring.
Projecting 2019: The Scioscia generation has come to an lead to Los Angeles, however the Angels made positive the Mike Trout generation will final the majority of the celebrity outfielder’s occupation with a record-shattering, 12-year deal price greater than $430 million signed this spring. Trout stays a perennial MVP candidate able to maintaining the Angels in placing distance within the AL just about himself. He’ll quickly get lend a hand within the type of most sensible outfield prospect Jo Adell, who reached Double-A final season.
To check: 97-65, 2nd in AL West, misplaced AL wild-card recreation
What’s new: Additions come with UT Jurickson Profar, OF Robbie Grossman and RHP Marco Estrada. Long gone are C Jonathan Lucroy, 2B Jed Lowrie and RHPs Trevor Cahill and Jeurys Familia.
Reason for worry: LHP Sean Manaea’s 2019 season is in query as he continues to get better from arthroscopic shoulder surgical treatment. In the meantime, 1B Matt Olson (29 HRs in 2018) will pass over the early portion of the season after present process surgical treatment to deal with a hand fracture.
Projecting 2019: It’s tricky to gauge expectancies for the A’s, who surprised baseball with a playoff run final season after 3 instantly last-place finishes within the AL West. The roster stays probably the most most cost-effective in baseball and quick on celebrity energy, however 3B Matt Chapman is poised for superstardom after proving he’s greater than a glove on the sizzling nook final season. Left-handed pitching prospect A.J. Puk’s anticipated go back from Tommy John surgical treatment may be offering a shiny glance into Oakland’s long term, although the Athletics’ inventory took successful when 2018 first-rounder Kyler Murray introduced he intends to play within the NFL over MLB.
To check: 89-73, 3rd in AL West
What’s new: Additions come with C Omar Narvaez, 1B/DH Edwin Encarnacion, 1B/OF Jay Bruce, SS Tim Beckham, OFs Domingo Santana and Mallex Smith, LHP Yusei Kikuchi and RHP Hunter Strickland. Long gone are 2B Robinson Cano, DH Nelson Cruz, SS Jean Segura, RHP Edwin Diaz, C Mike Zunino and LHP James Paxton.
Reason for worry: RHP Felix Hernandez couldn’t cling a rotation spot final season; he’ll make $27 million within the ultimate yr of his contract in 2019. The lack of Cano, Cruz and Segura isn’t offset by way of the additions of Encarnacion and Bruce, and Diaz stored 64 p.c of the group’s wins final season.
Projecting 2019: After years of showing poised to finish their long playoff drought, the Mariners blew it up this offseason and seem headed towards a rebuild. Seattle may leap again briefly, although, as key items bought in trades — comparable to LHP Justus Sheffield and RHP Justin Dunn — aren’t some distance from the majors. Including former most sensible shortstop prospect J.P. Crawford from the Phillies provides Seattle a wild card because it appears to be like to determine a brand new core.
To check: 67-95, 5th in AL West
What’s new: Additions come with C Jeff Mathis, 3B Asdrubal Cabrera, OF Hunter Pence, RHPs Lance Lynn and Shelby Miller, LHP Drew Smyly and first-time supervisor Chris Woodward. Long gone are 3B Adrian Beltre, C Robinson Chirinos, UT Jurickson Profar and RHP Bartolo Colon.
Reason for worry: Texas dedicated extra mistakes than every other AL group final season, and overcoming that flaw doesn’t determine to get any more uncomplicated with Beltre’s retirement. In the back of LHP Mike Minor, the Rangers’ rotation is a number of query marks.
Projecting 2019: The Rangers are making issues attention-grabbing with gambles on palms comparable to Smyly and Miller, however it’s most likely the group will as soon as once more battle this season. Additional building from RF Nomar Mazara and chopping down LF Joey Gallo’s lofty strikeout totals might be key spaces of center of attention as Texas continues its rebuild, which isn’t anticipated to jump ahead as not one of the group’s most sensible potentialities have performed past Double-A.
—Through Kyle Brasseur, Box Stage Media