Is AL West Best?

Posted on February 27th, 2014 by Matt

For years, the AL East has been considered the best division in baseball. After all, the Yankees and Red Sox are perennially quality teams, the Rays have been consistent for several years, and the Orioles and Blue Jays have also made moves to strengthen their position. However, with some free agent moves and young talent, the AL West might soon be considered the toughest division in the game.

Oakland Athletics

Having won the division two years in a row, the A’s still seem to somehow fly under the radar. They have an impressive minor league system which has been generating most of the talent that has led to their success. Also, some impressive trades and a couple of free agent signings have all combinedcespedes to make the A’s the leader in the West division. The next step for the Athletics is to parlay their regular season success into some postseason hardware.

Texas Rangers

Many people might point to the Rangers as the best team out west despite having finished runner up to Oakland two years in a row. The Rangers have done their best during this off-season to improve their team and catch the A’s – most notably, they have added Prince Fielder and Shin-Soo Choo to the lineup, although they also suffered the loss of closer Joe Nathan. The rotation is still anchored by ace Yu Darvish, and the Rangers look positioned for another quality season.

Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim

While the shine might have worn off of the free agent acquisitions of Albert Pujols and Josh Hamilton, the Angels still have a team with the potential to get back into the playoff conversation. Mike Trout might be the best player in all of baseball, and Jered Weaver is a legitimate ace pitcher when healthy. The Angels might need to find production from a couple more pieces to really contend with the Rangers and A’s, but they should not be overlooked.

Seattle Mariners

The Mariners have made the biggest splash of the off-season, pulling Robinson Cano away from New York with some $240 million. The question for the Mariners is whether or not that is enough to move up the standings and be a legitimate contender in 2014. The M’s already have excellent starting pitchers Felix Hernandez and Hisashi Iwakuma, and have been rumored to be the front runners for Masahiro Tanaka. With good performances from some young players like Brad Miller, Kyle Seager, Mike Zunino, Dustin Ackley, and Justin Smoak, the Mariners could surprise and be a major player in the 2014 pennant race.

Houston Astros

While the other four teams in the division appear to be playing for the present, the Astros seem to be more oriented toward their long-term future. However, that isn’t to say that Houston will remain out of the race for long. With an impressive farm system and very little in the way of long-term payroll commitments, the Astros could be on a faster-track to success than many observers would have guessed.

The Astros might be a year or two away from being a real contender, but a case could be made for any of the other four teams winning the division in 2014. For the runners-up, the wild card seems like a possible landing spot. With some free agent additions and plenty of young talent, the AL West just might be the division that rises above the rest in the coming season.



2009 Donruss Elite Extra Edition Auto Mike Trout #57 PSA 10 RC Angels  picture
2009 Donruss Elite Extra Edition Auto Mike Trout #57 PSA 10 RC Angels
$15000.0


2017 NBC SPORTS TV Used Shirt Jacket Oakland A's Lanyard Media Pass Jose Canseco picture
2017 NBC SPORTS TV Used Shirt Jacket Oakland A's Lanyard Media Pass Jose Canseco
$15000.0


NOLAN RYAN Rangers original oil painting by Hall of Fame artist Arthur K Miller picture
NOLAN RYAN Rangers original oil painting by Hall of Fame artist Arthur K Miller
$14999.0


1980 TOPPS RICKEY HENDERSON RC - RATED GEM MINT 10 - Oakland Athletics #482 picture
1980 TOPPS RICKEY HENDERSON RC - RATED GEM MINT 10 - Oakland Athletics #482
$14995.0


Rare Nolan Ryan Game Used Texas Rangers Final Season Goodman & Sons Jersey W/COA picture
Rare Nolan Ryan Game Used Texas Rangers Final Season Goodman & Sons Jersey W/COA
$12998.0


2014 Topps Chrome Derek Carr Red Refractor Auto Rookie #1/5 1/1 Oakland Raiders picture
2014 Topps Chrome Derek Carr Red Refractor Auto Rookie #1/5 1/1 Oakland Raiders
$12000.0


2001 Bowman Chrome Albert Pujols ROOKIE RC AUTO /500 #340 BGS 9 MINT Angels picture
2001 Bowman Chrome Albert Pujols ROOKIE RC AUTO /500 #340 BGS 9 MINT Angels
$11999.99


1969 Oakland A's Andersen Reggie Jackson Rookie Graded PSA 9 Pop 1 None Higher picture
1969 Oakland A's Andersen Reggie Jackson Rookie Graded PSA 9 Pop 1 None Higher
$10000.0


LA Tickets Kobe 81 Framed 1972 Lakers Kings Angels Kershaw-NO Staples Ctr RARE 2 picture
LA Tickets Kobe 81 Framed 1972 Lakers Kings Angels Kershaw-NO Staples Ctr RARE 2
$10000.0


JT Miller Signed New York Rangers 2016-2017 Season Game Used Hockey Stick picture
JT Miller Signed New York Rangers 2016-2017 Season Game Used Hockey Stick
$10000.0


Topps Museum Collection Mike Trout GAME USED ROOKIE LOGO LAUNDRY TAG 1/1 ANGELS picture
Topps Museum Collection Mike Trout GAME USED ROOKIE LOGO LAUNDRY TAG 1/1 ANGELS
$10000.0


GAME USED Jersey LANCASTER Barnstormers Jose Canseco Oakland A's 40/40 MVP 1988 picture
GAME USED Jersey LANCASTER Barnstormers Jose Canseco Oakland A's 40/40 MVP 1988
$10000.0


<< Previous Page    Next Page >>