Eight weeks have come and gone now in the 2019 MLB season. The AL East had a very eventful week, and it should continue to make for a great season.
AL East Standings
1) New York Yankees (28-17) (4-1 in week 8)
The Yankees had a great week in that they took two from the Orioles, and went 2-1 against Tampa Bay. The Yankees are definitely exceeding current expectations considering they’ve basically been the RailRiders for the past few weeks.
Gleyber Torres hit three home runs in a doubleheader against the Orioles, joining Joe DiMaggio as the only Yankees under 23 to have a three-homer day. This helped fuel the Yankees heading into a big series against Tampa, in which the Yankees ended up taking a rubber match 13-5 on Sunday afternoon. The first game of the series ended with them erasing a 3-1 lead on a Gio Urshela walk-off.
2) Tampa Bay Rays (27-17) (3-2 in week 8)
The Rays opened the week shutting out the Marlins twice. The Rays’ pitching staff did a great job holding the Marlins from scoring, and it was even more helpful since the Rays only scored five runs over those two games.
They went on to face the injured Yankees, and they took one game by a score of 2-1. The Rays are going to want to start scoring more runs if they want to help out their above-average pitching staff.
3) Boston Red Sox (24-22) (2-3 in week 8)
The Red Sox had a tough schedule this week, taking on the Rockies and Astros. None of the games were blowouts, and the Red Sox had about the best possible 2-3 week a team could have. The defending champs started out having a rough year, but are now right back in the division race. Who knows where they will go from here?
4) Toronto Blue Jays (19-27) (3-3 in week 8)
Toronto tied both of their series against the Giants and White Sox. The biggest story of the week for the team is Vlad Guerrero Jr. He hit his first four big league home runs this week, and this is huge for him because of all the early criticism he faced.
Trent Thornton also had a great week on the mound, throwing 11 2/3 innings giving up just three earned runs. There is a lot of upside to the rookie right-hander, and Toronto fans should be excited about him.
5) Baltimore Orioles (15-31) (1-5 in week 8)
The Orioles got swept in a doubleheader against the Yankees, along with dropping three out of four to Cleveland. This is more of what people expected to happen in Baltimore compared to their near .500 start to the season.
The Orioles are clearly rebuilding, and it will take some drastic measures for this team to crawl out of the huge hole they’re in. However, this season is a good opportunity for the Orioles to give some of their minor league players a shot to see what they bring to the table.
Team of the Week- New York Yankees
The Yankees are this week’s team of the week. They only dropped one of their five games by a score of 2-1. They are also doing this as one of the most injured teams in all of sports. Players like Aaron Hicks are starting to come back, so things should only get better from here for the Yankees.
Player of the Week
Pitcher- Chris Sale, Boston Red Sox
The hard-throwing southpaw threw 12 1/3 innings this week against two of the best offenses in baseball. He gave up five earned runs while striking out 27, 17 coming in just one outing. Lack of control cut him short against a tough Houston team where he went 5 1/3 striking out 10. Sale had a great week, even though he didn’t get much run support.
Hitter- Vladimir Guerrero Jr, Toronto Blue Jays
It was only a matter of time until the Blue Jays third basemen broke out into the majors. He hit four home runs while batting .333 on the week. This is the Vlad that baseball fans expected to see, and many were short tempered with him after he began the season in a slump
1) Vlad Guerrero Jr. is not a bust.
2) The Orioles are back to normal.
3) The Rays should look to add a bat to their lineup if they want to stay in the AL East race.
Feature Image Courtesy of azdailysun.com
P.S. Thank you to Max Rayman for the series idea, check out his page here: https://thegamehaus.com/author/max-rayman/.