AL East Round Up: Head to Head Edition


Welcome to this week’s AL East Round Up. The regular season’s final games are being played today and the division has been locked up by the Baltimore Orioles. I thought it would be a good idea to take a look at how the supposed ‘toughest division in pro sports’ panned out. How did each team fair within the division? In the run of the season, each team would have played the other 4 teams a total of 19 times. While the Red Sox and Yankees still have one more head to head match up, as do the Blue Jays and Orioles, let’s take a look at the numbers.


Baltimore Orioles- 95-66
New York Yankees- 83-78 (12GB)
Toronto Blue Jays- 83-78 (12GB)
Tamp Bay Rays- 77-84 (18GB)
Boston Red Sox- 71-90 (24GB)

Orioles vs AL East

VS Yankees: 13-6
VS Blue Jays: 10-8
VS Rays: 12-7
VS Red Sox: 11-8

The Orioles played well against the rest of the division. They really took advantage of teams having down years. If you want to win a division, you have to make sure you really squash the teams who are struggling. With the Yankees more dedicated to the Derek Jeter Retirement Show this year than winning, The Orioles took advantage and stomped them. Perhaps the biggest surprise is that the Blue Jays appeared to be the toughest opponent for the O’s. Not that that really matters as the O’s were clearly the better team in this division. The above records show it, but you could tell just by watching them play. It’ll be interesting to see if this deep team can make a deep run in October.

Yankees vs AL East

VS Orioles 6-13
VS Blue Jays 11-8
VS Rays 8-11
VS Red Sox 11-7

The Yankees were an even bigger disappointment to me this year than they should have been. I really thought that all the financial might they threw around last winter was going to at least make the season interesting. I never thought they’d win the division, but I at least thought they’d make it interesting. We knew that the aging lineup would be a huge question mark. But, what I didn’t expect was for them to focus more on Jeter’s Farewell than actually winning.

I don’t care what anyone says, this season was a write off a long time ago for the boys in pinstripes. They would rather keep running out the iconic Yankee than actually win games. One could argue this cost them…a lot. Yes, he’s a first ballot Hall of Famer. Yes, he’s baseball royalty. But, that would have been true last year. Why let him destroy a season? His skills have diminished. His bat has diminished. If he had retired last year, he’d have still been able to have his travelling show, he’d be a year closer to HoF eligibility and the Yankees may have been able to contend this year. Just saying.

Within the division, the Yankees just about broke even. That’s not good enough if you want to contend.

Blue Jays vs AL East

VS Orioles 8-10
VS Yankees 8-11
VS Rays 11-8
VS Red Sox 12-7

The Blue Jays played really well against the Rays and Red Sox this year. But, they are supposed to. The two teams are having bad years. Worse than the Blue Jays, even. You’re SUPPOSED to beat them when they’re down. Period. While it is not surprise how the Jays made out against the division leading O’s, it is a surprise to see that they didn’t really take advantage of a distracted Yankee team. The Blue Jays season comes down to a few more wins here, a few more series wins there. The worry is that next year, these teams that struggled will not be so down in the dumps. Have the Blue Jays missed their window of opportunity?

Rays VS AL East

VS Orioles 7-12
VS Yankees 8-11
VS Blue Jays 8-11
VS Red Sox 10-9

The Rays have amassed a losing record within their own division. That is NOT going to help you win anything. Even the great Joe Maddon cannot pull a rabbit out of that hat. The only bright spot is that they took the edge over the Red Sox. Barely. With a healthy squad next year, perhaps the Rays can avoid an early slump. It’ll be an interesting challenge as they enter their first full year without David Price. In fact, as of right now, they will start 2015 without a proven stud to lead them. They’ll have to rely on Evan Longoria to carry this team.

Red Sox VS Al East

VS Orioles 8-11
VS Yankees 7-11
VS Blue Jays 7-12
VS Rays 9-10

Wow. The Red Sox do not have a winning record against any division opponent. That would explain why they are 24 games back. It was very clear that the Sox were out of it this summer. However, MLB still gets what it wants every time the Yankees and Red Sox play each other. Do we really think it is a coincidence that the season ends with the rivals playing each other? Anyway, the Soc are bond to improve on this situation. They have made off pretty well during their in season re-build. I am always in awe of their ability to take on huge contracts and then unload them and restock their team. Landing Yoenis Cespedes was HUGE (just ask Oakland). Then they went out and got Rusney Castillo. The Sox are just fine, thank you very much. Just wait until Jon Lester comes back this off season.