1. New York Yankees (93-69) – The team improved their rotation, which should supplement their aging offense. They still have the firepower to compete for a few more years though.
2. Boston Red Sox (91-71) – Don’t be fooled, only a year ago this team was the talk of the league. If they get their ducks in a row, they could be just as good as we all thought.
3. Toronto Blue Jays (89-73) – This team has the potential to be scary. GM Alex Anthroplous knows what he is doing, and has the beginnings of a perennial contender.
4. Tampa Bay Rays (85-77) – Their pitching is the best in the division, but the real question is whether their offense has what it takes to compete again. If it does, they could win the division.
5. Baltimore Orioles (63-99) – Not even Buck Showalter can save this team. Expect OF Adam Jones to be sought after come the trade deadline. It’s time to strip down and rebuild.
1. Detroit Tigers (95-67) – Big additions this offseason added to an already potent lineup. Coupled with their outstanding starting pitching, this team could be tough to beat come October.
2. Kansas City Royals (81-81) – They are on the rise — finally. In a year or two, we could be seeing Kansas City’s royal blue in the playoffs…just not this year.
3. Minnesota Twins (80-82) – Last year they suffered some crippling injuries, but if they return to form this team could still make some noise.
4. Cleveland Indians (79-83) – They have some strong pieces in the rotation, and frankly they have a pretty decent lineup. But at the end of the day, they seem poised for disappointment.
5. Chicago White Sox (67-95) – Ozzie Guillen had the right idea and jumped off this sinking ship. Large contracts are dragging down this team, and until they expire the Sox won’t be competitive.
1. Los Angeles Angels (97-65) – The Angels are the team to beat in the AL, hands down. Their rotation is almost unhittable from top to bottom and Albert Pujols adds yet another slugger to an already devastating lineup.
2. Texas Rangers (94-68) – They will battle the Angels until the very end, but at the end of the day they just are not as good as their rivals. Yu Darvish should become a strong rotation piece though.
3. Seattle Mariners (68-94) – Jesus Montero will grow as their DH, as will their young starting pitching prospects, but growth usually doesn’t translate to wins. Give them a few years.
4. Oakland A’s (64-98) – Until they get a new stadium this team is not going anywhere but down. This was highlighted by their fire sale this season. San Jose, here they come.
1. Philadelphia Phillies (94-68) – The Phillies are getting older, and their stranglehold on the division should end within the next few seasons…but the end is nigh.
2. Washington Nationals (86-76) – The Nats made some strong additions — especially to their pitching staff — this offseason which should give them a needed push to be competitive.
3. Miami Marlins (82-80) – Even with their hideous new uniforms and strange centerfield decoration, the team screams disappointment. Too many hot heads being lead by a hot-headed manager never ends well.
4. Atlanta Braves (80-82) – This season won’t hold many tomahawk chops for the Braves, as their offense will ultimately lead to their demise in 2012.
5. New York Mets (75-87) – Another “wait ‘til next year” kind of year awaits the Mets. Though, next year could be brighter as some of the divisions most promising pitching prospects should see Citi Field at some point this season, giving fans hope for the future.
1. Cincinnati Reds (89-73) – Even without closer Ryan Madson, the Reds should have an easy time tackling this weak division.
2. St. Louis Cardinals (85-77) – The Cardinals lost Albert Pujols to free agency, which will dent not only their offense, but mentality heading into this season. They don’t have the pieces to repeat their crown.
3. Milwaukee Brewers (83-79) – The Brew Crew replaced Prince Fielder with Aramis Ramirez, which won’t be anything close to the production they are used to expecting.
4. Pittsburgh Pirates (70-92) – The Pirates are slowly but surely getting better. Their younger pieces are developing. Give them some time, they’ll make some noise.
5. Chicago Cubs (66-96) – Similarly to the Mets, the Cubs are rebuilding but wont admit it. Theo Epstien has a plan for the future and it will pay off…in five years.
6. Houston Astros (55-107) – The team’s last year playing NL baseball will not be pretty.
1. Arizona Diamondbacks (88-74) – This team is young, hungry and talented. If their pitching can produce like it did last year, they should easily take this division.
2. Los Angeles Dodgers (87-75) – The Dodgers should be better than everyone expects. The team’s solid offseason acquisitions, despite ownership struggles, patched holes across the board.
3. San Francisco Giants (83-79) – The Giants did not do much to replace their needs this offseason. To be competitive, the team needs a bounce back season from the aging Aubrey Huff.
4. Colorado Rockies (79-83) – The Rockies have some intriguing parts, but they won’t add up in the end. Other teams in the division are simply better equipped for the long haul.
5. San Diego Padres (70-92) – The Padres made a great deal in trading Mat Latos for a package of promising prospects, but they still need seasoning.