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Blog Entry

AL West will be the new AL East

Posted on: February 13, 2012 6:23 pm
Edited on: February 13, 2012 6:41 pm
 


By Matt Snyder


The AL East has been pretty widely regarded as the best division in baseball for a while. And with good reason, as the numbers don't lie. In the past 15 years, the AL wild card has come from the AL East 11 times. The best record has also come from the AL East 11 times. The American League World Series representative has come from the AL East nine times, while the World Series champion was an AL East team six times. Also note the '96 Yankees won it all, 16 seasons ago. Simply, it's a dominant division.

But with the events of this offseason, we're liable to see a shift in power to the west coast. Monday's Yoenis Cespedes signing for the A's wasn't a seismic shift type deal, but it shows they're focusing on winning within the next four years. Also note that the extensions of general manager Billy Beane and club president Michael Crowley are a true sign the A's will eventually get their new stadium in San Jose. When that happens, they'll start to have some extra revenue. So things should be looking up for the A's in the next few years, right? Well, not so fast.

AL West offseason
In fact, the A's might be looking like the AL West's version of the Baltimore Orioles. Since 2000, the Orioles haven't finished better than third -- which happened only once -- and have come in last the past four seasons. They've also had a payroll of at least $72 million seven of the past 11 seasons. They aren't poor by any means. They just can't keep up in the monster of a division that is the AL East.

Let's see what's in store for the A's in the next decade or so, in terms of their divisional competition.

• The Angels have an owner who just shelled out over $300 million to land Albert Pujols and C.J. Wilson in free agency. It probably didn't seem like much of a big deal to Arte Moreno, considering he's looking at a local TV contract of 20 years for $3 billion. Plus, the Angels play in the mega-market that is Los Angeles. They aren't going away.

• The Rangers paid over $50 million just for the right to negotiate with Japanese phenom Yu Darvish and then paid him over $50 million more to sign. The have a front office and ownership group that can compete with anyone in terms of brains and most teams in terms of dollars. The Dallas area is a large market and the fan base is continuing to grow after two straight World Series appearances. They aren't going away, either.

• The Astros are moving to the American League West, and while it's gonna be a few years before they can compete, remember they have a new owner, Jim Crane, who likely didn't pay $680 million to own a doormat of a baseball team. Plus, Houston is one of the largest markets in America -- and the Astros had a nine-figure payroll in 2009. Don't discount how they'll play in this division come 2015 or 2016. They can spend, and will have to in order to keep up.

• The Mariners are in the 12th biggest market in MLB, which isn't bad at all. But they'd be at risk of falling far behind if not for a lucrative TV deal in their near future. Last week, a USA Today report noted the Mariners are among a handful of teams ready to cash in with a mega-TV deal like the Angels just did. Prior to the 2015 season, the Mariners can opt out of their current local TV deal with Root Sports and hit the open market. The Seattle Times also pointed out that the Mariners have trimmed their bottom line to the point that the only long-term investment is the reliable ace Felix Hernandez. So they could be positioning for a major strike within the next few years, after landing the aforementioned lucrative TV deal.

The process is going to be gradual, especially and obviously with the Mariners, Astros and A's.

Just don't be surprised if a decade from now the AL West is viewed as the best division in baseball. The resources are all falling into place for a westward move in the balance of league power.

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Comments

Since: Jan 13, 2008
Posted on: February 15, 2012 2:14 pm
 

AL West will be the new AL East

Guys:

I'm more than OK with the disagreements, but you might want to actually read the story before coming after the premise. I didn't say the AL East wasn't awesome in the past. I didn't say the AL East won't be the best division in baseball this season (it will) or even the next few. I'm talking about four, five, six years from now. If you are talking about the Mariners' offense now or spouting off stats about the past, you didn't read -- or didn't comprehend -- my points in the actual story.


Come on Matt you know most of them can't read or spell for that matter.



Since: Jun 3, 2010
Posted on: February 14, 2012 11:13 pm
 

AL West will be the new AL East

Guys:

I'm more than OK with the disagreements, but you might want to actually read the story before coming after the premise. I didn't say the AL East wasn't awesome in the past. I didn't say the AL East won't be the best division in baseball this season (it will) or even the next few. I'm talking about four, five, six years from now. If you are talking about the Mariners' offense now or spouting off stats about the past, you didn't read -- or didn't comprehend -- my points in the actual story.

- Matt



Since: Feb 16, 2008
Posted on: February 14, 2012 9:14 pm
 

AL West will be the new AL East

Sorry that was not 2 games but 72 games my bad



Since: Feb 16, 2008
Posted on: February 14, 2012 9:12 pm
 

AL West will be the new AL East

I agree with the East is the Beast even thou it came from Yank-me fan. The Soxs and are best friend Yank-me are the beasts, and the Rays and Blue Jays are strong and could easily compete for the West title. It takes more than Albert to win,if they had to play in the East they have what 2 games against NY,Bos,TB and Toronto they would be under .500 for sure I'm sure someone will say we beat this team and that team more but when you play those 4 teams for a solid month theyh will pound the Angels to hell. East Rules



Since: Dec 15, 2010
Posted on: February 14, 2012 5:50 pm
 

AL West will be the new AL East

what I think about this story.>>>ROFLMAO
CJ Wilson is a flash in the pan and the Angels need more then Pujols.
Rangers aint going anywhere
Seattle has some good pitching, but aside from Montero, where is their offense? Their offense reminds me of that Julia Roberst movie..."Sleeping in Seattle"The Yankees own the rangers and , generally, the red sux own the Angels.
The shift isnt happening.
If it wasnt for the Yankees and the red sux, the Jays and the Rays would be fighting out every year for dominacy. they still give us trouble as they are 2 great teams.
The Orioles also were great once. Their owner needs to get kidnapped by aliens and replaced by one of them.
The East is the Beast,.



Since: Jan 27, 2009
Posted on: February 14, 2012 4:17 pm
 

AL West will be the new AL East

Can't live in the past, you have to look to the future. Go west young man!




Since: Oct 4, 2011
Posted on: February 14, 2012 9:32 am
 

AL West will be the new AL East

I don't know that the AL West has reached the level of success as the AL East, but what is up with making Pujols and Darvish look like presidential candidates?  Pujols looks like he's thanking his campaign supporters, and Darvish looks like a president throwing out the ceremonial first pitch.



Since: Mar 9, 2007
Posted on: February 14, 2012 8:56 am
 

AL West will be the new AL East

OOOO I forgot no WS in 1994. So that's 9 of 21 since 1990 and 12 of 21 overall for those keeping score. Next closest is the NL East with 4 titles and surprisingly the Marlins lead the charge there.



Since: Mar 9, 2007
Posted on: February 14, 2012 8:52 am
 

AL West will be the new AL East

Since 1990 the AL East has won 9 of 22 World Series titles and played in 12 of 22. Meanwhile the AL West has won a grand total of 1 World Series title since 1990.



Since: Feb 16, 2008
Posted on: February 13, 2012 11:12 pm
 

AL West will be the new AL East

Snyder what ever drugs your on you should stop because they are very strong AL West vs AL East get a grib on life. You really believe that I can't even talk about that. Yanks Soxs Rays Blue Jays vs A's Angels Rangers Mariners come on . Call 911 your nuts.


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