Chicago Cubs and 2023 MLB standings predictions

Washington Nationals v Chicago Cubs
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Aaron Judge, Marwin Gonzalez
New York Yankees v Texas Rangers - Game Two / New York Yankees/GettyImages

The American League East will feature some of the most potent lineups in baseball.

1. New York Yankees: 94-68

Will Aaron Judge break his own record? Not sure how likely that is, but the Bronx Bombers will be looking to be World Series contenders per usual. They made a big FA splash in All-Star pitcher Carlos Rodón, adding to a really good rotation of Gerrit Cole, Luis Severino, and Nestor Cortes. The lineup still features OF Giancarlo Stanton, 1B Anthony Rizzo, 2B Gleyber Torres, IF DJ LeMahieu, and 3B Josh Donaldson. Stanton and Rizzo are easy to slot in 25-30 homers with LeMahieu with a .350+ OBP. Torres brought the power back last year after losing it in 2021, but he can easily hit 25 homers and slug .450+. Not sure what Donaldson will bring at this point as he is aging and the numbers have dipped. Hard to not bet on the Yankees playing in October.

2. Toronto Blue Jays: 92-70

The Jays have some legit slugging power and have made a few solid additions. Vlad Jr. will be in the mix to win MVP and should get great power production from SS Bo Bichette, 3B Matt Chapman, and the newly acquired LF Daulton Varsho. The big question is, will George Springer be healthy? Last year he played 133 after missing most of 2021 and posted a 132 wRC+. The Jays will take that kind of season again. They added some veteran depth in 1B Brandon Belt and CF Kevin Kiermaier. They also added starting pitcher Chris Bassitt, who joins a rotation of Alex Manoah, Kevin Gausman, and José Berríos. This absolutely can make a run in October and do have a legit shot at even winning the East.

3. Baltimore Orioles: 87-75

An optimistic pick, the young O's showed a lot of promise last year winning 83 games. Rising star catcher Adley Rutschman made an immediate impact and the team found some swagger. The team was fifth-best defensively in UZR (Ultimate Zone Rating) and top-10 in DRS. They boast an outfield with RF Anthony Santander, CF Cedric Mullins, and LF Austin Hayes, all of which can hit for solid power. Mullins brings some nice speed too. They added veterans 2B Adam Frazier, SP Kyle Gibson, and C James McCann. This year we will get a look at the top prospect in baseball, Gunnar Henderson. The starting pitching is not incredible, but they have a good defense and a lot of exciting pieces around it.

Cannot fail to mention having MLB Pipeline's top farm system.

4. Tampa Bay Rays: 84-78

The Rays always find ways to build a competitive team. They added a starter Zach Eflin to a rotation that features All-Star Shane McClanahan and a now-healthy Tyler Glasnow. Their lineup is pretty much the same, built around young star SS Wander Franco. IF/OF Brandon Lowe, LF Randy Arozarena, and IF Isaac Paredes can hit 20+ homers and 1B Yandy Diaz is great at getting on base. This team can definitely make its way to the postseason again, it can lie on how well they compete against the top of their division and how healthy they stay.

5. Boston Red Sox: 81-81

It's been an interesting offseason, to say the least for the Sox. They are coming off a 78-win season while losing some notable talent...but also making a few additions. Their biggest losses included IF Xander Bogaerts, P Rich Hill, DH J.D. Martinez, and P Nathan Eovaldi. Boston did make the moves to add Japanese star OF Masataka Yoshida, 3B Justin Turner, P Corey Kluber, CP Kenley Jansen, OF Adam Duvall, and P Adalberto Mondesi. Meanwhile, 3B Rafael Devers, IF Enrique Hernández, and OF Alex Verdugo will still be around. They have talented pieces, but some of their additions include older players at the end of their careers i.e. Turner, Kluber, and Jansen. The starting pitching has some question marks as well. They can compete, just not sure they are nearly as good as the other teams.