Oddsmakers have pegged the New York Yankees as the consensus favorite to win the AL Pennant this season at 8/5 odds. The Yankees’ young stars — Aaron Judge, Gleyber Torres, and Gary “Kraken” Sanchez — have yet to play in the World Series together, but the Baby Bombers are the top favorites to win the championship.
The Yankees are also 4/1 odds to win the 2020 World Series, according to a recent update by William Hill.
The biggest threat to the Yankees are the Minnesota Twins. Led by the Bomba Squad, the Twins out-slugged the Bronx Bombers last season. But for some unknown reason, the Twins can’t defeat the Yankees in the postseason. The Yanks always seem to be the team that knocks the Twins out of the playoffs.
2020 AL PENNANT ODDS
NY Yankees 8/5
Houston Astros 7/2
Minnesota Twins 8/1
Tampa Rays 8/1
Cleveland Indians 12/1
Oakland A’s 12/1
Chicago White Sox 15/1
LA Angels 15/1
Boston Red Sox 15/1
Toronto Blue Jays 30/1
Texas Rangers 30/1
Seattle Mariners 60/1
Kansas City Royals 100/1
Detroit Tigers 100/1
Baltimore Orioles 100/1
The Houston Astros are still reeling from the fallout of the cheating scandal that rocked baseball and destroyed the legitimacy of their championship run in 2017. The coronavirus outbreak knocked the Astros cheating scandal off the front page, and the pandemic diluted the chatter on social media. But just because the public is focused on other things, doesn’t mean that teams and players forgot. Everyone will be gunning for the Astros this season. If there’s any team to fade in 2020, it’s the Astros.
AL East: Baby Bombers Time
The Yankees upgraded their starting pitching staff in pursuit of the AL Pennant. CC Sabathia retired, but they added former Astros ace Gerrit Cole. The Yanks have one of the deadliest bullpens in the league, and manager Aaron Boone has never been shy to go to his pen as early as the fourth inning.
The young stars, the so-called Baby Bombers, are seeking their first taste of the World Series limelight. The delayed season gave Judge time to heal a weird rib fracture that he suffered late last season. Shortstop Gleyber Torres put his name in the record books alongside Yankees legends like Joe DiMaggio and Mickey Mantle. And when the Kraken gets hot, look out. Catcher Gary Sanchez jacked several monstrous shots over the last two seasons. It says something when he’s hit dingers farther than Judge and Giancarlo Stanton.
The Tampa Bay Rays aren’t freaking out about playing without a crowd because they drew the worst attendance in the AL last season. If anything, the Rays might actually have a psychological edge in that department, only because they’re used to having no fan support. The Rays are 6/1 odds to win the AL East behind the Yankees, but they’ll be slugging it out for one of the wild-card spots. You can find the Rays at 8/1 odds to win the AL Pennant outright.
The Boston Red Sox lost two of their top players, Mookie Betts and David Price, in a blockbuster trade with the LA Dodgers. Looks like the Sox are in rebuilding mode this season.
The Baltimore Orioles are so bad and the organization is so cheap, it’s not even worth wasting any time to fluff up their anemic chances of actually winning the AL Pennant at 100/1 long-shot odds.
AL Central: Fear the Bomba Squad
The Minnesota Twins and Cleveland Indians will battle it out for supremacy in the AL Central. The Twins seem like the runaway pick (currently 3/5 odds at William Hill) to win another AL Central division title for Rocco Baldelli.
The Twins, led by the Bomba Squad, are a team on the rise, so long as they don’t meet the Yankees in the postseason. For some mystical and mathematical reason, the Twins can’t beat those damn Yankees in October. The Twins are 8/1 odds to win the AL Pennant. Maybe they can get lucky and someone else will upset the Yankees in the ALDS. That seems to be the only way they can skip October games in the Bronx.
The Cleveland Indians are 12/1 odds to take down the AL Pennant. Terry Francona’s team is at 3/1 odds to knock off the Twins and win the division.
The Detroit Tigers, were horrendous last season, but they recently selected Spencer Torkelson (righty 1B/3B) with the #1 pick in the MLB Draft. Let’s see how fast the kid can make it to the show.
AL West: A’s Surprise, Astros Shame
The AL West lacks a legit contender this season, aside from the scandalous Houston Astros. That also makes them ripe for a potential upset. Which of the teams out west can be a bona fide sleeper pick?
The Oakland A’s, at 12/1 odds to win the AL Pennant, are the best of a mediocre bunch of teams in the AL West. The “Moneyball” philosophy keeps them competitive against richer, bigger-market teams, but it best works in the regular season. It doesn’t always translate into playoff wins.
The Texas Rangers have a new ballpark. That’s the kind of new juju that often inspires a team to make a run at a playoff berth. Globe Life Field looks amazing, with lots of nooks and crannies running along the outfield wall. It’s also shallow down the lines, but has a deep center field.
The Seattle Mariners jumped out to a sizzling start last season, but totally blew chunks for the rest of the summer. They’re loaded with a lot of up-and-coming prospects, but are still several key players away from becoming a contender.
Meanwhile, the Astros are 7/2 odds to win the AL Pennant. They’re seeking their third pennant since 2017 and their third trip to the World Series in the last four seasons. They’ll have to figure out who will replace ace Gerrit Cole, who bolted in free agency for the Yankees. Future Hall of Fame hurler, Justin Verlander, injured his lat in spring training, and he’s no spring chicken.