Major Baseball is well into its second half as the season starts to wind toward the home stretch of August and September.
Starting the season, the American League East was predicted by some bookmakers to be one of baseball’s strongest divisions.
The New York Yankees had spent millions during the offseason to reload their roster, the Boston Red Sox would be defending their World Series title, while the Tampa Bay Rays had been able to get great production from a roster that was made with limited flexibility financially.
However, the three teams have been mediocre at best and the Yankees are currently 25 to 1 on Bovada and sportsbook.com to win the World Series, while the Red Sox and Rays on topbet and betonline sit at 50 to 1.
Regardless of how well those three teams have played, the AL East should have a big finish since all five teams are close together. From top to bottom, the difference is just 8 games.
The Baltimore Orioles now lead the division and are 16 to 1 on the updated World Series futures. Baltimore is four games ahead of the Toronto Blue Jays and Yankees, 7 ½ in front of Boston and 8 in front of Tampa Bay.
Baltimore is now at 8 to 1 on the futures board to be the American League representative in the World Series. However, the Orioles will have to worry about the Yankees and Blue Jays, and the recently resurgent Red Sox who have won 8 of 10 and the Rays winners of 7 of 10.
The Red Sox and Rays have both been mentioned as teams that could sell top name players such as David Price from Tampa and Andrew Miller and Koji Uehera from Boston.
However, the Rays have won 14 of their past 18 and Boston 8 of its past 10. The upcoming 10 days might determine if either of the two teams takes a gamble to win the AL East or caves in and makes trades to rebuild for another season.
With Boston returning to its form of late last season and Tampa with one of the best managers in the league, it would not be shocking to see one of the two or both battling down to the wire at the end of September for the AL East title.
Current 2014 World Series Futures
LOS ANGELES DODGERS 9 to 2
OAKLAND A’S 9 to 2
DETROIT TIGERS 5 to 1
WASHINGTON NATIONALS 8 to 1
LOS ANGELES ANGELS 8 to 1
ST. LOUIS CARDINALS 10 to 1
SAN FRANCISCO GIANTS 12 to 1
ATLANTA BRAVES 16 to 1
BALTIMORE ORIOLES 16 to 1
TORONTO BLUE JAYS 20 to 1