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American League West Betting Preview: Houston’s Continued Domination

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Calling all Major League Baseball fans! Oskeim Sports provides a detailed betting preview on the 2019 American League West division.

Be sure to check out Oskeim’s betting preview on the American League East and American League Central divisions!

American League West Betting Preview

The Houston Astros have dominated the division the last two seasons and are the odds on favorites to claim the division again in 2019. After consecutive 100-win seasons, the Astros are not without questions.

In fact, the pitching staff will have to make up for the loss of Charlie Morton and likely Dallas Keuchel via free agency and Lance McCullers Jr, who underwent Tommy John surgery. The rotation is still strong with Justin Verlander and Gerit Cole, with Wade Miley, Josh James, and Collin McHugh rounding it out.

At the plate, the Astros scored nearly 800 runs and hit 205 home runs a year ago. Alex Bergman lead the team with 31 home runs and Jose Altuve batted .316.

Ten players hit over 10 home runs and while Carlos Correa was one of them, he had an off-season batting just .239 with 15 home runs. A return to form, along with newly acquired Michael Brantley should bolster an already potent offense.

The A’s earned a wild-card berth last season after winning 97 games. They should be right in the mix again this season.

The Oakland Athletics surprised more than a few people on their way to 97 wins and a wild-card spot. They had a powerful lineup that produced 813 runs and 227 home runs.

Khris Davis led the attack with 48 home runs and 123 RBI. Matt Olson, Matt Chapman, Stephen Piscotty and Jed Lowrie all topped the 20 home run mark, making the entire lineup a nightmare for opposing pitchers.

Oakland was solid on the mound, with Sean Manaea leading the team in wins with 15 and a 3.59 ERA. However, Manaea will miss the entire season due to a shoulder injury, which required surgery.

That leaves Mike Fiers and Marco Estrada as the top two starters. The question is whether or not they and the likes of Frankie Montas, Paul Blackburn, and Daniel Mengden will be strong enough to lead the team back into the playoffs.

Los Angeles has arguably the best player in baseball in Mike Trout, therefore they can be considered in the mix. Justin Upton, Andrelton Simmons, Shohei Ohtani, Kole Calhoun, and veteran Albert Pujols all contribute to an attack that hit 214 home runs last season. As is with most teams, do the Angels have the pitching to keep pace?

Matt Harvey and Trevor Cahill were signed and will anchor the rotation that includes Andrew Heaney (team-leading 17 wins last season), Tyler Skaggs and Jaime Barria.

While the bullpen is solid, the key will be whether or not a disappointing group of starters can put it together.  Los Angeles has the offense to remain in contention, but a likely worn down pitching staff later in the year will hinder their chances. A .500 season appears to be the most likely bet for the Angels.

The Mariners scored only 677 runs last season and lost Nelson Cruz and Jean Segura via free agency. Newly acquired Edwin Encarnacion can pick up the slack and will be joined by Ryon Healy, Kyle Seager and Mitch Haniger who all hit over 20 home runs.

Wade LeBlanc lead a starting unit with a 3.72 ERA and Marco Gonzales lead and an otherwise underwhelming pitching staff with 13 wins. A .500 season will be an accomplishment for the 2019 season.

The Rangers appear destined for the basement in the AL West this season. With the retirement of Adrian Beltre, a complete revamping of the roster is likely to take place. Texas had a poor 4.92 ERA and hit only 2.40 last season.

Likely out of any playoff contention by July, the Rangers could trade some of their more talented players. Winners of just 67 games last season, a 100-loss season is not out of the question this year.

Thank you for visiting Oskeim’s blog and reading his betting preview on the American League West.