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How the public is betting the AL East during Spring Training

The New York Yankees are big favorites in the American League East headed into the 2021 season. We break down how the public is betting the division.

New York Yankees relief pitcher Albert Abreu (84) delivers a pitch during the MLB Spring Training game between the Detroit Tigers and New York Yankees on March 1, 2021 at George M. Steinbrenner Field in Tampa, FL. Photo by Mark LoMoglio/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

The AL East looks destined to be a three-team race this summer between the New York Yankees, 2020 division champ Tampa Bay Rays and the upstart Toronto Blue Jays. However, the bettors see one team as a heavy favorite to prevail by the season’s end. Let’s discuss each AL East squad and how they are being viewed by those betting on DraftKings Sportsbook.

New York Yankees (-200)

The Yankees are the class of the division. They account for 70% of the bets and 50% of the handle. New York has a fearsome lineup, headed by Aaron Judge, Giancarlo Stanton and DJ LeMahieu. They will have one of the best offenses in MLB as long as their stars stay healthy, which has been an issue for the past couple of years. The Yankees have brought in Corey Kluber and Jameson Taillon to fortify their rotation behind Gerrit Cole.

Toronto Blue Jays (+350)

The Blue Jays have received 14% of the bets and 20% of the handle, the second-most of any team in this division. They boast a lineup that includes blossoming stars such as Vladimir Guerrero Jr., Cavan Biggio and Bo Bichette. That batting order will be even stronger this year following the offseason acquisitions of George Springer and Marcus Semien. The pitching staff remains a question mark in general for Toronto, but ace Hyun-jin Ryu had a very successful 2020, and rookie fire-baller Nate Pearson has a bright future.

Tampa Bay Rays (+350)

The Rays have the same odds as the Blue Jays but are receiving just 11% of the bets and 9% of the handle. They will be hard-pressed to repeat as division champions after trading away former Cy Young Award winner Blake Snell and seeing Charlie Morton walk in free agency. However, with youngsters such as Austin Meadows, Brandon Lowe, and last year’s postseason star, Randy Arozarena, at the top of their lineup, the Rays should still be competitive. Plus, we may soon see the MLB debut of Wander Franco, who is widely regarded as the best prospect in baseball.

Boston Red Sox (+2000)

The Red Sox account for 18% of the handle, but just 4% of the bets. Their lineup still contains some big bats such as Xander Bogaerts, Rafael Devers and J.D. Martinez. But the Red Sox didn’t do much in the offseason to upgrade a starting rotation that had the sixth-worst earned run average last season. However, the return of left-hander Eduardo Rodriguez should help. He didn’t play last year contracting COVID-19, which then led to the development of myocarditis.

Baltimore Orioles (+5200)

The O’s are the clear longshot in the AL East. They have only 3% of the handle and 2% of the Bets. Baltimore is heading into year five of their rebuild, which doesn’t seem to be anywhere near completion. Outfielder Austin Hays and first baseman Ryan Mountcastle are a couple young building blocks who the Orioles hope will continue to improve in 2021. Outfielder Trey Mancini’s comeback from colon cancer is one of the game’s best feel-good stories.

Here’s a look at the betting splits as they sit as we kick off Spring Training on March 1st for the 2021 MLB season.

AL East betting splits, March 1

Handle Rank Team Odds % of Handle % of Bets
Handle Rank Team Odds % of Handle % of Bets
1 NY Yankees -200 50% 70%
2 TOR Blue Jays +350 20% 14%
3 BOS Red Sox +2000 18% 4%
4 TB Rays +350 9% 11%
5 BAL Orioles +5200 3% 2%

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