As the second half of the MLB season gets into full swing, the Boston Red Sox have managed to maintain their slim lead atop the AL East standings. But with the Tampa Bay Rays poised to enjoy another strong second-half run, and the Toronto Blue Jays likely to get a lift from their imminent return to home turf at Rogers Centre, the race for this year’s AL East divisional pennant is far from over.
CanadianBettingSites takes a look at how the raise for the top of the AL East standings is shaping up, along with best bets for each team. Sports bettors looking to get in on MLB action for the first time can indepth MLB betting guide and reviews to learn all they need to know to get the best out of their baseball betting experience.
|Odds to Win AL East|
|Boston Red Sox||1.90||1.87||1.90|
|Tampa Bay Rays||2.75||2.50||2.75|
|Toronto Blue Jays||10.00||8.00||10.00|
|New York Yankees||8.50||10.00||8.50|
Red Sox Enjoy Surprising Turnaround
Winners of just 24 games a year ago, little was expected from the Boston Red Sox this time around. As the club surpassed last season’s win total in mid-May, observers continued to expect the Red Sox to tumble from their steady perch atop the AL East standings. But so far, Boston has managed to silence the naysayers by fending off the surging Tampa Bay Rays, and have won over the oddsmakers. Despite posting wins in just two of eight contests ahead of a two-game series with Toronto, a $20 bet at Betway (1.90) on Boston to claim their first AL East pennant since 2018 returns just $38.
Give it up for your 2021 Red Sox All-Stars! pic.twitter.com/aHmKM3wtcI
— Red Sox (@RedSox) July 14, 2021
Several members of the Red Sox squad that won the World Series just three years ago remain on the squad. Shortstop Xander Bogaerts has emerged as the offensive leader on this club and also represents Boston’s best hope on the odds to claim AL MVP honours, with a $20 bet at 10bet (36.00) returning $720.00
BEST SHORTSTOP IN THE LEAGUE XANDER BOGAERTS pic.twitter.com/YYtD1yQOJ1
— Jared Carrabis (@Jared_Carrabis) July 14, 2021
Nathan Eovaldi also sits just off the pace on the odds to win this year’s AL Cy Young Award, with a $20 bet at Spin Palace Sports producing a healthy $820 payout. The 31-year-old leads the Red Sox with nine wins this season, but his recent struggles have reflected the team’s own, picking up just three wins in his past seven starts. And it is that recent cooling off that has suddenly made a value bet on the Red Sox to fall from grace and miss the playoffs for a third straight year. With a $20 bet at Spin Palace Sports (5.00) generating a handsome $100 return.
Rays Remain in Striking Distance
While the Red Sox have faltered, the Rays have heated up, with a torrid 10-3 run lifting them to within a half-game of the top of the standings. However, value can still be found by sports bettors wagering on Tampa Bay repeating as division champs, with a $20 bet at 10bet (2.75) returning $55. The Rays also join Boston as the AL East teams sporting the best World Series, with a bet on either club at Sports Interaction (13.00) paying out $260.
The Tampa Bay Rays continue to find ways to win 🙌
— Elite Media Group (@TheEliteMedia_) July 21, 2021
The Rays have once again been a dominant team on home turf, racking up an MLB-leading 27 victories to date. The club has done an outstanding job of frustrating opposing batters and ranks second in the AL in team ERA. And while their odds to make the playoffs are short, with a $20 bet at Spin Palace Sports (1.28) paying just $25.60, it is toughing seeing this club missing the postseason.
Yankees, Orioles Faded
The same cannot be said for either the New York Yankees or Baltimore Orioles. Far closer to the basement in the MLB standings than the top of the AL East, there is nothing the club currently offers on the MLB futures. As for the Yankees, the early-season favourites have yet to enjoy a breakthrough and get set to embark on a crucial 10-game road trip, which starts in Boston on Thursday, with their pennant hopes fading.
Gerrit Cole, 99mph 🔥 pic.twitter.com/rfbAnFtAbL
— Rob Friedman (@PitchingNinja) July 18, 2021
The Yankees have struggled to maintain any consistency since mid-May, and have not been helped by injuries up and down the lineup. One bright spot for New York has been the play of Gerrit Cole. The Yankees ace has overcome a recent three-game losing streak with back-to-back wins and remains the man to beat as the favourite to win this year’s AL Cy Young Award.
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Blue Jays Well-Positioned Down the Stretch
The Toronto Blue Jays have experienced many of the same consistency issues as New York, and remain neck-and-neck in the standings. But unlike the Yankees, the Blue Jays are set to get a huge lift as they count the days until their return to Rogers Centre on July 30. While the Blue Jays have been warmly received in their temporary homes in Dunedin and Buffalo, they have not produced, struggling to maintain a .500 record.
15,000 fans will be allowed in stands at the Rogers Centre when the Blue Jays return to Toronto on July 30, team president Mark Shapiro says. That’s about 30% of the stadium’s capacity. Previous story on the Blue Jays’ return: https://t.co/L0rgNrKPX5
— CBC News Alerts (@CBCAlerts) July 17, 2021
The club has a golden opportunity to reverse that trend, with 37 of their final 62 games set to take place at Rogers Centre, including a potentially season-defining four-game set with the Red Sox early next month. Toronto has also maintained a winning pace over the past four weeks, going 15-9 over their past 24 contests, and can’t be ignored as a solid value bet to win the division, with a $20 bet at 10bet (10.00) currently offering a $200 payout.
Every Vladimir Guerrero Jr. homer is absolutely majestic.pic.twitter.com/De9qbYkoDw
— Baseball America (@BaseballAmerica) July 14, 2021
If the Blue Jays do make a late-season run, it will most certainly come as a result of Vladimir Guerrero Jr.’s continued outstanding play. Fresh off an MVP performance at this year’s MLB All-Star Game, Guerrero is still squarely in the running to win the Triple Crown with the best batting average, most home runs, and RBI. However, he continues to trail Shoei Ohtani, on the odds to win this year’s AL MVP and is worth getting in on, with a $20 bet at Spin Palace Sports (3.00) returning $60.