American League Championship 2019 Preview: Predictions and Odds

How will the 2019 American League Championship Be Crowned?

After the season ends in late September, the American and National League will hold their own playoffs to determine a champion for each league that will go on to play for the World Series.

If there are no division ties that need to be settled, then the American League’s first playoff game is the Wild Card contest to be held on Wednesday, Oct. 2nd, 2019.

Once the Wild Card winner is determined then that team will travel to the home ballpark of the American League team with the best regular season record to begin a best of five-game series known as the Division Series.

At the same time that series starts, another series between the remaining two division winners in the American League will also get underway. Both AL Division Series will open on Friday, October 4th.

The winners of the two Division Series advance to the American League Championship Series, a best-of-7 series that will start on Saturday, October 12th at the home park of the AL team with the better overall regular season record.

Once a National and American League Champion is crowned, then both teams square off in the best-of-7 World Series that will begin on Tuesday, October 22nd. The team with the better regular season record will have home field advantage throughout the series.

Who are the Favorites to Win the 2019 American League Title?

Houston Astros

Even though the Houston Astros and New York Yankees are very close in the race for the top spot in the American League, bettors are preferring Houston to win the league championship.

That reaction comes from Houston’s moves at the trade deadline with the acquisition of ace Zack Greinke from Arizona and several other smaller moves that bolstered the back end of the rotation and bullpen.

With core members of their offense, shortstop Carlos Correa and second baseman Jose Altuve, back and healthy, the Astros lineup has been firing on all cylinders, scoring 94 runs in their first 11 games in August.

Three veteran aces lead the Houston rotation as teams will have to face strikeout artists Justin Verlander and Gerrit Cole, along with Greinke. The Astros’ top three starters will be tough for any team to overcome in a series of any length.

Much like the Yankees, the Astros are dominant at home, boasting a current record of 43-15, buoyed in part by their mediocre AL West division mates. According to a recent chat on ESPN, Houston will be helped by the second easiest remaining schedule in baseball.

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New York Yankees

The Yankees have been one of the best stories in all of baseball this year by overcoming so many injuries on their way to the best record in the American League as of August 14th.

Offensively, the Yankees strike a lot of fear into the hearts and minds of opposing pitchers. With Aaron Judge leading the way, the Yankees are hitting a lot of long balls, a feature that will play well in October.

If there is a major fault with the Yankees, it has to be the starting pitching. New York did nothing at the deadline to bolster a staff that has been mediocre all season.

For New York to eclipse Houston, they will need stellar performances from veteran starters like Masahiro Tanaka and James Paxton, two pitchers who have struggled to find their groove in 2019.

Problems with the rotation aside, the bullpen is one of the strongest in MLB headed by fireballing closer Aroldis Chapman.

Look for manager Aaron Boone to rely heavily on the bullpen to close out games where the Yankees have the early lead once the playoffs begin.

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Cleveland Indians

The Indians are the hottest team in the American League and they are doing this without a couple of their best starting pitchers.

Cleveland won’t overwhelm teams with a flashy lineup or a dominating staff, but they are very efficient at scoring runs and holding teams from doing the same.

With ace Corey Kluber about to return from a freak injury earlier in the year, the Indians could be primed to pull away from the Twins and take the AL Central title.

If Cleveland does take over the Central race, expect their odds to drop slightly, so there’s a hint of value in their current figure for bettors.

As the playoff push heads into September, it would be wise to pay close attention to the return of Kluber and how Cleveland navigates one of the easier schedules in the American League down the stretch.

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Minnesota Twins

No team in the history of baseball has hit home runs with the frequency that the 2019 Minnesota Twins are currently doing to opposing pitchers.

Not only have they already broken the team record for long balls in a season, but the Twins are on pace to break MLB’s all-time record set last year by the New York Yankees.

Yes, the Twins pitching staff leaves a lot to be desired, but the Minnesota lineup is so talented that any spot in the lineup could deliver a game-winning home run.

Although they are in a battle for the AL Central title with Cleveland, it would be smart not to discount the Twins’ AL chances if they can get into an ‘anything could happen’ division series.

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BetStars NJ+1000

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Tampa Bay Rays

Although they have no shot of catching the Yankees in the AL East, Tampa Bay could be a dangerous team if they can get out of the Wild Card game with a victory.

The Rays are a very solid baseball team that can defend as well as other team in baseball.

With a capable lineup and a talented young pitching staff, Tampa Bay will need a little help to get into a division series but if they do, they could cause trouble for one of the big teams in the American League.

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Who Will Win the 2019 American League Championship?

The American League title should come down to either Houston or New York, but no one is ready to throw Cleveland and Minnesota out of the mix just yet.

The current advantage has to go to Houston due to the addition of Greinke to the already spectacular rotation and the lack of moves by the New York front office.

However, if the Indians get back a healthy and efficient Kluber, that could be enough to insert Cleveland among the Astros and Yankees in the race for the AL title.

2019 American League Championship Winner Odds

If you are in New Jersey you can bet on your favorites to win the American League Championship with 888Sport and BetStars NJ. Find the latest odds below. Good luck!

American League Winner888Sport NJ BetStars NJ
Houston Astros+100-118
New York Yankees+220+200
Cleveland Indians+800+2000
Minnesota Twins+800+900
Tampa Bay Rays+1200+1300
Oakland Athletics+2500+2000
Boston Red Sox+4000+2500
Texas Rangers+8000+12500
Los Angeles Angels+10000+17500
Chicago White Sox+10000+150000
Detroit Tigers+250000+500000
Kansas City Royals+250000+500000
Seattle Mariners+250000+500000
Toronto Blue Jays+250000+500000

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