For the second time in the last six seasons, the American League West division will be the home of the defending World Champions, the Houston Astros. Behind them? A group of teams that have all improved to varying degrees, setting this division up for the most parity it has seen in years in 2023.
The American League West is chock full of star power at the plate, on the mound and in the field. With all of this said, let’s get into some bold predictions for 2023.
One bold prediction for each American League West team in 2023
Houston Astros: They will be a Wild Card team this season
Let’s get spicy from the start: Houston will not repeat as American League West champions in 2023.
Even after adding Jose Abreu to their powerful lineup, Houston remains mostly unchanged from a year ago. And that’s perfectly fine (they’re the defending champions, after all!). They did lose Justin Verlander to the New York Mets and have not upgraded their long-standing weakness at catcher. Still, this team is potent and well-versed in championship pedigree. But is that enough to keep their grip on the AL West in 2023? With all the improvements made by other teams to close the gap on the Astros, it might not be.
Make no mistake, the Astros will have a prime opportunity to defend their title in the playoffs this season. They’ll probably do so as a Wild Card, though. We’ll say the first AL Wild Card, to be sure.