3. Tampa Bay Rays
The Tampa Bay Rays are the third biggest threat to the New York Yankees winning the 2020 World Series. Being in the AL East, the Rays have the chance to end the Yankees World Series hopes before the postseason even starts.
The Rays finished the 2019 season four games short of winning 100 games as they went 96-66 which was good enough for a wild card berth. They wound up beating Oakland in the Wild Card game before losing the ALDS in five games against the cheatin’ Houston Astros.
This offseason, Tampa didn’t really make any big splashes, but kind of just stuck with the team they had. The biggest move Tampa made was a trade with the Padres where they got Hunter Renfroe and Xavier Edwards in exchange for Tommy Pham and Jake Cronenworth.
Another trade the Rays made was getting Jose Martinez who will likely be their starting designated hitter this season. Martinez is a 1B/DH who the Rays got from St. Louis alongside Randy Arozarena and a draft pick in exchange for prospects Matthew Liberatore and Edgardo Rodriguez plus a draft pick.
With that, here is what the Rays lineup will likely look like on Opening Day:
- P: Charlie Morton
- C: Mike Zunino
- 1B: Ji-Man Choi
- 2B: Brandon Lowe
- SS: Willy Adames
- 3B: Yandy Diaz
- OF: Hunter Renfroe
- OF: Austin Meadows
- OF: Kevin Kiermaier
- DH: Jose Martinez
This is a darn good lineup and some years it would be good enough to win the AL East. Looking at the roster comparisons between Tampa and Yankees, the Bombers are in a far better position and if all goes right, they should win the AL East. But that’s where the problem is, everything going right.
The Yankees had to deal with injury after injury, last season and because of it, they did not play a single game all season in which one of their primary players was not on the injured list. They are already starting the season without Hicks and James Paxton.
If that happens again this season, the Yankees might find themselves in some trouble as the Rays try to make a push towards their first AL East title since 2010.