Area MLB teams Easing into 2023 Season, But Will New Schedule Help or Hinder Yankees, Mets, and Phillies?
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Are the 2023 Tampa Bay Rays the greatest Major League Baseball team to ever play the game?
Well, let’s not get carried away too much after a couple weeks of the season.
Maybe, though: who can know this early.
One thing the unbeaten start has done for the Rays is change the odds to win the American League East: Tampa Bay is now even with the New York Yankees at offer of +150 with betMGM sportsbook (via NJ.bet) to win the division.
One thing that MLB has done in 2023 to help better teams–like the ones that play in the AL East such as Tampa, New York, Toronto, and Baltimore–is changing the schedule to make it more evenly balanced. Instead of beating each other up 19 times each (76 total games), teams in each division will only play 13 games against each opponent (52 total games).
Instead of losing some of those games against very good opponents, the Rays can now go out and beat up on the weaker teams more often around the league. That is exactly what they did to start 10-0: Tampa swept Detroit, Washington, and Oakland.
Because of the new schedule, you are going to get more elite teams winning 100-plus games, and that should be very interesting for the playoff and division races.
What about the other area teams?
Well, both the New York Mets and Philadelphia Phillies have been beset by injuries that occurred before and early in the new season. But each has found a way to at least tread water in the NL East, especially with the team most people think is the best in baseball–the Atlanta Braves–in the division.
The Mets will spend money at some point to offset the injury to closer Edwin Diaz, and they will be in the race for the whole year, just like in 2022. The Phillies might be in a little more trouble, but both New York and Philadelphia might take a step back in 2023 thanks to their roster issues.
According to aGamble.com, gambling offers comparison website, both teams are outside the top three odds to win the National League pennant, with the Braves (odds of +300) and the two NL West powers, Los Angeles (odds of +325) and San Diego (odds of +550) ahead of them. But those teams have also gotten out of the gate slowly (well, every team has when you compare them to the Rays), and that has made the storylines very interesting.
It is very early in a 162-game campaign, so there is still very little to take from the first two weeks. But all three area teams should be in the mix until late September, just like in 2022.
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