Detroit Tigers: Assessing whether team can contend in next two seasons
By Ben Rosener
The state of the rest of the American League
If the 2017 season taught us anything in the American League it’s that the Wild Card picture in the junior circuit is incredibly jumbled and messy.
Moving forward, that’s probably going to be the case.
The Oakland Athletics and Chicago White Sox are both rebuilding.
Kansas City could join them in starting over this offseason with first baseman Eric Hosmer, center fielder Lorenzo Cain, third baseman Mike Moustakas, shortstop Alcides Escobar and starting pitcher Jason Vargas hitting the free agent market this winter.
The Baltimore Orioles could be in a similar position next season as Adam Jones, Manny Machado, Zach Britton and Brad Brach are all slated to become free agents following the 2018 campaign.
There’s also Anaheim and Seattle. Two teams that while talented, finished two and six games below .500 respectively.
However, both are propped up by uncharacteristically thin farm systems that may produce little in the way of impact talent in the coming seasons.
In other words, pretty much any team could have a shot in the Wild Card if they string together some positive results, receive some unexpected contributions and generally punch above their respective weight like the Twins did this past season.