It has proved to be an interesting beginning for the AL East, with the Baltimore Orioles currently sitting at the top of the standings.  The Orioles have come out hitting with their newly improved batting lineup, and pitching surprisingly well with a rotation that was projected as the worst in the AL East.

It is, of course, only the first week of the season, but winning and losing streaks are important no matter when they happen.

The Boston Red Sox and Tampa Bay Rays can’t be happy with their starts. Both Boston and Tampa managed to grab their first win of the year on Friday, after starting off their season with six straight losses.  

This puts the Toronto Blue Jays in a good spot to start the season with their impressive 5-2 start.  The Jays played the Minnesota Twins and the Oakland Athletics to start the year, and in both three-game sets, they ended up winning the first two games and losing the final one.

With a win in their first road series against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, it puts the Jays in second place in the AL East, sitting just ahead of the New York Yankees with their 4-3 record.

This doesn’t imply that the standings will stay this way for long. The Yankees and Red Sox are just too strong and the Orioles just don’t have the depth of pitching.  But it certainly doesn’t hurt the Jays when the season starts this way.

Looking ahead in the Jays schedule, they will be playing the Seattle Mariners after they finish the series with the Angels.  Seattle lacks in offense, so it will be important for the Jays to jump on their pitchers early, putting the Mariners in a situation where they would have to mount a comeback.

This could be difficult if they matched up against the AL Cy Young award winner from last year, Felix Hernandez.

If the Jays can win two out of three against both the Angels and the Mariners, they will be in a good position and mindset to go into their first series of games against the AL East.  On April 15th, they start a four-game series against the Red Sox, play two games against the Yankees and then have a day off before a series against the Rays.

They finish off April with four games against the unbeaten Texas Rangers and then two more against the Yankees.

This part of the schedule will be a hard two weeks for the Jays.  Though they have traditionally played well against the division rivals, it won’t be easy to win these upcoming series.  If they can build up a strong record heading into the second half of the month, their built-up confidence will be crucial to battle out the wins against these powerhouses of the East.

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