The Fight for Spotlight: Which Team is the Best in the MLB?

By Daniel A.

“Extra! Extra! Read all about it! The New York Yankees’ offense clutches up another win! The Boston Red Sox remain dominate with the best record in baseball! And the Houston Astros continue to melt teams with their hot offense!” As these three teams continue to show why they have been ranked and are the top teams in the Major Leagues, the questions become: Which team is truly the best in the MLB and how successful the future of these teams will be? With the All-Star break coming soon, baseball is going to see an increase in views, meaning millions of fans are going to want to know whether their team is the best or not.

An offense is in charge of creating runs to back up the pitcher. A productive offense will create many runs and can always find a way to score. Fortunately, for these top three teams, they have very productive offenses who help them reach the top. With the young, rookie lineup, the Yankees find someone new to come in clutch every game. Offensively they are not playing to their potential as their hitters are all hitting below .300. But being the team of talent they are, they are finding ways to win and still compete for the spotlight. As a team they are hitting .252, with an on base percentage of .330, a total number of 775 hits, and a total of 451 runs batted in. In addition, the Yankees have a total of 151 home runs, with Aaron Judge having 25 and Giancarlo Stanton with 22. As for the Boston Red Sox, their offense has been playing to the top of their game throughout the first half of the season. As a team, they are currently batting .271, have an on base percentage of .338, have 880 hits, 479 runs batted in, and a total of 130 home runs. Although these two rivals have very similar offensive stats, defending World Series Champions, Houston Astros continue to show absolute dominance with their bats. They aggressively fight to show the country why they are still the best team in baseball. As a team they are hitting .262, with an on base percentage of .336, have a total of 840 hits, have batted in a total of 461 runs, and a total of 120 homeruns. When looking at all of these league leading stats, it can be seen that each team, offensively, is loaded and will give their opponent a difficult time at the plate. However, when you closely compare these stats to one another, the Red Sox come on top overall, leading both teams in the different stats. Additionally, the majority of these stats are ranked first in the MLB. Closely to follow, the Astros stats are ranked second and can be seen as the second best offensively. Finally, the Yankees are placed third offensively only leading the teams in number of home runs.

Offense play a huge role in the sport of baseball, but just like any sport defense wins games, and just as closely compared as each team’s offense is, their pitching staff is equally important and talented. For the Yankees, going into the season, they were said to have the best bullpen in the league. Overall, their pitching is not letting them down, but it is not the best it was said to be. Interestingly, the majority of their pitchers are young with fresh arms, and even their veterans are doing well for them and not disappointing. With a team average ERA (earned run average) of 3.46, the Yankees have a total of 59 wins, 903 strikeouts, and an average WHIP (walks and hits per innings pitched) of 1.171. As for the Red Sox, they were said to have a few issues among their starting rotation, but now it is up for debate whether they have the strongest rotation in the league. As a team they have an ERA of 3.54 with 64 wins, 894 strikeouts, and an average WHIP of 1.206. Finally, for the Astros, they were said to have a lights-out starting rotation. Currently, they are exceeding expectations and, according to baseballreference.com, many analysts and reporters believe they could have the best rotation ever in history. With a team ERA of 2.88, they have 62 wins, 989 strikeouts, and a WHIP of 1.051. Again, similarly to the teams’ offenses, when closely compared, it paints a full picture of who has the best pitching staff. The Astros appear to have the better pitching staff, which is extremely closely followed by both the Yankees and Red Sox.

Although the stats show which team is more dominant than others in different areas of the field, the teams have said their own words on one another and what they think. As for Yankees, manager Aaron Boone has shared to the press what he thinks of the Red Sox: “I know they win every day by a lot…They are playing great.” Boone went on to say, “We are trying to get our own house in order, trying to get guys healthy and on the mend…Just trying to get traction and guys playing well. That’s all you can concern yourself with especially at this point in the season. But it’s hard not to notice they are running through the league right now.” It is clear that Boone believes that the Red Sox are doing very well and are a hard team to beat. As for the Astros, Boone has said, “Obviously the playoffs last year were one thing for this team, but this year they are threatening…beating the teams they play, usually winning each series, make them very powerful.” Yet again showing that he believes the team has major potential to do some harm in the future.

AJ Hinch, Houston Astros general manager, has stated that the Yankees pitching, “Is very strong. From their starter to their tremendous bullpen I make sure my batters are ready for anything. We try not to worry too much on how good someone’s pitching is and just play the game.” In addition, Alex Cora, Red Sox manager has stated, “[The Yankees] are always fired up and will not leave the stadium without a fight. They are a bunch of young guys who have talent and determination.” The Yankees, Astros, and Red Sox are three big teams in the MLB and although they constantly fight for the spotlight, it is clear they see great things in each other, and we can definitely expect something great from all of them in the future.

Looking at each team’s farm system, the future could be very promising for some of these teams. The New York Yankees have a lineup stacked with rookie all stars. Although the team is not playing to their potential, they can thank their 2nd ranked, in the league, recruiting organization. By bringing up players like Miguel Andujar, Aaron Judge, and Gleyber Torres, the future of the Yankees lineup should be very interesting to see what they can do in the MLB. As for the Red Soxs, they have the 24th ranked recruiting organizations. However, with the talent they have on the team now, the question becomes whether or not they can hold on to the spotlight for the next couple of years without young, all star players. Finally, the defending champions, Houston Astros have a farm system ranked 30th in the league. However, with the young MVP, Jose Altuve, a powerhouse lineup, and good trading skills the Astros appear to have a good future ahead of them.

After comparing many different areas of the game, it can be seen that some teams outplay others. When it comes to offense, the Red Sox have the best lineup in baseball. Defensively, the Houston Astros have a very strong lineup and best in the MLB. Although the Yankees follow closely to the two teams in both areas, they are shown to have the best, most promising future. Having great recruiting skills, the clubhouse can expect new, young stars to help them reach the top. In conclusion, there are a lot of aspects in a sport that plays into finding a best team. With additional biased opinions, there can be misleading conclusions, showing that it is extremely hard to truly find the best team in a league.

Student Bio

Daniel A.

2018 Summer Program
2020 Summer Program

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