A wild offseason full of trades and record-breaking free agent signings has us thinking the MLB season can’t get here soon enough. How do the Dodgers who spent over $1 billion this offseason stack up against the other 29 teams? Where do the defending champion Texas Rangers rank? How about the Angels who lost a once-in-a-generation talent this offseason? We break it all down here!
30. Oakland Athletics
The Athletics enter the 2024 season as the worst team in baseball. Only a few years removed from being a legitimate contender in the American League, the team is now hoping to avoid a third-straight season with 100 losses or more. There aren’t many reasons to be excited about this club. The A’s lost 112 games in 2023 — not great. Players such as Zack Gelof, Shea Langeliers and Brent Rooker offer some excitement, but the fanbase must brace itself for another miserable campaign.
29. Colorado Rockies
Kris Bryant should have known what he was getting himself into when he signed a massive deal with the Rockies. The former Cub joined the Rockies ahead of the 2022 season. At the time, Colorado was coming off a 74-win season and hadn’t enjoyed a winning campaign since 2018. In Bryant’s first two years with the club, the Rockies have gotten worse — winning 68 games in ’22 and 59 in ’23, respectively. While division rivals (Dodgers, Diamondbacks, Giants) continue to improve, the Rockies continue to flail.
28. Chicago White Sox
The White Sox aren’t far removed from being a popular pick to represent the American League in the World Series. After winning 93 games in 2021, Chicago struggled in ’22 and finished with a .500 record. Last year, however, was a disaster. The Sox were terrible from the jump and ended the season with 101 losses. 2024 figures to be another long year for the franchise, as well. In the offseason, the front office traded away reliever Aaron Bummer…and that’s about it. Star pitcher Dylan Cease remains a member of the club to the surprise of many. According to league sources, Chicago has been asking for a massive haul in exchange for Cease.
27. Pittsburgh Pirates
The teams below Pittsburgh in our rankings are in a far worse position than the Pirates. Despite being ranked 27th, the Pirates are on the rise. The team has a legit star in Bryan Reynolds and the likes of Oneil Cruz and Ke’Bryan Hayes are very talented players. Additionally, a few top prospects — namely Henry Davis and Endy Rodriguez — should take a jump in 2024. No. 1 overall pick Paul Skenes is a future ace, but it remains to be seen whether he will join the rotation this season.
26. Washington Nationals
Can the Nationals take another step forward in 2024? Washington entered last season with zero expectations. However, the young club surprised many by playing competitive baseball and winning 71 games. Josiah Gray and MacKenzie Gore — pitchers acquired in the trades involving Max Scherzer/Trea Turner and Juan Soto — both held their own on the mound, with the former earning an All-Star appearance. In the lineup, CJ Abrams and Keibert Ruiz appear to be cornerstone players moving forward. We don’t expect Washington to compete for a playoff spot this season, but it is headed in the right direction.
25. Los Angeles Angels
Take a breath, Angel fans. Orange County’s baseball team featured two of the game’s best players — Mike Trout and Shohei Ohtani — for the past six years, but it never reached the postseason. Now, Ohtani will take the field for the Los Angeles Dodgers and Trout is left to fend for himself. Veteran coach Ron Washington will look to change the momentum of the franchise, but he faces a tall task. Anthony Rendon’s health (and mindset) will be a focal point throughout the season. The Angels are certainly better than the A’s, but it is hard to envision the club competing with the rest of the AL West.
24. Kansas City Royals
Perhaps the optimism surrounding the Royals last season was a bit premature. The young club won 56 games in 2023 and finished at the bottom of the American League Central standings. As bad as the year went, however, we believe KC will be an improved club in ’24. Bobby Witt Jr. is an absolute star and he should be even better this season. The Royals bolstered a horrible starting rotation by adding Michael Wacha and Seth Lugo to the mix. Cole Ragans impressed towards the end of the season, but the jury is still out on his long-term potential on the mound.
23. Cleveland Guardians
Cleveland will enter the new season in a familiar spot. Its pitching staff has a ton of talent, and its lineup lacks depth. On the mound, the return of Triston McKenzie will only improve a rotation that includes former Cy Young winner Shane Bieber and a trio of second-year starters — Tanner Bibee, Logan Allen and Gavin Williams. Jose Ramirez is a true star in the lineup, but he doesn’t have much help surrounding him. Can Josh Naylor build upon his strong 2023 season? Will Andres Gimenez rebound from his disappointing year? Cleveland certainly hopes so.
22. Detroit Tigers
Detroit appears to be trending upwards. En route to a winning record in the second half of the season, Detroit’s rotation posted the seventh-best ERA in baseball. Eduardo Rodriguez is now a member of the Arizona Diamondbacks, but Tarik Skubal appears to be a budding ace. The club added a pair of veteran pitchers in the offseason (Kenta Maeda and Jack Flaherty), and also signed Mark Canha to help boost the lineup. Former No. 1 overall pick Spencer Torkelson finally tapped into his vast potential last year and could become a true star in ’24. Detroit can compete for the AL Central crown.
21. Boston Red Sox
Boston’s offseason of inactivity has bothered a large portion of the fan base. The Red Sox seemingly were never in the mix for Shohei Ohtani or Yoshinobu Yamamoto, and they had to watch on as the Yankees acquired Juan Soto. Additionally, the front office traded former ace Chris Sale to Atlanta in exchange for Vaughn Grissom — a highly-touted prospect. Lucas Giolito could be a good addition to the rotation, but this team currently feels like a bottom-feeder in a stacked AL East.
20. San Francisco Giants
The Giants’ offseason was a mixed bag. San Francisco made a handful of nice moves including signing Bob Melvin as the new manager, inking Korean outfielder Jung-hoo Lee to a six-year deal, and acquiring former Cy Young winner Robbie Ray from Seattle. On the flip side, the Giants failed to land Shohei Ohtani or Yoshinobu Yamamoto and instead saw both stars land with their biggest rival. San Francisco should be a competitive team in 2024, but it will be tough to compete with the likes of Los Angeles and Arizona.
19. Miami Marlins
Last year was a massive success for the Marlins. The underdogs surprised many by winning 84 games and reaching the postseason — their first playoff appearance in a full season since 2003. Luis Arraez led the Majors with a .354 BA, and Jesus Luzardo and Eury Perez displayed their immense ability on the mound. Former Cy Young winner Sandy Alcantara is set to miss the season as he recovers from Tommy John surgery and the Marlins must find a way to produce more runs on a nightly basis. We cannot count them out, but the Marlins shouldn’t be favored to reach the postseason once again.
18. Milwaukee Brewers
The Brewers will be fascinating this year. Former manager Craig Counsell shocked the league by opting to join the rival Chicago Cubs. On February 1, Milwaukee traded former Cy Young winner Corbin Burnes to Baltimore. With Burnes no longer with the club, all eyes will turn to the future of shortstop Willy Adames and closer Devin Williams. If they are made available, both players would be highly coveted by many of the top teams around the league. Milwaukee has talent on its roster and in its farm system, but it may opt to ‘rebuild’ in 2024 if it deals Williams and Adames.
17. Cincinnati Reds
Can the Reds win the National League Central? Cincinnati was one of baseball’s most entertaining teams in 2023. The franchise opted to tap into its strong farm system by calling up a handful of its top prospects. Elly De La Cruz, Matt McLain, Spencer Steer, Christian Encarnacion-Strand and Noelvi Marte all made an impact in the lineup, and both Andrew Abbott and Brandon Williamson contributed on the mound. Hunter Greene has Cy Young potential, and newcomers Frankie Montas and Nick Martinez should help bolster the rotation.
16. New York Mets
A strong argument can be made that the New York Mets were baseball’s most disappointing team last season. On the heels of a 101-win year, the Mets entered 2023 as World Series contenders. However, the team never figured it out on the field and ended the year with 75 wins. The franchise hasn’t made a big splash in the offseason and instead relied upon smaller additions including Harrison Bader, Luis Severino and Joey Wendle. At best, we envision New York as the third-best team in the NL East.
15. St. Louis Cardinals
Like the Mets, St. Louis endured a humiliating 2023 season. Excluding shortened seasons (1994, 1995, 2020), the Cardinals 71 wins marked their lowest mark since 1990. Ahead of ’23, St. Louis had won 90+ games in three full seasons in a row. Paul Goldschmidt and Nolan Arenado remain stars, but they didn’t perform up to expectations last year. The club invested in its starting rotation by signing Sonny Gray, Kyle Gibson, and Lance Lynn — but we don’t know if that will be enough to win the division.
14. San Diego Padres
The offseason has brought a ton of change to San Diego. Juan Soto is a Yankee, star closer Josh Hader signed with Houston, 2023 Cy Young winner Blake Snell is no longer a Padre, and Mike Shildt has replaced Bob Melvin as the manager. Still, San Diego employs three stars in its lineup — Manny Machado, Fernando Tatis Jr., and Xander Bogaerts. The Padres never clicked last year and still won 82 games. Would we be shocked to see this team compete for a playoff spot in ’24? No. However, there are some clear holes that the franchise needs to fill before the season begins.
13. Chicago Cubs
The Cubs came up a little short of a Wild Card berth last year, but they should enter this season as the favorite to win the NL Central. The franchise shockingly fired manager David Ross and hired the game’s top manager, Craig Counsell, in his place. Additionally, the club signed Japanese star pitcher Shota Imanaga to a four-year deal and swung with the Dodgers for talented prospect Michael Busch. The team remains in the mix to retain former MVP Cody Bellinger and All-Star Matt Chapman. If they sign both, the Cubs will surely be the favorite to win the division.
12. Minnesota Twins
The American League Central is the weakest division in baseball and the Minnesota Twins are clearly the team to beat. Last year, Minnesota won 87 games and snapped an 18-game losing streak in the playoffs — sweeping Toronto in the Wild Card round before being eliminated by Houston in the ALDS. The club must find a way to replace the production of both Sonny Gray in the rotation and Jorge Polanco in the lineup. Offensively, the team will look for Carlos Correa and Byron Buxton to bounce back following disappointing seasons. Royce Lewis, pictured above, smacked four home runs in the postseason and is poised for a big year, as well.
11. Seattle Mariners
Seattle won 88 games in 2023 and the season was still considered a disappointment. Mariners baseball operations head Jerry Dipoto made a few head-scratching comments and an in-season trade of star closer Paul Sewald angered the clubhouse. This offseason, Seattle traded third baseman Eugenio Suarez and former Cy Young winner Robbie Ray. A few additions have been made to the lineup — including Mitch Haniger, Luke Raley and Jorge Polanco. Seattle’s pitching staff is strong, but the front office still needs to make an impact move or two if it wants to knock off Texas and Houston for the AL West title.
10. Toronto Blue Jays
Will the Blue Jays ever put it all together and win when it matters most? Toronto earned a Wild Card berth in 2023, but it was promptly swept out of the playoffs for the third time in four seasons. Kevin Gausman and Jose Berrios represent one of the better one-two punches atop a rotation in the league, with Chris Bassit and Yusei Kikuchi providing good depth for the Jays. Alek Manoah is a massive wild card. If he can return to form, he is a star. However, Manoah was unplayable in 2023. Which version will show up this year? Veteran Justin Turner will add another reliable bat to the lineup…but is he an upgrade over Matt Chapman?
9. Tampa Bay Rays
Tampa Bay has reached the postseason five years in a row, but can the team make it six-straight? It has been a busy offseason for the Rays. Shane McClanahan will miss the 2024 season while he recovers from Tommy John surgery. Wander Franco remains under investigation and he is almost certainly not going to take the field for the franchise this year (or ever again). Star pitcher Tyler Glasnow and outfielder Manuel Margot were traded to the Dodgers, and Tampa Bay received OF Jonny DeLuca and pitcher Ryan Pepiot. Pepiot figures to be in the rotation and he has a lot of potential. It’s hard to count this team out, but they will not be the favorite heading into 2024.
8. Arizona Diamondbacks
The Diamondbacks shocked baseball by winning the National League pennant in 2023, and they have only improved their team in the offseason. Eduardo Rodriguez signed with the Snakes and gives Arizona yet another high-end arm atop their rotation. Corbin Carroll is quickly becoming one of the league’s best players, and the rest of Arizona’s lineup is full of young talent and accomplished veterans. Two of those veterans are Eugenio Suarez (acquired from Seattle) and Joc Pederson.
7. New York Yankees
In 2023, for the first time in seven seasons, the Yankees failed to make the postseason. As a result, the fan base expected the franchise to make a game-changing move (or two) in the offseason. New York offered Yoshinobu Yamamoto a massive contract but ultimately failed to ink the star. However, the Yanks were able to swing a trade for superstar outfielder Juan Soto. Soto and Aaron Judge will be a terrifying duo throughout the season. The lineup will also be boosted by the addition of outfielders Alex Verdugo and Trent Grisham. Marcus Stroman was signed to join the pitching staff, as well.
6. Houston Astros
The Astros won 90 games last year — their lowest mark in a full season since 2016 — and advanced to the ALCS for the seventh year in a row. Losing to the Rangers in Game 7 stung, but the Astros arguably remain the team to beat in the American League West. Yordan Alvarez and Kyle Tucker are superstars and are just entering their primes. Star closer Josh Hader signed with the club in the offseason and gives Houston the best bullpen tandem in the league alongside Ryan Pressly. With a strong rotation to boot, Houston will make an impact in 2024.
5. Baltimore Orioles
The Orioles arrived earlier than expected and won an AL-best 101 games in 2023. Adley Rutschman and Gunnar Henderson were very good last year, and both figure to be among the game’s best players very soon. Grayson Rodriguez looks like a future ace, but he will enter the year with less pressure after the O’s completed a massive trade for former Cy Young winner Corbin Burnes. Burnes is a massive addition to Baltimore’s rotation and gives the team a good shot at winning in October. Oh, and reinforcements are on the way. Top prospect Jackson Holliday is primed to make an impact in 2024.
4. Texas Rangers
The reigning World Series champions are looking to end Houston’s stranglehold atop the American League West. There are plenty of reasons to believe in Texas entering 2024, but it may take the club a bit of time to get rolling. Two-time World Series MVP Corey Seager will miss most of spring training after undergoing surgery to repair a sports hernia. Additionally, both Jacob deGrom and Max Scherzer are set to miss significant time as they recover from surgeries of their own. If Texas can keep pace with Houston and Seattle early on, it has the potential to surge in the summer.
3. Philadelphia Phillies
Bryce Harper has a reason to be happy entering the new season. The Phillies are a very good team and figure to compete for the National League pennant once again. Philadelphia has knocked off the rival Atlanta Braves two years in a row, but it was upended by Arizona in last year’s NLCS. While the club hasn’t had too busy of an offseason, it did re-sign star pitcher Aaron Nola to a seven-year deal. The rotation is one of the best in the league and the lineup is absolutely stacked. Philadelphia may have a move or two left to make, as well.
2. Atlanta Braves
Atlanta won 88 games in 2021 and went on to win the World Series. The club won 101 games in ’22 and 104 last year and both seasons ended the same way — eliminated by Philadelphia in four games. The Braves will be an angry club this year. Reigning MVP Ronald Acuna Jr. leads a lethal lineup that includes numerous stars. Chris Sale adds to a strong starting rotation, and the additions of Aaron Bummer and Reynaldo Lopez bolster the bullpen. Atlanta will be in the postseason…but that is where the questions will begin.
1. Los Angeles Dodgers
The Dodgers won 100 games in 2023 — the fourth full season in a row they reached that mark — but were embarrassed in the NLDS by the Diamondbacks. However, the pain of the sweep was eased in the offseason as the Dodgers spent over $1 billion to improve the team. Los Angeles signed the two biggest prizes of the offseason, inking Shohei Ohtani to a $700 million deal and Yoshinobu Yamamoto to a $325 million pact. Additionally, the Dodgers acquired star pitcher Tyler Glasnow and signed All-Star outfielder Teoscar Hernandez. Ohtani joins a lineup that includes two other former MVPs — Mookie Betts and Freddie Freeman. Good luck, pitchers.