The American League East is competitive with the Boston Red Sox, Toronto Blue Jays and Tampa Bay Rays rounding out the top three teams in the division.
Boston holds a slim half-game advantage over the Rays heading into its series opener against the Blue Jays on Monday night. The Blue Jays, who are six games out of first place, have a chance to gain some ground on both Tampa Bay and the Red Sox this week.
Even though they’re the third-place team, Red Sox manager Alex Cora knows Toronto still is talented, and they’re not taking any team lightly.
“It’s a good team. They did an outstanding job in the offseason adding some pieces,” Cora told reporters over Zoom. “They’re finally healthy, quote-unquote, right? With George (Springer) finally back in the lineup. They made some moves the last few weeks to improve their bullpen. Obviously what (Vladimir Guerrero Jr.) is doing has been amazing. ? I’m happy for him obviously, not too happy for us that he’s been very disciplined. He made some adjustments in the offseason. He got himself in great shape, just kind of like (Rafael Devers.) And you see the results.”
Cora also doesn’t see any team as an easy one.
“I consider everybody a good team in the East,” he said.
Although the Baltimore Orioles are dead last, Cora noted how they’re still “doing their thing.”
“The other four teams they’re good baseball teams with a few red flags,” Cora said. “It’s gonna be a fight all the way to the end.”
The Red Sox have two important series this week, and it all begins Monday at 7:07 p.m. ET on NESN.