Friday, February 13, 2009


With spring training right around the corner, Jenni and I are going to be giving some preseason division rankings over the next several Fridays, starting with the AL East. Living in New York it is easy to forget that the AL East does not entirely consist of the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox. But I've done my best to be impartial, taking into account the merits (and demerits) of all five teams. Here are my preseason rankings for the AL EAST.

1. Tampa Bay Rays

The defending AL champs are chock full of young talent and I can't imagine how any other team in the AL East can really compete. They are my pick for the best of the AL East and I want to highlight a couple Rays, starting with their coach, Joe Madden

It's not just the hipster glasses, Madden's got a strong face and a no nonsense attitude. Well, I guess it has a lot to do with the glasses.

2008 rookie of the year Evan Longoria is another standout on the Rays. Don't let the similarity to Eva Longoria fool you (which always used to happen to me). Evan is a very attractive (male) baseball player.

Below some other highlights from the Rays, submitted without comment.

From left to right: BJ Upton, Shawn Riggins, Gabe Kapler, and Matt Garza.

2. Toronto Blue Jays

Not knowing a ton about the Blue Jays besides the fact that they no longer have AJ Burnett, who used to look like a Meth addict, and that Roy Halladay is their number one starter, I think the Blue Jays are a strong number two in the AL East.

I am embarrased that I forgot about Halladay until recently. Had I remembered I think he might have made my top 5. He's got a sweet beard and looks like he should be on tv (as an actor). He even looks like someone that I would be friends with.

For comparison, here's a photo of AJ Burnett (now a NY Yankee):

He's got the capacity to drag any team down, New York is no exception. And just because the Yankees made him cut his hair, don't let it fool you. He looks ridiculous.

3. New York Yankees

I was sad that no one highlighted CC Sabathia on Monday because he's a good looking bigger man and a big boost on the attractiveness scale for a Yankees team that I believe is just mediocre.

CC Sabathia looks like a great guy!

But with the Yankees I think the key is to be aware of the negatives, including the previously discussed AJ Burnett above. I would also put Jorge Posada in that category, who I hate for many reasons, some of which I cannot get into here.

He looks kinda like a gopher.

But for what its worth the Yankees also have some perennial talent, some of whom I've got below...

From left: Melky Cabrera, Robbie Cano, Derek Jeter, Chien-Ming Wang (who looks better than this picture), and Mariano Rivera.

4. Boston Red Sox

Oh the Red Sox... I suppose they've got a couple gems hidden in the rough here, but I think the BoSox are going to have a tough time stacking up in this division. Like the Rays, the Red Sox have a pretty good looking manager, Terry Francona, which should count for something

On the negative side I can't help thinking of Jenni's unfavorite, Dustin Pedroia, but I would also throw Kevin Youkilis into that category as well.

I know he might fall into the "ugly/sexy" category for some folks, but or me that big head is one big negative.

Below are a couple BoSox highlights...

From left: Rocco Baldelli, Jacoby Ellsbury, Tim Wakefield Hideki Okajima, and Big Poppi (mostly here for nastalgia).

5. Baltimore Orioles

I won't lie, I'm not sure I could name a single player on the Baltimore Orioles besides Miguel Tejada, and I'm not sure if he even plays anymore. (UPDATE: He doesn't). But after a quick look at the roster, things don't look great for last years AL East losers. However, I would like to highlight one player: outfielder Nick Markakis.

Even on a team of young attractive people (see Tampa Bay above) I think that Markakis would stick out as pretty good looking. Too bad that he has so many people around him that inevitably will drag down this team.

Adam Jones, far right, doesn't even have his eyes open in his official team photo. Where's the self respect? Ty Wigginton, center right, bears a striking reseblance to Broken Lizard's Kevin Heffernan. Gregg Zaun, center left, actually doesn't look that bad on second glance. However, his head must be huge. And poor Jamie Walker, far left, has the stupidest expression on his face.


  1. Is that Nick Markakis or Mike Smereka??

  2. I want to publicly agree that AJ Burnett is super supremely ugly. I hate him already and the season hasn't even started. If only Mike Mussina hadn't retired...that probably would have bumped my Yankees average up to an 8.