Skip to content

a.​l mlb eastern division winner the past 15 years

I’ve been following baseball my entire life.​ I remember back when the New York Yankees would sweep the AL East every year and raise the division trophy.​ But in the last 15 years, the landscape of the AL East has shifted dramatically.​ It’s no longer the Yankees’ dominion, and there have been a slew of other teams that have taken the leave as the AL East Division Winner.​

The Boston Red Sox won the AL East in the three consecutive years, from 2007 to 2009.​ Led by the resiliency of David Ortiz, their “idiots” team came back from a historic 3-0 deficit against their rivals, the Yankees, to win the AL Championship and later the World Series.​ Even if you don’t like the Sox, you’ve got to admit that was pretty amazing.​

The remaining 12 years have been split up fairly evenly among the other AL East teams.​ The Yankees have won the division 5 times in that span.​ Since 2014, the Toronto Blue Jays, Baltimore Orioles, and Tampa Bay Rays have all taken home the title once.​

The most recent season saw the Yankees have the most dominant year in awhile, running away with the division and even making it to the ALCS.​ They had the most wins of any team in baseball as well and this spurred our hopes of a Toronto-New York finale for the ALCS.​

Of course, the Rays had other ideas and put an end to my dreams of a tantalizing Fall Classic.​ While at first it was a slight letdown, I understood that the best team from the AL East won and, statistically, it was the Rays.​

In the last 15 years, the AL East has been the most competitive division in baseball, and I’m anxiously awaiting what’s in store for the future.​ Will the Yankees continue their dominance? Will the young Rays take the league by storm? Guess we won’t know until the 2021 season rolls around.​

In the next 4 sections, I’m going to focus on each of the AL East teams and discuss how their individual performance has worked to shape the division is now.​ Starting with the Yankees.​

The Yankees have been an ever-present force since the dawn of the AL East.​ They won the division title first in 2000 and then again in 2002.​ After that, there was a lull in their success before they took the division for three consecutive years from 2006-2008.​ After missing out on 2011, they went on add paper tickets to mlb ballpark app win the division 5 more times from 2012-2020, making them the most successful AL East team in the past 15 years.​

The Boston Red Sox burst onto the scene in 2004 and quickly ran away with the division.​ Over the next four years, they won the division trophy 3 times before their historic World Series win in 2007.​ It seemed a new era of baseball mlb all star team group images had dawned, but the Red Sox were unable to keep up their pace over the next few years and even sank to the bottom of the AL East at times.​ However, they were able to make it back to the Fall Classic in 2018 and made a valiant effort against the Los Angeles Dodgers.​

While the Orioles and Blue Jays have both had some success in the past 15 years, their performance has not been as consistent as the Yankees and Red Sox.​ The Orioles, who have been perennial basement dwellers for much of that period, earned a Wild Card spot in 2012 and 2014 before winning their first division title in 2016.​ The Blue Jays had back-to-back winning seasons in 2015 and 2016 before faltering in 2017.​ But they were able to earn a Wild Card spot in 2020 before losing to the Rays in the divisional round.​

The most consistent team in the division lately has been the Tampa Bay Rays.​ After a dismal start to the decade in 2010, they finally started to pick up some steam in 2013 and have been competitive ever since.​ The Rays earned three Wild Card spots from 2013-2019 before, then finally won the division in 2020.​ The Rays also came the closest to taking down the ultimate juggernaut of the Yankees, coming narrowly short in the divisional round of the 2020 MLB playoffs.​

As I look ahead to the 2021 season, I am excited to see how the AL East pans out.​ Will the Yankees march their way to yet another division title or will they be outdone by the young and hungry Rays? It’s a fascinating prospect and one I can’t wait to see play out in the coming months.​ I’m sure the AL East will be as competitive and unpredictable as it has been in the past 15 years, and I’m looking forward to it.​