Go ahead, pick an American League East champion.
Lots of people are in love with the Blue Jays, who won the offseason. They probably will be the consensus pick when teams leave Florida. But you wouldn't be nuts to pick the Yankees, Rays or Orioles. You'd need some imagination, but you probably even could pick the Red Sox.
Now pick the last-place team.
Just reverse the process. From here, it's hard to see the Blue Jays falling that far. But if the Red Sox bounce back as they are designed to do, then the Yankees, Rays and Orioles all could be in danger of finishing last, maybe even with 80 wins. Wouldn't that be something? This is a loaded division, and anything's possible.
Last year: 95-67, survived a five-game division series against the Orioles before being swept by the Tigers in the ALCS, with the lasting memory a postseason average of 2.4 runs per game.
Big fun: Watching Youkilis change sides in baseball's biggest rivalry.
Last year: 93-69, with a 29-9 record in one-run games sending them to the playoffs for the first time since 1997. Beat the Rangers in a wild-card playoff, lost to the Yankees in the ALDS.
Big fun: Dylan Bundy will try to make his case to stick in the rotation he soon will lead.
Big worry: Can Showalter find enough firepower in his lineup? A poor spring showing could cause him to pursue available hitters, including the Cubs' Alfonso Soriano.