2022 American League Divisional Picks: AL Central

No 2021 MLB division winner finished more games ahead of the second-place club than the Chicago White Sox. The Chisox had a 93-69 record in 2021, which put them 13 games ahead of the Cleveland Guardians (80-82). That finish put the White Sox behind the Tampa Bay Rays (100-62), who won the AL East, and the Houston Astros (95-67), winners of the AL West. The Astros eliminated the White Sox in four games in the ALDS.

The Detroit Tigers (77-85), Kansas City Royals (74-88), and Minnesota Twins (73-89) finished behind the Guardians in 2021.

Things look much different in early 2022 in the American League Central. The Twins (35-27) hold a three-game lead over the Guardians (29-27) at the top of the division. Meanwhile, the White Sox check-in at third (27-31), followed by the Tigers (24-25) and Royals (20-39).

Before we look at how the American League Central will play out in 2022, check out our guide on World Series Betting, as well as the best sites for betting on MLB in 2022. 

2022 American League Central picks

To Win 2022 American League CentralBetOnlineBovadaXBetMyBookie
Minnesota Twins-105+105+111+111
Chicago White Sox+130+130-101-101
Cleveland Guardians+500+500+680+680
Detroit Tigers+8000+8000+8000+8000
Kansas City Royals+30000+50000+34000+34000

Minnesota Twins

The Twins had a payroll of $141 million in 2021. With that, the club had four players making more than $10 million or more. In 2022, that payroll fell to $138 million, with one player making over $10 million. That player, free agent signing Carlos Correa, is pulling in more than 25 percent of the entire team payroll at $35.1 million.

Correa is playing well, but he is not leading the Twins in any offensive categories at this time. His .303 average puts him behind the Twins — and MLB leader — Luis Arraez (.359) and Gilberto Celestino. His 47 hits are fourth on the team, and his 19 RBIs rank him sixth on the club. Correa is coming off a season where he was the most pursued free agent. He hit .279 with 26 home runs and won his first Gold Glove.

While Correa is not leading the team offensively, the club is better with him on the field. The Twins are 24-15, with Correa playing vs. 11-12 without him.

Minnesota TwinsTO WIN AL CENTRAL IN 2022
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-105
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Chicago White Sox

The White Sox are behind the Twins and Guardians, but the oddsmakers still think the 2021 ALCS winners have a chance to finish at the top of the division again in 2022. The White Sox are 8-12 in their past 20 games and 1-4 in their last five outings. They have an upcoming series with the Tigers, which could improve their fortunes.

Chicago is -56 in run differential this season. They finished last year at +160.

The White Sox have been without Tim Anderson since late May, but he is heading to Triple-A for his rehab assignment for a groin injury. Anderson is hitting .356 with 58 hits, five home runs, and 19 RBIs. The team needs him back in a big way.

Chicago White SoxTO WIN AL CENTRAL IN 2022
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+130
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Cleveland Guardians

The Guardians had a rough start to the season, but it looks like the team has found its footing as of late, with a record of 11-4 since May 28. It should be noted that those wins have come against the Royals (20-39), Baltimore Orioles (26-35), Texas Rangers (28-31), and Oakland A’s (21-41). With that, the jury should remain out on Cleveland. The upcoming series the Guardians have against the Dodgers (37-23), Twins, and Red Sox (32-29) will give everyone a better idea of where the team stands in 2022.

Cleveland GuardiansTO WIN AL CENTRAL IN 2022
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+680
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Detroit Tigers

The Tigers have won more than two games in a row just twice this season, and that is not going to cut it, even in a division where four of the five teams finished below .500 in 2021.

Detroit TigersTO WIN AL CENTRAL IN 2022
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+8000
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Kansas City Royals

The Kansas City Royals are tied for last in MLB with a winning percentage of .339. The team is second last in run differential at -88. It is going to be a long season for Royals fans.

Kansas City RoyalsTO WIN AL CENTRAL IN 2022
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+30000
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Our pick

This is really going to come down to who has the healthier star. If Carlos Correa can stay in the Minnesota Twins lineup for most games, I think the Twins could win the AL Central. If Tim Anderson stays on the White Sox playing roster, he gives that team a huge boost. Right now, I’m siding with the Twins.

Pick: Minnesota Twins to win the American League Central in 2022.

Minnesota TwinsTO WIN AL CENTRAL IN 2022
star iconstar iconstar iconstar iconstar icon
+105
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Trent Reinsmith

Trent covers UFC and MMA for MTS. He currently covers MMA for MMA Junkie and Forbes. He has also written for Vice, Bloody Elbow, Fight! Magazine, UFC 360, and Narratively among others. He has been involved with MMA since he and some friends threw some money together to purchase the pay-per-view of UFC 1, and the rest is history.