1 breakout player on each Yankees AL East rival

Baltimore Orioles v New York Yankees
Baltimore Orioles v New York Yankees / Elsa/GettyImages
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Yusei Kukuchi, Toronto Blue Jays

When you're signed to a three-year deal worth $36M, you may should know the type of player you're acquiring, but for Yusei Kukuchi, his first season with the Blue Jays was nothing short of a disaster. At 31 years old, Kukuchi is much older than the other three players I spoke of, but there's a reason why he's on this list.

Just because you're in your 30s doesn't mean you can't be ready for a breakout campaign, especially after the terrible year he had last season. One of the biggest reasons I think he's going to be great is because of expectations. Coming is as the projected No. 5 starter, nobody is expecting much from Kukuchi, which should hopefully help him relax on the mound.

After spending three seasons in Seattle, the new environment of Toronto could have been too much for Kukuchi last season. However, now that he's been able to adjust, I'd expect him to loosen up and break out. His spring training numbers have been solid, and he's looking like he's ready for a great season, showing Blue Jays fans why he was signed in the first place.

Kukuchi isn't going to compete for a Cy Young Award or anything like that, but he should be much better than the 6-7 record and 5.19 ERA that he displayed last year. He's a very competitive pitcher, so look for his spring training numbers to continue into the regular season and for Kukuchi to be a bright spot in the Jays pitching staff.