MLB Odds – Post-Deadline Futures

The Texas Rangers are huge trade deadline winners! The Pittsburgh Pirates are big ol’ deadline losers! Brian Cashman is a genius! All of these proclamations and more were floated out in the wake of the MLB’s trade deadline on August 1. Perhaps they are all true? Perhaps none are? It’s difficult to tell right now, because they don’t play the World Series in August.

When it comes to the oddsmakers though, they certainly are buying into the idea that the Rangers traded themselves into favoritism in the American League. Texas made some big deals to bring in sluggers Carlos Beltran and Jonathan Lucroy, and avoided trading some of their most coveted prospects.

But don’t go crowning the Rangers just yet: they failed to add any pitching, which has been a glaring weakness for a team that’s winning despite a suspect run differential. They’ll need their retooled offense to carry them down the stretch while their starting pitchers get healthy. And just because the moves look attractive now, doesn’t mean they’ll pay off down the line.

Think of the 2014 deadline winners, the Oakland Athletics. They were one and done in the postseason, with rental pitcher Jon Lester getting a no-decision in the must-win game. Last year, Johnny Cueto played terribly for the Royals 90-percent of the time. Not all players thrive after a change of scenery.

Then, there’s the players who absolutely explode after switching teams. Last year, it was Yoenis Cespedes pacing the Mets offense during their deep October run. New York tried to boost its feeble offense again this deadline, acquiring Jay Bruce from Cincinnati. Bruce’s numbers are solid, but it will take more than a .265 hitter to turn around the spiraling NL champs, who will have to leapfrog two teams to grab a wildcard spot.

Meanwhile, the true top dogs in the National League all made it clear they won’t be surrendering their division leads anytime soon, as the Cubs, Nationals and Giants all made quality additions to already strong title contenders. Washington got a true closer in Mark Melancon, to replace headcase Jonathan Papelbon. Chicago gave themselves a bullpen upgrade, adding Aroldis Chapman, Joe Smith and Mike Montgomery. San Francisco, the even-year darlings, added Matt Moore to a rotation that scares on paper, but hasn’t been playing up to snuff lately.

Pretty much every team at the top of the odds board made some sort of change to their roster this week. Some were big swings – like the Indians adding Andrew Miller – and some were simply changes for changes sake – like the Blue Jays and Pirates swapping Drew Hutchison for Francisco Liriano.

The trade deadline doesn’t win you a championship, but it certainly makes teams look more capable of doing so. After a crazy few weeks of wheeling and dealing, here’s who is looking most attractive.

Odds to win 2016 World Series:

  • Chicago Cubs: 3/1
  • San Francisco Giants: 5/1
  • Washington Nationals: 13/2
  • Texas Rangers: 7/1
  • Cleveland Indians: 7/1
  • Toronto Blue Jays: 12/1
  • Boston Red Sox: 14/1
  • Los Angeles Dodgers: 15/1
  • Baltimore Orioles: 18/1
  • Houston Astros: 25/1
  • Miami Marlins: 25/1
  • New York Mets: 30/1
  • Detroit Tigers: 35/1
  • St. Louis Cardinals: 40/1
  • Pittsburgh Pirates: 50/1
  • Seattle Mariners: 60/1
  • Chicago White Sox: 65/1
  • Kansas City Royals: 100/1
  • New York Yankees: 100/1

(Photo Credit: Johnmaxmena2 (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/4.0)], via Wikimedia Commons)

Boris

Hockey may be a wildly unpopular sport in the U.S., but where no one is paying attention, there's a ton of value for Boris to mine. An avid NHL fan of over 20 years, Malloy made his first bet against a friend during the 2001 Stanley Cup Finals (going against Ray Bourque) and has been hooked ever since. He has yet to pay off that debt of $2, but he's made plenty back since. In between worrying about the league's next lockout, he regularly contributes to MTS and is also fluent in football, basketball, baseball and French (sort of).