The Los Angeles Dodgers ended a World Series drought of more than 30 years when they took home the MLB championship last year with a 4-2 series win over the Houston Astros. Los Angeles finished the season with the second-best record in the National League West at 106-56. The San Francisco Giants, who had the best record in the NL West and overall in 2021, had one more victory than their California rivals and finished the season at 107-55.
The National League pennant chase has begun and the Dodgers, who ousted the St. Louis Cardinals in the NL Wild Card game, are in the running along with the Giants are for the NL title.
Let’s look at the odds those teams, as well as the Atlanta Braves and the Milwaukee Brewers have of clinching the American League pennant.
|Los Angeles Dodgers||+115||+115||+115|
|San Francisco Giants||+280||+280||+275|
DODGERS OR GIANTS
The Giants finished the 2020 season with a losing record (29-31) and missed the playoffs. The Dodgers finished last year with the best record in the league at 43-17 and went on to win the World Series. So, when the Giants started the season hot, many thought that it would be temporary. It wasn’t. The Giants closed the season with the best record in baseball. They are matched up against the Dodgers in the first round of the playoffs and the series is going to be a test for them.
The Dodgers tied the franchise’s best regular-season record in 2021 and it did so thanks to the team finishing the season fourth in runs scored, and home runs and second in walks drawn. As for pitching, Los Angeles had a team ERA of 3.01, which was the best in MLB. In short, the Dodgers are a complete team.
The Giants finished the 2021 MLB season with the most home runs in the National League. The pitching in San Francisco was as potent as the team’s hitting as the club allowed the fewest home runs in MLB and had the second lowest team ERA.
The season series between these teams ended with Los Angeles winning 10 games and the Giants 9, but after the All-Star break, the Giants owned the Dodgers, beating them in seven of 10 meeting.
BRAVES AND BREWERS
The Braves face long odds and that might be because they do not have the best playoff record as of late. Before last year, the team t hadn’t won a playoff series since 2001. This year’s Braves club looks good on paper and has had a good run since the All-Star break, but with the Dodgers and Giants being so much better, it’s hard to pick Atlanta as a live underdog.
The Brewers had some of the worst hitting in the National League in 2021. The club tied for last in batting average with the Miami Marlins at .233 and its OBP of .317 was in the middle of the pack. As for home runs, the Giants, Braves and Dodgers finished the NL season as the top three clubs, while the Brewers were in the No. 8 spot.
The safe bet is to pick the winner of the Los Angeles Dodgers vs. San Francisco Giants series and that’s what I am going to do. I think the Giants have been a surprising success in 2021, but I think that run ends in the ALDS and that the Dodgers go on to once again represent the National League in the World Series.
Prediction: Los Angeles Dodgers to win the NL pennant at +115 via BetOnline.
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