- Bovada has updated its 2019 World Series odds with October just around the corner
- The Astros (+275) are AL favorites while the Dodgers (+300) are the top dog in the NL
- The Nationals (+1600) have the pitching staff to compete in the postseason
With more than two weeks of games still to play, Major League Baseball has already broke its single-season record for home runs, besting the 6,105 homers swatted in 2017.
The Yankees and Twins are even having their own personal derby, going back and forth setting new single-season home run records every night.
Will this powerful trend extend into October or will pitching once again rule the postseason? Let’s take a look at the Bovada odds and make some World Series’ picks.
2019 World Series Odds
|Los Angeles Dodgers||+300|
|New York Yankees||+350|
|Tampa Bay Rays||+2500|
|New York Mets||+3300|
|St. Louis Cardinals||+4000|
|San Francisco Giants||+5000|
Why are the Astros the American League favorite despite having a worse record than the Yankees? Because Houston is the club with the best chance of keeping balls in the park.
Justin Verlander has an 18-5 record with a 2.52 ERA and 265 strikeouts, and is on pace to have the lowest opponent’s batting average (.166) and second-lowest WHIP (0.77) by any starter in MLB history.
— MLB Stats (@MLBStats) September 7, 2019
That said, the 36-year-old isn’t even a shoo-in for his second Cy Young award because teammate Gerrit Cole is 16-5 with a 2.73 ERA and a major-league leading 281 Ks. If Cole Train can maintain his 13.72 strikeouts per nine innings through his next couple starts, it would be the highest in baseball history.
LOS ANGELES DODGERS
The Dodgers recently became just the third team to win seven or more consecutive division titles, but after two World Series losses in a row, the real question is whether they’ll win their first championship since 1988.
With Christian Yelich out for the rest of the year with a fractured knee cap, Cody Bellinger is the odds-on-favorite to win NL MVP. The 24-year-old phenom is hitting over .300, has an on-base-percentage over .400, and with 44 home runs, has an outside chance to set the franchise record (49).
— VinScullyTribute (@VinScullyTrib) September 12, 2019
There is real concern about the pitching staff though. The bullpen has been struggling of late and ace Hyun-Jin Ryu has a 9.95 ERA in his last four starts. Heading into October, Los Angeles will need 31-year-old Clayton Kershaw to finally overcome his playoff demons (career postseason ERA of 4.32).
Two weeks ago, I laid out why the Nationals are the best Wild Card bet to win the World Series. They, of course, have to make the playoffs first.
That shouldn’t be a problem despite a recent four-game losing streak — the remain 3.5 games clear in the Wild Card race — but weather postponements could have Washington playing as many as nine games in the season’s last eight days, with the Wild Card game the very next day.
JOSH DONALDSON: “You caught that?”
MAX SCHERZER: “Yeah, I caught it.”
Max-like reflexes. pic.twitter.com/kzQ9n49qJB
— Washington Nationals (@Nationals) September 9, 2019
Considering that everything depends on a rested and ready 1-2-3 of Max Scherzer, Stephen Strasburg, and Patrick Corbin, the Nationals are going to have to be crafty down the home stretch to set their starters up for October success.