by OddsShark (@OddsShark) – Sponsored Post
The New York Yankees’ recent statement against their archrival has triggered some change on the World Series odds board.
The Houston Astros are the +275 favourite (bet $100 to win $275) on the updated 2019 World Series odds at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com. The Los Angeles Dodgers (+300) are the second favourite, followed closely by the Yankees (+350). Other contenders on those MLB odds include the Atlanta Braves (+800), St. Louis Cardinals (+1200), Washington Nationals (+1400), Minnesota Twins (+1600), Chicago Cubs (+2000), Cleveland Indians (+2500) and Tampa Bay Rays (+3300).
Three weeks ago, the Astros and Dodgers had a much bigger gap over the Yankees and the rest of the field, with respective odds of +225 and +275. At that time, the Yankees’ price was posted at +450. But New York has matched Houston win-for-win as the teams vie to earn home-field advantage throughout for a potential American League Championship Series showdown in October. The Yankees, with their lineup led by Aaron Judge and DJ LeMahieu, among others, also had an impressive series win against the Boston Red Sox last weekend that effectively guaranteed MLB a new champion in 2019.
The main difference between the big three, though, is elite starting pitching. The Dodgers have the best starting-pitching ERA in baseball. The Justin Verlander-led Astros are fourth. The Yankees rank 17th. It’s a similar story with staff ERAs since the all-star break – the Astros are first, the Dodgers are fourth and the Yankees rate 18th despite their high-end bullpen.
But a lethal lineup and lights-out bullpen can be enough to offset only-OK starting pitching in the playoffs, and the Yankees are getting an ace output from lefthander James Paxton who has fashioned a 2.57 ERA and .170 opponents’ batting average while earning credit for the win in eight consecutive starts. Paxton, however, has never pitched in the playoffs. In other words, taking the Yankees over the chalk at betting sites at this point requires a minor leap of faith.
Atlanta has, somewhat quietly, fashioned the National League’s second-best record while playing in an NL East division where three of the other four teams are competitive. The Braves have the 10th-best post-all star break ERA and that might be enough to complement a lineup led by sluggers Ronald Acuna Jr. and Freddie Freeman.
Only two out of 14 wild-card teams have reached the World Series since the creation of the wild-card game in 2012. If one is looking for value among wild-card teams – while being cognizant it’s not the percentage play – then the Washington Nationals (+1600) present as an acceptable longshot. The Nationals have the third-best team OPS since the all-star break and a bona fide ace in Max Scherzer to carry their pitching staff. Washington’s tortured playoff history is also likely a red flag to casual bettors.