by OddsShark (@OddsShark) – Sponsored Post
The long-awaited Mookie Betts trade has created a significant ripple on the 2020 World Series odds just days ahead of pitchers and catchers reporting to spring training.
With the Los Angeles Dodgers’ acquisition of the superstar outfielder from the Boston Red Sox, the Dodgers and New York Yankees are now +350 co-favourites at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com to become Major League Baseball’s champion this season. Other contenders at betting sites include the Houston Astros (+700), Atlanta Braves (+1400), Minnesota Twins (+1600), defending champion Washington Nationals (+1600), St. Louis Cardinals (+1700), New York Mets (+2000), Philadelphia Phillies (+2000) and Tampa Bay Rays (+2000). The Toronto Blue Jays trail at +8000 on the World Series futures.
The Dodgers have won the NL West seven consecutive years and are also on a run of having reached the National League Championship Series four consecutive seasons. Adding Betts and veteran pitcher David Price from the Red Sox has created sky-high expectations for a legacy franchise which has been trying desperately to end a World Series title drought that reaches back to 1988. They probably have as much betting value as one can expect.
The same goes for the Yankees, whose price also dropped on the MLB odds after the signing of star right-handed pitcher Gerrit Cole. New York has been a consistent contender over the last two seasons without a bona fide ace starter, so it is not hard to imagine that adding Cole puts them over the top.
The Astros moved down the board after their punishment from MLB for electronic sign-stealing in 2017, which cost general manager Jeff Luhnow and manager A.J. Hinch their jobs. The scandal might have some stickiness and it hardly seems plausible that Houston could play through such self-inflicted turmoil.
Besides, there is greater betting value elsewhere. A quick exit from last season’s postseason might have led some bettors to fade the Twins, but the defending AL Central champions have a high floor after adding middle-of-the-order bat Josh Donaldson to one of baseball’s most potent offenses. Similarly, the Atlanta Braves have a young and talented pitching staff that could come of age right on time to complement the offense that carried them to the top of the deep NL East division.
The Nationals captured their first World Series from a wild-card position and subsequently bid adieu to third baseman Anthony Rendon, who signed with the Los Angeles Angels. No team has repeated as champions since the 1998-2000 Yankees won three in a row, so it is usually a safe assumption to presume baseball will crown a new team in late October.