Who Wins Baseball’s Divisions?
For futures bettors, there’s nothing like predicting who will win the MLB divisions, championships and World Series. Can the Braves repeat? Will the Giants implode?
Now that Major League Baseball’s free agency has been sorted out and we generally know where all the superstars have landed, it’s time to take stock of each division and predict who is favored to win.
Futures betting on baseball can be fun, especially when you take it from the division to the championship series all the way through the World Series. What makes it so interesting is that the favored teams rarely win it all, so predicting who can be the breakout team can be quite lucrative.
Let’s get started.
American League East
Last year, the Tampa Bay Rays were again somewhat of a surprise. The Rays consistently have some of the best management in baseball and get the most for the least amount of money. But with AL East rivals the Toronto Blue Jays ramping up with some significant off-season trades and acquisitions, you never know.
While the Jays lost a couple of starting pitchers, their pick-ups could negate that loss. And the addition of third baseman Matt Chapman from the Oakland A’s add punch to an already stacked lineup. But the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox also made some significant changes, so the entire division is thankful that the Baltimore Orioles are there, because no one else will finish in last.
- Tampa Bay Rays +240
- Toronto Blue Jays +180
- New York Yankees +230
- Boston Red Sox +600
- Baltimore Orioles +15000
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American League Central
The Chicago White Sox are clearly the class of the somewhat weak American League Central division. It would take a mighty collapse for the White Sox to lose the division, but the Minnesota Twins and the Detroit Tigers made some significant additions.
The Twins surprisingly won the Carlos Correa sweepstakes, while trading Josh Donaldson to the Yankees for catcher Gary Sanchez and third baseman Gio Urshela. The Tigers picked up Javier Baez to play short, and has some intriguing young players due to break out.
The Cleveland Indians—sorry, the Guardians—didn’t help themselves and the Kansas City Royals didn’t improve.
- Chicago White Sox -190
- Minnesota Twins +600
- Detroit Tigers +600
- Cleveland Guardians +900
- Kansas City Royals +1400
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American League West
In the AL West, the Houston Astros lost Correa and are counting on some older pitchers to bail them out. This could be the year they come back to earth after losing the 2021 World Series in six games. But you wonder how the Los Angeles Angels can be so mediocre with two of the best players in the game on their roster, Mike Trout and Shohei Otani. But Trout is injury-prone, and the rest of the roster doesn’t move the needle.
The Seattle Mariners won 90 games last year for the first time since 2003 but still finished out of the playoffs. Is this the year they’re going to make their move? The Texas Rangers added lots of payroll with Corey Seager and others, but their pitching is still suspect. And the Oakland A’s have done the teardown, maybe biding their time until they move to Las Vegas.
- Houston Astros -165
- Seattle Mariners +450
- Los Angeles Angels +400
- Texas Rangers +1600
- Oakland Athletics +2500
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National League East
The National League East is the strongest division in the National League and maybe in all of baseball. The New York Mets signed dominant pitcher Max Scherzer to go along with their ace, Jacob DeGrom. Eduardo Escobar was acquired to play third, and the lineup appears stacked, but a little light on power. They’re the Mets, and something always seems to derail them.
The world champion Atlanta Braves lost Freddie Freeman, but replaced him with power hitter Matt Olsen. Ronald Acuna and Marcell Osuna will also return. The Philadelphia Phillies, meanwhile, added Nick Castellanos and Kyle Schwarber to go along with MVP Bryce Harper. If their pitching shows up, this could be the Phillies’ year. But of course, the Miami Marlins didn’t improve and the Washington Nationals subtracted.
- Philadelphia Phillies +400
- New York Mets +140
- Atlanta Braves +150
- Miami Marlins +1400
- Washington Nationals +4000
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National League Central
Going from the strongest division in the NL to the weakest, the National League Central, it’s going to be a crap shoot between the Milwaukee Brewers and the St. Louis Cardinals. If Christian Yelich can regain his form there’s a chance, but there’s not much stability at the infield positions, so the powerful outfield and pitching will have to carry the Brewers. They have the reigning Cy Young winner on the mound with Corbin Burnes, and a solid staff. The Cards will have an emotional year saying goodbye to future Hall of Famers Yadier Molina and the returned Albert Pujols, and maybe pitcher Adam Wainwright as well.
The Chicago Cubs added Japanese outfielder Seiya Suzuki, but didn’t do much else, the Cincinnati Reds dumped payroll, and the Pittsburgh Pirates have one of baseball’s best stadiums but one of the worst teams.
- Milwaukee Brewers -150
- Louis Cardinals +200
- Chicago Cubs +1100
- Pittsburgh Pirates +5000
- Cincinnati Reds +1300
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National League West
The San Francisco Giants were the shock team of last year’s National League West. Predicted to barely finish .500, the team tore out of the gate and won the division, ending the L.A. Dodgers’ run of eight straight titles. But can they do it again? Missing will be star catcher Buster Posey, who retired. Other players had career years and might not reach that level again. And after ace Logan Webb, the team added Carlos Rondon, who ran down at the end of last year with the White Sox.
The Dodgers lost Corey Seager but gained Freeman, adding even more pop to the lineup. Starting pitcher Scherzer is gone, but it’s still a powerful rotation. The San Diego Padres were the big disappointment last year, but with a new manager and stable lineup, they could be a threat. The Colorado Rockies added Kris Bryant, but lost Trevor Story. And the Arizona Diamondbacks are—well, they’re the D-Backs.
- Los Angeles Dodgers -225
- San Diego Padres +325
- Colorado Rockies +8000
- San Francisco Giants +550
- Arizona Diamondbacks +10000
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Next week, we’ll break down the new playoff system and take a look at how to bet the wild card round, the division series, the championship series and the World Series.
For the complete MLB season schedule, click here.