Top Props of the Week: 2013 MLB World Series Matchups
by Dave Schwab - 9/25/2013
The MLB regular season comes to a close this Sunday, setting the stage for the start of 10 team’s quest for a World Series title. BetOnline has released its early odds for potential matchups in this year’s Fall Classic, so here is a brief look at a few that offer the most value.
If you are looking to bet the favorites in this race, then you definitely want to go with the Los Angeles Dodgers out of the National League. Despite some less-than-consistent play down the stretch, they are still the odds-on-favorite to win the NL Pennant at +100. Things are a bit more up in the air in the American League with Boston holding a slight edge over Detroit to win the pennant at +175 with the Tigers listed at +200.
When you put all the numbers together, the odds for a Los Angeles vs. Boston World Series are +500, and the odds that Detroit will win the AL and face the Dodgers are +550. The problem with either one of these scenarios is that you have to feel confident that Los Angeles can regain its mid-season form and make a run through the other contenders in the NLDS and NLCS. Heading into its final five outings of the season, the Dodgers are 8-11 in their last 19 games.
Looking for Value
It is safe to say that Boston and Detroit will most likely battle it out for the right to represent the American League in this year’s World Series. We have already gone over the Dodgers’ situation, so what about teams like St. Louis and Atlanta. The Cardinals would be a popular choice given their past success in the postseason, but how much did the battle just to get there this season take out of this ball club?
The Braves have been coasting much of the second half of the season and appear to be more than ready to make their mark in the playoffs. They come into the postseason with the top pitching staff in the NL and a lineup that is averaging 4.3 runs a game, which is third amongst NL playoff teams. The only thing that is not in their favor is the experience of playing with the pressure that a tight division race provides.
I still like Atlanta’s +300 odds to win the NL Pennant as the second favorite, and I love their odds to face the Red Sox in the World Series at +1000. The odds they would play Detroit are also +1000. The odds that it will be a St. Louis vs. Boston World Series are +1250, and the odds for a Cardinals vs. Tigers series would be +1300.
Playing the Long Odds
It has been over 20 years since the Pittsburgh Pirates have posted a winning season and made it to the playoffs, so it is easy to understand the excitement surrounding this team. While inexperience will certainly be a factor once the playoffs begin, there is something about this team that makes it a very dangerous opponent to face in a one-game playoff or a best-of-five NLDS. From there anything can happen, especially when you have one of the best pitching staffs in the NL.
Oakland is no stranger to the postseason with six trips since 2000, but the farthest it has gotten was a four-game sweep in the 2006 ALCS. Last season the Athletics lost to Detroit 3-2 in the ALDS to add to the list of disappointing losses in the playoffs. There is no hard-and-fast reason why this year will be any different, but the A’s still have a team that can compete with the top dogs in the AL. For sentimental reasons alone, this might warrant a small play on a Pittsburgh vs. Oakland World Series at +4100.
Read more articles by Dave Schwab
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