America’s pastime features a marathon regular season, one that starts in spring, consumes all of summer, and ends just in time to greet the fall. After 162 games, the best teams in Major League Baseball continue playing in a postseason that often provides some of the most dramatic and enthralling games in sports.
This year's playoffs also offer shrewd punters a final chance to capitalize on baseball until pitchers and catchers report back in the spring. With that in mind, Gambling.com has evaluated some of the best bets that could provide the most value of baseball’s postseason. Read on for those odds as well as expert tips!
Last year the Chicago Cubs ended a 108 year championship drought when they defeated the Cleveland Indians in game 7 of the World Series. After being cursed for over a century, what are the chances that the Cubs can completely turn their franchise fortunes around and become the first team to win consecutive World Series titles since the New York Yankees won three straight championships from 1998-2000?
Frankly, we wouldn’t put it past them. Winning a single championship is incredibly hard, and doing so as a Cub proved to be even harder for decades on end, so asking them to win another one so quickly is a very tall order, to say the least. Asking a team that's regressed (the 2017 Cubs won 11 fewer games than 2016) - to so is even taller.
Still, the core of last season’s title-winning squad is still here, and those players have proven that they have what it takes to win it all. Given their talent and World Series-winning experience, the Cubs are a truly dangerous team until the final out of their season is recorded.
With that in mind, the odds the North Siders are being given make them a juicy value pick to win the title outright. According to bet365, the Cubs are near the back of the pack in the National League with odds of 15/2 to win the World Series, with only the Wild Card-winning Arizona Diamondbacks being a longer shot at 10/1.
While some teams in the National League had better years, these are still the defending champs and they have more than enough weapons to win a series against any other team in the field of playoff teams. With such great value on their odds, it’s more than worth taking a flyer on a repeat for the Chicago Cubs.
Two of the three teams with the best odds according to the top bookmakers reside in the American League, and they may be the two most dangerous sides in the entire field. First up are the Cleveland Indians, the team on the losing end of Chicago’s historic championship from a year ago.
The same solid pitching that powered that team is present in the current iteration, and the offense has arguably only gotten better as young studs Jose Ramirez and Francisco Lindor have both improved at the plate. This lethal balance led Cleveland to win an American League-record 22 games in a row in August and September.
If they can put together a run that is even a pale imitation of that awe-inspiring streak they will break their own nearly seven decade long championship-free drought. Currently they sit at 15/4 odds to claim the ultimate prize at Paddy Power, the second best odds of any team in the playoffs. With the way this team has played this season, those odds may be shortchanging them.
The biggest obstacle for the Indians on the American League side of things look to be the upstart Houston Astros. In the summer of 2014, when the Astros were in the midst of a massive rebuild that included losing a whole lot of games, Sports Illustrated magazine put the team on the cover of an issue and declared them Major League Baseball’s next big thing and predicted they would be the 2017 World Series Champs.
While many scoffed at the declaration at the time, the 2017 Astros are doing everything in their power to make it come true. That meant winning 101 games to finish 21 games ahead of the second-place finisher in their division. It also meant finishing with the best team batting average, runs batted in, on-base percentage, and slugging percentage in all of baseball, and finishing second in team home runs by just three.
Led by young studs Carlos Correa, George Springer, and MVP-candidate hitting machine Jose Altuve, Houston’s offense is unquestionably the class of baseball. Add in the fact that they have a former Cy Young award winner in Dallas Kuechel leading the pitching staff and this is a team that looks every bit as good (if not better) as Sports Illustrated predicted three years ago.
At odds of 5/1 according to Winner, it’s definitely worth taking a swing Houston to hit their way to the ultimate prize. To bet on these Fall Classic odds as well as individual series and game lines, head to Betway today! Players signing up for an account for the first time will be greeted with a generous free bet promotion!