American League Pennant 2018 Best Bets, Picks and Analysis

American League Pennant 2018 Best Bets, Picks and Analysis

The story of the American League this year was hitting, as the five playoff teams are the top five in the Junior Circuit in team OPS and runs scored. Or, was it pitching?

The five playoff teams all finished in the top six in ERA, as the Tampa Bay Rays – likely a playoff team themselves if they didn’t have the misfortune of being in the East – also are among the elite in that category.

All five teams are excellent, but only one can win the pennant. So, for MLB betting fans, who’s the best bet? All lines are from Karamba.

  1. Houston Astros (+175)

    The defending champs hit as well as anyone, but if it’s true that good pitching beats good hitting, then the Astros are in great shape, with a staff that has allowed more than 100 fewer runs than anyone else in the American League this year.

    They get to start the playoffs by facing easily the weakest team in the field, Cleveland, and once again have such strength on the pitching side that either Charlie Morton or Lance McCullers Jr. will shift to the bullpen.

    The Astros’ main weakness is that this is baseball, and losing three out of five or four out of seven is highly possible even for the best teams, and also that they may have wasted a hot run of play with how well they did in September to put away the West after the A’s rallied to tie for the lead in August.

    The Astros are the top pick at +175 with Karamba.

  2. Oakland A’s (+1000)

    The team with the second-most home runs in the American League this year gets to go to Yankee Stadium for the wild-card game, and if they can win that, the A’s will be acclimated to East Coast time when they go to Fenway Park for the start of the division series.

    There is a case to be made that Oakland has the best bullpen going, and while they absolutely need it because of a rotation that’s even thinner without the injured Sean Manaea, it isn’t like that’s slowed them down so far.

    This is a team that was under .500 in the middle of June, and wound up 30-some games over by the end of the season. The A’s are a great longshot bet at +1000 with Karamba.

  3. Boston Red Sox (+175)

    Boston led the East by five games at the end of July, and the margin never went below that in the final two months, ballooning into double digits for most of the stretch run. Could a lack of meaningful games be a problem?

    How about the fact that the Red Sox had losing records this year against the A’s, Astros, and Cleveland? The Red Sox have two MVP candidates in their lineup in Mookie Betts and J.D. Martinez, Chris Sale and David Price anchoring the rotation, and Craig Kimbrel to close out games.

    They’re stacked, although the middle of the bullpen can be iffy – a concern if games go into extra innings or a starter’s pitch count gets worked. Boston is great, but not invincible, and in a league with three 100-win teams, it’s easy to shy away from the favorite. You can bet them at +175 with Karamba.

  4. New York Yankees (+600)

    In another year, the Yankees might be favored to win it all, but in 2018, they’re headed to the wild-card game.

    Their strength is reflected, along with their popularity, in the fact that they’re extremely close in odds to a division winner, despite having to start the playoffs with a win-or-go-home game against an A’s team that’s plenty dangerous in its own right.

    The Yankees set a major league record for home runs this year, and the power runs up and down the order, and on the bench, and New York finally is getting healthy at the perfect time.

    The bullpen is dominant, but not immune to melting down – particularly Aroldis Chapman – and between Luis Severino’s rocky second half and Masahiro Tanaka’s penchant for giving up homers, the rotation has to be seen as a question mark.

    You can bet the Yankees at +600 with Karamba.

  5. Cleveland (+500)

    Francisco Lindor and Jose Ramirez are a fabulous tandem on the left side of the infield and in the lineup, providing Cleveland’s heartbeat. The starting rotation is loaded, with four pitchers who struck out at least 200 hitters this year, all capable of going deep into games.

    They’d better, because the bullpen is an obvious Achilles’ heel. Cleveland not only has the worst record of any American League playoff team, but rolled to the Central title on the strength of its performance within the division.

    Against everyone else, Cleveland went an uninspiring 42-53 – although 4-3 against the possible ALCS opponent Red Sox.

    Bet them -- if you dare -- at +500 with Karamba.

Recommended Betting Sites

Secure Trusted Verified
Advertiser Disclosure
Every online gambler deserves a safe and fair place to play. Our mission at Gambling.com is to create a safe online environment for players through free, impartial and independent reviews of the UK's best online gambling companies so that you can play with confidence and security. All ratings and reviews are made independently of the operator by our team of gaming experts and with every company being fully UK licensed they can be trusted to offer fair play. We accept compensation from the companies advertised on this page and this may affect the brand positioning. We endeavour to continuously update this list so we can bring you the most current sites and the best available offers but we cannot review every site in the market.
Advertiser Disclosure
Every online gambler deserves a safe and fair place to play. Our mission at Gambling.com is to create a safe online environment for players through free, impartial and independent reviews of the UK's best online gambling companies so that you can play with confidence and security. All ratings and reviews are made independently of the operator by our team of gaming experts and with every company being fully UK licensed they can be trusted to offer fair play. We accept compensation from the companies advertised on this page and this may affect the brand positioning. We endeavour to continuously update this list so we can bring you the most current sites and the best available offers but we cannot review every site in the market.
1

Get up to £50 in Bonuses

4.9
BET NOW
Read Review
2

Bet £10, Get a £10 Free Bet

4.8
BET NOW
Read Review
3

50% First Deposit Bonus up to £50 Promo Code: MB50

4.7
BET NOW
Read Review
Terms and Conditions apply for all bonuses. Must be 18+ to participate.

Betting Strategy Articles

Betting Navigation

Newsletter

Sign up for the free Gambling.com Newsletter to stay on top of all the best bonuses!
We will never share or misuse your personal information. Privacy Policy

Latest Betting Strategy

Betting Guides

Country Guide

DISCLAIMER: Online Wagering is illegal in some Jurisdictions. It is your responsibility to check your local regulations before playing online. GDC Trading Ltd takes no responsibility for your actions.
© 2011-2018 GDC Trading Limited. All Rights Reserved. Gambling.com is a registered trademark of GDC Trading Limited.
Terms and Conditions  |   Privacy Policy

Asset 4AndroidGET IT ONfacebookDownload_on_the_App_Store_Badge_US-UK_RGB_blk_4SVG_092917twitter