The MLB season is about to enter the final month of the year and the postseason. Even though there are just a handful of regular season games remaining, there is still time to place wagers on several futures markets.
The season officially ends this upcoming Sunday, with the Wild Card tilts scheduled for next week.
While most of the playoff spots are secured, there is still plenty to be decided in the American League.
Currently, four teams are vying for the final two postseason spots. Since the Tampa Bay Rays already wrapped up their division, the Yankees, Red Sox, and Blue Jays must fight for one of the positions still left.
Entering Thursday night’s action, the Yanks hold a one-game lead over Boston, which occupies the second Wild Card. The Seattle Mariners are just a half game behind the Red Sox and one up on Toronto.
Two of these teams will qualify for at least the one-game showdown, with the other two watching from home.
Let’s look at the MLB odds still available at West Virginia sportsbooks and how the playoff landscape might turn out.
MLB Odds At WV Sportsbooks
Since almost every division is already set, examining the odds for which team will take each league is much more interesting.
At FanDuel Sportsbook WV, the AL teams are broken up into two groups. Two teams that already locked up their division and one that is about to feature similar odds to win the AL pennant.
The Astros lead this group with odds of +200, with Tampa at +290, and the Chicago White Sox at +310.
Not only have these teams qualified for the playoffs, they all get a free pass to the ALDS for winning the division. That’s huge, because realistically anything can happen when your season comes down to one single game.
That’s what the rest of the AL contenders will be looking to get into during this final weekend.
With the Yankees and Red Sox owning the current spots, they have better postseason odds than the other two. New York is available at +700, whereas Boston is posted at +1000.
Both Seattle and Toronto need some assistance to get in, but it’s certainly possible. Despite having a lead on the Blue Jays in the standings, the Mariners have much lower odds.
This is due in part to the fact that the Blue Jays finish the year with a series against dreadful Baltimore.
FanDuel shows Toronto at +1500 to earn the AL crown, compared to the Mariners with odds of +3000.
Of course there is added risk to choosing one of these last four participants, but there’s also lots of added value. If you’re able to pick the right team that eventually advances out of the AL Wild Card, then you’ll own much better odds than you’ll see later on.
Betting On The NL Pennant
The National League’s playoff picture doesn’t have as many moving parts as the AL, but the fight for the league title should be just as exciting.
All of the NL teams are set for the most part. Atlanta is about to win its division and the Cardinals are good for the second Wild Card.
This only leaves the NL West to be decided, with the Giants still holding a two-game margin over the Dodgers.
Although they would need to win an additional game compared to most others, the Dodgers are the favorite to win the NL. FanDuel has them posted at +145 to make it back to the World Series.
This could get tricky, though, as they’d face the Cardinals in that contest. St. Louis just had its winning streak come to an end, but its recent 17-game run did punch its playoff ticket.
The Dodgers roster is unmatched, but that doesn’t mean a whole lot in a single-elimination game.
San Francisco holds the second-best odds for the NL at +290. If it doesn’t hold onto its slim lead in the NL West, then it will face the Cardinals.
The odds for both sides are intriguing because while one of them has to play in the Wild Card, they’re both two of the better teams in baseball.
At the moment, they’re the only two that exceeded the 100-win mark.
The Brewers follow them at +340, before there’s a sizable jump to Atlanta listed at +600. St. Louis is last among the NL squads even though it is one of the hottest right now.
The online sportsbook offers the Cardinals to take the NL at +1000.
MLB Player Futures
There are a few betting categories for players that still need to be determined, as well.
One of the closest races is between a couple of guys for the NL MVP. With just a few games left the favorites are obviously in a good position, but you never know what can happen in the final series of the season.
Philadelphia appears like it will miss the postseason once again, but there could be a silver lining. According to FanDuel, outfielder Bryce Harper is favored to take MVP honors with odds of -260.
He’s followed by the Nationals’ Juan Soto (+320) and San Diego’s Fernando Tatis Jr. (+600).
Harper has quietly been a monster this year. He’s hitting .308 with 34 homers and 82 RBI. Harper leads the entire league in OPS with an incredible 1.041 in 137 games.
An impactful weekend from Soto or Tatis could adjust these odds, but that seems unlikely with both of their teams out of the playoffs.
NL Cy Young Award
The award for the best pitcher in the NL is also up for debate. While FanDuel provides odds for several players, this is pretty much down to a two-man competition.
Milwaukee’s Corbin Burnes is at the top of the list, available to wager on at -175. He’s closely followed by Los Angeles’ Max Scherzer, who’s performed at a very high level since getting traded.
FanDuel offers Scherzer to win the Cy Young at +160.
The two aces have very similar stats when comparing them. Scherzer holds the edge in wins, but Burnes leads him in ERA and strikeout rate.
There isn’t a bad choice between them, but perhaps Burnes’ team winning the division could be the difference for voters.