Is the Third Time the Charm? NL Pennant Odds Favor the Dodgers
Three seasons ago, in 2017, the Los Angeles Dodgers ran roughshod over the league, leading all of Major League Baseball with 104 wins, and represented the National League in the World Series. In 2018, the Dodgers won the NL West, and beat out the Milwaukee Brewers for the Pennant. The Dodgers, the first team to clinch a division and a postseason berth this year, are the odds-on favorites to win the Pennant for a third straight year, with 2019 NL Championship odds at -110.
The Boys in Blue, who have won the NL West now for seven consecutive seasons and nine of the last twelve, are a balanced team with the best lineup in the league and strong starting pitching. Led by NL MVP candidate Cody Bellinger, Max Muncy, Joc Pedersen, and Justin Turner, they lead the circuit in runs scored, home runs, and OPS. A stacked rotation with Hyun Jin Ryu, Clayton Kershaw, and Walker Buehler has the Dodgers are tops in ERA and WHIP, but the bullpen is perhaps the weak link of the club. Dave Roberts, an experienced postseason manager, has the team ready to go deep into October.
NL Pennant Odds For the Other Division Leaders: What Are the Braves and Cardinals Chances?
Odds for an Atlanta Braves 2019 NL Pennant are +380. The East-leading club has a 9.5 game lead in the division and the second best record in the league. The Braves are riding a wave of steady performances up and down the roster, and some mid-season reinforcements by acquisition and return from injury. Freddie Freeman, Ronald Acuna, Jr., and Josh Donaldson lead the offense with Mike Soroka and Max Fried at the top of the pitching staff. The Braves are 2-4 versus the Dodgers on the season.
The St Louis Cardinals are in the lead of the NL Central by four and five games respectively over the Cubs and Brewers. Odds for a Cardinals NL Pennant are +750. Veterans Yadier Molina and Paul Goldscmidt head up a team balanced with former All Stars and young talent, which has kept its division lead going 21-9 over the last 30 games. The cards are 4-3 against the Dodgers on the year.
Wild Card Odds Still Wide Open as Brewers, Cubs, Phillies, DBacks, and Mets Vie to Join the Nationals at the Top of the Heap
The NL Wild Card race finds the Washington Nationals in a strong position to claim the top spot, with a three and a half game lead. The Nationals are +900 to win the NL. Competing with them for a postseason berth are the Chicago Cubs (+1200), Milwaukee Brewers (+2200), New York Mets (+2200), Philadelphia Phillies (+2600), and Arizona Diamondbacks (+3200).