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A’s ‘dreadful’ roster gets no respect from oddsmakers

The Oakland Athletics finished last season with the American League’s worst record at 60-102 and baseball’s second-worst mark behind the Washington Nationals, who went 55-107.

As the A’s mull a possible move to Las Vegas, local oddsmakers clearly expect Oakland and Washington to be the worst teams in baseball again this season.

The A’s have the lowest season win total at the Westgate SuperBook at 59 and are the +150 favorites to finish with the fewest wins.

The Nationals have the second-lowest win total at 60 and are the 2-1 second choice to finish with the fewest wins.

“When we were doing that pool, the first raw numbers we did we had Oakland as the odds-on favorite,” SuperBook manager Randy Blum said. “We had to close the gap a little bit with Washington to correlate to the win totals. But we still expect the A’s to be horrific.”

Blum bet on the A’s at another book to go under their win total of 62½.

“Our opening number was 57½, so that’s why I bet under 62½,” he said. “I can’t imagine them not losing 100 games. When you look at their roster, it’s dreadful. But a lot of computer models have the Nationals being worse.”

Circa Sports rates Washington as the worst team with a win total of 58½, compared with 59½ for Oakland, and the book has the Nationals as the +220 favorites to finish with the most losses. The A’s are the +295 second choice.

“The Nationals are also in a rebuilding phase. But the players they’ve been acquiring have way more upside than the A’s,” Blum said. “With Oakland, there’s not a lot of upside at all.

“Over the last couple of years, they’ve gotten rid of all their decent players. The crazy thing is they don’t really have young kids they’ve gotten in trades coming to the big leagues right away to show for it. There’s just not a lot to like there.”

The A’s made the playoffs in six of 10 years before bottoming out last season, when they finished with the franchise’s worst 162-game record since 1979, when they went 54-108.

“It’s pretty clear they’re not trying to win right now, and they want to get out of Oakland. They’re barely fielding a competitive team,” Blum said. “It’s still baseball, and any team can beat any team on any given day. But over the course of a 162-game season, a team like Oakland just doesn’t win many games in the end.

“They have one or two guys left who are able to play. But there’s still a good chance those guys could be gone this year.”

The A’s are 500-1 at the Westgate to win the AL West, 1,000-1 to win the AL pennant and 2,000-1 to win the World Series.

Seth Brown is arguably Oakland’s best player. The first baseman/designated hitter batted .230 last season and led the team in home runs (25) and RBIs (73). He’s 500-1 at the Westgate to win the home run title and 1,000-1 to be AL MVP.

Contact reporter Todd Dewey at tdewey@reviewjournal.com. Follow @tdewey33 on Twitter.

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