Pitchers and catchers haven’t reported yet, but the Major League Baseball season already has the makings of a two-team race — at least in the betting market.
The Los Angeles Dodgers acquired former American League MVP outfielder Mookie Betts and former Cy Young winner David Price in a trade with the Boston Red Sox on Tuesday for outfield prospect Alex Verdugo. The Minnesota Twins got pitcher Kenta Maeda from the Dodgers and sent pitching prospect Brusdar Graterol to the Red Sox. The Dodgers also sent outfielder Joc Pederson to the Los Angeles Angels for infielder Luis Rengifo.
Those moves have created a clear favorite in each league, with the New York Yankees given a strong edge in the AL, especially given the turmoil surrounding the Houston Astros amid their sign-stealing scandal.
The Westgate has posted the prop: Will the Dodgers or Yankees win the 2020 World Series? No is a slight favorite at -125 (yes +105), but the odds show the strength of the two teams.
“Those teams look to be a cut above the field,” Westgate sportsbook director John Murray said via text message, “but anything can happen in the playoff format.”
The Westgate dropped the Dodgers from +450 to win the title to +350 after the trade and lowered their National League pennant odds from +200 to +150, Murray said.
Odds moved similarly across the market. Sunset Station sportsbook director Chuck Esposito said his book moved the Dodgers from +550 to +350 after the trade.
William Hill had the Dodgers down to +400 to win the title after the trade Tuesday night, then lowered them further to +350 on Wednesday. Caesars Entertainment and MGM Resorts held at +400 on Wednesday after lowering the price Tuesday.
The Dodgers were below +200 to win the NL across the market and as low as +135 at Circa Sports.
The Yankees remained the World Series favorite at prices ranging from +250 to +350, with the Dodgers a notch behind. The Astros remained the third choice at 6-1 to 10-1 across the market.
The Yankees ranged from +150 to +110 to win the AL.
“In the end, you’re talking about two extremely public teams,” Esposito said. “… It’s an extremely long season. Pitching will be a big part of it. The Yankees still have some holes. The Dodgers have to hope Price returns to form.”
One team not expected to do well is the cost-cutting Red Sox, who were as high as 50-1 to win the World Series and 24-1 to win the AL across the market Wednesday.
“Doesn’t appear they will have much for the Yankees this season,” Murray said.