For each of the past three seasons, the division winners in the American League East, American League Central and National League West have all been the same: Boston Red Sox, Cleveland Indians and Los Angeles Dodgers. Anyone for a four-peat for the trio?
The 2018 Red Sox were arguably one of the best teams in MLB history in winning a franchise-record 108 games and then largely cruising to a World Series title. The Red Sox won the AL East by eight games and pretty much everyone of note is back … yet they are +125 second-favorites on the AL East odds at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.
The New York Yankees are +100 to win a division they haven’t won since 2012. The Yankees have maybe the best lineup and bullpen in baseball but their rotation is a huge question mark.
Cleveland is a -350 favorite on the AL Central odds. The Tribe cut some costs this offseason but still clearly have the most talent in the AL Central. In fact, one could say the only other team even trying to win this season in the division is the Minnesota Twins (+400). Cleveland finished 13 games ahead of Minnesota in 2018.
Out West, the Houston Astros are -500 favorites on the AL West odds to win it a third straight season. They were second in the majors with 103 wins last year but ran into the Red Sox in the ALCS. The Astros have by far the best overall roster in the AL West.
The Dodgers have the longest active division-winning streak in the majors with six straight NL West titles but haven’t been able to win a World Series in that span. Los Angeles lost a few pieces this offseason, including Matt Kemp, Yasiel Puig and Manny Machado, but is still the clear -400 favorite on the NL West odds. The Colorado Rockies (+550) are the only other team likely to even finish above .500 in the NL West.
It was a disappointing 2018 season for the Chicago Cubs as they came up one game short of winning the NL Central for a third year in a row; the Cubbies lost a one-game NL Central tiebreaker game against the Milwaukee Brewers, who won the division for the first time since 2011. The division likely is the deepest in baseball with the Cubs at +200 on the NL Central odds, St. Louis Cardinals at +225 and Brewers at +325. The Cincinnati Reds (+700) are much improved.
Finally, the Philadelphia Phillies are +175 favorites at sports betting sites on the NL East odds to win the division for the first time since 2011. No team appears to have improved itself more this offseason than the Phillies, who added the likes of Bryce Harper, J.T. Realmuto and Jean Segura. The Washington Nationals (+275) and defending division champion Atlanta Braves (+300) are both very capable.