The MLB Futures market clearly changed on Thursday with the MLB Trade Deadline and the shake-up at the top with the Detroit Tigers acquiring David Price from the Tampa Bay Rays and the Oakland A’s acquiring Jon Lester from the Boston Red Sox. Everybody seems to be taking a Tigers-A’s ALCS for granted and league-wide parity definitely took a hit with Thursday’s transactions.
Here’s a look at the current MLB Futures Market from Bovada.lv:
|Team||Odds as of August 1|
*not offered: Arizona, Chicago (NL), Colorado, Houston, Texas
Here’s a look at various points throughout the season, including a month ago on July 1:
|Team||March 5||May 1||June 4||July 1|
Oakland’s July acquisitions moved them from 6/1 to 4/1 as the overall favorite to win the World Series, even though they’ve won just one playoff series in their last seven playoff appearances. Even though the A’s and Tigers both got significantly better at the deadline, the Angels’ odds did not move from 10/1 over the last month. It’s unfortunate that there aren’t better odds on them because they’re probably the American League’s only hope to avoid a Tigers-A’s ALCS, unless Baltimore manages to pull a sizable upset.
In the National League, the Dodgers are a big favorite over anybody else, in large part because any opponent will definitely see Clayton Kershaw twice and would absolutely see Zack Greinke twice in the NLCS. The Nationals are worth a look at 10/1 because they have a very underrated rotation and an offense that can produce if healthy.
Since Bovada has taken down their player props, let’s look at the division futures in MLB’s six divisions.
|Toronto Blue Jays||+130|
|New York Yankees||+550|
|Tampa Bay Rays||+900|
|Boston Red Sox||+6600|
The Rays were +3300 a month ago and have now dropped to +900, despite gaining only two games on the division-leading Orioles. The Orioles could have been had at +225 last month, so the value on them appears to be gone. With the Yankees now five games back, and a lot of division games left, there doesn’t seem to be much value in this division.
|Kansas City Royals||+550|
|Chicago White Sox||+5000|
Last month, the Tigers were -400 and it was advised that bettors lay the four dollars and plan to collect their profit. With the Price addition, the Tigers are now -1000 and there’s no value in this division whatsoever. The Royals did nothing, the Indians were sellers, but it won’t affect the team all that much, and the White Sox are Chris Sale and Jose Abreu.
|LA Angels of Anaheim||+200|
The A’s were -333 a month ago, so their odds have actually dropped, but three of the teams in the AL West no longer have odds. The Angels went from +275 to +200 in spite of Oakland’s pitching additions. The smart money here would be to take Oakland -300 because they’re in the best position at the present. However, you’re probably better off taking Oakland to win the AL Pennant because winning the AL West would guarantee home-field in the first two rounds given the current standings.
|New York Mets||+4000|
The Braves have gone from the favorite to even money to +150 to +140 as the Nationals have gotten healthier. The Braves and Nationals are separated by just 1.5 games and have nine head-to-head meetings left this season, beginning with next weekend’s series in Atlanta. The value lies with the Braves, who have owned the Nationals over the last three seasons and are already 7-3 against their chief division rival so far this season.
|St. Louis Cardinals||+125|
The Brewers were a -135 favorite a month ago, so times have quickly changed. Bettors who don’t believe in the Pirates, who are 0.5 games behind St. Louis and 2.5 games behind Milwaukee for the division could guarantee 0.25 units of profit by taking both St. Louis and Milwaukee at a flat bet price. The Pirates have come on strong over the last couple of months, however. The Brewers have been met with skepticism all season long and the Cardinals’ acquisition of John Lackey has added more fuel to that fire.
|Los Angeles Dodgers||-350|
|San Francisco Giants||+225|
The Dodgers went from -180 a month ago to -350 now. The Giants probably don’t have enough to catch them and Matt Cain is probably out for the rest of the season with the likelihood of having surgery to remove bone chips. Unlike the A’s, where making a playoff bet may be the smartest route to go, the Dodgers have serious bullpen problems and some offensive inconsistencies that may hinder them in the playoffs. It might be smarter to lay the 350 here.
Keep an eye on Bovada.lv for any favorable movement in these futures as we approach the All-Star Break and as teams gear up for a second half postseason run.