The strangest season in MLB history has now reached the postseason and, despite all the doubts as to whether we would ever finish the year, there will be a World Series to enjoy once we have sorted out the Divisional Series and League Championship Series.
From here onwards it is neutral venues all the way with teams entering bubbles with San Diego and Los Angeles hosting the ALDS and Texas and Houston being used for the NLDS before the World Series will take place at the Globe Life Field in Arlington.
Dodge the Dodgers in the National League
Most pundits are struggling to look past the Los Angeles Dodgers when it comes to the National League Pennant and they are
10/11 favourites to win the conference, with the Atlanta Braves, San Diego Padres and Miami Marlins seemingly making up the numbers.
That may well be true of the Marlins – they caused a big upset against Chicago Cubs in the previous round – but deserve to be outsiders at
15/1 to win the World Series and
7/1 to get through the National League.
The Dodgers have a tricky matchup against San Diego in their best-of-five series with Fernando Tatis Jr in red-hot form, which suggests it could be closer than many are suggesting.
Meanwhile, the Braves should have few problems getting past Miami and that is why they could be a value bet at
10/3 in the National League.
Atlanta took care of business brilliantly against the Cincinnati Reds, who looked built for the playoffs. The Braves won 1-0 in 13 innings and then 5-0 in Game 2 and if they can maintain that pitching support from Max Friend, Ian Anderson and the bullpen, Atlanta could upset the odds as they have the second-best lineup in MLB behind the Dodgers.
Yankees Won’t Have it Easy in the American League
New York Yankees were super-impressive in sweeping the Cleveland Indians and the Bronx Bombers crossed the plate 22 times.
They also have the ace Gerrit Cole and the way he out-pitched on-song Shane Bieber suggests the Yankees will be difficult to stop. However, the odds are now too short and they maybe should not have taken over as American League favourites at
Whoever wins their series against Tampa Bay Rays should be heading to the World Series as Oakland and Houston don’t look quite good enough this season.
Tampa Can Take the World Series
Tampa Bay Rays look the value play at
19/5 with maybe people put off by their lack of big-name star quality.
Don’t forget, the Rays were easy AL East winners for a reason and they did so comfortably with no other team coming close to the number one seed in the American League.
Tampa Bay trounced Toronto 3-1 and 8-2 and could be about to win the World Series for the first time. They have a strong pitching department with Blake Snell, Tyler Glasnow and Charlie Morton and won their season series 8-2 against the Yankees.
Spectators would love a Yankees v Dodgers World Series; it may well be a Rays versus Braves instead which would be a weird ending to a weird season.
* All odds correct at time of writing