Major League Baseball is here. The 2021 MLB Season starts on Thursday, April 1. Check out the latest news as we head into spring training’s final week so you can get ready to make your bets against their MLB odds for the rapidly approaching 2021 Season.
MLB COVID-19 Update – March 24th Edition
2021 MLB Season
- When: Thursday, April 1 – Friday, October 1
- Where: Various
2021 World Series Odds
- Los Angeles Dodgers +300
- New York Yankees +550
- San Diego Padres +800
- Tampa Bay Rays +2000
- Atlanta Braves +1000
- Minnesota Twins +1800
- Chicago White Sox +1000
- Oakland Athletics +2400
- Houston Astros +2500
- Cleveland Indians +4000
- Cincinnati Reds +3500
- Chicago Cubs +4000
- New York Mets +1000
- Washington Nationals +3500
- St. Louis Cardinals +2500
- Toronto Blue Jays +2000
- Philadelphia Phillies +4000
- L.A. Angels +4000
- Milwaukee Brewers +3000
- Boston Red Sox +5000
- Miami Marlins +7000
- San Francisco Giants +8000
- Arizona Diamondbacks +10000
- Colorado Rockies +12500
- Seattle Mariners +8000
- Baltimore Orioles +10000
- Detroit Tigers +12500
- Kansas City Royals +10000
- Texas Rangers +15000
- Pittsburgh Pirates +25000
MLB to try and stop doctoring of baseballs
Major League Baseball released a memo this week to all teams outlining steps the league is taking to prevent pitchers from doctoring baseballs. Doctoring is a process some pitchers use that helps spin rate and ball placement.
The process includes adhering foreign substances to balls that, like pine tar, affects spin rate. The rate of a baseball’s spin goes a long way in determining whether a batter makes enough contact for a base hit.
MLB said they’d measure spin rate on pitches. If a pitcher’s spin rate increases significantly from pitch to pitch, the league will inspect balls and then send them to a third-party lab for testing. MLB is also going to have compliance officers in dugouts watching what pitchers and other players do.
The intent is to prevent cheating. But it sounds very Orwellian, doesn’t it? We’ll have to see how it works out. Major League Baseball seems to come up with something new every year. Whatever they come up almost never has the impact the league expects and often falls away by the All-Star Game.
Minnesota Twins odds dive to +1300 but Twins still require a left-fielder
The Twins offer 18-to-1 odds to win the World Series. Some baseball handicappers believe Minnesota upsets the Chicago White Sox, wins the AL Central Division, and then marches into the postseason a strong choice to take the pennant.
Although it’s difficult to go against the Twins, they seem to contend every year, Minnesota has yet to find a starter at left-field. Minnesota had planned on having Alex Kirilloff start at left-field.
But Kirilloff, the Twins’ top prospect, has had an awful spring training. Minnesota won’t start the season with Kirilloff on the roster. The Twins believe he requires more development.
Dodgers and Yankees hold as favorites
Since the start of spring training, some teams, like the Atlanta Braves and San Diego Padres, have shown a decline in odds. No two teams, though, have come close to the odds the Los Angeles Dodgers and New York Yankees offer.
Last week, the defending champions dropped another +50, going from +350 to +300. The Yankees dropped +50 as well, going from +550 to +500.
The Dodgers’ drop makes sense. Trevor Bauer, the 2020 Cy Young winner, signed with Los Angeles. Bauer joins a rotation with Clayton Kershaw, Walker Buehler, and David Price.
NYY’s odds drop makes less sense. The Yankees have a loaded batting lineup, but they field a loaded lineup every year.
Questions about the Yankees’ starting rotation remain. Gerrit Cole will be as solid as any pitcher in MLB this season. But Corey Kluber, whom the Yankees list as second in the rotation, has had an up and down spring training.
He struggled in his second to last start. If Kluber doesn’t become an ace, the Yankees will have trouble winning the NL East. Because questions remain regarding NYY, the Yankees are more of an underlay to win the World Series than the Dodgers even though New York offers better odds.