What’s the biggest lock in sports right now? That would be the Los Angeles Dodgers winning the NL West Division. They have done so seven years in a row – yet still not won a World Series since that memorable 1988 team led by Kirk Gibson and Orel Hershiser – and are the biggest division favorites entering 2020, priced -900 at Mybookie.ag. Let’s check the NL Divisional Winners Odds for this upcoming season.
NL Divisional Winners Predictions & Odds April 6th 2020 Edition
The cream usually rises to the top, so to speak, and the Dodgers are easily the most talented team in that division but maybe the fact that the 2020 campaign will be shortened due to the coronavirus – still no clue when the season might start or how many games will be played – could help the a team like Arizona (+800) to have a shot at dethroning Los Angeles.
Dodger manager Dave Roberts enters his fifth season with the club after leading the team to the best record in the National League last year and back-to-back World Series appearances in 2017 and 2018. The 2016 NL Manager of the Year has delivered four straight 90+-win seasons and a .604 (393-256) winning pct., which is best in the NL during that span.
In 2019, the Dodgers were 106-56, establishing a franchise record for most wins in a season. The Dodgers posted the best record in the National League for the sixth time in the divisional era (since 1969, 22nd time overall) and club’s .654 winning percentage set a Los Angeles record. The Dodgers won the NL West by 21.0 games, the largest margin in both franchise and NL West history, surpassing the 1975 Reds’ 20.0 margin of victory. The previous franchise best came in the pre-divisional era, when the 1955 club finished in first place in the National League with a 13.5-game cushion.
In the NL East, the Atlanta Braves are +165 favorites to win the division a third year in a row. The New York Mets are at +275 but their chances of winning the division were hurt significantly with the news that No. 2 pitcher Noah Syndergaard would miss the 2020 season following Tommy John surgery. That may keep him out until midseason of 2021. He is under team control through the end of that season, at which point he can become a free agent.
Syndergaard last appeared in a Grapefruit League game March 8 against the Astros, about a week before the Mets suspended their spring camp. It is unknown when Syndergaard first began experiencing elbow discomfort. A key part of the Mets’ R.A. Dickey trade with the Blue Jays in December 2012, Syndergaard placed fourth in 2015 NL Rookie of the Year Award voting, following that up with his best season — a 2.60 ERA across 183 2/3 innings in ’16. But Syndergaard posted a career-worst 4.28 ERA last summer.
Syndergaard’s absence opens a spot in the starting rotation for Steven Matz or Michael Wacha, the two pitchers who had been in camp battling for the fifth starter role. Jacob deGrom, the two-time defending Cy Young Award winner, remains as the headliner of the starting rotation, which also includes Marcus Stroman and Rick Porcello, the 2016 AL Cy Young winner but who was awful last year with Boston.
In the NL Central, the St. Louis Cardinals are +200 favorites to repeat. The Cards were scheduled to “host” two games against the rival Cubs (+225 to win the Central) in London on June 13-14, but that was canceled due to the coronavirus. For the London Series 2019, New York Yankees took on Boston Red Sox in front of 119,000 people over two days. The Yankees took both games, 17-13 and 12-8.
The Cardinals went an NL-best 47-27 (.635) following the All-Star break last season to clinch their 12th NL Central title with a 91-71 mark. The Cardinals beat the NL East Champion Atlanta Braves, 3-2, in the Division Series before falling to eventual World Series Champion Washington in the NLCS. The Cards have recorded 12-straight winning seasons dating to 2008.
The Cards are an excellent defensive team. Second baseman Kolten Wong was voted the recipient of the 2019 Rawlings Gold Glove award, and five of his teammates also flashed the leather last season, with Yadier Molina, Paul Goldschmidt, Paul DeJong, Harrison Bader and Jack Flaherty finishing as Gold Glove finalists.
NL Divisional Odds Predictions
Braves in NL East, Dodgers in NL West and Cincinnati Reds (+250) in Central.