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2013 MLB Futures: NL Pennant

It’s time to look at the future odds for which team will come out of the “senior circuit” this year in MLB as it appears to be a bit more wide open then the AL.

Teams you can eliminate off the bat:
Miami +15000; Colorado +8500; San Diego +5000; Chicago +4000; New York +4000


Little has to be said about the biggest underdog out there in Miami has they traded half of their starters to Toronto this winter and are absolutely decimated in terms of talent. You don’t have to see them play one game before pegging them for last in the NL East.

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Similar things can be said for Colorado and San Diego as they play in the loaded NL West that just has too many quality teams in front of them. L.A. and San Francisco will battle all year for that division crown, but Arizona (+2500), is still good enough to beat up on these two bottom feeders for most of the year.
That leaves two big market teams in the Cubs and Mets on this list and both are in the early rebuilding stages of their franchises. Both will be relatively competitive this season but the playoffs are out of the question in 2013.

Longshots: Pittsburgh +4000; Milwaukee +2800; Arizona +2500

The playoffs are going to be tough for all three of these teams and as I’ve already touched on, Arizona will arguably have the toughest shot to see October baseball of these three teams. Milwaukee and Pittsburgh play in the more wide open NL Central but lose those “gimme” games against Houston this year so they will need to find ways to get more wins than losses over the likes of Cincinnati and St Louis. Of the two, I believe Milwaukee has a better shot at shocking the division simply because they are so dominant at home and still have the sluggers to never be “out” of games.

Value Bets: St Louis +1000; Atlanta +1000; Philadelphia +1200

All three of these teams are loaded with playoff tested veterans and will be major players in the playoff race all season. But of the three, I believe Philadelphia at +1200 is the best pick of them all as they get a healthy Ryan Howard and Chase Utley for the entire season and still have a very deep rotation. They have a good mix of speed and sluggers and after two very disappointing seasons, I expect this team to be involved in October baseball.

Favorites: LA +450; Washington +450; Cincinnati +550; San Francisco +650

It is no surprise to see these four teams topping the list as all were good last year and the additions L.A. made this winter have put them ahead of the defending champion Giants within their own division. But there is little value on the Dodgers or Nationals at this point simply because the NL is going to be quite wide open this year and laying 4.5 to 1 on either of these teams that have some concerns to work out isn’t something I want to do. San Francisco at +650 isn’t bad but we haven’t seen a repeat NL champion since the Atlanta Braves did it in 1995 and 1996. They are definitely playoff tested and have the pitching staff to shutdown anyone but to ask them to repeat as League champions is tough.

That leaves Cincinnati at +550 and after years of getting close to the playoffs and coming up short, the Reds seemed to have turned a corner last year before collapsing at home against the Giants in the Divisional round. This team will have learned a lot from that heartbreaking defeat and will apply it to this year’s run at a crown. They play in the weakest division of the three in the National League and because of that could find themselves with home field advantage all the way until the World Series.

Plays: Cincinnati at +550 and Philadelphia at +1200
 
 

  
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