2016 National League Pennant Futures Odds

The first two months of the 2016 MLB regular season are in the books and a very interesting race for the National League Pennant is taking shape. Using TopBet’s updated futures odds to win the NL, the following is a look at a few best bets from each division.

NL East Top Pick

According to the betting odds, the NL East is a two-team race between Washington and New York with both teams listed as +550 third-favorite to win the NL Pennant. The actual standings through the first seven days of June paint a different picture with Miami (+2000) and Philadelphia (+3500) still within striking distance of the division-leading Nationals, but I would expect both of those teams to fade after the All-Star break.

Of the four teams in contention for the division title, Washington still has the best chance to compete for the league pennant given its deep starting rotation backed by best hitting lineup in the NL East. 

NL Central Top Pick

The Chicago Cubs fast start out of the gate at 40-17 has them listed as the top favorite to win the NL Pennant at +150 betting odds. They have already opened-up an 8.5-game lead on Pittsburgh (+1400) and a 10.5-game lead on St. Louis (+1800) in what has traditionally been a tight division race over the past few seasons. The Cubs are second to only the Cardinals in runs scored in the NL and they are clearly the best pitching team in that league with a team ERA of 2.61.

As long as Chicago’s starting rotation stays healthy and its bats still keep getting the job done with an average of 5.4 runs a game, it is going to be extremely difficult for any team in the NL Central to close the gap.

NL West Top Pick

This is shaping up to be another two-team race to the division title with San Francisco holding the edge as a +325 second favorite to go on and win the NL Pennant. The Giants are 35-25 through their first 60 games which is good enough to currently have a three-game ahead of Los Angeles. The Dodgers are listed at +900 odds to win the NL and their record through 60 games stands at 32-28. San Francisco also has the edge offensively in runs scored, but both team’s pitching staffs are ranked in the top five of the NL so things should stay tight in the standings all the way into September.

I would have to lean towards the Giants in this race since it is their turn to make a run to the World Series. The one thing that is still standing in the Cubs’ way of making history are some historical trends of San Francisco winning a MLB World Series title every other year since 2010.

Overall Prediction

Given everything we have seen so far from all 15 teams in the National League, it would be hard to bet against the Cubs putting it all together over the course of an entire season to finally  return to the World Series as NL Champs for the first time since 1945.

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