The Los Angeles Dodgers have been scuffling of late, losing nine of 13. Their lead in the National League West is down to ½-game over the San Diego Padres. Both New York teams have better records and Houston now has the same mark as the mighty Dodgers. What are the Dodgers odds to win?
So it begs the question. Is it still worth taking the Dodgers against the field when it comes to MLB betting? Their odds to win World Series no. 8 in franchise history currently stand at +450, (down from a preseason +550) compared to any other team as a favorite at -850. Los Angeles has cost bettors over $200 total based on daily $100 moneyline bets this year. Does it make sense to abandon their sinking odds and their high expectations in favor of a field now even more stacked against them?
Let’s take a closer look at the Dodgers’ odds to win it all vs everyone else, and if/why either bet makes sense.
Is the Slump for Real?
Essentially, does this 4-9 swoon mean that the Los Angeles Dodgers are no longer the best team in the National League? Much less, in all of baseball?
While there are other issues at play, the blame largely rests on the shoulders of a struggling offense. And, in the eyes of manager Dave Roberts, that offense’s approach at the plate.
“People get caught up in their own individual paths,” he said Sunday pregame in San Francisco. “But the whole kind of focusing on just winning a game and whatever it takes to win that day, we’ve got to get back to that mindset.”
Hours later, his team had been shut out 2-0, wasting three leadoff doubles and a leadoff walk in a futile performance. It was the fourth time on a six-game trip that the NL’s leader in OPS was held to two runs or fewer.
Los Angeles ranks 24th in the majors in runs scored in June after a scorching May in which it ranked first.
It’s safe to say that Mookie Betts is the driving force. He hit .342 with 12 home runs in May but has plummeted to .204 with one long ball in June. Roberts insisted in his frustrated weekend sessions with reporters that there are eight others who can help out, but it’s clear that as Betts goes, so go the Dodgers.
History suggests this is just the usual pattern for the star right fielder. In his career, Mookie has more home runs, doubles, and walks in May than any other month. June is his worst month for average, OPS, and virtually every major counting stat.
If you’re relying on Betts to pick it back up and carry the lineup with him (ignoring the struggles of Justin Turner, Cody Bellinger, and others), then your patience will be rewarded and Dodger’s odds to win it all will improve.
Pitching Woes, Too
Even if the lineup that some considered to be the greatest ever assembled heats back up, the Dodgers have some question marks on the mound. Clayton Kershaw was quite ordinary in his return from a pelvic injury this weekend, pitching on the same day the team put Walker Buehler on the IL with an elbow strain that will sideline him for up to two months.
That leaves Kershaw trying to round back into form atop a much leaner rotation. Andrew Heaney will likely fill Buehler’s spot and Dustin May and Danny Duffy may be ready to contribute later in the season, but it stands to reason that a rotation that dominated early on will be looking for reinforcements ahead of the trade deadline.
Not exactly what you want if you’re taking the Dodgers against the field.
New York, New York
The Dodgers still have a slight edge on the New York Yankees at the sportsbook in terms of World Series odds, however, they can’t sniff the Bronx Bombers in the eyes of many observers, and certainly not as it relates to recent results. The Yankees are on an 11-1 tear not long after they put together a 21-3 run. Sheer dominance in the AL East.
The other Big Apple squad, the Mets, recently split a four-game set at Dodger Stadium and will, at some point, have both Jacob deGrom and Max Scherzer back in the rotation.
Houston, with what looks like an easy march to the AL West title, is a perennial challenger. The defending champion Atlanta Braves have won 11 in a row, while San Diego and San Francisco seem primed to battle Los Angeles until the end. Remember, the Padres are contending without Fernando Tatis, who is due back in July.
As Dodgers shortstop Trea Turner said over the weekend, “People aren’t scared of us, and they shouldn’t be.”
Indeed, there are too many good teams in the field, including one in New York that just might set the MLB record for wins in a season. Hard to go against that collection of teams with the Dodgers still trying to figure it all out.
In a year where the number of teams making the postseason increases to 12 from 10 and a new format takes place, it’s even harder to have supreme confidence in one single team. The top two division winners get byes and avoid a three-game wild-card series, a factor that will become paramount in the tight NL West.
The Dodgers’ odds to win even their division has gone down quite a bit in the past few weeks. In the event they do not win it, those Dodgers vs the field odds get even steeper in a more prolonged playoff system. More chances for a Betts slump. More opportunities for starters to get hurt. More incentive to take the field.Follow us on Twitter