2023 MLB Futures Odds, Betting Picks: Finding Value in Teams to Make or Miss the Playoffs

2023 MLB Futures Odds, Betting Picks: Finding Value in Teams to Make or Miss the Playoffs article feature image

Michael Owens/Getty Images. Pictured: Shohei Ohtani and Mike Trout

As we head towards opening day on Thursday, make sure to check out my three MLB Futures Guides:

Additionally, check all of our content on the Action Network MLB vertical. 

Before we wrap up the offseason futures talk, I wanted to provide an addendum — and some data — that I will look to include in my Part I in future seasons: odds and projections for teams to make or miss the playoffs.

2023 MLB Playoff Projections

Let's contextualize where the data below comes from and what each of the columns indicates:

Playoff Probability: Average of the playoff projections from FanGraphs and PECOTA.

Fair Odds: Playoff Probability converted into implied odds.

YES Odds and NO Odds:  Listed odds via DraftKings Sportsbook.

"YES" Edge and "NO" Edge: The difference between the projected playoff probability and the listed odds at DraftKings.

Win Differential: The difference between my win total projection and the average win total projection from FanGraphs and PECOTA. A positive number indicates that I am higher than those public projections, while a negative number indicates that I am lower than the public projections.

Teams to Make the Playoffs

The market projection from FanGraphs and PECOTA likes 10 teams to make the playoffs more often than the odds suggest, three of which have a projected edge above 10 percent.

However, I show a negative win differential for all three teams — the Los Angeles Angels, Milwaukee Brewers and MinnesotaTwins — meaning I am lower on all three teams than the projected totals from FanGraphs and PECOTA.

I would still like to bet the Twins as a partial hedge to my Guardiansfutures, with the potential to win both bets.

And although we already have a small bet on the Angels' AL West odds, there are numbers closer to +180 that I have to poke, too.

If we expand the edge boundary to five percent, the Houston Astros, New YorkYankees and San Diego Padres come into range as potential bets since each aligns with a positive number in my win differential column, indicating that I am even higher on these teams than the provided playoff projections.

Unfortunately, they are all heavily juiced to make the playoffs. The best you can do is parlay them at FanDuel and include the Braves, who show a minor edge on the YES from the public projections but also rank as one of my top win differential clubs.

I would set the fair odds on that four-team playoff parlay at a minimum of -140 (58.3% implied), and you can place that bet up to -114 (53.3% implied). Currently, you can get -108 at FanDuel.

Those four teams make up my presumptive ALCS and NLCS coming into the 2023 season, although I do like Cleveland and St. Louis at their respective odds for betting purposes.

The Tampa Bay Rays and Toronto Blue Jays show slight agreement between a small YES edge and a small win differential lean to the Over; however, there's not enough for me to bet on either team.

My projection can justify a YES bet on the Guardians; however, I'd rather bet their division odds at plus money considering my projection gap relative to their AL Central rivals.

Teams to Miss the Playoffs

The market projection from FanGraphs and PECOTA likes 15 teams to miss the playoffs more often than the odds suggest, four of which have a projected edge above 10 percent.

One of those four teams (the White Sox) aligns with my Win Differential column. However, the White Sox Under is my favorite Win Total bet for 2023. I would rather lay -110 on White Sox Under 83.5 than bet them to miss the playoffs at -150, so I'm not sure if there is a need to add more to my White Sox fade.

The public projections would recommend betting on Baltimore (-450), Seattle (+130), and St. Louis (+200) to miss the playoffs; however, I show a strong Win Differential rating on each of those teams; and would pass on all three bets.

I could bet against the Cubs — who show nearly a nine-percent edge to miss the playoffs — but I'm not inclined to lay -450 to bet against an organization that has spent a lot of money in free agency over the past two years.

While I am lower on the Mets and the Phillies than the projection market, I can't quite justify their odds (+310 and +145, respectively) to miss the playoffs in a top-heavy National League. In fact, the public projections likes the value of he YES prop for the Mets.


  • Los Angeles Angels Make the Playoffs – YES (+185, 0.25u) at PointsBet
  • Minnesota Twins Make the Playoffs – YES (+130, 0.25u) at PointsBet
  • Parlay: Atlanta Braves, Houston Astros, New York Yankees, San Diego Padres Make the Playoffs – YES (-108, 0.5u) at FanDuel

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