One World Series Future to Bet Right Now and Another to Avoid

One World Series Future to Bet Right Now and Another to Avoid article feature image

Thomas B. Shea-USA TODAY Sports

The first month of the MLB season is in the books. Six teams – Boston Red Sox, New York Yankees, Houston Astros, New York Mets, Chicago Cubs and Arizona Diamondbacks – are on pace to win 100 games.


As the calendar turns to May, which of these contenders is offering bettors value to win the World Series? To find out, we created a consensus World Series projection using simulations from ESPN, FanGraphs, Baseball Prospectus, Prediction Machine and numberFire.

Using those results, here is one World Series bet to place and one to avoid …

To determine if a team is offering value, we look at what their current odds are to win the World Series at and compare that to the consensus projection. For example, Washington is +1050 to lift the Commissioner’s Trophy. In order for us to feel comfortable wagering on the Nationals, they need to win it all 8.7% (which is 100/(1050+100)) of the time. The Nats are projected to win the World Series 6.1% of the time, meaning there is no value in placing a bet at +385 odds.

Houston Astros

Current odds: +445, Implied Probability: 18.4%
Astros win the World Series 19.8% of the time

It’s not often that the team favored to win the World Series is being undervalued by the oddsmakers, but that is the case with the defending champs. Houston’s offense is top 10 in batting average (.255), OPS (.746) and runs scored (149), but it’s the pitching staff that is scary good. The Astros’ arms have an MLB-best 2.54 ERA, 10.55 K/9 and opposing teams are hitting .201 against them.

According to FanGraphs, the ‘Stros are the most talented team in baseball. It’s not too late to get on the Houston bandwagon.

Play: Astros (+445) to win the World Series

New York Mets

Current odds: +1601, Implied Probability: 5.9%
Mets win the World Series 2.4% of the time

According to Baseball Prospectus’ third-order winning percentage, which is a team’s projected winning probability based on underlying statistics adjusted for quality of opponent, the Mets should be in third place in the AL East, not first.

Sure, New York has already banked 17 wins but the team has issues, including Matt Harvey in the bullpen, Jay Bruce with two home runs and Yoenis Cespedes leading the NL in strikeouts. According to the consensus projections, it is a 50/50 proposition that the Amazin’ Mets even make the playoffs.

Pass: Mets (+1601) to win the World Series

Below are each team’s odds and projected chance to win the World Series:

Pictured: Astros shortstop Carlos Correa