Atlanta Braves 2019 Betting Odds, Preview: Sitting on a Gold Mine

Atlanta Braves 2019 Betting Odds, Preview: Sitting on a Gold Mine article feature image
Credit:

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Ronald Acuna Jr.

  • Despite signing Josh Donaldson earlier in the offseason, the Atlanta Braves have been the quietest contender in the NL East this winter.
  • With a deep pitching staff, young star players and one of the best farm systems, they are very well positioned for the next handful of seasons.

Original analysis published on Feb. 25. 

The Atlanta Braves were pretty happy at the end of the 2018 season. They went from 72 to 90 wins and won a division title. They watched Ronald Acuña Jr. burst onto the scene and mash some long dongs. They had, and still have, one of the best farm systems in the game, especially in the pitching department.

Then the Mets decided to go out and acquire a bunch of assets. And the Phillies decided to do the same. The Nats lost Bryce Harper, but could certainly bounce back after an uncharacteristic season.

Can Atlanta go from first to worst in this loaded NL East?

2018 Results

  • Record: 90-72 (+18.5 units), 82-80 ATS (-5.4 units)
  • Over/Under Record: 78-79-5
  • Preseason World Series Odds: 175-1
  • Win Total: 75
  • Most Profitable Starter: Julio Teheran (18-13, +4.9 units)

The 2018 Braves were among a handful of teams that far exceeded their win total and won bettors fistfuls of units throughout the season. After a third consecutive season with 72 wins or fewer, Atlanta finally got back to its winning ways.

A new era of young Braves all chipped in: Acuña, Ozzie Albies, Johan Camargo, Dansby Swanson and so on. Mike Foltynewicz went from mediocre to very good. Freddie Freeman Freddie Freemanned.

There are plenty of promising things developing in Atlanta and they appear to be well-positioned to get even better.

2019 Odds

  • World Series Odds: +1800
  • Division Odds: +300
  • Win Total O/U: 86
  • Playoff Odds: Make +175, Miss -210

The Braves entered the offseason with 12-1 World Series odds, but have dropped back to 18-1 thanks to the offseason activity of their division foes.

When Harper rumors heated up, the Phillies’ win total went from 86.5 to 88.5, which also caused the rest of the NL East teams to all drop back by one-half win.

The NL East division odds are very intriguing to me. Not necessarily the Braves’, but these odds are going to vary quite a bit around the market. I plan on fading the Phillies, and may end up taking any of the other three if the price is right. Following the Harper signing, I did take the Nats at +300, but may still take the Braves — especially if they sign Dallas Keuchel or Craig Kimbrel

Roster Notes

  • Additions: Josh Donaldson, Brian McCann, Raffy Lopez, Josh Tomlin, Matt Joyce, Ryan LaMarre (minors), Andres Blanco (minors)
  • Subtractions: Brandon McCarthy, Anibal Sanchez, Brad Brach, Darren O’Day, Ryan Flaherty, Rene Rivera, Kurt Suzuki, Lucas Duda, Peter Moylan, Adam McCreery
  • Potential Lineup
    1. Ender Inciarte – CF
    2. Josh Donaldson – 3B
    3. Freddie Freeman – 1B
    4. Ronald Acuña Jr. – LF
    5. Nick Markakis – RF
    6. Ozzie Albies – 2B
    7. Brian McCann – C
    8. Dansby Swanson – SS
  • Projected Rotation
    1. Mike Foltynewicz (Injured)
    2. Kevin Gausman (Injured)
    3. Julio Teheran
    4. Bryce Wilson
    5. Kyle Wright
    6. Sean Newcomb
    7. Max Fried
  • Prospect Watch: Mike Soroka (No. 24, RHP), Kyle Wright (No. 30, RHP), Austin Riley (No. 38, 3B), Touki Toussaint (No. 50, RHP), Bryse Wilson (No. 82, RHP), Kolby Allard (Unranked, LHP), Luiz Gohara (Unranked, LHP)
  • Key Injuries: Mike Foltynewicz (Elbow, April), A.J. Minter (Shoulder, April), Kevin Gausman (Shoulder, expected to miss one start)
  • MVP Candidates: Freddie Freeman (+1800), Ronald Acuna Jr. (+2500), Josh Donaldson (+4000), Ozzie Albies (+6000), Nick Markakis (+20000)
  • Cy Young Candidates: Mike Foltynewicz (+5000), Sean Newcomb (+8000), Julio Teheran (+10000), Kevin Gausman (+30000)

Analysis

Player to Watch: Ronald Acuña Jr. 

Ronald Acuña Jr. — the Vladimir Guerrero Jr. of 2018.

Acuña was called up to the show early last year at the spry age of 20. Though the Braves weren’t expected him to do much, Acuña was one of the big reasons why they won 90 games and the NL East.

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