World Series Predictions, Picks | Best Bets For Series Spread, MVP and More on Phillies vs Astros

World Series Predictions, Picks | Best Bets For Series Spread, MVP and More on Phillies vs Astros article feature image

Matt Thomas/San Diego Padres/Getty Images. Pictured: Bryce Harper

It all comes down to this.

The World Series is finally here, and the Philadelphia Phillies and Houston Astros will get things going Friday night with Game 1 in Houston. It will be Aaron Nola against Justin Verlander at 8:03 p.m. ET on FOX.

There are, of course, plenty of ways to bet the World Series, and rest assured we'll have you covered for all four, five, six or seven games with bets on individual games.

But right here, right now, we're focused on the overall landscape of the series. How can you find value before things get started? We've got you covered with World Series futures and props, including a pair of picks on the series spread, one MVP pick and a player-vs-player prop.

Here are our best bets for the 2022 MLB World Series.

MLB Odds & Picks

Click on a pick to skip ahead
Phillies -1.5 (+270)
Cristian Javier World Series MVP (+3300)
Bryce Harper More Hits Than Kyle Tucker (+150)

Phillies -1.5 (+270)

Odds via DraftKings

Sean Zerillo: Some of the series spread bets are intuitive. For example, Astros -3.5 games or Phillies-3.5 games are the same as betting those teams to win 4-0 in the exact result market.

You can look to bet the Phillies -1.5 games — which I prefer to the exact Phillies Win 4-2 prop – at +270 or better.

Alternatively, you can play the +1.5 game spread up to -138; or their +2.5 game spread up to -317; any of those bets represent an edge of at least one percent compared to my number.

I’ll take shots at Phillies -1.5 and +1.5 and hope to push if they lose in 7.

Kenny Ducey: Yes, I’m sending it on an alt line here. I think the Phillies are sorely mispriced, and I think there’s a good chance they will stun the Astros here early and never look back, just as they’ve done in their previous three series.

Simply put, if you’re going to throw on Philly you might as well grab this line.

The fact of the matter is that Houston’s unblemished record this October is, in a lot of ways, incredibly misleading. It has had the great fortune of facing some unserious playoff contenders in the Mariners and Yankees, and even in that Seattle series the Astros were lucky to escape the first two games at home with a victory.

The Phillies have the better offense in this series with a .749 OPS in 11 games, and they arguably have the better front-line starting considering the postseason history of Justin Verlander and Framber Valdez. Sure, Cristian Javier and Lance McCullers Jr. look damn near unhittable right now, but we’re not going to see them starting multiple games in this series.

Instead, it’ll be Verlander — working on his third straight postseason with an ERA over 4.00 — and Valdez, who memorably allowed 10 earned runs in just 4 ⅔ innings across his two World Series starts last season. Now, imagine the sixth-best offense against lefties, which is red hot, stepping in to Valdez twice.

Yordan Alvarez is quietly in a funk, Jose Altuve has one hit all postseason and the Astros lack imposing offensive talent aside from a few reliable bats. Philly hits up and down the order and has the better front-line starting with Aaron Nola and Zack Wheeler out-pitching Houston’s top two arms in the playoffs and for most of the regular season.

I think the Phillies are the better team, and I think they win in five.

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Cristian Javier World Series MVP (+3500)

Odds via DraftKings

DJ James: Cristian Javier has been the most underrated pitcher for the Houston Astros all season and he looked impeccable against the New York Yankees in the ALCS.

Javier will likely not pitch until Game 3. However, there is a good chance this can be a long series. For one, Houston has not seen the pop off the bats that Philly has. Secondly, the starting rotation for the Phils is comparable to Houston’s. The major discrepancy is bullpen performance.

Even still, the WashingtonNationals did not utilize many bullpen arms in 2019 when they went on to win the World Series in 2019, and I would expect a similar strategy employed by Rob Thomson and the Phillies.

Back to Javier. Since the series has a chance to go to potentially six or seven games, he will have a chance to make a few appearances. On the season, Javier held a 2.43 xERA against a 2.54 ERA with a 33.2% strikeout rate.

The Phillies only walked 7.7% since August 1 for the remainder of the regular season, so this virtually eliminated the only weakness Javier can encounter: walking hitters.

Bryce Harper and Kyle Schwarber may prove to be tougher outs because of Javier’s slightly worse splits against lefties and how strong of eyes the two of them have.

Either way, a flyer on Javier is a good bet to +3000. If he gets two chances on the hill in a low-scoring series, he should prosper.

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Bryce Harper More Hits Than Kyle Tucker (+150)

Odds via DraftKings

Charlie DiSturco: This is one of the more outrageous lines I’ve seen on the prop market.

Bryce Harper is the hottest hitter on the planet. Aside from his incredible .419 average and 1.351 OPS across three series, Harper has been held hitless just once in 11 games. In seven of those games, he’s had multiple hits.

Harper finally looks like his old self after battling injury all season. We’ve seen how dominant he’s been in the postseason and this line would make much more sense if he were matched up against Yordan Alvarez, not Kyle Tucker.

His toughest matchup comes against southpaw Framber Valdez — whom he’ll likely see twice — but that doesn’t worry me as Harper hits .256 against left-handed pitching.

Tucker has struggled this year after batting nearly .300 a season ago. His average is down at .257 and he’s just 6-for-28 in the postseason. His power has been limited and he’s struck out nine times.

Houston’s bullpen has been incredible — just two earned runs in 31 2/3 innings — and Philadelphia lacks in that area, but the starting pitching discrepancy is not as drastic. Tucker will have to face Aaron Nola and Zack Wheeler twice and will also face high-leverage arms.

Harper has continually come up with clutch hits while Tucker has slumped. Harper is undervalued in this hitting matchup at +150. This is a line that should be closer to EV, and even then I’d favor Harper.

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