A new baseball season is at hand and it is going to look quite a bit different.
We will have pitcher and batter clocks, and larger bases and the shift is gone.
We have owners that are willing to spend money to chase a championship (Mets and Padres), much to the chagrin of many other MLB owners who just want to collect fat checks and pretend they will finish above .500.
The biggest change coming this season is the balanced schedule. Teams from the AL East won’t have 19 division battles, which has been dropped to 13 games.
At the same time, Cleveland and sort of Minnesota and the Chicago White Sox (in recent years) cannot feast on Kansas City and Detroit for 38 contests to beef up their record.
This will make a difference in betting on baseball, though we probably won’t know its full effect until later in the season.
2023 MLB Odds
Here are the latest MLB futures betting odds from the teams that are the contenders for the upcoming 2023 MLB season with spring training just getting ready to start courtesy of our top-rated sportsbooks.
Hot Takes on MLB Contenders
Astros Hot Take: The best team in baseball to start the season with a loaded lineup. Though Justin Verlander wasn’t great in the World Series again, he was their anchor all last season and is not an easy person to replace.
Yankees Hot Take: If Aaron Judge can reach 80 percent of what he accomplished last season, the Yankees are still formidable. If he doesn’t, there are holes in the everyday lineup and the bullpen needs guys to step up.
Blue Jays Hot Take: Talent-wise Toronto appears to have the pieces but something is missing. There is a lack of leadership among the players and not sure who comfortably grabs that role. The Jays could reach the playoffs or finish 4th in the AL East.
Mariners Hot Take: If Houston has injuries or lacks the same fire, Seattle is poised to supplant them atop the AL West. GM Jerry DiPoto made shrewd off-season moves, bringing in Teoscar Hernández and Kolten Wong, and will add during the season.
Guardians Hot Take: Though Cleveland will face a tougher schedule, this young team plays hard every day, it has excellent starting pitching and a very good bullpen to win close games. Winning the AL without spending money seems like a reach, but AL Central champions sound right.
Rays Hot Take: Tampa Bay has to be counted in the mix because nobody does more in player development on a budget than the Rays. Maybe the lack of shift will help the Rays have a more consistent offense.
Mets Hot Take: Give New York an A for effort to improve their roster. One has to wonder about the age of the Mets’ starting staff with Max Scherzer (38), Justin Verlander (39), and Carlos Carrasco (35). What looks great in April might look a great deal different in September. Could be overvalued for your MLB picks.
Dodgers Hot Take: Not the team of the past several seasons, though still quite formidable. Mookie Betts and Freddie Freeman are still among the best in baseball which takes the pressure off the younger players. The L.A. bullpen does need help.
Braves Hot Take: Might be the most complete team outside of Houston in the majors. Still, a youngish roster that is deep in several areas and Brian Snitker is the perfect manager for this bunch.
Padres Hot Take: The star power in San Diego is arguably the best in baseball with Manny Machado, Xander Bogaerts, and Juan Soto. The starting staff and bullpen are Top 5 as far as depth across the board, but who are the glue guys?
Phillies Hot Take: Sometimes a manager just has to let the players play the game. That’s what happened to the Phillies after Joe Girardi was jettisoned and Rob Thomson took over as skipper. More than good players in Philadelphia to make another run.
Cardinals Hot Take: St. Louis is the best of a weak NL Central. Paul Goldschmidt and Nolan Arenado anchor a good, not great offense, and hard to imagine Goldy will come close to last year’s MVP season at 35. The starting pitching lacks elite talent, yet is the best in the division 1-thru-5.
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*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.