MLB BASEBALL FUTURES ODDS – 2020 NL CENTRAL PREDICTIONS
Looking for 2020 NL Central Predictions? Four teams are between +200 and +300 to win the NL Central. There is not another division in baseball with as many teams so crowded at the top.
MLB Predictions – 2020 NL Central Handicapping Insight
Here’s a closer look at the 2020 NL Central.
Chicago Cubs 2020 NL Central Predictions
Cubs NL Central Division Odds: +215
Cubs Win Total Odds (latest based on 162 games): 85.5
Cubs World Series Odds: +2500
Win total markets are a little more volatile than division futures, typically, but the Cubs have a lower win total than the Cardinals (though St. Louis’ odds are juiced) and are longer in the World Series futures market. They are favored ever so slightly in the division, however.
Joe Maddon is out and David Ross is in. The players have been outspoken about how good everything feels in the clubhouse with their former teammate returning as the skipper.
Of course, Ross was carried off the field in 2016 after hitting a home run on the final swing of his career in Game 7 of the World Series.
He will bat Kris Bryant leadoff, followed by Anthony Rizzo and Javy Baez. I, for one, expect a bounce back from Bryant in a role he seems comfortable with.
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With Bryant and Rizzo at the corners, the Cubs have three guys who can play up the middle in Baez, David Bote and rookie Nico Hoerner. The versatility is awesome. Bote can play second and third; Baez can play at least second and short, as can Hoerner. Bryant can shift into left field to make the Cubs a little better offensively.
That’s a lineup Ross has to be considering. It would free up Kyle Schwarber to get one high-leverage at-bat a game as a pinch hitter and keep him out of the outfield, where he isn’t good. Ian Happ is set to be the everyday centerfielder and feels primed for a big season. Jason Heyward will be in right with Steven Souza Jr serving as the fourth guy.
The pitching will benefit from a shorter season. Jon Lester may no longer be an ace but indications in the Cy Young markets is that Yu Darvish is poised to be.
St. Louis Cardinals 2020 NL Central Predictions
Cardinals NL Central Division Odds: +220
Cardinals Win Total Odds (latest based on 162 games): 87.5 (+110/-145 O/U)
Cardinals World Series Odds: +2000
The oddsmakers are tricky with season win totals. The lean on St. Louis has to be under but it would be hard to bet it at that price.
Then again, St. Louis is almost perennially undersold in the preseason and finds players out of nowhere to step up in a postseason run.
The expectation is prospect Tyler O’Neil will work his way into the everyday lineup but the Cardinals have prepared a depth chart with him at the fourth guy, in case things don’t work out for the young slugger.
The lineup lacks power, especially if Paul Goldschmidt is going to slug closer to .500 than .600.
Cincinnati Reds 2020 NL Central Predictions
Reds NL Central Division Odds: +280
Reds Win Total Odds (latest based on 162 games): 83.5 (-165/+125 O/U)
Reds World Series Odds: +2800
The Reds are the darlings of the division, despite having missed the playoffs for seven consecutive seasons.
Cincinnati will get a full season out of Trevor Bauer, along with the budding ace Luis Castillo and Sonny Gray, who came off his finest season in many years in 2019.
The offense adds Mike Moustakas and Nicholas Castellanos, one left-handed and one right who do more than just hit home runs. They should keep the fans off Joey Votto’s back for not hitting homers (he hit just 15 in 142 games in 2019).
Milwaukee Brewers 2020 NL Central Predictions
Brewers NL Central Division Odds: +300
Brewers Win Total Odds (latest based on 162 games): 83.5
Brewers World Series Odds: +3300
Christian Yelich led the league in OPS last season and finished second in the NL MVP the season after winning the award. He’s in his prime and quite possibly still getting better at 28 years old.
The Brewers will do their best to protect him with Keston Hiura, Avisail Garcia and Justin Smoak. They also brought in Eric Sogard, who had a fine season in the AL East last season, to hit leadoff.
Most of the pitching staff is unproven, which can mean a whole many different things, from “undervalued” to “insufficient”.
Milwaukee has the best player in the division but the rest of its roster has question marks.
Pittsburgh Pirates 2020 NL Central Predictions
Pirates NL Central Division Odds: +8000
Pirates Win Total Odds (latest based on 162 games): 69.5
Pirates World Series Odds: +10000
The Pirates are offering much better value in the NL Pennant market, where they are also available at up to 100/1 at some shops. If you’re going to bet the long-shot, you’ll get better value in the pennant markets.
CappersPicks.com 2020 NL Central Predictions
I believe the Cubs are being undersold in the futures markets, division included.
If Chicago stays healthy, it has just enough depth to put together a variety of quality lineups but the health of the staff is even more important.
If Lester, Darvish and even Kyle Hendricks can lead the staff and the others fall into place, Chicago can take it all the way in the National League. I am buying the Cubs in both the division and pennant markets.
What do you think of our 2020 NL Central predictions? Comments are welcome below.
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