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It may feel like the furthest thing from baseball weather outside, but spring training is just around the corner.
Pitchers and catchers will report as early as Feb. 10, and we'll soon learn how this chaotic offseason will shape the 2020 campaign.
With the bulk of the winter activity wrapped up, the World Series odds now closely resemble what they'll look like at the start of the season. Here's where every team currently stands:
|Team||Opening odds (10/11/19)||Current odds (1/14/20)|
|New York Yankees||6-1||3-1|
|Los Angeles Dodgers||6-1||6-1|
|St. Louis Cardinals||18-1||16-1|
|New York Mets||20-1||16-1|
|Boston Red Sox||12-1||20-1|
|Tampa Bay Rays||20-1||30-1|
|San Diego Padres||50-1||30-1|
|Los Angeles Angels||100-1||30-1|
|Chicago White Sox||60-1||40-1|
|Toronto Blue Jays||80-1||100-1|
|San Francisco Giants||100-1||300-1|
|Kansas City Royals||1000-1||500-1|
The Yankees (3-1), plagued by injuries in 2019, made the biggest splash of the offseason by signing pitcher Gerrit Cole for $324 million and will begin the 2020 season as overwhelming World Series favorites. The Astros (7-1) took a step back, mainly due to losing Cole and the fallout from the sign-stealing scandal that prompted the firings of president of baseball operations Jeff Luhnow and manager A.J. Hinch.
The National League favorite Dodgers (6-1) missed out on prized free agents Cole and Anthony Rendon but still boast one of baseball's most talented rosters despite replacing Hyun-Jin Ryu and Rich Hill with Jimmy Nelson and reliever Blake Treinen this offseason.
Otherwise known as the NL East.
Considered the best of the rest, the Braves (12-1) didn't have the flashiest offseason, but the additions of Cole Hamels, Travis d'Arnaud, and Will Smith bolster a roster with very few holes. Re-signing Josh Donaldson to play the hot corner has to be a priority, though, as replacing his production wouldn't be easy.
The defending champion Nationals (16-1) should be thrilled about bringing back Stephen Strasburg, but losing Rendon is a big blow to their lineup. The Mets (16-1) saw their odds shorten slightly after bringing in a trio of arms - Rick Porcello, Michael Wacha, and Dellin Betances - and a new manager in Carlos Beltran. They boast a balanced roster capable of making noise in the NL East and have plenty of momentum after finishing the season 40-21, although losing Zack Wheeler to the Phillies (18-1) is a bit of a blow. Philadelphia also added Didi Gregorius to a lethal lineup that could carry the club back to the postseason.
The Red Sox (20-1) round out this group, but it's hard to see the upside there. Boston is still looking to shed salary after an offseason where Martin Perez and Jose Peraza were the headline acquisitions, and the club may have to search for a new manager as Alex Cora will likely face steep punishment for his involvement in separate sign-stealing scandals with the Astros and Red Sox.
The front end of this group is loaded with teams that we have no reason to believe will be better in 2020. The Indians (25-1) signed no one and traded Corey Kluber for peanuts. The Twins (25-1) needed to improve their pitching staff but the group arguably got worse after Minnesota swapped in Homer Bailey and Rich Hill - who's out until at least June - for Kyle Gibson and Martin Perez. The Cubs (30-1) were eerily quiet, and they let Cole Hamels walk.
There's more reason for optimism with the back end of this group. Improved health would be huge for the Rays (30-1), owners of one of the most lethal pitching staffs in MLB, and the Athletics (30-1), who welcome Frankie Montas and Sean Manaea back to the rotation.
The Angels (30-1) made quite the splash by signing World Series winner Anthony Rendon, the most prized hitter on the market, while also adding Julio Teheran and Dylan Bundy to a rotation that desperately needed reinforcements. The Padres (30-1) also underwent quite an overhaul, with Tommy Pham, Jurickson Profar, and Zach Davies highlighting the new additions, but the team that really jumps out from this group is the Reds (30-1). Cincinnati has a capable rotation, anchored by a pair of legitimate front-end starters, and the team signed Mike Moustakas to join an already lethal lineup that includes a number of exciting young hitters.
Much like the Padres, the Brewers (40-1) underwent a significant roster reconstruction, but it remains to be seen whether they're actually better. One team that definitely improved is the White Sox (40-1), who had a terrific summer. Veterans Dallas Keuchel and Gio Gonzalez were added to a rotation that includes exciting young arms in Lucas Giolito, Dylan Cease, and Michael Kopech, while Yasmani Grandal and Nomar Mazara join a lineup that features endless potential with Eloy Jimenez, Tim Anderson, Yoan Moncada, and top prospect Luis Robert. The White Sox might offer the best value on the board.
The Rangers (50-1) missed out on Rendon and instead settled for Todd Frazier. Yikes. Corey Kluber and Kyle Gibson are nice adds to an underrated rotation, but the lineup needs work. The Rockies (80-1) were quiet over the winter and could still deal All-Star Nolan Arenado, while it's no secret Madison Bumgarner joined the Diamondbacks (60-1) to be close to his horses, not to win another World Series.
There's some value with the Blue Jays (100-1), if only for a lineup that contains two of the best young hitters in baseball, but their patchwork rotation needs a lot to go right for Toronto to reach the postseason. Ryu headlines an otherwise underwhelming group that contains a number of fourth or fifth starters, with Tanner Roark and Chase Anderson signed to add depth to a rotation that already included Matt Shoemaker and Trent Thornton.
Otherwise known as the teams with eyes on 2021 ... or 2025.
Alex Moretto is a sports betting writer for theScore. A journalism graduate from Guelph-Humber University, he has worked in sports media for over a decade. He will bet on anything from the Super Bowl to amateur soccer, is too impatient for futures, and will never trust a kicker. Find him on Twitter @alexjmoretto.