Can the Atlanta Braves retain their World Series title? Find out who the frontrunners are with Pinnacle's oddsmakers and who could win the sought-after Rookie of the Year award. Read on to inform your predictions.
In 2021, the Atlanta Braves overcame the Houston Astros in six games to lift their first World Series title since 1995. But they will face tough competition from 2020 winners the Los Angeles Dodgers and last year’s runners-up to defend their crown.
How will the MLB 2022 regular season work?
After almost 100 days of disagreements, the owner-led lockout was finally lifted in March as the MLB and MLBPA reached a new five-year collective bargaining agreement (CBA). However, the lockout has meant a week’s delay (91 games) to the start of the season which was due to originally begin on March 31. The season will officially start on April 7.
Those 91 missed games will now be played during mutual off-days and even via double headers between teams. There’s also been a number of rule changes in 2022 including the National League adopting the designated hitter rule full-time, a rule that was temporarily in place during the Coronavirus-hit 2020 campaign.
Elsewhere, the playoffs have been expanded to 12 teams and the ‘ghost runner’ on second base in extra innings has been reinstated.
In other news, Cleveland have moved away from their Indians moniker and have rebranded themselves as the Cleveland Guardians.
World Series favourites: American League
The Houston Astros are out at 11.151* with our traders to win the World Series despite bringing in eight-time All-Star player Justin Verlander. Contributing factors to their drifting odds may be them losing their star shortstop Carlos Correa to the Minnesota Twins and the questionable availability of pitcher Lance McCullers Jr.
At shortstop, the Astros will revert to one of their top prospects, Jeremy Pena, to fill the shoes of Correa.
Nonetheless, the Astros finished first last season in terms of Runs per Game (5.34) and still have key players Jose Altuve, Kyle Tucker, Yordan Alvarez, Alex Bregman, Michael Brantley, and Yuli Gurriel. At shortstop, the Astros will revert to one of their top prospects, Jeremy Pena, to fill the shoes of Correa. They’re also at short odds of 1.714* to win the American League’s West Division.
91 wins is typically good enough to reach the postseason but the Toronto Blue Jays were edged out by the Boston Red Sox and the New York Yankees for the two wild card spots last year. The Blue Jays, who are at 10.040* to win the 2022 World Series, knew they were just a few players short from being a serious contender last season.
To remedy that, they’ve brought in Kevin Gausman and Matt Chapman to bolster their options and are second favourites (2.820*) to win the American League’s East Division. This season, 95 wins would put them in real contention and their new signings could provide them with a springboard into the postseason.
World Series favourites: National League
The Los Angeles Dodgers fell to the Atlanta Braves in theNational League Championship series in 2021 but are strong favourites at 5.760* to win the World Series in 2022.
The Dodgers’ line-up is arguably the best in MLB; they finished last season with 5.05 Runs per Game but this could increase in 2022.
Their new contract agreement with Clayton Kershaw means the Dodgers’ rotation has a three-pronged threat of Walker Buehler (16-4, 2.47 ERA, 212 K), Julio Urias (20-3, 2.96 ERA, 195 K), and Kershaw himself (10-8, 3.55 ERA, 144 K). Plus, the addition of first baseman Freddie Freeman has offset the departure of Corey Seager to the Texas Rangers.The Dodgers’ line-up is arguably the best in MLB; they finished last season with 5.05 per game but this could significantly increase this year.
As for the Atlanta Braves, they sit at 13.790* to retain their World Series title. They’ve largely kept the nucleus of their team together – aside from the aforementioned Freeman - but can this young side, who were at odds of 51.000 this time last year, maintain their meteoric rise to the top?
The New York Mets, priced at 10.740*,could pose a huge threat in the National League and have a good chance of winning the World Series. But after spending 103 days in first place last season and still ending up with a losing record, coach Steve Cohen went on a free-agent spending spree to reshape the line-up.
Their marquee signing is pitcher Max Scherzer from the Arizona Diamondbacks who will form a fearsome duo with pitcher Jacob deGrom. But will it be enough to claim the top prize?
Cross-city rivals the New York Yankees (who play in the American League) could also be contenders for the title this season and are priced at 10.890*.
MLB 2022: Futures markets
Pinnacle offer a wide array of futures markets across both the National League and American League. This includes the historic CY Young award for the best pitcher in both divisions. In the American League, the New York Yankees’ Gerrit Cole is the favourite at 5.520*, followed by the Cleveland Guardians’ Shane Bieber at 8.030*.
The New York Mets’ pitcher Jacob deGrom, affectionately known as “The deGrominator”, leads the way in the National League at 4.940*, with a handful of players at 9.290* including Walker Buehler, Max Scherzer, and Corbin Burnes.
Examining the Rookie of the Year contenders, Kansas City Royals’ shortstop Bobby Witt Jr. is the early favourite at 4.000* in the American League, whilst in the National League, Oneil Cruz, the Pittsburgh Pirates’ 6-foot-7 slugger is also at 4.000* with our traders.
Find Pinnacle's unrivalled MLB markets here.