It's that time of the year. The Super Bowl parade has run its course. Winter coats and boots are down to their last few weeks of use. The group chat with your friends is buzzing with summer destination ideas. And the sun is staying out a little later. That can only mean one thing: baseball is back.
With all 30 teams reporting for Spring Training workouts this week, it's time to officially celebrate the return of America's pastime (can we please call it something else? This is why people don't like baseball).
Anyway, what better way to get in the mood for the only sport without a time limit/clock than to take a look at which teams the sportsbooks think have the best shot to become World Series champions?
Here's a look at the odds for each team in the National League to win the 2023 World Series, ranked by their bet-ability (read: fun to wager on).
Looking for American League World Series odds? Find those here!
The Dodgers are one of baseball's most consistent teams, reaching the World Series three times since 2017! But after an epic collapse in the playoffs last year despite a record-setting regular season, and the departures of Trea Turner and Tyler Anderson this offseason, the vibe in L.A. is not so L.A.
But if there is any team as proven as the reigning champion Astros, it’s the Dodgers. They have DOMINATED their division, being crowned NL West champs for the last 10 years straight. I mean, that is just unheard of.
Money. Money. Money. The richest owner in sports, Steve Cohen, wants to win and with the Mets sitting atop the league in roster payroll that is certainly the expectation. I mean the guy even bought a Super Bowl commercial spot.
I’m a Mets fan, but not a delusional Mets fan. Playoffs are almost expected from the players, coaches and front office at this point after an underachieving 2022 that saw a first-round postseason exit. Still, the Mets haven't really proved anything in this new Cohen era of baseball other than it's fun to have money in sports.
This Mets team is full of luxury tax ignorance and players with nicknames like Mr. Smile, the Flying Squirrel, and Polar Bear. What’s not to like?
Grade: B+ (remember when I said I wasn’t a delusional Mets fan?)
The 2021 World Series Champion Braves just seem to find a way every year. From rookies competing against each other for Rookie of the Year, to locking up young talent on team-friendly contracts—Atlanta is a well-run organization with a present and future to get excited about. They proved they can survive without Freddie Freeman, so they must do the same after Dansby Swanson packed his bags to join the Cubs.
As a Mets fan, I am no stranger to how good the Braves are. They absolutely fleeced the division from the Mets in the last week of the season in a classic battle of who wanted it more. Expect the Braves to have that same energy with a majority of last year’s roster returning.
The Padres at +1000 could be the best bang for buck bet on this list. After falling to the Phillies with a trip to the World Series at stake, the Padres added All-Star Xander Bogaerts to a lineup with Manny Machado (2022 MVP runner-up), Juan Soto (2021 MVP runner-up) and a returning Fernando Tatís Jr. (2021 MVP finalist). Oh and 42-year old Nelson Cruz to top it off. Old is good in baseball, I guess.
The Padres are fun. After sending the Dodgers packing in the 2022 playoffs, they may be ready to rise to the occasion and snatch the division away from L.A. — they have all the pieces to a World Series puzzle.
The Phillies made a run to the big stage last season. After sneaking into the playoffs as the final NL Wild Card team, the Phillies got scorching hot and took out the Cardinals, Braves and Padres en route to a World Series loss to the Astros. No one expected the Phillies to be NL champs, but they got hot at the right time.
Chances Philadelphia can get hot at the right time again? Very slim. Chances Philadelphia can get a favorable seeding in the playoffs in a division with the Mets and Braves? I’m not saying they can’t do it, that lineup is stacked. But +1400 might be a reach.
The Cardinals might not be the most fun or flashy team, but these odds are a steal! They play an old man’s brand of baseball, but they have the best defender in the game in Nolan Arenado, and a guy who can throw the ball literally like 104mph in Ryan Helsley — that’s fun enough, right?
The Cardinals have the benefit in playing in what is easily expected to be the worst division in 2023, so playoffs seem almost guaranteed. This would be an A++ grade if it wasn't for the strength of the rest of the NL.
Sorry Brewers fans, but the window has closed. Even your Cy Young award winning All-Star pitcher is unhappy and has one foot out of the door. Poor Corbin Burnes.
For Milwaukee to be competitive in 2023, they NEED Christian Yelich to remember how to be Christian Yelich and another arm to help out Burnes and Brandon Woodruff. But still, they play in the league's worst division and aren't even the best team in it.
What an L of an offseason for baseball in the Bay. The Giants missed out on Aaron Judge (they really wanted him!) and then had a DISASTER of a signing and then unsigning of Carlos Correa. This team was bad last year. And also old.
BUT, they did add guys like Michael Conforto, Mitch Haniger, Sean Manaea. That’s enough to be competitive and baseball is a weird sport where whatever team is hot can make a run. These odds are juicy, but the Giants would have to overperform on every level for it to happen.
Okay back to Dansby Swanson. One of the best shortstops in the game left Atlanta for the Cubs this offseason and is the only reason the Cubs will be somewhat competitive this year. After inking him to a long-term deal, it appears that the Cubs are ready to emerge from the rebuild.
Many were surprised by Swanson’s move to Chicago. The Georgia native won a ring with Atlanta and spoke endlessly about how lucky he was to be a Brave. But his wife, Mallory Swanson (formerly Pugh) plays in the NWSL for the Chicago Red Stars and for the USWNT. The two are recently married, and what better way to make the whole husband-wife thing official than at least living in the same city?
Miami might be the sexiest team in baseball. The uniforms? Sexy. The stadium? Sexy. The city of Miami? Sexy. Miami’s rebuild has been long, but the moment is finally here where this team will be competitive. Their division does them no favors, but a sneaky wild card spot could be possible.
This roster is full of young, confident ballers headlined by shortstop Jazz Chisolm. If you think baseball is boring, please watch Jazz Chisolm highlights and then take this bet so you have a reason to watch him and the Marlins all season long. The guy literally euro-steps onto home plate after hitting home runs. Remarkable.
Eh. I’m indifferent about this team. They always have some talent but somehow always suck. I don’t expect anything more than a third-place NL West finish from this team at best.
The only reason the D-backs have a chance is their manager Torey Lovullo. Great baseball mind.
If there is one thing that embodies the current state of the Pittsburgh Pirates franchise, it’s this:
Tell me you still want to bet on this team after watching that.
The Reds seemed to be on the verge of something after making the playoffs during the COVID-shortened 2020 season, but since then, this team has truly embodied Ohio. The Reds are definitely a baseball team.
If you ain’t a Reds fan, leave this alone.
The Rockies remind me of a puppy: clueless, lovable and young! No baseball fan hates the Rockies and that is because it is almost impossible to. This team plays baseball in the snow, has a ballpark that might as well be a little league field, and literally has never won their division before!
The Rockies do have Kris Bryant, who is under team control through 2028—and with a young core forming they could be competitive in another couple of years. Just not this year. But hey, we still love ‘em.
This should be bet $1 to win a four-year term as the President of the United States.
The only thing Washington will be competing for this season is to not be the worst team in all of baseball.