We’re quickly approaching the MLB All-Star Game on July 9. Although pre-season World Series favorites like the Houston Astros, New York Yankees, and Los Angeles Dodgers have played well enough to remain favorites, a few surprise teams have shaken up World Series odds. Check out information on the Atlanta Braves, Tampa Bay Rays, and Minnesota Twins, three possible World Series surprise teams.
Surprise MLB Teams Shaking Up the 2019 World Series Odds
- 2019 World Series Odds: +900
The Atlanta Braves are in a battle with the Philadelphia Phillies for the NL East Division. Atlanta currently holds the lead in the division by about 3 games. The Braves have been on fire, winning 13 of their last 16, as of June 17.
Not only that, but the Braves’ offense ranks fourth in runs per at 5.45, third in team batting average at .267, and third in team on-base plus slugging percentage (OPS) at .804. The starting rotation ERA is 4.20. Atlanta’s bullpen ranks ninth in team ERA at 4.04. The Braves are legitimate contenders to win the World Series.
Tampa Bay Rays
- 2019 World Series Odds: +1000
As of June 17, the New York Yankees are only a game and a half ahead of the Tampa Bay Rays in the AL East Division. While the Braves have built their World Series resume by dominating at the plate, the Rays have built their Fall Classic resume by dominating on the mound.
Tampa only averages 4.67 runs per game, good for nineteenth in MLB. They rank first in team ERA, though. The Rays’ starting rotation has a 3.07 team ERA. That’s close to amazing. The starting rotation’s WHIP is also impressive at 1.12, ranking third, while Rays’ pitchers have struck out 686 batters as of June 17, also ranking third in the league.
The bullpen? How about a 3.39 team ERA only behind the Cleveland Indians sound? Tampa Bay is a real contender to not only win the AL East over Boston and New York, but to also win the World Series.
- 2019 World Series Odds: +800
Minnesota is the most surprising team at under +1000 odds to win the World Series. During he preseason, few, if anybody, pegged the Minnesota Twins as a possible World Series winner. Minnesota is the top hitting team in MLB. Minnesota ranks first in runs batting average, on-base percentage plus slugging, and home runs.
The Twins average 5.87 runs per game. The batting average is .273 while their OPS is .852. The Twins have also hit 137 home runs heading into June 18.
What’s scary is that the starting rotation has a 3.93 team era, ranking sixth, and a 1.25 team WHIP, ranking seventh. Although Minnesota looks like a strong World Series contender, the bullpen ranks twentieth. How manager Rocco Baldelli uses his relievers during the playoffs if the Twins make will be the key to their World Series chances.