MLB AL West Division Betting Predictions for the Upcoming 2023 Season

MLB AL West Division Betting Predictions for the Upcoming 2023 Season

The Houston Astros are defending World Series champions and have won the AL West Division five of the past six seasons. Is there any reason to think that might change in 2023? The team did lose reigning AL Cy Young Award winner Justin Verlander in free agency but is the biggest division favorite in baseball at -180 with Opening Day about six weeks away – pitchers and catchers reported to spring camps in Florida and Arizona this week. Check out MyBookie’s MLB odds for the Regular Season.


Experts’ Predictions for the American League West Division | MLB Lines


The Astros have made the postseason in six straight seasons (2017-22). They didn’t win the AL West in the COVID-shortened 2020 campaign (Oakland did) but reached as a Wild-Card team. The Astros are the first franchise to post a .620 winning percentage and multiple titles over a six-year stretch since the 1953-58 Yankees. Houston is 541-329 (.622) over the last six seasons. The Astros are the first club in AL history to reach 100 victories four times in a span of five full seasons (2017-19, 2022).

The Astros have advanced to the ALCS for six straight years, a feat that has only been accomplished by one other club in Major League history, the 1991-99 Braves. Since 2017, the Astros have played more postseason games (86) and have earned more postseason wins (53) than any other club.

Losing Verlander certainly will hurt. In winning his third Cy Young Award last year, he had a 1.75 ERA, which was the lowest posted by an Astros starting pitcher in a full season in club history, besting Roger Clemens, who worked to a 1.87 ERA in 2005. Verlander’s ERA was the lowest posted by an AL pitcher in a full season since the Red Sox RHP Pedro Martinez had a 1.74 ERA in his Cy Young season of 2000.

Houston has an ace in waiting in lefty Framber Valdez, who set a MLB single-season record by registering 25 consecutive quality starts from April 25-Sept. 18. Valdez’s streak bested the previous franchise record set by Mike Scott (20 straight in 1986). Valdez led the AL in innings (201.1) and led the Majors in quality starts (26).

The Astros had two players earn Silver Sluggers in second baseman Jose Altuve and DH Yordan Alvarez and they are still in their prime. The team also added former AL MVP Jose Abreu in free agency. Last year with the White Sox, Abreu hit .304 with an .824 OPS, drawing a personal-best 62 walks and posting a .378 on-base percentage that ranks second in his illustrious career. Abreu experienced a drop in power last year, with 15 home runs and 75 RBIs in 157 games, but he should benefit from the Crawford Boxes in left field at Minute Maid Park.

The Seattle Mariners ended the longest playoff drought in MLB last year by earning a Wild Card spot and are +260 second favorites in the West. The M’s swept the Blue Jays in the Wild-Card Round but then were swept by Houston in the ALDS.


Seattle has a superstar in the making in 2022 AL Rookie of the Year Julio Rodriguez. He batted .284 with 84 runs scored, 25 doubles, 3 triples, 28 home runs, 75 RBI, 40 walks and 25 stolen bases, getting on base at a .345 clip, slugging .509 with an .853 OPS in 132 games during his rookie season. He led Major League rookies in home runs (28), total bases (260), slugging percentage (.509), OPS (.853), bWAR (6.0) and fWAR (5.3). Rodriguez was the third 3rd rookie in Major League history, and the 1st player in his debut season to reach 25+ home runs and 25+ stolen bases.

This offseason, the M’s added to the offense with Kolten Wong, AJ Pollock and Teoscar Hernández. Hernández provides an immediate power upgrade to a lineup that needed it last year, even with a 90-win season that culminated in a playoff berth. The 6-foot-2, 215-pound slugger slashed .267/.316/.491 (.807 OPS) last season with 25 homers, 77 RBIs, 35 doubles, one triple and 71 runs scored, good for a 127 OPS+, 129 wRC+ (league average for both is 100) and 2.4 wins above replacement.

The Los Angeles Angels have Shohei Ohtani and Mike Trout but what else? They are +900 to win the West in what could be Ohtani’s final season with the team ahead of free agency. Ohtani already has been named the Opening Day starter on the mound and will DH per usual.

With Ohtani, Mike Trout and Anthony Rendon absorbing most of the payroll, the Angels focused this offseason on midtier players who could deepen their roster, acquiring outfielder Hunter Renfroe, infielders Gio Urshela and Brandon Drury, starting pitcher Tyler Anderson, and relievers Carlos Estevez and Matt Moore.

Texas (+700 to win the West) made a big splash in signing two-time NL Cy Young Award winner Jacob deGrom from the Mets, but he hasn’t been able to stay healthy the past two years. Including the COVID year, deGrom hasn’t thrown more than 92 innings in a season since 2019. Nathan Eovaldi and Andrew Heaney aren’t bad back-of-rotation additions either.

Oakland (+8000) is probably the worst team in the majors and isn’t trying to win but instead move in a few years to Las Vegas.


AL West Expert Predicted Order Of Finish

Astros, Mariners, Angels, Rangers, A’s

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