In baseball, the two teams that faced each other in the 2017 World Series are predicted by sportsbooks to have the most victories this season. The Los Angeles Dodgers and the Houston Astros are both picked to win 97 games, according South Point Casino. An internet betting site has the over/under on their victory totals at 96.5.
The defending champions captured 101 games last year in the American League West. The Dodgers had a league-leading 104 victories.
Three teams follow with a line of 94.5; the New York Yankees, the Chicago Cubs and the Cleveland Indians.
While sports books believe the two will have the most wins in the regular season neither one is the favorite to win the 2018 World Series. The Dodgers and Astros are at 6/1, behind the consensus choice, the New York Yankees at 5/1.
Dodgers Might Miss Darvish
The Dodgers acquired Yu Darvish midseason in a trade with the Texas Rangers last year, and were hoping he would help them win their first title since 1988. But after a disappointing postseason, LA let him exercise free agency options, and the team’s No. 2 pitcher ended up on the Chicago Cubs after a bidding war.
Darvish melted down against the Astros in the 2017 World Series. He was unable to get past the second inning in either of the two games he started, including Game 7.
“It’s tough,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said to the LA Times. “You play the game over and over in your head. I did that for weeks.”
But Roberts seems to be ready for a new season, and its one where he believes he’s managing a World Series contender.
“I felt we were the best team last year,” he said. “I feel we are the best team this year.”
Houston Ready to Defend Crown
Astros General Manager Jeff Luhnow told the Associated Press on Tuesday that winning multiple championships was part of his goal.
“These guys are not satisfied with what happened and they want to take a great team and make it legendary,” Luhnow said. “We’re a great team, with great accomplishments. We’re not legendary yet and I think they all desire to be legendary.”
The team has three pitchers who started on Opening Day last year. Dallas Keuchel got the ball for the Astros, while Justin Verlander was on the mound for Detroit and
Gerrit Cole got the nod for Pittsburgh. Now that they are all three on Houston Manager AJ Hinch has a decision to make.
The man that will be catching the hurlers is Brian McCann and he couldn’t be happier about the starting rotation.
“We have arms. It all starts with starting pitching,” he said. “Now it’s time to go out there and compete and go have some fun.”