- The Atlanta Braves (43-30) are riding high after winning nine of their last 10 games
- The New York Yankees (44-27) have a 1.5 game lead in the AL East despite a series of early season injuries
- OF Giancarlo Stanton has been activated from the IL and is set to return to the Yankees lineup
The Atlanta Braves have gone from afterthoughts in the National League East to legitimate World Series contenders.
The Braves’ rise has been particularly impressive. Two weeks ago Atlanta’s World Series Odds were +1800, but after winning nine of 10 that price is now +1100.
2019 World Series Odds
|Los Angeles Dodgers||+275|
|New York Yankees||+700|
|Boston Red Sox||+1400|
|Tampa Bay Rays||+1400|
*Odds taken 06/18/19. Click on the link in the table above to see odds for all 30 MLB teams.
The Braves might have been worth a roll of the dice at their original price, but now the value is all but gone. For my money, the best value lies with a team in the American League.
— Atlanta Braves (@Braves) June 18, 2019
Yankees Great and Getting Better
On Monday American League home run leader Edwin Encarnacion made his debut with the Yankees. On Tuesday Giancarlo Stanton will make his long awaited return to the lineup, thereby adding another big hitter. Now picture those two paired with Aaron Judge and company in a playoff game. Sounds scary doesn’t it?
Welcome back, Giancarlo Stanton.
The Yankees slugger has officially been activated off the injured list. pic.twitter.com/iBPaWZ2pyN
— YES Network (@YESNetwork) June 18, 2019
The Yankees are already 17 games over .500 and hold a 1.5 game lead over the Tampa Bay Rays. That record was built despite a rash of injuries that can’t be matched by any of the other teams in Major League Baseball. With a healthy lineup expect them to build on an offense that’s already ranked fourth in home runs and fifth in runs in the American League.
Yankees Pitching Staff Also Contributing
The Yankees own a 4.03 ERA as a team thanks to a strong starting staff and arguably the best bullpen in all of baseball. Masahiro Tanaka, JA Happ and James Paxton give New York three great pitching options and they could have a fourth if Luis Severino ever returns and performs to his capability.
Masahiro Tanaka is up to 17.8 WAR for his career, 4th most all-time by a Japanese pitcher pic.twitter.com/efsxKySJFL
— Baseball Reference (@baseball_ref) June 18, 2019
The bullpen as mentioned is beyond elite. They have three top tier arms that take stress off the starting pitchers. Being able to hand the ball over to talented arms like Adam Ottovino, Zack Britton and Aroldis Chapman is a luxury few teams have. There really is no weakness in this lineup.
Final Sales Pitch
Now that the Yankees are returning to full health I expect a long and sustained winning streak to begin. I also expect their odds to move the same way the Braves’ did, so if you want to jump on the Bronx Bombers you should get your money in sooner rather than later.
Pick: New York Yankees (+700)
Let's have fun and keep it civil.