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Twins Odds to Win AL Central Improve as Indians Struggle to Open 2019 Season

Byron Buxton
Byron Buxton and the Twins are off to a fast start in 2019. Photo by Keith Allison (flickr) [CC License].
  • The Minnesota Twins (2-1) are tied for the lead in the AL Central
  • The Cleveland Indians won the division by 13 games in 2018
  • The Indians are still heavy favorites to have the best record in the division this year

It hasn’t taken long for some teams to make their mark this season.  The Minnesota Twins are trending upwards thanks to a quick start out of the gate coupled with a surprisingly slow one by the Cleveland Indians.

2019 American League Central Odds

Team 2019 AL Central Odds at Bovada
Cleveland Indians -350
Minnesota Twins +240
Chicago White Sox +2800
Kansas City Royals +3500
Detroit Tigers +4000

*Odds taken 04/01/19

You can see how all of the divisional races are shaping up at our 2019 MLB Divisional Odds Tracker.

Any change of opinion on who will win the AL Central this early into the season would be a wild overreaction. Here’s a reminder why the Indians are not only the best value play on the board but quite possibly the best value play in all of baseball when it comes to MLB division futures.

2019 Will Look Like 2018 in the American League

The top contenders in the American League according to the odds this season? The New York Yankees, Boston Red Sox, and Houston Astros. All playoff teams from a year ago. What did Cleveland do last season? They made the playoffs after winning the division by 13 games over the Twins.

While there was some movement in the offseason, nothing was earth shattering enough in the American League to change the opinions of oddsmakers on these teams. If they believe the result of the 2019 season will match the results from the 2018 season, so should you.

The best pitcher in the division is still Corey Kluber. Jose Ramirez and Francisco Lindor are still the best offensive players in the division. And yes, they all happen to sport Indians jerseys last we checked. It’s an 162 game season and there is no reason to go changing your outlook based on a handful of games.

Fade the Twins Despite Solid Start

Another reason to love Cleveland this year is the lack of competition in the division. Sure, the Twins have been good to start the year, but not good enough to make me believe they can bridge the gap between the two teams. Now only paying +240 to win the AL Central, Minnesota doesn’t offer good enough odds to take the risk they can somehow keep this up.

There is no evidence the Twins are anything other than a Cinderella-like long shot.

Minnesota lost the division by double digit games last year and did little to nothing to improve this season. With the Indians expected to be just as good as they were last year, there is no evidence the Twins are anything other than a Cinderella-like long shot, and now they aren’t even giving you any value.

The Twins won an opening season series against Cleveland but that shouldn’t be cause for you to react at all. If anything, enjoy the fact you get a little more value today betting the Indians than you would have had a couple weeks ago.

The advice is the same in the AL East, where Boston’s slow start offers nothing more than a value boost. Expect the AL Central to follow in the same fashion. Bet the Indians and don’t pay any mind to the 2% of the season that’s now in the books.

Pick: Cleveland Indians (-350)

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