Spring training finally got underway Tuesday for the Colorado Rockies, as pitchers and catchers (as well as several top sluggers) had their first spring workouts. That means we’re right in the middle of prognostication season. We’ve already pored over the various projection systems, but there are other means of forecasting, specifically the gambling odds for who will win the World Series. Bovada released theirs earlier this week:
2017 World Series Odds
A necessary caveat: betting odds don’t serve as projections or predictions on the part of oddsmakers, but moreso how they expect people (namely, their customers) to evaluate and bet on teams. As such it should come as no surprise that the top four teams include last year’s World Series participants in the Cubs and Indians, the richest team in baseball in the Dodgers, and the team that added Chris Sale to one of the league’s top offenses in the Red Sox. Three of those teams also hail from the biggest markets in baseball, making them pretty good bets for the casual/degenerate baseball fan. And, to be honest, they would be a pretty entertaining LCS pairings.
As for our valiant Colorado Rockies, the outlook is a little less rosy. At 40-to-1 odds, they rank as the 17th team most likely to win the World Series. While that shouldn’t be too shocking—despite whatever optimism we feel, they are still coming off six straight losing seasons—it might pique your curiosity to compare the odds at different points in the offseason.
This is where things get interesting. The day after the World Series, the Rockies had the ninth-worst odds for winning the 2017 World Series and they actually got worse when the Winter Meetings began. Since then, they are one of only six teams whose odds have actually improved. In fact, only the Rockies, Giants, and the aforementioned Red Sox, Indians, and Dodgers have seen their odds improve since the Cubs were crowned champions, and none have seen their odds improve more than Colorado, going from 75-to-1 to 40-to-1 odds.
Obviously this doesn’t mean that the Rockies are destined for World Series glory this October/November. When a team makes the news in free agency multiple times, they enter the consciousness of gamblers, leading oddsmakers to adjust their odds. Also, as spring training goes on and injuries pile up (RIP Alex Reyes’ UCL), the odds will certainly change. But right now, according to the oddsmakers, it looks like we have more reason to be optimistic about the Rockies in 2017 than in the past half decade.
Do you think the odds are fair/accurate? Is there any team that looks like they have better or worse odds than you’d expect?