The 2021 MLB campaign is officially one-third of its way in the books. And with fewer than 100 games remaining on each team's schedule, now feels like a good time to drop our MLB division winner predictions for the 2021 season.
Division championships aren't as glitzy as World Series titles. We get it. But the winners of each five-team subsection help inform that discussion. Ergo, it's important to look at which squads are most likely to finish atop all six divisions.
We will begin with the AL Central, so here's a look at their betting odds, courtesy of BetOnline:
|Chicago White Sox||-500|
|Cleveland Baseball Team||+450|
|Kansas City Chiefs||+1600|
All of our MLB division betting odds are accurate as of Thursday, June 10. You will definitely want to circle back and check them as the season marches on. The lines will shift a great deal.
2021 MLB Division Predictions
The three American League divisions will come first. After that, we'll move on to the three National League divisions.
Finally, remember that our predictions are not based off betting odds. We're giving you our pick to win the division regardless of where their betting odds stand. What you do with that information is up to you.
There is not much to consider when looking at the odds above. There is the Chicago White Sox, and then there is everyone else.
The White Sox are the only team in the AL Central that ranks in the top half of runs scored per game, and the Minnesota Twins are the only other AL Central team that also places in the top half of on base-plus-slugging percentage.
This isn't to say Chicago is especially dominant relative to the rest of the league. (They might be.) They're just head and shoulders better than their own division.
OSB Prediction: White Sox (-500)
Here are the odds on who will win the AL East:
|Tampa Bay Rays||+115|
|New York Yankes||+250|
|Boston Red Sox||+375|
|Toronto Blue Jays||+600|
In typical fashion, New York Yankees fans and analysts are claiming this season is going off the rails. Related: That is stupid.
The Yankees sit in third place, one game behind the Boston Red Sox and a full six games behind the Tampa Bay Rays. That's not great. But they're still above .500 with a pitching staff that rocks. They place in the top seven of earned run average.
Indeed, the offense is lamentable. The Yankees are bottom of the barrel in runs scored and on base-plus-slugging percentage. But they won't be down forever. They're too talented. They'll get better as they get healthier and work their way out of what's clearly a slump.
OSB Prediction: Yankees (+250)
Here are the odds on who will win the AL West:
|Los Angeles Angels||+1600|
Fans of the Los Angeles Angels, Seattle Mariners and Texas Rangers are free to look away. This is a battle between the Oakland Athletics and Houston Astros.
Most will roll with the Astros, and we have to agree. They have a near identical ERA compared to the Athletics, and their offense is so far unrivaled. No team is currently posting a higher on base-plus-slugging percentage.
OSB Prediction: Astros (-125)
Here are the odds on who will win the NL Central:
|St. Louis Cardinals||+265|
The NL Central is another non-competition. We understand if you're inclined to give the St. Louis Cardinals some level of consideration. But their pitching staff isn't nearly talented enough to pose a legitimate threat to the Milwaukee Brewers.
To be sure, Milwaukee has some offensive flaws. They are second to last in hits per at bat. But their pitching staff verges on immaculate, and they grade out favorably in the defensive metrics for position players (non-pitchers). Expect them to continue creating separation.
OSB Prediction: Brewers (-105)
Here are the odds on who will win the NL East:
|New York Mets||-210|
New York Mets or Atlanta Braves? That is the defining question of the NL East.
Every other team in the division is rebuilding or failing miserably. The Mets and Braves stand alone as World Series threats. Oddsmakers preferred Atlanta leading into the regular season, but New York won them over with one of the league's three best pitching staffs and MLB's top fielding defense.
The Mets have won us over, too. Their pitching and defense always profiled as elite, but they're getting on base at an above-average clip, as well. They're real contenders.
Here are the odds on who will win the NL West:
|Los Angeles Dodgers||-205|
|San Diego Padres||+215|
|San Francisco Giants||+800|
Los Angeles Dodgers fans are going to hate this pick, but we just can't quit the San Diego Padres. Their pitching staff currently rates as MLB's best, and they've yet to hit their stride on offense.
The latter is most important. The Dodgers are beating the Padres in overall batting average as well as all the advanced metrics by a substantial margin. But San Diego is just beginning to approach full strength. Key players like Fernando Tatis Jr. missed significant time. We're betting their bats eventually catch up to their pitching staff.
OSB Prediction: Padres
Check out the below list of the top online sportsbooks so you can decide which one to use for all your future MLB betting: