March 7, 2021

Who could be this year’s Nationals? How all 30 MLB teams stack up (ESPN)


Only one World Series favorite entering the season actually won the World Series in the decade we just completed. Wait, let’s put that another way: A team that was one of the top five favorites entering the season won the World Series only once over the past decade.

The 2019 Washington Nationals didn’t necessarily feel like a surprise champ, given the star-laden nature of the team and their many playoff appearances throughout the decade, but they were coming off a mediocre 82-80 season, had lost Bryce Harper in free agency and entered the season just ninth among World Series favorites, according to the betting odds.

Here are the final preseason odds for the decade’s champions, via sportsoddshistory.com, along with where that team’s odds ranked among the 30 franchises, the team’s win total from the previous season and how much it improved during its championship year:

2019 Nationals: +1,600, ninth (82, +11)
2018 Red Sox: +1,150, seventh (93, +15)
2017 Astros: +1,175, sixth (84, +17)
2016 Cubs: +660, first (97, +6)
2015 Royals: +3,300, 18th (89, +6)
2014 Giants: +2,500, 13th (76, +12)
2013 Red Sox: +2,800, 14th (69, +28)
2012 Giants: +2,000, seventh (86, +8)
2011 Cardinals: +2,500, 10th…

Read “Who could be this year’s Nationals? How all 30 MLB teams stack up” at ESPN