With the playoff starting today let's take a look at some odds and value on three of the teams in the race to win the AL pennant. These teams are all at plus money, but which is the best one to take?
At BetOnline the odds right now stand at Toronto +150, Kansas City +200, and Texas +550. With the Yankees and Astros playing today I want to focus on these three teams. For one of your MLB playoff picks I think one of these teams is the way to go, let's break it down.
Toronto Blue Jays +150
It looks like Tulowitzki should be good to go and David Price will be the horse they can lean on. They come into the playoffs as the hottest team overall in the league and according to the odds the most popular team to pick. It makes sense with the lineup they have which leads the major leagues in just about every offensive category. I don't really need to get into the fact that these guys can hit, from Bautista to Donaldson to Tulo this line up is extremely dangerous. Pitching wise with the addition of Price is also pretty formidable with Estrada pitching well and Stroman back, and a good closer in Osuna. But, at +150 and still having to face the Rangers and possibly the Royals I just don't like the value. I mean if you go with the saying that pitching wins pennants than the Blue Jays are still a starter or possibly two away from being American league champions. They might be the odds on favorite but I wouldn't consider them the value favorite.
Kansas City Royals +200
Let's not forget about the Royals now who come in with the best record in the American League. With fresh memories in the minds of these players within a breath of winning the World Series I expect them to be primed for a strong playoff run. I fully expect them to be in the American League championship whether is against the Rangers or the Blue Jays. When you look at it at +200 it is almost a little bit disrespectful considering their record and recent pedigree. Their lineup doesn't scream out to you on the offensive side like the Blue Jays but they have some really clutch hitters and it seems like from top to bottom there is not a weak spot in their lineup. Maybe not the power of the Blue Jays, but solid nonetheless. Surprisingly what they leaned on last year might not be enough to get to the promised land this year as their pitching has been less than stellar ranking 10th in the major leagues with a 3.74 ERA which ranks seventh out of all the playoff teams. So as they wait for either the Astros or the Yankees the main question you have to ask yourself is that does this team have enough solid pitching in the likes of Johnny Cueto, Edinson Volquez and Yordano Ventura, and no Greg Holland for a strong playoff push?
Texas Rangers +550
Here's another hot team coming into the playoffs and have their work cut out for them having to take on the Toronto Blue Jays. Don't think that the Rangers are going to be intimidated though as they have several guys with playoff experience. Don't sleep on their lineup either as they got some guys that can flat out hit from Fielder to Beltre to Choo. Pitching wise with the addition of Cole Hamels I think makes this team one to be reckoned with. Yovani Gallardo and a surprising Colby Lewis could surprise and at odds at over 5 to 1 I see no reason not to take a shot with them. They are playing good baseball right now and won the most important game of the year against a red-hot Los Angeles Angles team. What impressed me most about that was that came after a really tough lost the previous day which displays their resilience.
For my MLB American League playoff pick as far as value goes I think the best play is on the Texas Rangers. Really good odds on a veteran team with a good pitching staff and some guys in the lineup that can make a difference with one swing of the bat. Although it'll be tough to beat Toronto I think value wise it is a solid play.
MLB Pick: Texas Rangers +550 at BetOnline