As one of the top contenders heading into the 2015 season, the Dodgers will be chasing a World Series title. Is there a good price on LA in the MLB futures odds?
The Dodgers are listed second on the futures list, with the Washington Nationals the only team ahead of them at +600. Right now LA is trading at +650 to win the World Series here in the 2015 season.
The Dodgers, behind the sparkling arm of Clayton Kershaw, enjoyed a fantastic regular season which saw them win the NL West with a 94-68 record. They were six games ahead of the San Francisco Giants, but it was the Giants that got the last laugh, as they would go on to win it all in October. The Dodgers fell short against the St. Louis Cardinals to end their playoff run.
A big reason why LA was so dominant was because of Kershaw, who easily won both the MVP and the NL Cy Young. He went 21-3 with a 1.77 ERA and racked up 239 strikeouts (with just 31 works) over 198.1 innings of work. Those are some of the best numbers you're going to see out of a pitcher. Zack Greinke and Hyun-Jin Ryu both had effective seasons in the rotation, while Kenley Jansen (more on him later) recorded 44 saves with a 2.76 ERA.
Hitting wise, Adrian Gonzalez led the way with 27 homers and 116 RBI, both of which were team highs. Yasiel Puig dealt with injuries throughout the season and could never find his footing, while Matt Kemp shook off a rough first half and really found his stride in the second half of the season. Dee Gordon was a menace on the basepaths, totaling 64 stolen bases in all.
Not happy with an early exit in the postseason, the Dodgers made a number of moves over the offseason in preparation of a deep playoff run in 2015. It's World Series or bust for Los Angeles.
Who's gone? Matt Kemp and Dee Gordon are the big names that have left hitting-wise, but LA has done a nice job of filling in the gaps. Jimmy Rollins and Howie Kendrick have been brought on board (as has Yasmani Grandal). On the pitching front, Brandon McCarthy and Brett Anderson have moved over to LA and will take up spots at the backend of the rotation behind Kershaw, Greinke and Ryu.
The Dodgers will also be interested to see Pederson take on a bigger role at the highest level, and he'll have that opportunity to shine now that Kemp has moved on.
An injury has already popped up for the Dodgers, however, as Jansen has been ruled out for a number of weeks. He should be fine for the start of the regular season, but it's still a situation worth monitoring as we approach opening day as the MLB odds will surely shift.
Considering the Dodgers have the most dominant pitcher in all of baseball, you can't really count them out. We all saw what Madison Bumgarner was able to do for the Giants en route to the World Series title in 2014.
But will Klayshaw get enough help this season? That remains to be seen. The additions of McCarthy and Anderson to the backend of a strong rotation should help, and we also like the hitting moves that the Dodgers made. Kendrick is an upgrade (speed not withstanding) over Gordon at second, and Rollins and Grandal fit in nicely too. Don't forget about young Pederson, one of the top prospects in the nation, who will take over for the departed Kemp in the outfield.
All in all, we like the Dodgers' chances, health permitting. As long as Kershaw remains his dominant self atop that rotation, LA will be just fine. That being said, we think there are better values out there on the MLB betting odds board when it comes to futures MLB pick.
MLB Pick: Pass on Dodgers +700 at Bet365