The American League Pennant winner will again host the World Series as the AL won yet another All-Star game in this past mid-summer's classic. So with that over, we look ahead to the second half of the season. Most teams have played about 90 games at this point, so really we are a little more than half-way through the season as far as games remaining, but we usually use the All-Star game as the defining mid-point of the season. Over in the NL, there really is only one very good team, and that is the LA Dodgers.
They made it to the World Series two years in a row- and lost both times. First to the Astros, and then to the Red Sox. I think if they can make it to their 3rd World Series in a row, then 3rd time will be a charm for them, and they'll win for the first time since 1988. It doesn't seem that long ago, but it's going on a 30+ years drought for LA. What I am really hoping for, and I think most baseball fans are too, would be an LA-New York Yankees World Series, and the way things are playing out, that definitely seems in the realm of possibility. In the AL, it is the Yankees, Twins, and Astros who all lead their divisions, and I expect all three to wind up being the division leaders in the end.
Before the 2nd half gets under way, the Dodgers and Yankees are the two favored teams at +275 and +325 respectively. Houston is not too far behind at +350, and then things start to separate a bit as the Braves are +750, the Twins are +900, and the Cubs and Rays are both at +2000. As to the division winners, it seems like they are all almost decided already. All the current division leaders are minus odds to win their division from the Braves at -714 to the Astros at -10000. The exception is the NL Central, where the Cubs and Brewers are both +175. I think that division is a toss-up between those two teams, and whoever does not win the division will likely get the wild-card berth. But for now, here's hoping for a Yankees Cubs or Yankees Dodgers World-Series Match-up.