Major League Baseball came back with a bang last April and fans couldn’t have been happier. After all, watching the best of the best slugging it out is an incredible spectacle. Still, it’s hard to focus on the feel-good factor for too long. Before you know it, the focus quickly shifts to the most likely outcomes for the 2021 MLB season.
The regular season doesn’t end until October and the winners of the World Series are crowned at the beginning of November, so there’s plenty of baseball left to play. Regardless, it’s fun to predict which franchises will be there or thereabouts in a couple of months.
A Continued Charge from San Francisco
The San Francisco Giants won three of the first World Series of the decade, but they steadily declined and haven’t won a major trophy since. Watching a franchise such as the Giants fall from grace isn’t healthy for baseball fans, yet thankfully, 2021 seems to be the season they have transformed into title contenders.
They have steadily rebuilt their bullpen by adding the likes of Zack Littell, Dominic Leone, Jimmie Sherfy, and Conner Menez, making them very strong throughout the squad. As a result, they have been in first place, or thereabouts, since April, leading some publications to call SFG the Boston Red Sox of the West Coast. Big praise, indeed. Regardless of the comparison, it’s clear that the 41/25 Giants will be in the World Series picture this campaign.
Unpredictability in the National League Central
Every sports league has a division that causes you to take the rulebook and throw it in the trash. In the MLB, it’s the NL Central that will encourage you to tear your hair out, especially if you like to punctuate your viewing experience with an exciting wager. Even this “How to Bet on Baseball – An Expert Guide to Baseball Betting” can’t unravel the mysteries of the NL Central!
Of course, that’s the beauty of the division because there are currently four franchises with an opportunity to qualify for the playoffs in October. The Brewers and Cubs have identical records, while the Reds and Cardinals are only five wins behind. There’s a chance the chasing pack will drop off dramatically in the next few months, causing the NL Central to be no more exciting than the one-sided AL East. However, as it stands, it appears as if there will be several twists and turns before the winners and wild card nominees are decided.
The Red Sox Powering Their Way Out of Trouble
Okay, so Boston aren’t in any real danger of missing out on the play-offs. With only three wins separating the Red Sox and the Rays, it’s easily feasible that the former ends up top of the AL East by October. Still, most people would expect a franchise like the Boston Red Sox to be dominating and they aren’t.
What they are doing is using their powerful offense to stay in the conversation. For instance, Boston ranks in the top six in the AL in OPS. Sure, the pitching department is better than first thought, yet it’s the attacking baseball that is making them very watchable. So, whatever happens, it will be worth tuning in whenever they are on TV.
What do you think will happen from now until the end of the regular season? Let us know in the comments section!