2019 World Series Betting Preview: Schedule, Odds, and More

The Houston Astros and Washington Nationals will meet in the 2019 MLB World Series (photo credit: USA TODAY Sports)

The Washington Nationals and the Houston Astros have reached the MLB World Series, and they’ll begin action on Tuesday, October 22, 2019. The Astros won the World Series in 2017 and will be looking to once again reach the top of the baseball mountain. The Nationals are looking to win the franchise’s first World Series title.

The Astros have home-field advantage and they are the betting favorite to win it all. On Monday, the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook had the Astros at -220 to win the 2019 World Series, with the Nationals as +190 underdogs. At DraftKings Sportsbook, the Astros were -235 and the Nationals +192. At FanDuel Sportsbook, it’s the Astros at -240 and the Nationals at +200. Across the board, the Astros are the World Series betting favorite.

2019 MLB World Series Schedule

Game 1: Nationals at Astros
Tuesday, October 22, at 8 p.m. ET
Minute Maid Park
Houston, TX

Game 2: Nationals at Astros
Wednesday, October 23, at 8 p.m. ET
Minute Maid Park
Houston, TX

Game 3: Astros at Nationals
Friday, October 25, at 8 p.m. ET
Nationals Park
Washington, DC

Game 4: Astros at Nationals
Saturday, October 26, at 8 p.m. ET
Nationals Park
Washington, DC

Game 5: Astros at Nationals
Sunday, October 27, at 8 p.m. ET
Nationals Park
Washington, DC

Game 6: Nationals at Astros
Tuesday, October 29, at 8 p.m. ET
Minute Maid Park
Houston, TX

Game 7: Nationals at Astros
Wednesday, October 30, at 8 p.m. ET
Minute Maid Park
Houston, TX

How Long Will the World Series Last?

The World Series is a best-of-seven series starting in Houston. The first two games will be in Houston, followed by the next three in Washington, DC, and then it’s back to Houston for the final two games if those are needed. Not all games may be needed, as the first team to win four games takes the World Series title.

Sportsbooks have prices available for the exact series result, which can allow us to get some insight into how long the betting market thinks the World Series will last. At the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook, the shortest betting odds belongs to the exact series result of the Astros to win in six games, with it being priced at +300. The Astros winning in five games is the next favorite at +400.

Astros in 4+700+750+800
Astros in 5+400+440+390
Astros in 6+300+300+290
Astros in 7+450+400+400
Nationals in 4+2000+2500+2300
Nationals in 5+800+950+950
Nationals in 6+700+875+800
Nationals in 7+600+650+600

*Odds as of Monday, October 21, and subject to change.

How They Got Here

The Houston Astros topped the American League West with a record of 107 wins and 55 losses. Their record also earned them the top see in the AL and they met up with the Tampa Bay Devil Rays in the American League Division Series. In a best-of-five series, Houston came out on top 3-2.

The Astros then took on the New York Yankees in the American League Championship Series. It was a best-of-seven series and the Astros won 4-2. The final game was an exciting one, with Jose Altuve hitting a 2-run walkout home run in the bottom of the ninth to send the Yankees home.

The Washington Nationals had a longer road to the World Series in terms of teams they had to get through. Finishing second in the National League East, the Nationals had to take on the Milwaukee Brewers in the National League Wild Card Game. They won that single-elimination playoff game 4-3 and advanced to take on the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Despite being the No. 4 seed and the Dodgers being the No. 1 seed, the Nationals defeated Los Angeles in the best-of-five National League Division Series by 3-2. They had to go to Los Angeles to do it, too, winning Game 5 on the road by a score of 7-3.

The Nationals then faced the St. Louis Cardinals in the National League Championship Series, but they made quick work of the Cardinals by sweeping them in four games.

Leading up to the 2019 MLB World Series, the Astros have played 11 playoff games and the Nationals have played 10.

The Astros have been very much the frontrunner all season long, including the playoffs. There was a small bump in the road in the ALDS when the Astros went up 2-0 in the series but then let the Devil Rays win the next two games in Tampa Bay to even the series, but even then the series didn’t really feel in jeopardy. The Nationals, on the other hand, have been coming from behind.

Washington started slow but fought back to win an NL Wild Card spot. They were then down to the Brewers 3-1 in the NL Wild Card Game but came back to win 4-3. Against the Dodgers, the Nationals were down 2-1 in the series, but they won Game 4 and then, as mentioned before, took Game 5 out west.

What To Watch For

High-end pitching will be on display in this World Series, with both squads bringing to the mound a bunch of very good pitchers and we’re excited to see these guys duel. Houston with its three-headed monster of Gerrit Cole, Justin Verlander, and Zack Greinke have a little more firepower in this regard, but don’t sleep on Max Scherzer, Stephen Strasburg, and company. Patrick Corbin has also been good for the Nationals. All of that said, can Washington’s starters rise to the level they need to be at in order to beat the Astros?

With both groups of starting pitchers being so good, we’re going to want to really see which one of these two offenses can get going. This specifically pertains to Washington’s offense, as there’s just simply a better chance that Houston’s pitching outperforms Washington’s. if the Nationals can’t get anything going with their bats, this series is going to be over and it’s going to be over quick.

Who Will Be the World Series MVP?

Houston pitcher Gerrit Cole had a great regular season, going 20-5 with a 2.50 ERA, and his stellar pitching has carried over to the postseason. In his 22 innings pitched this postseason, Cole has an incredible 0.40 ERA and 32 strikeouts. As he’ll be the Astros Game 1 starter and the most likely starting pitcher to see the mound more than once for Houston, Cole is the MVP favorite.

At DraftKings Sportsbook, Cole is +650 to win the World Series MVP award, with Justin Verlander second at +750. At FanDuel Sportsbook, it’s Cole at +700 and then Verlander at +750.

DraftKings SportsbookFanDuel Sportsbook
Gerrit Cole (+650)Gerrit Cole (+700)
Justin Verlander (+750)Justin Verlander (+750)
Alex Bregman (+1000)Alex Bregman (+1000)
George Springer (+1000)George Springer (+1000)
Jose Altuve (+1000)Jose Altuve (+1000)
Carlos Correa (+1250)Carlos Correa (+1200)
Max Scherzer (+1300)Max Scherzer (+1300)
Stephen Strasburg (+1400)Stephen Strasburg (+1400)
Anthony Rendon (+1400)Anthony Rendon (+1500)
Juan Soto (+1400)Juan Soto (+1500)

*Odds as of Monday, October 21, and subject to change.

Now, going back to the exact series odds, you can use those bets for a nice correlation play on who to bet to win World Series MVP. If you think the Astros will win in five games, it might be worth it to place that bet along with betting Cole to win MVP, figuring that if the Astros win in five games it’ll be Cole who starts the series off win a win and then seals the World Series title in Game 5. If you think the Astros will win in six games, you might want to bet on Verlander to win MVP along with it. The same sort of thinking applies here, in that Verlander is likely to get the win in Game 2 and then he should be in line to get the ball in Game 6 to finish it off.

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