Most years, the race to the National League Championship is a marathon, but this year it will be a sprint. As teams cannot afford to get off to a slow start, every game truly will be considered must-win.
While a team that gets hot early may have a better chance to make the postseason, betting odds for the NL championship still favor the strongest teams. Let’s take a look at the three favorites to win the NL pennant, according to the BetUS sportsbook.
2020 National League Championship Odds & Preview
Los Angeles Dodgers NL Pennant Odds (+140)
2019: 106-56, Won NL West
They have perennially been one of the strongest clubs in the National League for years, but the Los Angeles Dodgers have not been able to produce when it matters most: the postseason. Still, this is a team that is loaded and one that should again be capable of making a deep run in the playoffs, which is why they have the best betting odds.
On the pitching side, the Dodgers will rely on the two-headed monster of Clayton Kershaw (16-5, 3.03 ERA) and Walker Buehler (14-4, 3.26 ERA). These two head a strong staff and will be tough for any National League contender in the postseason.
When talking about the Dodgers’ offense, you have to start with Cody Bellinger. The big-swinging lefty hit .305/.406/.629 with 47 home runs, 115 RBI and 121 runs scored last season.
While the Dodgers are certainly happy that a season is being played, they are ecstatic that it guarantees that Mookie Betts will suit up for them. After being acquired in the offseason, Betts adds another huge bat to an already loaded lineup. Last year, for Boston, he hit .295/.391/.524 with 29 home runs, 80 RBI, 135 runs, and 16 stolen bases.
The Dodgers are expected to win the most games this season in our regular-season wins odds, with an Over-Under of 37.5 games won.
Atlanta Braves NL Pennant Odds (+500)
2019: 97-65, Won NL East
The Atlanta Braves are one of the most exciting teams in MLB, and their young nucleus is a major part. Arguably one of the most exciting players in the game right now is Ronald Acuna Jr. Last season, Acuna hit .280/.365/.518 with 41 home runs, 101 RBI, 127 runs, and 37 stolen bases.
One of the veterans of the club is first baseman, Freddie Freeman. Back in camp after being diagnosed with COVID-19, Freeman is expected to be a full go this season. Last year, Freeman hit .295/.389/.549 with 38 home runs, 121 RBI, and 113 runs.
Heading the rotation for the Braves is youngster Mike Soroka. Turning 23 at the beginning of August, Soroka went 13-4 with a 2.68 ERA last season. Add a solid bullpen that features Will Smith, Mark Melancon, and Shane Greene, the Braves should have enough pitching and definitely have enough offense to make a deep run.
This is one of the better options for fans looking to bet on the 2020 National League Championship.
Washington Nationals NL Pennant Odds (+700)
2019: 93-69, Won World Series
The Nationals are the poster child for what could happen in a shortened season. Last year after 60 games, they were 27-33. That record may not even make the playoffs this season. Despite the tough start, they won the World Series last year. This year’s odds to win the World Series has them at +1600.
The Nationals will try to repeat in 2020 but will do so with a big void in their offense, as Anthony Rendon left for the Los Angeles Angels. With the likes of Juan Soto (.282/.401/.548 with 34 home runs, 110 RBI, and 110 runs) and Trea Turner (.298/.353/.497 with 19 home runs, 57 RBI, 96 runs, and 35 stolen bases), the Nationals’ offense is still elite.
On the pitching side, the Nationals still have an elite trio in Max Scherzer (11-7, 2.92 ERA), Stephen Strasburg (18-6, 3.32 ERA) and Patrick Corbin (14-7, 3.25 ERA). Even with a hit to their offense, Washington’s starting pitching should keep them in most games.