2019 National League Championship Preview: Predictions and Odds

How will the National League Championship Be Decided in 2019?

In early October, the American and National League have their own playoff bracket to determine which two teams will play for the World Series crown.

If there are no ties that need to be broken to determine the winner of a division, then the first playoff game for the National League is a Wild Card game to be held on Tuesday, Oct. 1st, 2019.

After the Wild Card game is decided then the winner of that one-game playoff heads to the home ballpark of the National League team with the best record for a five-game series known as the Division Series.

At the same time that series is being played, another series between the other two division winners in the National League is also being held. Both Division Series will start on Thursday, October 3rd.

The winners of the two Division Series advance to the National League Championship Series, a best-of-7 series scheduled to start on October 11th at the home park of the team with the better overall regular-season record.

Once a National and American League Champion is crowned, then both teams face off in the best-of-7 game World Series scheduled to begin on Tuesday, October 22nd at the home park of the team with the better regular-season record.

Who are the Favorites to Win the 2019 National League Title?

Los Angeles Dodgers

Of any of the National League teams on this list, the Los Angeles Dodgers have been the most consistent throughout the year.

According to fangraphs.com, the Dodgers’ playoff odds started at close to 90% on opening day and haven’t dipped all season due to their dominance in the National League West.

As of August 14th, the Dodgers own a whopping 18.5-game lead over the second-place Arizona Diamondbacks and virtually assured at this point of their seventh consecutive division title.

If you believe in the simple math of baseball, then the Dodgers are definitely the odds-on favorite to go to their third-straight World Series.

They have scored the most runs and allowed the least amount of runs scored in the National League this season, which is quite frankly, the entire point of this wonderful game.

With a rotation that features Walker Buehler, Cy Young contender Hyun-Jin Ryu and future Hall of Famer Clayton Kershaw, the Dodgers are going to be incredibly tough to beat in any limited game series.

The lineup features NL MVP front runner Cody Bellinger, the slugging Max Muncy, and the savvy veteran Justin Turner. The Dodgers can jump on teams via the long ball or through stringing together base hits.

If the favorites have a weakness it is the bullpen. Their closer Kenley Jansen has been on a rollercoaster this year with his performance and their failures to secure help at the trade deadline could prove costly in October.

If you are in New Jersey you can bet on your favorites to win the National League Championship with 888Sport and BetStars NJ. Find the latest odds below. Good luck!

SportsbookNational League WinnerLink
888Sport NJ-106
BetStars NJ-110

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Atlanta Braves

Atlanta has exploded since June 1st winning 41 of their last 64 games as of August 14th. The streak has allowed them to put a stranglehold on the National League East, although a sluggish August has given Washington the opportunity to sneak back into the race.

In the National League, only the Braves can comfortably say that they can score runs like the Dodgers, but their pitching staff is nowhere near as proficient as Los Angeles’ hurlers.

Also, in early May, Atlanta was swept at Los Angeles in a three-game set facing Buehler, Ryu, and Kershaw, the three pitchers they would face opening the NLCS.

Down the stretch, the East division will be determined by the seven games the Braves play versus the Nationals.

Should the two teams get relatively close to splitting the remaining contests, then Atlanta will be your division champions and in the prime position to make their first NLCS since 2001.

SportsbookNational League WinnerLink
888Sport NJ+400
BetStars NJ+400

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Chicago Cubs

The Cubs are looking to get back to the NLCS after making the finals three years in a row from 2015 through 2017.

Manager Joe Maddon’s squad has arguably the second-best collection of pitchers in the National League and a struggling bullpen has boosted somewhat by the arrival of All-Star closer Craig Kimbrel.

But, Chicago has two huge flaws that will keep them from making the World Series for the first time since their win in 2016. The first is their inability to win on the road and the second is a bullpen that has coughed up too many games.

The lineup, led by All-Star regulars like Anthony Rizzo and Kris Bryant, isn’t as potent as Atlanta or Los Angeles but is only one of five NL teams to average over five runs per game.

SportsbookNational League WinnerLink
888Sport NJ+850
BetStars NJ+850

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New York Mets

Future bets on the Mets are definitely being gobbled up at an increased clip since their winning streak to start August, but bettors should exercise caution before going all in.

The biggest red flag is that New York is one of seven teams within 3.5 games of one of the spots in the National League Wild Card game, and are two games back of the Cardinals for the second spot.

Currently, the Mets are nine games back of Atlanta in the East, so their own avenue for the playoffs is by getting into the Wild Card game, a challenge that could easily disappear in the coming weeks with an ill-timed losing streak.

SportsbookNational League WinnerLink
888Sport NJ+1100
BetStars NJ+2000

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St. Louis Cardinals

One of the biggest potential values on the board is St. Louis. They hold onto the second spot in the Wild Card race and are just one game back of Chicago in the NL Central race.

With a potent lineup that is just getting fully healthy and with a competent pitching staff, the Cardinals could put a late run on the National League and become a hot and dangerous team going into the NL playoffs.

SportsbookNational League WinnerLink
888Sport NJ+1200
BetStars NJ+1200

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Washington Nationals

The Nationals make this list due to the strength of their top three starters. Max Scherzer, Stephen Strasburg, and Patrick Corbin are one of the best starting trios in all of baseball.

For the Nationals to be involved in the NL title race, Scherzer will have to be healthy and currently, that is not the case as he struggles with back issues. If he returns and pitches at a high level, then Washington could wreak havoc on the National League in a playoff setting.

SportsbookNational League WinnerLink
888Sport NJ+1300
BetStars NJ+1100

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Milwaukee Brewers

The Brewers came so close last season to making their first World Series since the early 1980s, falling to the Dodgers in game seven of the NLCS in 2018.

This season, Milwaukee has struggled to find their footing with an offense that has been inconsistent and a pitching staff that has yet to show the strength of last season.

The Brewers have an uphill climb to win either the NL Central or capture a spot in the Wild Card game but with 2018 NL MVP Christian Yelich leading the way, Milwaukee must be considered in the NL playoff picture.

SportsbookNational League WinnerLink
888Sport NJ+1600
BetStars NJ+1500

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Who Will Win the 2019 National League Championship?

It is hard to deny that the Dodgers have one of the best overall teams in all of baseball. With their starting pitching and efficient top-to-bottom lineup, Los Angeles could make quick work of their NL rivals and get back to their third straight World Series.

Atlanta provides some decent value and with their young lineup, the Braves’ offense could literally overpower teams on their way to an NL title.

If you are looking for dark horses, lean toward the teams with that can prevent runs from being scored.

For that reason, I like the Nationals and Cardinals to become troublesome for teams down the stretch.

2019 National League Championship Winner Odds

If you are in New Jersey, you can bet on your favorites to win the 2019 National League Championship with 888Sport and BetStars NJ. Good luck!

National League Winner888Sport NJBetStars NJ
Philadelphia Phillies+1800+1600
Arizona Diamondbacks+5000+4000
San Francisco Giants+5000+5000
Cincinnati Reds+9000+7500
San Diego Padres+10000+12500
Colorado Rockies+10000+20000
Pittsburgh Pirates+15000+40000
Miami Marlins+250000+500000

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Odds to Win the NL Central Division

The odds are provided by DraftKings and 888Sport. If you are in New Jersey you can place a bet on the favorite to win the NL Central Division.

Division Winner888Sport NJ
CHI Cubs-143
STL Cardinals+250
MIL Brewers+300
CIN Reds+4000
PIT Pirates+25000

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