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MLB Playoff Picture 2018: Latest Postseason Bracket and World Series Odds

Joel Reuter@JoelReuterBRFeatured ColumnistSeptember 27, 2018

NEW YORK, NY - SEPTEMBER 20:  Mookie Betts #50 of the Boston Red Sox celebrates in the locker room after defeating the New York Yankees to clinch the American League East Division at Yankee Stadium on September 20, 2018 in the Bronx borough of New York City.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

The 2018 MLB playoff field is nearly set.

All five American League teams and three of the five National League teams have clinched a spot. That leaves the Colorado Rockies and Los Angeles Dodgers fighting for the NL West title and the whoever loses out on the division crown battling with the St. Louis Cardinals for the second NL wild-card spot.

Also still up for grabs is the right to host the AL Wild Card Game and the NL Central title, as the Chicago Cubs and Milwaukee Brewers are separated by just a half game.

Here's a look at how the playoff field would line up if the season ended Wednesday, as well as some updated World Series odds:

     

Current Playoff Matchups

American League

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Wild Card Game: (WC2) Oakland Athletics at (WC1) New York Yankees

ALDS: (1) Boston Red Sox vs. (WC) New York Yankees/Oakland Athletics

ALDS: (2) Houston Astros vs. (3) Cleveland Indians

National League

Wild Card Game: (WC2) Los Angeles Dodgers at (WC1) Milwaukee Brewers

NLDS: (1) Chicago Cubs vs. (WC) Los Angeles Dodgers/Milwaukee Brewers

NLDS: (2) Atlanta Braves vs. (3) Colorado Rockies

     

Odds to Win 2018 World Series

Chris Sale
Chris SaleAdam Glanzman/Getty Images

Boston Red Sox: 3-1

Houston Astros: 7-2

Los Angeles Dodgers: 11-2

Chicago Cubs: 15-2

Cleveland Indians: 8-1

New York Yankees: 12-1

Atlanta Braves: 12-1

Oakland Athletics: 15-1

Milwaukee Brewers: 18-1

Colorado Rockies: 30-1

St. Louis Cardinals: 30-1

Odds courtesy of OddsShark and last updated Tuesday.

    

Overview

HOUSTON, TX - JULY 08:  (L-R) Charlie Morton #50 of the Houston Astros, Lance McCullers Jr. #43, Gerrit Cole #45 and Justin Verlander #35 wait to celebrate with the team after defeating the Chicago White Sox 2-1 at Minute Maid Park on July 8, 2018 in Hous
Bob Levey/Getty Images

The Red Sox have won a franchise-record 107 games, so it's no surprise to see them listed as the World Series favorite.

Paced by a high-powered offense that leads the majors in batting average (.268), OPS (.791), runs (855) and runs per game (5.38), the Red Sox also have a dangerous starting staff and one of the best closers in baseball.

Chris Sale (12-4, 2.11 ERA) and David Price (16-7, 3.58 ERA) form a lethal one-two punch atop the rotation, while Craig Kimbrel (42/47 SV, 2.79 ERA, 13.7 K/9) can slam the door with the best of them.

Of course, the defending champion Astros will have something to say about the AL side of things.

Houston leads the majors in starters' ERA (3.20) and team ERA (3.13), and a playoff rotation of Justin Verlander (16-9, 2.60 ERA), Gerrit Cole (15-5 2.92 ERA), Charlie Morton (15-3, 3.18 ERA) and Dallas Keuchel (12-11, 3.75 ERA) is going to be awfully tough.

The Yankees lead the majors in home runs (256), the Indians are the first team in MLB history to have four pitchers reach 200 strikeouts in a season, and the A's have the best record in baseball (41-21) since the All-Star break.

In other words, don't count anyone out in the American League.

The Dodgers are still trying to win their division, yet they're pegged as the favorites on the NL side.

Walker Buehler could be a huge X-factor for the Dodgers this postseason.
Walker Buehler could be a huge X-factor for the Dodgers this postseason.Rob Leiter/Getty Images

A 10-4 record in their last 14 games gives them some welcome momentum, and with the starting staff of Clayton Kershaw, Walker Buehler, Rich Hill and Hyun-Jin Ryu all pitching well right now, there's no question they're dangerous.

Likewise, the Cubs are still trying to lock down a division title over the streaking Brewers.

With a 3-4 record in their last seven games and a bullpen that's leaking like a sieve, this isn't the same Cubs team we've seen in recent seasons, but their combination of talent and experience could be enough to flip the switch in October.

This is uncharted territory for the upstart Braves, but they've had the luxury of clinching their spot well in advance, which has given them time to rest up and properly line up their playoff rotation. They'll go as far as Mike Foltynewicz and Kevin Gausman atop the staff can carry them.

The Rockies and Cardinals are still duking it out for the final wild-card spot, and both teams have been playing extremely well since the All-Star break.

It looks like whoever captures the NL pennant this year is going to have their work cut out for them against whichever club emerges from the AL race, but anything can happen in October.

     

All stats courtesy of Baseball Reference and accurate through Wednesday.

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