Los Angeles Dodgers World Series Favorites Entering June

Dodgers World Series
LOS ANGELES, CA - MAY 29: Los Angeles Dodgers third baseman Justin Turner (10) sprays Los Angeles Dodgers center fielder Alex Verdugo (27) with powder after a MLB game between the New York Mets and the Los Angeles Dodgers on May 29, 2019 at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles, CA. (Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

With two months of the MLB season in the books, life is looking good for the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Dodgers currently sit atop the NL West with a conference-best 38-19 record, so it should come as no surprise that statistical projections like the Dodgers odds to win it all. According to Baseball Reference, the Dodgers currently have a league-best 24.7% chance to win the 2019 World Series. The next-closest team is the Houston Astros at 20.8% and the next-closest team in the conference is the Milwaukee Brewers at 9.1%.

Los Angeles Dodgers World Series Favorites After May

The fact that the Dodgers are World Series shouldn’t be a surprise to many baseball fans. The Dodgers currently have one of the best all-around rosters in baseball as reflected by their 38-19 record. Cody Bellinger is easily the best player in baseball right now and is on pace for one of the best seasons in the history of baseball. Bellinger isn’t doing it alone, as Joc Pederson, Justin Turner, and Alex Verdugo help power an offense which ranks third in wRC+, batting average, and slugging percentage.

While the offense generates the headlines, the starting rotation remains among the league’s elite. Collectively, the Dodgers’ starting rotation has a 3.02 ERA and a 3.57 FIP. The ERA is the second-best in the league while the FIP is third. These rankings come with an asterisk, as the Tampa Bay Rays rank ahead of the Dodgers in both categories. Tampa Bay utilizes the opener more than any other team in baseball, so their inclusion among these rankings is somewhat subjective. Hyun-Jin Ryu currently owns an absurd 1.48 ERA and a 2.53 FIP through 11 starts, while Walker Buehler and Clayton Kershaw continue to be their reliable selves.

If there is one weakness with this team, it’s the bullpen. As of this posting, the Dodgers bullpen ranks 18th in FIP (4.49) and 21st in ERA (4.77). Pedro Baez is having a solid season thus far, but most of the other relievers leave something to be desired. Joe Kelly, in particular has been a disappointment, as the right owns an 8.35 ERA and a 5.49 FIP through 18.1 innings of work. Kelly is notoriously one of the streakiest pitchers in baseball and is due to turn his season around at any minute.

Baseball Reference Opponent Predictions

Baseball Reference doesn’t think the Dodgers will have any problem making their way through the National League. According to the site, Los Angeles currently has a 41.3% chance to advance to their third-straight World Series. The next-closest team are the Milwaukee Brewers with 18.6%.

Based on probability, Baseball Reference expects the Dodgers to face off against the Houston Astros. This would be a rematch of the 2017 World Series in which the Astros ultimately prevailed in seven games. The Astros have a 35.9% chance to make it out of the American League, but the Tampa Bay Rays aren’t far behind them. Baseball Reference gives Tampa Bay a 29.6% chance to make it to the World Series. The Dodgers and Rays have never faced off in a World Series and last played each other earlier in the season. The two teams played a two-game series, with each team coming away with a win. Los Angeles and Tampa Bay will face off again for a two-game series late in September.

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