CWS Finals Odds: Tennessee Vs. Texas A&M National Championship Series Game 1

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Written By Brett Gibbons | Last Updated
college world series odds

College World Series odds are set for the finals, and we’ll have a first-time champion. The top-seeded Tennessee Volunteers face the No. 3 Texas A&M Aggies in a best-of-three national championship series. the Vols have the lone CWS finals appearance between the two, but that happened back in 1951. Tennessee opened with -210 odds to win the series, while Texas A&M opened at +170 to win. The Vols opened at -145 to win Game 1, a number that moved in Tennessee’s favor. The CWS finals begin Saturday, June 22, on ESPN.

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College World Series Odds

To Win College Baseball National Championship

National Championship Series: Game 1

Find daily CWS finals odds below, updated after each result.

Tennessee opened a -145 moneyline favorite to take Game 1 from Texas A&M. Overnight, action favored the Vols slightly, pushing the line to as high as -155. Watch for more line movement in either direction as Saturday’s first pitch draws nearer.

This year, favorites are 11-1 straight up in Omaha. The lone underdog to win was Florida (+102) in an elimination game over Kentucky.

Though the SEC reigns dominant – this will be the fifth straight SEC winner and sixth in seven years – we will see a 13th consecutive unique champion. The only team to win multiple championships since 2010 is South Carolina (2010, 2011). This will also be the 18th unique champion since 2000.

How Tennessee Got Here

The Vols become just the fourth No. 1 overall seed to make the finals since the CWS moved to a Regionals-Super Regionals-CWS format in 1999 (Texas 2009, Texas 2004, Miami 1999). Notably, the top overall seed has not won the CWS since that inaugural year; none have won the title since the championship moved to a best-of-three series in 2003. Tennessee is the best poised to buck that trend this season.

Thought to be an unbreakable record, Tennessee is closing in on the all-time team home runs in a season. LSU’s “Geauxball” team hit 188 in 1997, and this year’s Vols team has 178 with two or three games left. While unlikely, especially against this Texas A&M rotation, Tennessee could tie the record with 3.3 homers per game (should the series go three games).

Only one round-tripper was needed for Tennessee to upend Florida State on Wednesday, 7-2, and secure its spot in the finals. That victory capped a perfect 3-0 run in Omaha and extended Tennessee’s NCAA Tournament record to 8-1. Star infielder Christian Moore hit for the cycle against North Carolina, just the second-ever cycle hit in a College World Series game.

6/14Florida StateW 12-11
6/16North CarolinaW 6-1
6/19Florida StateW 7-2

How Texas A&M Got Here

Nobody made the NCAA Tournament look easier than Texas A&M. The Aggies are a perfect 8-0, winning games by an average 4.5 runs per game. Aside from a ninth-inning home run robbery against Florida and an 11-inning win over Texas, A&M was rarely challenged getting to the finals.

Texas A&M pitched their 12th shutout of the season Wednesday and sent Florida packing, 6-0. As a team, the Aggies struck out 14 Gators, topped by starter Justin Lamkin’s nine (70 pitches). Star closer Evan Aschenbeck slammed the door shut, closing out the final two innings. Ashenbeck allowed one run during the NCAA Tournament and SEC Tournament combined. Against Texas, he went 4.2 innings to seal the victory for A&M.

These two coaches are very familiar with each other. While the head coach at TCU, Jim Schlossnagle hired Tennessee head coach Tony Vitello as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator back in 2010. Fourteen years later, the two former coworkers compete for a national title.

6/15FloridaW 3-2
6/17KentuckyW 5-1
6/19FloridaW 6-0

Texas A&M Vs. Tennessee Odds Analysis

There’s no question that these two are the best teams in the country. Sportsbooks favor Tennessee by a considerable margin, given the circumstances. In their only meeting this year, the Vols beat the Aggies, 7-4, knocking A&M out of the SEC Tournament; Tennessee would go on to win the SEC Championship. Three of A&M’s four runs came via home runs in that game.

While the Aggies trail the Vols considerably in team home runs, their 132 homers rank fifth in the nation. Four of the Omaha 8 ranked inside the top seven in team homers this season and A&M sits third among that group. Both pitching staffs supply a lot of power and tend to give up long balls. If you’re a fan of baseballs hit out of the park, this is your series.

Expected Pitching Matchups

Coaches aren’t afraid to exhaust all options on the mound with a championship on the line. In a pinch, they’ll run ace starters out as middle relievers or closers; LSU had Paul Skenes warmed up in Game 3 as a reliever but ultimately didn’t need him.

Game 1

  • Tennessee: Chris Stamos (3-0, 4.26 ERA, opener), AJ Causey (12-3, 4.21 ERA)
  • Texas A&M: Ryan Prager (9-1, 2.88 ERA)

Texas A&M may save Prager for Game 2. They’ve used a different starter in each opening game of the CWS, Super Regionals, Regionals, and SEC Tournament.

Game 2

  • Tennessee: Drew Beam (9-2, 4.30 ERA)
  • Texas A&M: Justin Lamkin (3-2, 5.00 ERA)

Game 3 (if necessary)

  • Tennessee: Zander Sechrist (5-1, 3.22 ERA)
  • Texas A&M: Shane Sdao (5-1, 2.96 ERA)

Texas A&M Vs. Tennessee Comparison

National ranks for stats listed in parentheses.

TennesseeMetricTexas A&M
58-12Overall record52-13
8-1NCAA Tournament record8-0
3.90 (6th)Team ERA3.86 (4th)
4.76 (18th)FIP4.84 (20th)
.311 (17th)Team batting.300 (44th)
.440 (2nd)wOBA.421 (8th)
177 (1st)wRC+159 (5th)
.977 (38th)Fielding percentage.978 (32nd)
.405wOBA L/15.368
4.60FIP L/155.04

Tennessee Vs. Texas A&M Pick Against Odds

Comparing strengths is pretty fruitless when dealing with the top two teams in the nation. Both teams have extremely talented and deep pitching staffs whose only shortcoming is giving up the occasional home run. Both teams are stacked with power, although the Vols are at historic levels with home run hitting. And both teams are incredibly well-coached.

For the final time this season, I’ll harken on my NCAA baseball mantra: In the postseason, pitching trumps all.

I like Texas A&M’s options better of the two. Of the five players to have started a postseason game this year for the Aggies, four have an ERA at or under 5.00; three are sub-3.00. Behind those starting options are six true stud relief options, five of whom have an ERA under 4.00. And, of course, Texas A&M rosters the best closer in the country in Evan Aschenbeck (1.54 ERA, 10 saves).

A&M took some action on their series price, though Tennessee took the Game 1 money. After opening at +170 for the series, the Aggies are down to +148 at FanDuel Sportsbook.

I bet Texas A&M +170 to win the series. Best of luck betting College World Series odds.

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