A Betting Timeline Of The Washington Nationals’ Bumpy Road To The World Series

Posted By Nate Weitzer on October 16, 2019

When the Washington Nationals let Bryce Harper walk in free agency, their odds to become 2019 World Series champions deflated — along with the hopes of their fan base. But baseball is a strange game sometimes, and after coming back to defeat the two-time defending NL champion Dodgers in five games in the NLDS, the Nats have swept the Cardinals in the NLCS to advance to the Fall Classic.

As an exercise in the unpredictability of MLB futures odds when compared to championship bets in the NBA or NFL, here is a look at the Nationals journey to the World Series via FanDuel Sportsbook.

February (+2400)*

While Bryce Harper had not yet signed with a team in the middle of February, reports were clear that the lefty slugger would not be returning to the Nationals. Washington had relatively low odds to win the World Series with few star names in the lineup and question marks surrounding the longevity of Stephen Strasburg as a secondary ace.

March (+1900)

Harper signed a 13-year deal worth $330 million to play with Washington’s division rival, Philadelphia, on March 1. That seemed to precipitate more action on the Nationals and increased their odds to +1900 by the middle of the month. Harper was voted as the most overrated player in the Majors by his peers and fans with a distaste for the bombastic star might have theorized that the Nats would be better off without him.

April (+2000)

Washington sat with a 7-8 record by April 16, leading to a slight decrease in futures odds. The Nats did win three of five against the Phillies during that span.

May (+3700)

With a 17-25 record on May 25, few expected the Nationals to make the playoffs in a loaded National League field, let alone win a World Series. Strasburg took consecutive losses at the Brewers and Dodgers earlier that month, raising more questions about his ability to perform in the clutch.

June (+5500)

This was the low point for the Nationals this season, as they stayed well below .500 with a 32-38 record on June 15 to trail the Braves by 8.5 games for first in the N.L. East. Washington responded with a five-game winning streak and went 10-3 the rest of the month to finish June with a 42-41 record.

July (+2800)

The Nationals rode their June hot streak into July, winning seven of eight to move to 50-43 by July 17. With the Mets faltering in late June and the Nats firmly in the Wild Card race, their odds moved closer to their preseason standing.

August (+2700)

Washington stayed in the playoff hunt by going 10-4 to sit at 66-55 by August 16. Sean Doolittle and Daniel Hudson began to establish some consistency in the bullpen for a Nats team that struggled badly to close out games earlier in the year.

September (+2200)

The Nats sat at 82-66 on September 15 with a Wild Card berth well within reach. Since they had struggled against playoff-bound teams and had a very high bullpen ERA (5.83), the Nats were far from frontrunners to navigate the N.L. playoffs even if they earned a spot.

October (+140)

After pulling off late-inning comebacks in both the Wild Card game at Milwaukee and Game 5 of the NLDS at Dodger Stadium, the Nationals appear to be a team of destiny. Washington entered Game 4 of the NLCS against St. Louis with +150 and moved up to +140 after completing a sweep of the Cardinals. With four excellent starting pitchers (Max Scherzer, Strasburg, Anibal Sanchez, Patrick Corbin) performing at a high level this postseason and an offense that is surging behind Anthony Rendon and Juan Soto, Washington is only a slight underdog to take down the Astros or Yankees when the World Series begins on Oct. 22.

*All odds taken from middle of each month

Current World Series odds

World Series Winner

Game
10/31/2019
(Eastern Time)
(EST)
Houston
Bet now
+550
Bet now
+500
LA Dodgers
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+550
Bet now
+600
NY Yankees
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+550
Bet now
+600
Atlanta
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+1200
Bet now
+1100
Washington
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+1200
Bet now
+1400
Philadelphia
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+1400
Bet now
+2000
St. Louis
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+1400
Bet now
+1900
Boston
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+2000
Bet now
+1200
Chicago Cubs
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+2000
Bet now
+2000
Cleveland
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+2000
Bet now
+1500
NY Mets
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+2000
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+2200
Tampa Bay
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+2000
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+3000
Minnesota
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+2200
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+3000
Milwaukee
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+2500
Bet now
+2200
Oakland
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+2500
Bet now
+3000
Arizona
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+4000
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+5000
LA Angels
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+4000
Bet now
+4000
San Diego
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+4000
Bet now
+5000
Chicago WS
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+6600
Bet now
+8000
Cincinnati
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+6600
Bet now
+5000
Texas
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+6600
Bet now
+10000
Toronto
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+10000
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+8000
Colorado
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+12500
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+8000
Pittsburgh
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+12500
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+10000
SF Giants
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+15000
Bet now
+8000
Seattle
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+15000
Bet now
+10000
Miami
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+25000
Bet now
+10000
Baltimore
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+50000
Bet now
+10000
Detroit
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+50000
Bet now
+10000
Kansas City
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+50000
Bet now
10000

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