Another Parade in Milwaukee? Why I’m Betting Brewers To Win The World Series

Written By Eli Hershkovich on October 8, 2021

With the 2021 MLB postseason already underway, you might think you’re too late to bet 2021 World Series odds.

The Dodgers are still the consensus favorites, sitting as low as +375 despite playing in the National League wild-card game. Then, the Astros or the Rays are right behind them.

But I’m backing the Brewers at +950 to win the World Series before they begin their postseason run, as Milwaukee attempts to bring another title home after the Bucks took the 2020-21 NBA championship.

The Brew Crew’s best available World Series odds across legal US sportsbooks are currently . Milwaukee has come a long way since being +5000 longshots when the market opened after the 2020 World Series.

Consider these factors before jumping on one of the teams atop 2021 MLB Futures.

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Brewers’ Rotation Magnifies 2021 World Series Odds

Craig Counsell’s team showcases MLB’s lone rotation with two starters in the top five of expected fielding independent pitching (xFIP). xFIP measures what the pitcher solely controls: strikeouts, hit-by-pitches, walks and fly balls allowed.

Corbin Burnes, the favorite in NL Cy Young odds at regular season’s end, and Brandon Woodruff present the stuff to stymie any lineup, including the Dodgers. Among starting pitchers, they both rank top five in strikeout rate and opponents’ hard-hit rate.

Also in that mix is fellow righty Freddy Peralta. Burnes and Peralta sit top 10 in home-run-to-fly-ball ratio (HR/FB). Woodruff and Peralta overpower opposing hitters with their fastball while Burnes elects to use his cutter (52.2%) and curveball (18.4%) at a higher rate.

Throw Adrian Houser and Eric Lauer into the conversation, and Milwaukee’s rotation is arguably deeper than any other playoff team.

Milwaukee’s Bullpen Loses Significant Arm

Even though Brewers generated the fifth-lowest relief xFIP across baseball, setup man Devin Williams (right hand fracture) was recently ruled out for the foreseeable future. Williams could return in the World Series if the Brewers advance past the NLCS.

Milwaukee was 70-4 after leading beyond seven innings this season — in large part because of Williams and closer Josh Hader. He’s clearly a significant loss but not one the Brewers can’t overcome.

Brad Boxberger and Brent Suter gift Counsell a pair of high-leverage arms (3.80 xFIP or better) with contrasting stuff. Both pitchers use the fastball at least 55.9% of the time, but Boxberger’s velocity is over six points higher. Meanwhile, Suter can deliver more than just an inning of work.

Then there’s Hader, who hasn’t allowed a single run since July while generating the highest strikeout rate (45.5%) among all relievers. He even has the second-highest wins above replacement (fWAR) behind White Sox closer Liam Hendricks.

The old adage is pitching and defense wins in the postseason. Given the Brewers own the No. 1 defensive rating (via FanGraphs), they fit the mold with those two aspects.

Will Brewers’ Offense Complete the Puzzle?

Since the All-Star break, Milwaukee sits dead-last among playoff teams in weighted on-base average (wOBA) and weighted runs created plus (wRC+). Both metrics measure a team’s offensive value apart from traditional statistics.

Christian Yelich, a former NL MVP, surprisingly represents a significant part of the issue. His fWAR is 6.2 points lower than his torrid stretch from 2018-19.

Nevertheless, the Brewers have accrued the third-highest walk rate (8.8%) among playoff teams, which is a critical factor in wearing down opposing pitching in the postseason.

Plus, Willy Adames, the ex-Rays shortstop, ranks top 25 in wRC+ since joining the Brewers on May 22. Avisail Garcia (29), Eduardo Escobar (28), Luis Urias (23) and Adames (20) all boast underrated power as well.

Although their overall offensive output isn’t ideal, that doesn’t necessarily equate to an unsuccessful playoff run. For instance, the Giants notched a 31-17 record in one-score games this season. Their late-inning heroics aren’t assured to have the same results this time around.

Brewers 2021 World Series Odds or Series Rollover?

Milwaukee is roughly a -140 favorite against Atlanta in the divisional round. If you’d rollover those winnings to the NLCS and beyond, using $100 as the baseline, their 2021 World Series odds (+950 or better) should be slightly more valuable.

Let’s have an October to remember, Brewers.

Eli Hershkovich Avatar
Written by
Eli Hershkovich

Eli Hershkovich is a lead sports betting writer with TheLines and Catena Media, formerly with Audacy and The Action Network. His goal is to provide you with data and information to lead you to winning bets. Eli is an avid college basketball gambler — among many other sports — and still hasn't forgiven Virginia for ruining his 2018-2019 Texas Tech futures.

View all posts by Eli Hershkovich