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AL West Odds 2021: Astros, Athletics Set to Duke it Out

Zack Greinke and the Houston Astros are favorites to win the AL West in 2021.

The return of baseball is almost here, as Opening Day is set for April 1. All 30 teams will be playing on Opening Day, giving baseball fans plenty of action early out of the gate.

When it comes to futures betting value for MLB divisions, the AL West is one of the most interesting on the board in the 2021 campaign.

Online sportsbook Bovada has released AL West odds with the Houston Astros favored at +125 followed by the Oakland Athletics (+160), Los Angeles Angels (+375), Seattle Mariners (+2000) and Texas Rangers (+7500) to round out the oddsboard.

The Astros’ +125 AL West odds mean that you would have to bet $100 to profit $125. Additionally, looking at the AL West odds, our sports betting calculator tells us that the Astros’ betting line represents an implied win probability of 44.4 percent.

AL West Odds 2021

Odds to Win the 2021 AL West 
TeamCurrent OddsOpening Odds
Houston Astros+125+125
Oakland Athletics+160+160
Los Angeles Angels+375+375
Seattle Mariners+2000+2000
Texas Rangers+7500+7500

Odds as of March 30 at Bovada

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Houston Astros (+125)

The Astros dominated the AL West from 2017 to 2019, winning three straight division titles and finishing with over 100 wins each year. Last year, in a season marred by injuries and fallout from the cheating scandal, the Astros got beat out by the Athletics for the AL West title by seven games.

All wasn’t lost for Houston, though. The ’Stros reached the ALCS and forced a Game 7 against the Rays after trailing 3-0 in the series before eventually falling to Tampa Bay in the series-deciding game.

Three-time all-star outfielder George Springer departed Texas in favor of Toronto in the offseason, which will undoubtedly leave a gap in Houston’s lineup. There’s still plenty of firepower left, though, as Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman and Yuli Gurriel will be looking to rebound after a down year in 2020.

Like them or hate them – and a lot of baseball fans do – the Astros won’t be going away any time soon and deserve the distinction as favorites in AL West odds 2021.

Oakland Athletics (+160)

On the heels of their first AL West banner since 2013, the A’s are returning largely the same core that rose above expectations in the 2020 campaign. Oakland will have plenty of motivation to stave off the Astros, who beat them in the ALDS. The series loss continued a concerning trend for a franchise that hasn’t reached the ALCS since 2006.

Oakland has two of the biggest bats in MLB in Matt Chapman and Matt Olson, who each had 36 home runs and 91 RBIs in 2019 and reached the double-digit mark in homers last year. Chapman only hit .232 in 2020, while Olson’s average fell from .267 in 2019 to .195. 

The A’s won the division last season without their bats consistently producing, and an above-average starting rotation is a big reason why. Chris Bassitt, Jesus Luzardo and Frankie Montas are all studs, and if they can continue to improve this season, don’t be surprised if the Athletics are one of the top pitching teams in the American League.

Oakland’s bullpen, which led the league with a 2.72 ERA, is no slouch either. If any team is going to beat out the Astros, it’s the A’s, so they’re certainly an attractive futures wager at +160 in 2021 AL West odds.

Los Angeles Angels (+375)

Despite boasting a big payroll and possessing the best player in baseball, the Angels continue to be stuck in mediocrity. Los Angeles’ playoff drought continued last year, as the franchise hasn’t been in the postseason since 2009.

The Halos are coming off five consecutive losing seasons, but can they rebound this year? That remains to be seen. The lineup is strong, with Mike Trout, Anthony Rendon and a healthy Shohei Ohtani back in the fold. 

The biggest question mark for the Angels could once again be pitching. Angels manager Joe Maddon is set to go with a six-man rotation this year, with Dylan Bundy, Ohtani and Andrew Heaney leading the way. Former Cincinnati Reds closer Raisel Iglesias should shore up a closer position that was a major weak spot a year ago.

L.A. once again looks great on paper, but can it translate that into consistent production and, more importantly, a playoff berth? Based on past showings, I’m not banking on it in AL West odds.

Seattle Mariners (+2000)

Speaking of playoff droughts, the Mariners take the cake in MLB. Seattle hasn’t made the playoffs or won an AL West Division title since 2001. Evident in their +2000 AL West odds, the sportsbook isn’t expecting that trend to change.

Seattle does have a decent chance at having a winning season, though. 2020 AL Rookie of the Year Kyle Lewis looks like a future star, while Taylor Trammell looks like a candidate to be this year’s breakout rookie in the AL. Seattle ranked 25th in home runs in 2020, but I’m expecting that number to rise significantly this time around.

The Mariners’ starting rotation is one of their strengths. Marco Gonzales was 7-2 with a career-best 3.10 ERA in 11 starts last year and is in line for another great season. James Paxton is rejoining the rotation after two years with the Yankees and Justus Sheffield and Justin Dunn are reliable options as well. 

Even if the Mariners play to their absolute best, they’ll be in tough to beat the likes of Houston, Oakland and Los Angeles in the AL West.

Texas Rangers (+7500)

The Rangers improved from 67 wins in 2018 to 78 in 2019 in Chris Woodward’s first season as manager, which had plenty of fans hoping to see more improvement last year. It didn’t happen, as the Rangers went 22-38 in the shortened 2020 campaign.

Texas was one of the worst teams in the league at the plate. The Rangers ranked 29th in batting average (.217) and runs (224) while tying for 23rd in home runs (62). The Rangers are returning the same core on offense, which doesn’t exactly bode well for their chances going forward.

Normally, below-average offense can be offset by solid pitching, but the Rangers were bad in that department as well. Texas finished the season tied for 20th in home runs allowed (81), 24th in ERA (5.02), tied for 25th in runs allowed (312) and 27th in walks (236). 

Japanese import Kohei Arihara is a new face in the rotation, along with former Atlanta Braves starter Mike Foltynewicz. 

Texas has work to do in every area of the diamond in order to even think about challenging for the division, and that’s not going to happen any time soon. There are much better long-shot options than the Rangers in MLB divisional futures.