Cubs, Giants Set to Open Season as World Series Betting Favorites

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With baseball season getting underway on Sunday the Chicago Cubs continue to reign as the 5/1 World Series betting favorites ahead of the San Francisco Giants at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.

The Cubs are looking to build on a 97-65 campaign and a drive to the NLCS in 2015, which resulted in them sitting as 10/1 World Series favorites early in the offseason. The winter signings of pitcher John Lackey, outfielder Jason Heyward, and infielder Ben Zobrist complemented the Cubs’ young core, and further shortened the club’s World Series odds.

The San Francisco Giants have also seen their odds rise dramatically, as they will open the season at 8/1 on those baseball futures after entering the offseason at 16/1.

The additions of free agent pitchers Johnny Cueto and Jeff Samardzija bolster the Giants’ rotation, while the club’s World Series victories in every even-numbered year since 2010 has certainly raised their appeal among more superstitious baseball bettors.

The Toronto Blue Jays round out the front of the World Series betting pack, with strong 10/1 odds at the sportsbooks. The Blue Jays enjoyed a 42-18 storybook finish last season, earning them the AL East division title and their first postseason berth since 1993.

While Toronto parted ways with David Price, they enter the season with a strong rotation, led by anointed ace Marcus Stroman and a revamped bullpen anchored by newly-acquired setup man Drew Storen and closer Roberto Osuna, fueling their rise on the odds since opening the offseason farther back at 14/1.

The New York Mets and Los Angeles Dodgers also maintain staying power on the baseball betting futures, deadlocked at 12/1, ahead of the defending World Series champion Kansas City Royals and the Boston Red Sox, who kick off their respective campaigns at 14/1.

The Houston Astros enjoyed a breakthrough 86-76 season in 2015 before bowing out to the Royals in the ALDS, with more of the same expected this season, earning them 16/1 odds.

The departure of Lackey and Heyward to the division-rival Cubs, along with the emergence of a young, talented Pittsburgh Pirates squad, has taken its toll on the St. Louis Cardinals, who have slipped to 18/1, alongside the Washington Nationals and Cleveland Indians.

The Pirates join the Detroit Tigers at 20/1, while the Texas Rangers are knotted with the Arizona Diamondbacks and New York Yankees at 25/1.