MLB

American League Winner Odds: Wide Open Field Featuring Reigning Champs

Scott Edwards Jr.
Scott Edwards Jr.@ScottEdwardsJr
American League Winner Odds: Wide Open Field Featuring Reigning Champs

Spring Training is underway, which means the 2024 MLB season is right around the corner with Opening Day quickly approaching.

It's far too early to know which teams are going to be the true contenders in baseball this season outside of the expected top dogs, but that's why we have betting odds. The American League is wide open compared to the National League, creating what should be an exciting battle to take home the pennant.

Let's dive into the American League winner odds for the 2024 season, per FanDuel Sportsbook.

Note: All advanced statistics are used from FanGraphs.

American League Winner Odds

Team
American League Winner Odds
Houston Astros+380
New York Yankees+390
Texas Rangers+650
Baltimore Orioles+700
Minnesota Twins+900
Seattle Mariners+1000
Toronto Blue Jays+1000
View Full Table

Houston Astros (+380)

Another season, another time that the Houston Astros are the favorites to take home the American League pennant.

It's hard to argue considering they've made it to seven straight American League Championship Series. Oh, and they have won four of them in those seven years. It's quite difficult to bet against them as a result, leaving them with the best odds -- even if they have less talent than other teams in the AL.

The Astros will have Yordan Alvarez, Jose Altuve, Alex Bregman, and Kyle Tucker back to lead their offense as its nucleus. All you can ask for is consistency, which is what they have. This offense was top-five once again last season, recording a .332 weighted on-base average (wOBA), smashing 222 home runs, and posting a 112 weighted runs created plus (wRC+).

Houston is dealing with tons of injuries on the pitching side, though, which is where they have more questions this season. Justin Verlander is working towards a return right now, Lance McCullers is still recovering from Tommy John surgery, and they'll be completely without Kendall Graveman in their bullpen. The good news is they added Josh Hader to be their closer and, ultimately, that's as strong of an addition as they can have heading into this season.

Their biggest question will come in the dugout. Dusty Baker retired in the offseason, meaning that the Astros will be moving forward with new manager Joe Espada. It remains to be seen how he will lead the way but that'll be what decides this team's fate. Thankfully for them, they have the players in place to make it happen one way or another.

New York Yankees (+390)

The most talented team in the AL is the New York Yankees -- but can they actually get it done?

Getting to the ALCS isn't necessarily the difficult part for them. It's winning the ALCS that is now incredibly hard for them because they haven't been back to the World Series since winning in 2009.

Why can this be the year when things change? Offseason-wise, they're back to being the Yankees.

New York went on to make a substantial change to their lineup, trading for Juan Soto. The MVP-caliber outfielder will be paired with Aaron Judge to form one of baseball's most dangerous duos. They also added Alex Verdugo to shore up their outfield even more. The Yankees' lineup needed improvements after suffering when Judge missed so much time last season, so these are the moves that give them a very capable lineup.

Where their chance to win the AL will be decided comes down to their pitching staff. Yes, Gerrit Cole will lead as their ace. But after that, all the question marks begin to pop up. The performances of Carlos Rodon and Nestor Cortes were a real cause for concern in 2023, so their ability to bounce back will be of the utmost importance. Marcus Stroman should help stabilize the rotation after signing with them at least.

If you're betting on a team based on talent, the Yankees are that team in the AL.

Texas Rangers (+650)

Winning back-to-back World Series doesn't happen all too much. But winning back-to-back AL pennants? That's an easier ask for the Texas Rangers.

It was in 2021 and 2022 that the Astros won the ALCS two years straight. The Rangers have the lineup to get it done and, if all goes right, could have the pitching by season's end. Texas' lineup will be carried by Corey Seager, Marcus Semien, and Adolis Garcia once again with the hopes of Evan Carter making strides after what he did in the 2023 postseason.

The potential problems for Texas will be through their current pitching situation. Both Max Scherzer and Jacob deGrom won't be ready until the summer to pitch for this team, leaving them in a tough spot. Nathan Eovaldi will be counted on as their most trustworthy starter after his strong postseason last year, but beyond that, there's little to feel confident about. If they can ride the wave long enough in the first half of the season, they can get themselves to the playoffs -- which is more the worry than them contending once they get there.

Texas has the talent and the experience to get the job done. Their odds could get better to bet on after a month or two, depending on how they start.

Baltimore Orioles (+700)

The Baltimore Orioles have so much to be excited about heading into this season after winning 101 games last year.

I've written about them a few times already heading into this new campaign, but the reality is that this Orioles team is well ahead of schedule and has a real chance to take another step this year. The reason is that their core of Adley Rutschman and Gunnar Henderson has only scratched the surface of what they can do to push this team forward.

They'll be adding Jackson Holliday to the equation this season, who just so happens to be MLB.com's No. 1 prospect. Depending on what he's able to do in his first season, he'll be a major reason this team can be an improved version of what it was last year.

Pitching will be what decides this team's fate in the regular season and playoffs. Taking the AL pennant got easier when they went and traded for former Cy Young winner Corbin Burnes. He will give the Orioles the ace that they desperately needed in the playoffs last year. Where some difficulties come, however, is with Felix Bautista missing the season due to Tommy John surgery. The most dominant reliever in baseball last season will not be at their disposal, meaning they'll turn to Craig Kimbrel -- not a bad backup option.

In their current form, it's hard to know if this Orioles team is ready to win a pennant, but if you're looking to back a young team with upside, this is the one to bet on.


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The above author is a FanDuel employee and is not eligible to compete in public daily fantasy contests or place sports betting wagers on FanDuel. The advice provided by the author does not necessarily represent the views of FanDuel. Taking the author's advice will not guarantee a successful outcome. You should use your own judgment when participating in daily fantasy contests or placing sports wagers.