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The NL Central was arguably the most competitive division in the MLB last season, with four-of-five teams hitting at least 82 wins. With no other division in baseball having four teams above .500, it is particularly difficult to project this one.
The Brewers came on strong at the end of 2018, with nine wins in their final 10 games to steal the division crown away from the Cubs. Despite a 96-win season last year, the defending NL Central champs have the third-best odds to win it again at +230, according to FanDuel Sportsbook.
The Cubs check in as the favorite, as they sit at +180 to take down the division title. The Cardinals, who won 88 games last year, are third at +210.
Despite an 82-win season out of the Pirates in 2018, oddsmakers have them tied with the Reds for the longest odds to win the division at +1200.
As it is always good to get differing opinions before placing a wager, here's how some experts think the NL Central will play out in 2019.
NL Central Expert Predictions
The folks at Cappers Picks think that oddsmakers have done a reasonable job projecting the division. While the Cubs' pitching rotation is another year older, they still managed to retain their young core. If Yu Darvish can return to his former glory, the Cappers Picks crew thinks they'll be able to win the title.
Tommy Stokke, of Bet Chicago, gives the Brewers the benefit of the doubt. They don't have the most talented pitching rotation, but he thinks they are incredibly deep and that matters for a 162-game season. Stokke also thinks that the Cubs won 95 games last year for a reason, and their team looks the exact same. He thinks they can reach their ceiling if both Darvish and Kris Bryant prove to be fully healthy.
Tom Oldfield, of bettingdotcom, thinks that this division is wide open. If the Cubs fully commit to their "win-now" mentality, he thinks they'll be the team to watch out for. As it stands right now, Oldfield thinks the best odds lie with the Brewers at around 3/1.
The Action Network
Mark Gallant, of The Action Network, thinks the Brewers will experience a swift fall from grace. He predicts the 2018 NL Central champs to have a losing record in 2019. Gallant expects the 2018 NL MVP, Christian Yelich, will regress. While Yelich is off to a great start this season, batting .375 with four homers, Gallant doesn't think he'll repeat his 2018 MVP performance.
The experts are pretty split on the NL Central. Two think the Cubs have a reasonable chance at winning the division while two think the Brewers are a good value as well. One expert is predicting a sub-.500 season out of Milwaukee, so this division is truly up for grabs.
Taylor Smith is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Taylor also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username jtsmittyyy. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.