Best Bets to Win the 2021 World Series Entering the Stretch Run

By Dan Vasta in MLB
| August 13, 2021 1:55 pm PDT

October baseball is one of the better atmospheres among all sports. Attending postseason baseball should be on your bucket list.

The pageantry and electricity in the air are incredible. The number of critical at-bats and pitches delivered is often talked about for years.

The strategy in baseball is unlike any other sport as well, but that only increases the excitement. Who is going to end up making a deep run in the postseason?

Most of the top teams have made themselves known, and bettors will want to target them down the stretch. With that, here are the top World Series picks for the stretch run in 2021.

Los Angeles Dodgers (+330)

The Dodgers have surprisingly not moved much from their preseason price, even as they bolstered an already stacked roster.

The LA power pitching can dominate in the postseason. Max Scherzer, Clayton Kershaw, and Walker Buehler have all displayed elite ability.

Just look at the damage they’ve done come postseason play.

Stat Clayton Kershaw Walker Buehler Max Scherzer
ERA 4.19 2.35 3.38
WHIP 1.07 0.99 1.13
IP/K 189/207 61.1/83 112/137

These three are a mixture of youth and experience. To see nearly 200 innings on Kershaw has added another season of a workload into his career. That is a reason why they have kept babying him in terms of innings. He should be back shortly after Labor Day weekend, which would allow enough time to get ready for postseason play.

Scherzer won the World Series two seasons ago and has pitched well thus far in the postseason. Kershaw and Scherzer are two of the better aces we have seen over the years.

Buehler is well on his way to joining the veterans if he can finish his season off with a Top 2 finish in the NL Cy Young. The postseason experiences will come in time, albeit it may take a decade for the innings to get on par with the other duo.

The health concerns of Kershaw and Scherzer in the postseason could be an issue due to age. Still, the Dodgers will be heavy favorites to win the first three games in a series.

The offense is next level if most of the players can play up to their talents.

Cody Bellinger has recently begun to get closer to a solid everyday starter, which will be unfair for teams.

The lineup is so talented, even if Bellinger fails to return to his MVP-like form. Trea Turner and Mookie Betts at the top of the lineup is a cheat code. The former is one of the best 2021 NL MVP bets right now, too.

Nobody should be able to put the ball in play with as much skill as that tandem.

Max Muncy has arguably the best case to win the NL MVP in terms of his teammates. Muncy failed to post 100 hits in the early stages of August, but nearly half of them were for extra bases.

Catcher Will Smith and utility man Chris Taylor are tough outs in the middle of the order. Shortstop Corey Seager is starting to get fully healthy, and he has been one of the better players for his position in baseball.

These odds suggest they are the clear favorites without much pushback from other NL squads. Needless to say, that makes the Dodgers one of the best bets to win the 2021 World Series.

Houston Astros (+550)

The Astros have been there and done that in the postseason. Watching games on television (and live in-person) get delayed due to inflatable trash cans thrown on the field has been enjoyable for many. It hasn’t seemed to impact the roster much.

However, injuries have played their toll. Alex Bregman is one of their stone-cold hitters that comes up clutch in tough spots. Having him back healthy by late August and early September is vital.

The lineup has luckily been one of the most potent ones in the entire league. Their ballpark is an advantage for them, but pay close attention to the standings this summer.

Will Houston become the top seed in the American League?

If they manage to post the best record in the league, the value would be even better.

The home field will play a pivotal role in their march towards reaching the Fall Classic.

If Houston barely wins the division and does not have home-field advantage in their ALDS matchup, the Astros are not as big of a lock.

The postseason experience is among the best in all of baseball despite the lack of a true ace. Zack Greinke has pitched in plenty of electric October atmospheres, but keeping the ball in the yard has been a concern.

He hasn’t exactly been elite in the MLB playoffs. Check out his career postseason stats.

  • 4.22 ERA
  • 118 WHIP
  • 106.2/96 IP/K

Lance McCullers Jr. has been a top-of-the-rotation pitcher, but he hasn’t been a Cy Young-like candidate this season.  

The value is good, but it likely won’t alter much throughout the rest of the season. The Astros remain a viable option to win the pennant and are one of the best World Series bets due to an experienced, potent lineup.

Milwaukee Brewers (+1000)

Pitching will make you a factor in October, and the Brewers have three fantastic arms. Check out this murderer’s row of hurlers and their current ERAs.

  • Corbin Burnes – 2.39
  • Brandon Woodruff – 2.23
  • Freddy Peralta – 2.26

Just filthy.

All of these guys have all been dealing this season. Because of this elite pitching staff, Milwaukee has a chance to compete with anybody in the National League.

Craig Counsell is a tremendous manager that would be a great candidate to win the Manager of the Year, but Gabe Kapler likely wrapped that award up months ago.

The starting rotation of the Brewers will make any opposing NL lineup work to scratch a run across the board. Woodruff and Burnes have been among the top five or so aces in the league. Peralta hasn’t been able to go as deep in games this season but has still made his mark on the roster.

The Brew Crew lack a potent offense at times. Getting Christian Yelich hitting again would propel them to offensive relevance.

The addition earlier in the season for Willy Adames has been their best move all season. The shortstop has given them a much-needed boost in the power department. Trading for Eduardo Escobar from the Diamondbacks was a formidable move, but this team doesn’t need to mash them through October.

The dynamic of the bullpen and their road ahead is what makes them a great value at 10/1 odds. Avoiding the Dodgers, Giants, and Padres is a benefit. They will be playing the winner of the NL East, which has had their fair share of problems. Avoiding the top squads with the Dodgers and Giants is instrumental towards postseason success.

This team hung in there with the Dodgers in the 2018 NLCS, forcing a Game 7. Despite falling short, the Brewers are going to break through eventually. The Brewers seem to have their best squad yet, so be confident and fortunate with a team that is set up perfect for a deep run into October.

Chicago White Sox (+400)

The White Sox might be the team to beat on the American League side. They have seen a power surge since July, and the return of their young studs has helped.

Luis Robert will soon become a force at the bottom of the order, but Eloy Jimenez is from a different planet. He became the first-ever player on the White Sox to have consecutive games with five-RBI and two-HR.

The amount of pop the middle of the order possesses is impressive.

Jose Abreu is well on his way towards a 25-plus homer season with over 100 ribbies.

Yasmani Grandal should be back in September, and he has been an on-base machine (.388). He could be hitting in the middle of the order but would be the perfect two-hitter for the lineup.

Shortstop Tim Anderson has been swinging a hot bat, and he is one of the more valuable players on the roster. He leads baseball in batting average since 2019 but has come up clutch for the franchise these past few seasons. When he rakes, the team is tough to beat.

Yoan Moncada and Andrew Vaughn should continue to rake and reach base safely as number five and six hitters in the order. Those are talented pieces to put towards the middle of an order, which should benefit their pitching staff.

The top rotation in the American League might have the top two Cy Young candidates. Lance Lynn and Carlos Rodon have been consistent threats on the mound that have kept Chicago in all their games.

Tony La Russa is another reason to enjoy making this selection to win the World Series. La Russa has more winning experience than any other manager in the game these days.

Just look at where he ranks all-time.

Most MLB Wins All-Time
Manager Wins
Connie Mack 3,731
Tony La Russa 2,794
John McGraw 2,763

Several respectable managers will be there in October, but La Russa has been there and done that.

Take the White Sox value before the odds shrink once they clinch the AL Central sometime in mid to late-September. All the pieces will be available to make a deep run, and their rotation and bullpen make them tough to limit.

My Top World Series Bet: Chicago White Sox (+400)

I love all of these teams in the final stretch run of the 2021 MLB regular season. The majority of them have elite pitching, but the amount of offensive production makes these choices well-balanced. The Astros and Dodgers have experienced players, and some of them have come up clutch for years.

The Brewers are not a reach due to their fortunate path. The Brewers will have a pitching advantage when they go on the road. The Giants or Dodgers are favorable matchups due to the size of their ballparks. Milwaukee will spin some gems in those parks, and the bullpen is good enough to upset both teams.

There is value with all of these teams, but the White Sox look like the best bet.

They are currently 4/1 but could have shorter odds when they pick up momentum with the return of Yasmani Grandal. They have managed the entire season with injuries across their everyday lineup.

Their bullpen now has Ryan Tepera, Craig Kimbrel, Aaron Bummer, Michael Kopech, and Liam Hendriks. The rotation has been lights out, and this is your best bet to win the World Series entering the stretch run.

Hopefully, my best 2021 World Series bets show you which teams are worth betting on this year. Ready to place a bet? Head over to the best baseball betting apps now.

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