The National League Pennant chase is officially on! With the All-Star Break festivities now in the rearview mirror, it is time to find out who has the best odds of representing the National League in the Fall Classic later this October. Let’s check out our MLB odds series where our 2023 National League Winner prediction and pick will be revealed.
A year ago, it was the Philadelphia Phillies that stormed their way through the playoff gauntlet by downing the St. Louis Cardinals in two games in the NL Wild Card, the defending champion Atlanta Braves in the NLDS, and finally the San Diego Padres en route to the World Series before losing to the Houston Astros in six games. Fast forward to 2023, and there are yet again plenty of familiar and new face contenders that could find themselves being on top of the National League when it is all said and done.
Here are the MLB odds, courtesy of FanDuel.
2023 MLB Odds: National League Winner
Atlanta Braves: +145
Los Angeles Dodgers: +210
Arizona Diamondbacks: +1200
Philadelphia Phillies: +1200
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Why The Braves Could Win the NL
Only two years removed from winning their first World Championship since the 1995 title, Atlanta is one of the rare teams in the league that is just as dangerous within the batter’s box and pitching mound. Entering the second half of the season with baseball’s best record at 60-29, Atlanta strives themselves on crushing balls into the bleachers while striking out batters with ease thanks to a formidable starting pitching staff. Most importantly, the Braves could win the National League thanks to a clean bill of health for some of their top playmakers out on the diamond. Did I mention that they are breaking records too? Their 169 home runs are the most in MLB History at the All-Star Break and are on pace for a franchise-best 109 wins on the season.
Why The Dodgers Could Win the NL
For the better part of the last decade, the Los Angeles Dodgers have been the prime example of success in the National League. Despite only having one World Series title to show for coming in the 2020 COVID-shortened season, the Dodgers still have not missed a beat. When taking a closer look, it was LA that finished the first half of the season strongly and currently sits on top of the NL West with the Arizona Diamondbacks at 51-38 overall.
Whether it’s the 35-year-old designated hitter in J.D. Martinez hitting 22 home runs on the season or the promising centerfielder in James Outman putting on a show, the Dodgers truly never stop reloading in their clubhouse. Certainly, their offense has been the bread and butter of the team and while the pitching staff has struggled at times, an uptick in production from the mound could be just what the doctor ordered en route to yet another NL Pennant.
Why the Diamondbacks Could Win the NL
One of the more pleasant surprises in all of baseball this season, the Diamondbacks are here to prove that they belong and that they’re not going anywhere. After the 2022 baseball season saw Arizona compile an underwhelming 74-88 record, Arizona is already 52-39 en route to possessing one of the more prolific offenses in the majors. Surely, their 2-5 mark in the last seven games before the All-Star Break most likely left a sour taste in their mouth, but Arizona should be expected to have a stellar second half of the season.
If there is one name on this roster that can carry this club to an NL Pennant, look no further than starting ace Zac Gallen. Not only did Gallen start in the All-Star Game for the National League, but he is certainly the man for the job when games start becoming more meaningful down the stretch and in the coming months.
Why the Phillies Could Win the NL
While there happens to be a couple of other teams throughout the NL with better records than the Phillies, it only makes sense that the defending NL Champions have the fourth-best odds to take home the pennant in back-to-back years with their 48-41 record overall. To be fair, the Phillies may actually be a better squad than what their record actually suggests, as a slew of injuries has prevented them to play at full strength.
Nevertheless, the Phillies have weathered the storm to perfection as they are only getting only more healthy daily. The one thing that the Phillies need to sort out in order to stand alone on top of the National League is to figure out an offense that is ranked only ninth in the NL in runs scored. Getting Trea Turner back on track and re-discovering Bryce Harper’s power at the plate could be exactly what the ‘Phils need to win two straight pennants.
Final 2023 National League Winner Prediction & Pick
Buckle up ladies and gentlemen, this National League race is going to come down to the wire! However, it is hard to ignore the historic tear that the Atlanta Braves are currently on. Take the Braves and spend no time looking back.
Final 2023 National League Winner Prediction & Pick: Atlanta Braves +145
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