2020 MLB Win Total Odds: Astros Listed with 3rd-Highest Projection Amid Scandal
Featured Columnist January 14, 2020 Comments Comment Bubble Icon
Amid the fallout from the Houston Astros sign-stealing scandal, oddsmakers remain high on the club.
At the Caesars Palace sportsbook the Astros boast an over/under of 97 for their projected win total in 2020. That’s second-best in the American League behind the New York Yankees (101) and third-best in MLB after the Los Angeles Dodgers (99).
2020 MLB Over/Unders
MLB suspended Astros manager AJ Hinch and general manager Jeff Luhnow for one year, fined the club $5 million and took away first- and second-round picks in 2020 and 2021 after The Athletic’s Ken Rosenthal and Evan Drellich reported Houston had set up a system by which it attempted to steal signs from the opposing catcher.
Astros owner Jim Crane went a step further, firing Hinch and Luhnow.
#Astros press conference. https://t.co/grLXtZvPDF
MLB.com’s Mark Feinsand reported Joe Espada will become the team’s interim manager.
All of the Astros players avoided punishments, but losing Hinch could cause the team to take a step backward.
The same could prove true of the Boston Red Sox. Manager Alex Cora was Houston’s bench coach in 2017, and Sports Illustrated‘s Tom Verducci reported the league is investigating claims Boston stole signs in 2018.
ESPN’s Jeff Passan reported Cora is likely to receive a “harsh” suspension.
Between the questions around Cora’s status and the team’s desire to trim payroll, going with the under on the Red Sox’s 89 projected wins might be a smart bet.
Some might think the defending champion Washington Nationals aren’t getting enough respect. Their 89.5 projected victories put them second in the National League East after the Atlanta Braves (92).
The Nationals re-signed Stephen Strasburg but lost Anthony Rendon, who signed with the Los Angeles Angels. It’s also easy to forget Washington (93 wins) finished four games back of the Braves (97 wins) in the division en route to their first title.