The Daily Sweat: The World Series is here and the Astros are the favorite

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The World Series is finally here.

The MLB playoffs have been thrilling so far, and the last two teams standing are the Houston Astros and Atlanta Braves. The Astros, of course, controversially won the World Series in 2017 and the AL pennant in 2019. The Braves, meanwhile, are in the World Series for the first time since 1999 despite winning 10 NL East titles in the interim.

In the ALCS, the Astros fell behind the Boston Red Sox 2-1, but rallied with three straight wins to get back to the World Series. The Braves were able to upset the defending World Series champion Los Angeles Dodgers in six games.

Entering the series, the Astros are currently -145 favorites at BetMGM with the Braves the underdogs at +120. For Game 1 specifically, the home Astros are -130 favorites with the Braves listed at +115. According to BetMGM, 54% of the bets are on the Braves but 65% of the money is on the Astros. 

And if you’re interested in the run line, the Astros -1.5 comes with +155 juice. The Braves at +1.5 runs has -190 odds. The total is set at 8.5 runs with 57% of the bets and 67% of the money on the over. 

On Tuesday night, the Braves are starting veteran Charlie Morton for his fourth postseason start. In 14.1 playoff innings, Morton has allowed 10 hits, six earned runs and has a 3.77 ERA. The Astros will counter with 23-year-old lefty Framber Valdez. Valdez struggled in his first two playoff starts but is coming off an eight-inning, one-run gem in his last outing, Houston’s 9-1 Game 5 win in Boston.

Houston Astros Jose Altuve, (27) smiles at teammate Carlos Correa as they take the field for the ninth inning of Game 5 of the American League Championship Series against the Boston Red Sox Wednesday, Oct. 20, 2021, at Fenway Park in Boston. (AP Photo/Winslow Townson)
Houston Astros Jose Altuve, (27) smiles at teammate Carlos Correa as they take the field for the ninth inning of Game 5 of the American League Championship Series against the Boston Red Sox Wednesday, Oct. 20, 2021, at Fenway Park in Boston. (AP Photo/Winslow Townson)

What about World Series MVP odds?

Astros position players make up six of the top players in the World Series MVP odds list at BetMGM.

Astros second baseman Jose Altuve leads the pack of World Series MVP candidates with +900 odds. Michael Brantley and Yordan Alvarez are next at +1000 with third baseman Alex Bregman at +1100, shortstop Carlos Correa at +1200 and outfielder Kyle Tucker at +1400.

The two Braves players with the best odds are veteran first baseman Freddie Freeman at +1100 and the red-hot Eddie Rosario at +1400.

Rosario enters World Series play with 18 hits in 38 postseason at-bats, including three home runs. On the other side, Alvarez has been Houston’s most prolific postseason hitter with 15 hits in 34 at-bats, including four doubles, a triple and two homers. But there’s the issue of the designated hitter. Alvarez, the ALCS MVP, has played the field sparingly during the 2021 season but will almost certainly be forced to head out to the outfield when the series shifts to Atlanta. That’s something to consider if you’re looking to bet Alvarez for World Series MVP.

World Series MVP odds at BetMGM

  • Jose Altuve: +900

  • Michael Brantley: +1000

  • Yordan Alvarez: +1000

  • Alex Bregman: +1100

  • Freddie Freeman: +1100

  • Carlos Correa: +1200

  • Kyle Tucker: +1400

  • Eddie Rosario: +1400

  • Max Fried: +1600

  • Austin Riley: +1600

  • Charlie Morton: +2000

  • Framber Valdez: +2000

  • Yuli Gurriel: +2500

  • Joc Pederson: +2500

  • Luis Garcia: +2500

  • Ozzie Albies: +3000

  • Adam Duvall: +3000

  • Tyler Matzek: +3000

  • Jorge Soler: +3500

  • Dansby Swanson: +4000

What else is there to bet on Tuesday night?

Both the NBA and NHL have plenty of action on Tuesday night. There are five NBA games and seven in the NHL.

One of the more intriguing NBA games on the slate is the Philadelphia 76ers at New York Knicks. Both teams are off to 2-1 starts, though the Knicks are coming off a home loss to the Orlando Magic on Sunday night. The Sixers blew a lead at home to the Brooklyn Nets last Friday but rebounded by easily beating the Oklahoma City Thunder on Sunday night.

In Tuesday night’s showdown at Madison Square Garden, the Knicks are 1.5-point favorites and -120 on the moneyline. You can also get the Sixers at +100 on the moneyline and the total is set at 218. While the Ben Simmons saga in Philly continues, Sixers star Joel Embiid is listed as questionable with knee soreness.

Elsewhere, LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers are 4.5-point road favorites over the San Antonio Spurs. The Lakers dropped their first two games of the year but finally got a win on Sunday night when they bested the Memphis Grizzlies, 121-118. The Lakers have yet to cover the spread this season.

Philadelphia 76ers' Joel Embiid plays during an NBA basketball game, Friday, Oct. 22, 2021, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
Philadelphia 76ers' Joel Embiid plays during an NBA basketball game, Friday, Oct. 22, 2021, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)

Who cashed tickets on Monday night?

If you had the under in Monday night’s New Orleans Saints vs. Seattle Seahawks game you never even broke a sweat.

With Russell Wilson still sidelined for Seattle, the Saints were 5.5-point road favorites and the total closed at 42. Other than an early 84-yard touchdown from Geno Smith to DK Metcalf, there wasn’t a whole lot of excitement in this one. That play gave the Seahawks an early 7-0 lead, but it would end up accounting for 38% of their total offense in a 13-10 loss.

Seahawks kicker Jason Myers missed two field goals in the loss, one from 44 midway through the third and another from 53 that would have given his team a 13-10 lead with 6:49 to play. That miss ended up giving the Saints the field position they needed to allow Brian Johnson to kick the 33-yard game-winner with 1:56 to play.

Still, it was enough of a performance from the Seahawks to cover the spread. On top of that, Smith is now 7-0 ATS in his last seven starts, dating back to 2014.

In the NBA there were two road underdogs who won outright. 

The New Orleans Pelicans were 5.5-point dogs against the Minnesota Timberwolves and won 107-98 behind 22 points and 23 rebounds from Jonas Valanciunas. The biggest upset came in Denver where the Cleveland Cavaliers knocked off the Denver Nuggets 99-87 as 9.5-point underdogs. Kevin Love had 22 points off the bench in the Cavs’ win.

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