The Phillies’ acquisition of catcher J.T. Realmuto last week is an interesting case study in the sports betting world.
Obviously a catcher is not going to have the same amount of impact on futures odds as a top of the line pitcher or a prized free agent like a Bryce Harper or Manny Machado. But Vegas and the sportsbooks clearly recognize how important the catcher position is to a baseball team.
Realmuto gives the Phillies arguably the best hitting catcher in the game and he also calls a tremendous game behind the plate. In other words, he could raise the team’s overall OPS as well as the team’s overall ERA with the way he handles the pitching staff.
In addition, many are speculating that Realmuto is something of a lure to bait Harper into finally putting pen to paper in Philadelphia. Harper reportedly wants protection in the lineup and Realmuto could certainly offer that with his bat as he belted 21 home runs last season. That home run total will almost certainly go up in 2019 too, as Citizens Bank Park is a much more hitter-friendly locale than Marlins Park.
DraftKings sportsbook bumped the Phillies’ World Series futures odds up to +1200. They are now tied with the Chicago Cubs as the team with the second best odds in the National League. The defending NL Champion Dodgers have the top odds at DK at +750.
Now is still a good time to get in on the Phillies action as these odds will sky-rocket if the Phils finally land Harper or Machado in the coming days.
Here are the latest World Series Futures odds based on a combination of several Philadelphia sportsbooks as of Thursday night.
2019 World Series odds
New York Yankees 11/2
Boston Red Sox 7/1
Houston Astros 7/1
Los Angeles Dodgers 8/1
Philadelphia Phillies 12/1
Chicago Cubs 12/1
Cleveland Indians 12/1
Atlanta Braves 14/1
St. Louis Cardinals 14/1
Washington Nationals 15/1
Milwaukee Brewers 20/1
New York Mets 25/1