Can you predict the top contenders of the 2024 World Series?Sports and Crypto Betting Insights - Sportsbet Blog

Contenders at the plate: The best MLB teams in 2024

Contenders at the plate: The best MLB teams in 2024

Step up and prepare for high-level professional baseball matches at the Major League Baseball (MLB). Find fierce competition and heart-pounding games as talented teams compete against each other on the field.

As the season kicks off on a high, teams like the Los Angeles Dodgers and New York Yankees are eagerly vying for a season-winning run. Texas Rangers are also on high gear as they set to defend their championship title.

From established powerhouses to up-and-coming challengers, here are early season predictions of the best teams to watch out for in the 2024 MLB season:

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American League teams

The MLB used to be divided into two separate leagues: the American League (AL) and the National League (NL). In 1903, these leagues cemented their cooperation with the National Agreement, creating the MLB. Although they are technically one league now, the AL and NL continue to exist as distinct entities within the MLB for tradition and scheduling purposes.

Here are some of the frontrunning teams in the AL:

New York Yankees

A team that has been a consistent force to be reckoned with throughout the years are the New York Yankees. They made a name for themselves as one of the most skilled teams with their power-hitting and strong pitching.

Although the Yankees lost to the Cleveland Guardians in one of their early games of the season, they remain one of the competition's frontrunners. With a long season ahead, a single loss does not define their potential for success.

Notable players

One player in the Yankees that has made a huge impact on the team is Aaron Judge. He is a five-time MLB All-Star who plays outfield. Anthony Volpe also won the American League Gold Glove during his rookie year in 2023. Volpe's improved swing path and consistent hard contact have helped with his success.

Texas Rangers

Another AL team to look out for is the defending champions of the 2024 MLB season. Considering their impressive performance in 2023, the Texas Rangers are one of the favourites to win this season as well. The main driving force behind their success is their playstyle, which focuses on offence.

A huge factor that helped with the Texas Rangers’ success is Bruce Bochy, the team’s manager who joined the squad in 2023. Bochy helped shape the team into the defending champions of this season.

They have established a solid system and tactics, using Bochy's championship and veteran experience. With these changes, the team transitioned from finishing 14 games under .500 in 2022 to one of the best MLB teams.

Notable players

Some of the star players in the Texas Rangers include Adolis García, Nathaniel Lowe, and Jonah Heim. They consistently play at the highest level, which has helped the team achieve overall success.

Although the Rangers faced an early setback with the injuries of key players like Josh Jung, the reigning champs have shown resilience. This is by acquiring the skills of players like Justin Foscue and Davis Wendzel to hold down the fort.

Baltimore Orioles

Although they aren’t traditionally considered a top team in the MLB, keep an eye out for the Baltimore Orioles this season. Their focus is on stability and the use of strong tactics under manager Brandon Hyde. Relying on a mix of emerging talent and established players, the Orioles have the tools to surprise opponents and make a run for the series title.

Notable players

One of the factors that can affect the team’s chances of winning this season is Kyle Bradish's return. He had a fantastic season in 2023 with a 2.83 ERA in 30 starts. If Bradish maintains his form, he could form a formidable one-two punch alongside Corbin Burnes, another solid pitcher of the team.

The Orioles also have Jackson Holliday, one of the top prospects in baseball. Although the Orioles may have a different level of roster depth or star power than some other teams, they have the chance to develop a competitive playstyle. This can earn them the 2024 World Series win.

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National League teams

Historically, the American League has seen more success in the World Series compared to the National League. However, this does not mean that the NL has less talented teams.

Here are some of the frontrunning teams in the NL:

Los Angeles Dodgers

The Los Angeles Dodgers are best known for their playstyle and talented rosters. Evident with their recent matches, the team’s overall playstyle has also helped them win. Their playstyle includes a combination of power-hitting and solid defence.

They showed this during their recent game against the San Diego Padres in a 5-2 victory. It revealed the team's commitment to excellence and overcoming tough opponents.

Notable players

One of the players to look out for from the LA Dodgers is Yoshinobu Yamamoto. Best known for his pitching skills on the field, he got the largest contract ever during the offseason.

Aside from Yamamoto, there is also Tyler Glasnow. Despite his history of injuries, he drew the Dodger’s first start of the season. Many team evaluators also believe that Glasnow is reaching his full potential in the big leagues.

Finally, Shohei Ohtani is another Dodgers’ star player that is expected to deliver for the team this season. The designated hitter hit his 175th home run last April 12, which is the record for the highest home run by a Japanese born player in the MLB (tied with Hideki Matsui).

San Diego Padres

Despite setbacks in recent years, the San Diego Padres are one of the teams to look out for in the 2024 MLB season. Even though the team lost key players like Juan Soto, Blake Snell, and Josh Hader, the Padres managed to maintain a competitive roster.

Under the guidance of their manager, Mike Shildt, the Padres developed a dynamic play style. It is characterised by aggressive baserunning, power-hitting, and strong defensive play. This style of play, combined with the team's remaining high-end talent, provides them with a solid foundation to compete for a wild-card spot.

Notable players

One of the most notable moves that strengthen the team’s roster is the addition of Dylan Cease. Best known as the ace from the Chicago White Sox, he bolsters the Padres' pitching staff. With a solid pitching corps, the Padres have the potential to dominate on the mound and keep opponents at bay.

Atlanta Braves

With 104 wins in the 2023 season, the Atlanta Braves are another NL team to watch out for this season. During the offseason, the Braves managed to maintain their core players while making strategic additions.

Motivation plays a crucial role for the Braves as they seek to avenge their previous season's ending. Their shortcomings fuel their drive to win. This also gives extra incentive for the players to perform at their best.

While competition in the National League has intensified, the Braves stand out as a team that is likely to contend for the World Series title.

Notable players

The biggest move for the Braves this season is acquiring Chris Sale and Reynaldo López who will join the backend of the rotation. This strengthens their already formidable pitching staff, adding versatility to the roster. The Braves are also betting on the promising talent of Jarred Kelenic, the team’s premier outfielder.

MLB 2024 season: Factors to take note of in the current campaign

The early performance of each team in the current campaign can potentially make or break their journey to the World Series. For early predictions on the MLB games, here are the player updates you can take note of before you place your bets:

Noteworthy transfers, injuries, and retirements

  • Josh Jung of the Texas Rangers suffered an injured wrist, which could have potentially affected the team’s performance.

  • Spencer Strider is going to miss the whole season as he underwent elbow surgery.

  • A notable retirement during the 2023/24 offseason was Josh Donaldson, who played for the New York Yankees.

  • Juan Soto was one of the star players of the San Diego Padres. However, he was acquired by the New York Yankees during the offseason.

New players to keep an eye out for

  • Spencer Arrighetti of the Houston Astros is one of the highly regarded prospects who made his debut this season. Expect to see him make plays for the team.

  • Wyatt Langford debuted in the MLB with the Texas Rangers. He was picked fourth overall considering his great track record in the Majors.

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Raphael Latorre16 Apr 2024

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