As the current favorite to win this year’s World Series, much of the drama in the race to the AL West Division title has faded with just one other team in shouting distance from the top team in the standings.

The Houston Astros own one of the top three records in the Majors and they are sitting on a comfortable lead in the division at 81-46 with 35 games left to play. That does not mean that the AL West is not part of the drama for this season’s two-team wild card race in the AL.

A One-Team Race to The Finish

The Astros’ current lead over the Oakland Athletics in the AL West is eight games their closest competitors nine games off the pace in the win column. While that lead is not insurmountable with a month left in the regular season, Houston appears to be the team to beat for the AL Pennant as a heavy -130 favorites. 

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The team’s odds to win the 2019 World Series are also the best on the board at MyBookie at +210 along with the NL’s Los Angeles Dodgers. Coming off a run all the way to the 2017 MLB title, the Astros got tripped up by Boston in last year’s ALCS in a 4-1 series loss. With most of the roster intact from last season’s 103-win effort, Houston added starter Zack Greinke at the MLB trade deadline to firm up its rotation.

The Astros boast the third-best team ERA in the AL at 3.74 and they back it up with a powerful lineup that is averaging 5.5 runs a game. While they still might not get past the New York Yankees in the AL or possibly the Dodgers in the 2019 Fall Classic, this team is winning the AL West as a ridiculous -15000 favorite at MyBookie.

One to Watch in The AL Wild Card Race

Oakland has the next-best odds to win the AL West at +1600, but the A’s are focused on holding on to one of the two wild-card spots with a projected 46.9 percent chance to make the playoffs. They are playing well in August with seven wins in their last 10 games as part of an overall record of 72-53. This has the A’s tied with Tampa Bay for that final wild-card spot. Cleveland holds the top spot in those standings at 74-52 through 126 games played.

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With an average of 5.0 runs per game, Oakland’s lineup is halfway down the list in the AL in scoring. It moves up to fourth on the list in pitching just behind Houston with a 4.02 staff ERA. While this should be good enough to stay in the wild card race right up until the final round of regular-season games, it is not enough to close the gap with the Astros over the next 36 games.

The Rest Riding Out the String

The best of the rest in the AL West is the Texas Rangers at 62-65 overall. They are 19 games back in the division standings and 11 games off the pace in the AL wild-card race. Also, 19 games off the pace are the Los Angeles Angels at 63-66. The betting odds for both of these teams in the division race have ballooned to +40000 with legitimate goals of just finishing above .500.

It was over for Seattle by late spring with a team that has won just 54 of its first 127 games. MyBookie still has the Mariners on the Al

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