Pitchers and catchers have started to report, meaning a new season is just around the corner. That also means that baseball betting is back, as MLB win totals have begun trickling in.
The plan is to go back to a full 162-game season this year, so odds for MLB Over/Under win totals will look normal again.
We'll take a look at the MLB win totals projections of all 30 teams for the 2021 season and make our best picks.
Teams projected for most wins in 2021
The Los Angeles Dodgers are projected to have the most wins in baseball this season at 102.5. After winning the 2020 World Series and signing prized free agent starter Trevor Bauer, this should come as no surprise.
The New York Yankees, at 95.5 wins, and the San Diego Padres (94.5) round out the Top-3 projected MLB 2021 win totals. New York is always a threat out of the American League, while the Padres made the playoffs last year for the first time since 2006 and added to an already talented team during a busy offseason.
Teams projected for fewest wins in 2021
The Pittsburgh Pirates are projected to have the fewest victories at 58.5, followed by a two-way tie between the Colorado Rockies and Baltimore Orioles at 64.5. They're the only teams with their MLB Over/Under win totals coming in under 65.
Pittsburgh and Baltimore are going through difficult rebuilds, while Colorado traded franchise cornerstone Nolan Arenado to the St. Louis Cardinals during the offseason.
2021 MLB Over/Under win totals
|Team||2021 Projected Win Total (As of February 23)|
|Boston Red Sox||80.5|
|Chicago White Sox||91.5|
|Kansas City Royals||72.5|
|Los Angeles Angels||83.5|
|Los Angeles Dodgers||102.5|
|New York Mets||90.5|
|New York Yankees||95.5|
|San Diego Padres||94.5|
|San Francisco Giants||75.5|
|St. Louis Cardinals||86.5|
|Tampa Bay Rays||85.5|
|Toronto Blue Jays||86.5|
Odds courtesy of DraftKings.
2021 MLB Win Totals Picks
Best NL Win Total Over Bet – Washington Nationals 84.5
It feels like the Nationals are getting a little overlooked with this number. Yes, their World Series title defense was a little underwhelming, winning just 26 games in the pandemic-shortened season, but that's hardly enough time to judge a team that had won it all the year before.
On top of that, the Nats did some great work this offseason. They added super-underrated first baseman Josh Bell, as well as Kyle Schwarber, to give a lineup that ranked fourth in batting average - and already included Juan Soto and Trae Turner - some added pop.
But the real strength of this team lies in the pitching staff. They bolstered a rotation, that features Max Scherzer, Stephen Strasburg, and Patrick Corbin, with the addition of Jon Lester. Now, Lester may not be the pitcher he once was, but pitching him fourth is a real luxury. And in the bullpen, they signed Brad Hand to replace Sean Doolittle. The NL East will be a competitive division in 2021, but the Nats have a chance to return to World Series contention either way.
Best NL Win Total Under Bet – Colorado Rockies 64.5
It's never a good sign when an owner considers firing himself after making a trade. But that’s what Dick Monfort said, and probably should have done after the return on the Arenado trade. (Rockies fans would rejoice, I'm sure of it).
But back down to the brass tacks. Here are the MLB teams that had a worse run differential than the Rockies' -78 in 2020: the Pirates and Texas Rangers. They brought in no one to help with the loss of Arenado on offense or to fix a staff that ranked second-to-last in team ERA.
It might not be long before the likes of Trevor Story and German Marquez are out the door, too. This organization just seems to have no plan, even when it comes to a rebuild. To top it all off, they have a season full of playing the stacked Dodgers and Padres. Oh, and did we mention that the Rockies are paying Arenado to play for the Cardinals this year? Woof. It will be a down year up in the Rockies.
Best AL Win Total Over Bet – New York Yankees 95.5
The Yankees have the highest regular-season win total in the AL, were a little rocky at times last season, and they still seem like the safest Over bet. The Bronx Bombers lived up to their name by once again leading the Junior Circuit in scoring. When healthy, this is the most dangerous lineup in the Big Leagues. Re-signing DJ LeMahieu was a big deal, but that “when healthy” label is the most important factor here.
There are question marks surrounding the rotation, but the Yanks got creative this offseason. Jameson Taillon is an underrated pickup, while Corey Kluber could be a huge steal. They are also expecting Luis Severino back at some point this season, and New York has this Gerrit Cole guy who is supposed to be pretty good. The rotation is also backed by one of the best bullpens in baseball. The Yankees' success will be measured in October, but I think they at least get to the postseason with relative ease.
Best AL Win Total Under Bet – Detroit Tigers 68.5
The Detroit Tigers surprised some people in 2020, winning 23 games. That’s how low expectations were. And for some reason, oddsmakers believe the Tigers will make another jump in 2021. But aside from hiring the guy who managed the Houston Cheaters, there haven’t been enough substantial changes to the Tigers’ roster.
A roster that had the second-worst run differential in the AL and was on pace for 64 wins in a 162-game season, where the pitching staff was the biggest problem, ranking dead last in team ERA. Now, there are some prospects that are showing some potential and they have brought in a couple of veteran guys to support the ageless-wonder Miguel Cabrera, but it’s just hard to see a four-game improvement with this team.
When Vegas releases MLB win totals
Traditionally, sportsbooks open MLB regular-season win totals odds a few weeks before teams report to Spring Training facilities in February, once free agency has settled and we have a good idea of what rosters will look like. But some shops are offering these wagers earlier and earlier in the new year.
How to bet MLB season win totals
Season win totals are pretty straightforward: you're betting on how many wins a team will have that regular season.
Oddsmakers set a projected number of wins for each team - based on past success, returning personnel and strength of schedule - and offer Over/Under betting options, allowing you to wager on if a team will exceed that win total (Over) or fall short of it (Under). This total does not include postseason games.
On top of the season win total itself, oddsmakers set an assigned cost to the Over and Under bets – also known as vig or juice – depending on the implied probability of the team winning more or less than that total.
Last year, for example, oddsmakers calculated the Yankees to win 37 games but felt like there was a better chance of them winning 38 games rather than 36. Therefore, they set the Yanks with a win total of 37 but increased the vig on the OVER to -130 (bet $1.30 to win $1) and decreased the vig on the UNDER to +110 (win $1.10 for every $1 bet).
- OVER 37 WINS (-130)
- UNDER 37 WINS (+110)
Season win totals are considered futures betting odds and sportsbooks will take action on season win totals from the time they post the odds until the start of the season. Futures bets are then graded at the end of the season when all results are final.
Where can I bet on MLB win totals?
You can bet on MLB win totals odds at every online and casino sportsbook. Find ratings and reviews for the best sportsbooks for betting on baseball win totals in your area.