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MLB Picks: Team Win Totals 2020 Season

MLB Picks: Team Win Totals 2020 Season

We’re less than a day away from what could be the wildest MLB season ever. The regular season has been shortened, schedules regionalized, extra innings rules modified, and designated hitters added to the National League.

We usually approach MLB win totals through the lens of a 162-game season. This year, we have just 60 games on tap. Variance will be high and margins for error slim. Scared money doesn’t make money, though. Let’s embrace the weirdness and look at win totals for all 30 major league teams.

NOTE:  A number of these totals vary between DraftKings and PointsBet. Be sure to find the best line for your bet! An extra game +/- might be the difference.

2020 MLB Team Total Wins

Baltimore Orioles: UNDER 20.5

The Orioles were horrible in 2019 and is now (somehow) even worse on paper after losing Trey Mancini, Jonathan Villar and Dylan Bundy during the offseason. They’ll now have to face the AL East 40 times and the incredibly strong NL east 20 times. Baltimore won exactly 33% of their games last season (54) and I think they do the same or worse this year.

Boston Red Sox: UNDER 30.5

The Red Sox lost Chris Sale to injury, Alex Cora to suspension, and traded away Mookie Betts and David Price. They didn’t acquire replacements – how could you when the talent lost is of this caliber? – and didn’t seem particularly interested in doing so, either. They’ll now face the gauntlet of 60 games between the AL East and NL East. I don’t see how they clear .500.

Chicago White Sox: OVER 31.5

GM Rick Hahn already had assembled an elite core of young talent before he added Edwin Encarnacion, Dallas Keuchel and Yasmani Grandal this offseason. Grandal’s addition is particularly significant, as his defensive and mentoring capabilities will do wonders for the club’s youthful staff. This all comes before we mention uber-prospect Luis Robert’s likely contributions. It might be close, but Chicago should be able to carve out enough wins across the AL and NL Central to clear 31.5 wins.

Cincinnati Reds: OVER 31.5

What a difference a year makes. Luis Castillo, Sonny Gray, Trevor Bauer, Wade Miley and Anthony DeSclafani make up one of the best top-to-bottom rotations in baseball. Mike Moustakas should rake in the Great American Small-park, and the universal DH will allow the team to regularly play Nick Castellanos, Aristides Aquino, Shogo Akiyama and Nick Senzel, despite not having enough outfield positions to go around. This is a solid club that will tally at least 32 wins.

Los Angeles Dodgers: OVER 37.5

This one is easy. The Dodgers are the best team in baseball. To hit 37.5 wins, they’d need a 62.5% winning percentage. Over the course of a 162-game season, a 62.5% winning percentage would result in 101 wins. I’d hammer that over. Facing the AL West 20 times isn’t the friendliest draw, so this might be tight, but it should hit.

Minnesota Twins: OVER 34.5

This is the same rationale as the Dodgers pick above, only I have even more confidence with this selection. 34.5 wins over a 60-game season translates to 93 wins in a normal season. This is an elite club in a weak division. Hammer the over here.

San Diego Padres: OVER 30.5

I could be walking into a trap here, but the Padres feel like a .500 or better team. Fernando Tatis Jr., Manny Machado and Tommy Pham are strong anchors in the lineup, and Wil Myers slotting into the DH adds additional pop. The bullpen is elite. Chris Paddack is a dark horse candidate for Cy Young, but the rest of the rotation is riddled with uncertainties. Starting pitching might ultimately sink San Diego’s Wild Card ambitions, but I think there’s enough pieces here to get to 31 wins.

Tampa Bay Rays: OVER 33.5

This simply is too low. 33.5 wins translates to 90 wins over a regular season. The NL East is loaded, but the AL East is down. Tampa Bay has one of the best pitching staffs in baseball and shouldn’t have problems racking up 34 victories in 2020.

Quick Picks

Atlanta Braves: OVER 33.5 (-110 at DraftKings)
Chicago Cubs: UNDER 32.5 (-115 at DraftKings)
Cleveland Indians: OVER 32.5 (-110 at PointsBet)
Colorado Rockies: UNDER 26.5 (-115 at PointsBet)
Detroit Tigers: OVER 21.5 (-121 at DraftKings)
Kansas City Royals: UNDER 25 (-110 at PointsBet)
Miami Marlins: UNDER 24.5 (-124 at DraftKings)
New York Yankees: UNDER 37.5 (-106 at DraftKings)
Oakland Athletics: OVER 33.5 (-112 at DraftKings)
Pittsburgh Pirates: UNDER 25.5 (-125 at PointsBet)
San Francisco: UNDER 25.5 (-165 at DraftKings)
Seattle Mariners: UNDER 24.5 (-118 at DraftKings)
Washington Nationals: OVER 32 (-110 at PointsBet)

Coin Flips

NOTE: I do NOT see a significant edge in these picks. The below are my selections if I had to pick one way or the other, and are provided mainly so I touch on all 30 teams. Perform your own research for each!

Arizona Diamondbacks: OVER 31.5
Houston Astros: OVER 35.5
Los Angeles Angels: OVER 30.5
Milwaukee Brewers: UNDER 30.5
New York Mets: OVER 32.5
Philadelphia Phillies: OVER 31.5
St. Louis Cardinals: OVER 32.5
Texas Rangers: UNDER 28.5


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