Chicago Cubs Are 9-to-5 Favorites to Win the 2016 World Series
The Chicago Cubs are the prohibitive favorite to win the 2016 World Series, according to the Westgate SuperBook and other leading Las Vegas sportsbooks. The Chicago Cubs have not won a World Series in 108 years, so they are expected to be a betting favorite with many gamblers.
The Westgate SuperBook has the Cubs as 9:5 favorites to win the World Series. The Cubs won 103 games this year, eventually winning the National League Central by 17.5 games.
Chicago Cubs Proposition Bet
The Cubs winning the World Series in 2016 or 2017 would be a bad option for the Westgate SuperBook. For the past two years, Las Vegas’s largest sportsbook has offered a proposition bet on whether Chicago could win the World Series either in 2016 or 2017.
In March 2016, that prop bet’s odds had been bet to +250 for the “Yes” option and -300 for the “No” option. Even with such odds, the betting public sided heavily with “Yes.”
Wagering on the Cubs
Westgate SuperBook says that three times more money has been wagered on the Cubs winning than any other franchise. That includes several 6-figure wagers.
Wynn executive director Johnny Avello said his casino’s sportsbook also had to cover a lot of Cubs bets. Avello told ESPN, “The Cubs are a pretty substantial loss for us, not just for that prop but also for the [World Series] futures. But I’m working on it. I’ve got about three weeks to play around and see what I can do.”
Jason McCormick of Station Casinos said his company’s sportsbook has taken twice as many bets on the Cubs as other franchises. McCormick said he doesn’t expect all of those tickets to be cashed, even if Chicago pulls through and wins the world title.
He said, “If they win, I bet several [bets] won’t get cashed in and will be saved as mementos on the walls of many North Side Chicago homes and Cubs fans everywhere.”
Why People Love the Chicago Cubs
The squad has many sentimental fans, even among those who never lived in Chicago. If a fan of a certain age was going to pick a favorite team besides the local franchise, it was likely to be the Cubs.
The Cubs are a fan favorite for a variety of reasons. The Cubs are one of the oldest teams, while they come from a major media market. The Cubs also were broadcast nationwide on a superstation from the 1980’s onward, so they (and the Atlanta Braves) were the only team most fans could see play every game, besides teams in fans’ local market. The late, beloved Harry Carey was on the broadcast team in those years, endearing many fans to the franchise, despite their history of failure.
Many Pick the Red Sox
Due to the betting interest of the public, wise bettors are likely to see the Cubs’ odds as inflated and look for other betting options. Bookmakers long have joked about how much money casinos have won from Cubs bettors.
Perhaps because of their long championship drought and the common perception that the Cubs franchise is cursed, a significant number of sports writers asked to pick a World Series winner chose someone other than the Cubs. Of 15 experts asked by ESPN to pick a favorite, 7 selected the Cubs, 6 selected the Boston Red Sox, 1 picked the Texas Rangers, and 1 picked the Los Angeles Dodgers.
The large number of pundits who selected the Red Sox should be an indication they are the second-leading favorite with the oddsmakers. The Boston Red Sox are given 9:2 odds
Other Betting Odds
The Chicago Cubs are 2:1 against the field at the WestGate Sportsbook. That translates to -240 in a moneyline bet. The SuperBook’s other leading favorites are the Rangers, Dodgers, Blue Jays, and Nationals.
Besides the Cubs and Red Sox, the Texas Rangers have the next-lowest odds at 5:1. Next are the Los Angeles Dodgers at 7:1. Due to the powerful bats in their lineups, the Toronto Blue Jays and Washington Nationals are each sitting at 8:1.
The San Francisco Giants and Cleveland Indians each have 12:1. Caesars Palace’s sportsbook says the Cubs winning would be good for their coffers, while the Giants winning would be the worst. The San Francisco Giants have won the World Series in the last three even-years: 2010, 2012, and 2014. They have the experience and the star power to win, but barely got into the playoffs, as they had to win a play-in game. They beat the defending NL Champion New York Mets to do so, and are now as valid of an option as any. Those looking for an outside betting option could do worse than the San Francisco Giants.