2020 AL playoffs betting is just around the corner, as the2020 MLB playoffs get started on Tuesday. The Wild Card round features eight teams in a best-of-three series format. The team with the best record will host each game, and there will be no off-days for travel between each series.

Although the rosters are not yet officially set and rotations have not been announced, here’s a look at the first-round matchups from a betting perspective.

2020 AL PLAYOFFS BETTING – No. 1 Tampa Bay Rays (-210) vs. No. 8 Toronto Blue Jays (+170)

Game 1 Tuesday, September 29 – 5:00 PM Eastern on TBS
Game 2 Wednesday, September 30 – 4:00 PM Eastern on TBS
Game 3 (if necessary) Thursday, October 1 – TBD

The Rays-Blue Jays series is the only one in the first round where the teams have played in 2020. Tampa Bay won the season series 6-4. The AL East Champions went 40-20 overall with a 20-9 record at home.

The top-seeded Rays have won five games in a row and will likely send RHP Tyler Glasnow (5-1, 4.08) to the mound in Game 1 and RHP Blake Snell (4-2, 3.24) to toe the rubber in Game 2.

Toronto went 32-28 on the season as their young team scored 302 runs, third-most in the AL LHP Hyun-Jin Ryu (5-3, 2.69) has postseason experience with the L.A. Dodgers, and his leadership in Game 1 will be critical to the Blue Jays’ success. OF Teoscar Hernandez, Randal Grichuk, and Lourdes Gurriel Jr. all hit 11 or more home runs this season.

PICK: Rays in 2

2020 AL PLAYOFFS BETTING – No. 2 Oakland Athletics (-135) vs. No. 7 Chicago White Sox (+110)

Game 1 Tuesday, September 29 – 3:00 PM Eastern on ESPN
Game 2 Wednesday, September 30 – 3:00 PM Eastern on ESPN
Game 3 (if necessary) Thursday, October 1 – TBD

Oakland won the AL West with a 36-34 record, including a 22-10 home mark. RHP Chris Bassitt (5-2, 2.29) likely gets the Game 1 nod, and closer Liam Hendriks (3-1 1.78, 14 saves) anchors the backend. The A’s will miss 3B Matt Chapman, who is out with a hip injury, but the roster has plenty of playoff experience.

The White Sox were in first place in the AL Central, but a 2-8 record down the stretch slid Chicago down to seventh in the AL and cost them the Division title. At 35-25, Chicago had the most home runs (96) second-highest batting average in the AL this season. Look for RHP Lucas Giolito (4-3, 3.48) and LHP Dallas Keuchel (6-2, 1.99) to start the first two games while five White Sox players hit more than ten home runs this year.

PICK: White Sox in 3

2020 AL PLAYOFFS BETTING – 3 Minnesota Twins (-120) v. 6 Houston Astros (+100)

Game 1 Tuesday, September 29 – 2:00 PM Eastern on ABC
Game 2 Wednesday, September 30 – 1:00 PM Eastern on ESPN2
Game 3 (if necessary) Thursday, October 1 – TBD

The Twins lost two of their final three games to finish the regular season, but they won the AL. Central at 36-24. Minnesota was 24-7 at home this season but have not won a playoff series since 2002, going 3-20 in that span and losing a record 16 straight playoff games. That losing streak is still active. Look for RHP Kenta Maeda (6-1, 2.70) to get the series started while RHP Jose Berrios (5-4, 4.00) and LHP Rich Hill (2-2, 3.03) wait in the wings.

Houston is one of two teams in the MLB playoffs with a losing record. The defending AL Champions went 29-31 this year. Houston went just 9-23 on the road this season while dealing with a multitude of injuries. RHP Zack Greinke (3-3, 4.03) is the only October-experienced starter, but the lineup still has plenty of playoff heroes like 2B Jose Altuve, OF George Springer, 3B Alex Bregman, and SS Carlos Correa.

PICK: Twins in 2

2020 AL PLAYOFFS BETTING – No. 4 Cleveland Indians (+100) vs. No. 5 New York Yankees (-135)

Game 1 Tuesday, September 29 – 7:00 PM Eastern on ESPN
Game 2 Wednesday, September 30 – 7:00 PM Eastern on ESPN
Game 3 (if necessary) Thursday, October 1 – TBD

The Indians swept the White Sox last week and used that tie-breaker to get the home-field advantage in the first round at 35-25. Cleveland’s pitching staff excelled this season with a league-best 3.29 ERA and 621 strikeouts. No playoff team in the AL boasts a rotation like Cleveland, with Cy Young frontrunner RHP Shane Bieber (8-1, 1.63), RHP Zach Plesac (4-2, 2.2), and RHP Carlos Carrasco (3-4, 2.91).

Despite being the No. 5 seed, the 33-27 Yankees are favorites to win the series, and at +250, they are favored to win the AL Pennant. The Yankees led the AL with 315 runs scored and finished second with 94 home runs. The Yankees were just 11-18 on the road this season, and the pitching staff had issues beyond RHP Gerrit Cole (7-3, 2.84). However, if the offense is healthy, the Yankees can go a long way.

PICK: Indians in 3


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