Preliminary 2018 ZiPS Projections Have Dodgers Winning NL West, Finishing With Best Record
Shanna Lockwood-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Dodgers are but a few days removed from a disappointing Game 7 loss to the Houston Astros in the World Series, but early projections for the 2018 season have already trickled in. Per ZiPS, the Dodgers are forecasted to 96-66 next season, which would be the best record in baseball.

Their odds of winning a sixth consecutive National League West title are pegged at 92 percent, the highest of any projected division champion. The Dodgers were give a 5.5 percent chance of becoming a Wild Card team, boast 97.4 percent odds of reaching the playoffs, and given the highest chance of winning the World Series at 17 percent.

They’re followed by the New York Yankees (12 percent), who are projected to go 92-70 and win the American League East. ZiPS gave the Astros 11.3 percent odds of repeating, while forecasting they will finish 90-72 and claim another AL West title.

ZiPS’ projections do not account for free agents, which means the Dodgers were evaluated as not having Yu Darvish and Brandon Morrow, among their six free agents, on the roster. Aside from free agency, Los Angeles holds club options on Logan Forsythe and Andre Ethier, plus a buyout on the veteran outfielder.

Because of their talent and depth, the Dodgers have regularly graded out well, whether ZiPS, analytical model FiveThirtyEight, or PECOTA.

A sixth consecutive NL West title and fifth straight season with at least 90 wins would extend franchise marks for the Dodgers. This season, they set a Los Angeles franchise record with 102 wins. Included in that were 57 wins at Dodger Stadium, which also set a record.

From 1958 until this year, no Dodgers team had won more than the 102 games the 1962 and 1974 clubs did since the move from Brooklyn. The Dodgers’ 104 wins tied with the 1942 Brooklyn team for second-most in franchise history.