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Top 5 World Series Favorites After MLB Trade Deadline

Top 5 World Series Favorites After MLB Trade Deadline

Billy Beane Oakland A's
Jason O. Watson-USA TODAY Sports

Now that the MLB trade deadline has passed, which teams improved their chances of capturing the 2014 World Series crown? Both the Oakland Athletics and the Detroit Tigers continued their push for AL supremacy with blockbuster deals, while the St. Louis Cardinals added a pair of right-handed starters to stay within shouting distance of the Los Angeles Dodgers. Here are five teams who are the favorites to reach this year's Fall Classic.

5. Milwaukee Brewers

Milwaukee Brewers
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

5. Milwaukee Brewers

Milwaukee Brewers
Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Brewers have a veteran group of starters who exceeded expectations during the first half of the season, especially Kyle Lohse, and will only go as far as their high-mileage arms take them. Carlos Gomez & Co. can put runs on the board, but like most contenders this season, Milwaukee is saddled with a below-average bullpen.

4. St. Louis Cardinals

St. Louis Cardinals
Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

4. St. Louis Cardinals

St. Louis Cardinals
Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

With the road to the NL pennant going through Chavez Ravine, the Cardinals added John Lackey and Justin Masterson to fortify a rotation that already included staff ace Adam Wainwright and injured budding star Michael Wacha. Now, St. Louis just needs top prospects Oscar Taveras and Kolten Wong to produce with the lumber.

3. Los Angeles Dodgers

Los Angeles Dodgers
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

3. Los Angeles Dodgers

Los Angeles Dodgers
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

This is a well-balanced squad with a ton of pitching and hitting that could catch fire down the stretch. Clayton Kershaw headlines a strong starting rotation, but an inconsistent cast of relievers and injuries to key players remain the biggest road blocks to a successful Dodgers title run.

2. Detroit Tigers

Detroit Tigers
Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

2. Detroit Tigers

Detroit Tigers
Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

David Price joins Max Scherzer to give the Tigers two of the premier strikeout artists in the game. While Rick Porcello is overachieving, former staff ace Justin Verlander continues to underachieve. And, a suspect bullpen still being led by hitter-friendly closer Joe Nathan shockingly remains a work in progress.

1. Oakland Athletics

Oakland Athletics
Lance Iversen-USA TODAY Sports

1. Oakland Athletics

Oakland Athletics
Lance Iversen-USA TODAY Sports

The addition of Jon Lester to the highest scoring team in the majors makes the A's the 2014 World Series favorites. A proven postseason arm, the 30-year-old southpaw solidifies the fourth-best pitching staff in all of baseball. Oakland also features an impressive Top 5 bullpen that is the envy of the Tigers.

Marvin Moore is a Texas Rangers writer for RantSports. Follow him on Twitter at @SportsMarvin, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your circles on Google.