Baseball Season is upon us and while many Bettors will be winding down and looking forward to the 2010 Football Season, I will be Revving it up over the next few months and producing profits that are simply not possible with football and hoops. Why is that? Because Baseball is not only a different animal, it is GODZILLA and the Japanese People in my neighborhood will once again be running for the hills. Baseball, unlike the other two major sports allows us to actually win more money than we bet, giving us the decided advantage over the books. Not only that, but because Baseball is a finese Sport, the Ole Phrase, “Anyone can beatAnyone else on any given day” is much more truer with this sport.
Underdogs Verses Favorites
I am going to try and do my best not to bore you with tons of statistics in this exercise, but we are going to have to use a few so bear with me. Let’s begin with Moneyline Stats over the last 8 years. This length of time gives us enough scope to determine what has been profitable and what has not. Betting Underdogs has not been profitable. However, we can find some situations that have been and the fact is, some are just plain BAD ASS Profitable. If you had bet ever Underdog in the last 8 years in
Baseball, you would have bet a lot of games and you would have lost just over 179 Units. That’s not too good but let’s look at the other side of the story. If you had bet every favorite you would lost over 730 Units. What does this mean? It means that you have over a 4 Times better chance of winning money if you bet Dogs. But you would still have lost right? Absolutely, because it can’t be that easy.
Baseball Underdogs that are Profitable
There are situations that have produced large profits over the last 8 years and the most prevalent one makes a lot of sense. Teams that play each other a lot often are more motivated to win and so it would make senses that Win/Loss Numbers would be close to 50% than any other situation. And they are. If you had bet all Divisional games (Teams in the same Division) over the last 8 years, you would have over 202 Units of Profit in your Wallet. That is a lot of money. That is GODZILLA Money. In addition to that, Dogs have done much better in the second half of the season and once again for a simple reason. Late in the year, more public money comes into play. That drives Line upward, giving you more value for your buck. I am not telling you to bet all Division Dogs, I am telling you that this is always a good starting point but there is more.
The Mid Relievers
There is a strong correlation between the strength of a team’s Bullpen and
how well they do both in the standings, and in the money made playing
them. When I talk about the Pens, I am not talking about who has the best
closer, although that does come into play. The average starting pitcher
rarely gets past the sixth inning. The average closer rarely gets past 2/3
of an inning. The fact is, as the season progresses, the starting thrower
becomes less and less important and from about May 20th until the end of
the season, starters will average just under 2/3 of an inning less than
previous games. That is based on the last 8 years and that is a
misconception to many. On average we can expect the guy who throws the
first pitch to last about 5.2 innings meaning 1 out short of 6. In
addition, we can expect him to leave the game more times than not, with
runners in scoring position and usually with less than 2 outs. That is why
the mid-line throwers are so important. Here is some info from a selected
Top 6 Money Teams of 2006
New York Mets
The Top 5 Bullpens of 2006
New York Mets
These are listed in order and as you can see, the Top 6 Bullpen’s also
comprised the Top 5 Money Teams. The only excpetion was KC who won some
huge moneyline plays late in the year. Similar results can be found in
previous years and latter years. In most cases, I would rather have a mediocre starter and a good Pen, than the opposite. That works out very well since that is the exact opposite of the way Vegas would like us to think. Vegas Sets Baseball Lines on two factors. The Starting Pitcher and now good or bad he is, and the overall perception of how good or bad a team is. It is our job to determine whether those guys who set the odds have done their homework and often they have not. Let’s remember one important thing. The best pitcher in the league can have a bad outing, the worst one can have a good one, bullpens generally remain fairly consistant. We do have a rate Bullpens for teams like Tampa Bay and Colorado differently because of the venue at which they play. But in most cases, Bullpen ERA is the best way to do this.
Betting Baseball Favorites
It is a fact that over the last 11 years, Baseball favorites have won right at 58% of the time. That means that if all betting lines during this timeframe were -135 plays, one would have broken even. But they are not. And the winning percentages of those games -140 to -220 do not go up as the line goes up. Anything past -140 is the worst losing proposition in Baseball. If you are playing these, you already have one leg in the well and GODZILLA is closing fast. Run Akatsuki, run!! I am not saying that these play don’t sometimes offer value, I am saying that when you bet them, you are already starting out in the hole. Tread lightly with these.
Betting Baseball Runlines
This is probably my favorite subject but not my favorite bet. Anytime I have seen anyone on the internet talk about betting runlines, they always are doing so laying -1.5 Runs. Have we forgotten that we can bet +1.5 Runs? I do that often and when I do, it is usually a Dog Division Game with a pitcher on the mound coming off a poor effort. I am going to cover that Pitcher Poor effort thing in more detail but let’s stay focused on this for now. Below is the Probability of winning by more than 1 run when a team wins the game outright. These stats are from the last 9 years. They are very interesting indeed.
Does anyone see what I see? There is not that big a difference in teams winning by more than one run as the Moneyline Spread Rises. What does that mean for us? It means that playing -110’s to -140’s at -1.5 Runs is going to be more profitable than playing anything higher. But here’s the deal. Most Bettors don’t play -1.5 Runlines until the line gets to -150 and those ar the least profitable choice of all based on line value. I do rarely play any -1.5 Runline and all the Ducks have to be lined up before I even consider it, but when I do, I am going to be betting them to give me a + Money Payout and not a -. The Most interesting -1.5 Runline Stats are below and it denotes how often teams win by more than 1 run when they do win the game.
Home Teams: 68.5%
Road Teams: 77.1%
Home Favorites: 69.7%
Road Favorites: 79.1%
Road Favorites more than -120: 80.1%
As we can see, Road -1.5 Runlines do much better than Home -1.5 Runlines. That is simply because the road team always gets their 9 times at bat whereas the home team does not. Vegas does adjust for this fact with lower runline payouts for road -1.5 runline teams.
I could write an entire book on other situations that are winning propositions and I will have more info as the season progresses. I am going to have a separate article on Winning Baseball Totals a little later in the Spring. I do want to let everyone know that some of these stats here come from various websites as well as some that I keep myself. Let’s briefly talk about two of my favorite situations though. The first is The Bounceback Pitcher. I love this one because it gives us two things. It gives us a starter who is motivated to perform well following a not so spiffy performance. And it gives us a Betting Line that is usually out of whack. As Stated before, most bettors bet starting pitchers and these people also usually bet against throwers who are not performing well. The fact is, that is the best time to back a starter. The Second One is The Bounceback Hitter. This is along the same line as the previous one. Teams off ZERO Runs scored get good line value and over the last 6 years have turned a profit each and every year. This is one to look for throughout the season.
There is a reason why I have produced a profit betting baseball over the last 19 years and it is because I always put myself in the best possible winning position. If you do that, you will win also, and the Japanese People in your neighbohood will pay the price.