Wunderdog's MLB Baseball Handicapping Philosophy
Handicapping and Betting Major League Baseball
The lines-makers and bookies across the country get nervous come Spring. Why? They know that educated baseball handicappers have an unusually high edge on them.
The hardest part of betting baseball is keeping up with the day in, day out action. That's where I come in by doing the hard (and tedious) work for you, tracking each and every game, trend, and useful statistic.
What makes Baseball Unique? The Series Tell a Story
Baseball is a unique sport in that each series gives you a 3 or 4 chapter novel. The last chapter is oftentimes very easy for one to master prior to the contest, based on the results of the first few games. Not only will you get side plays, you'll receive total plays as well, which are based on, among other factors, who will be the home plate umpire for the game.
Wunderdog’s Baseball Handicapping Approach
Betting on baseball can be extremely profitable as there is tremendous line value. In baseball games, on any given night, the best team can lose to the worst team with a greater frequency than any other sport.
Here's how I approach things:
- Look for profitable situations. In baseball there are certain situations which provide the bettor an advantage. Sometimes the stats line up the right way in which you get a team that has enough of an advantage in nearly every important category. Other times, you can catch a team in the right situation (better teams going for the sweep, fading very poor road teams after a road win, etc).
- Pay special attention to the bullpens. In today's age when most starters don't last much past the sixth inning, bullpens become the most important factor in baseball betting. The lines on baseball games are mostly established by the starting pitchers, but the bullpens pitch a third of the games. Look to bet against an overworked bullpen and to play on teams with solid and rested pens.
- Focus on the right stats. Baseball can be a game of statistics and it can be very confusing. The stats that matter most to us are: team won/loss record with starting pitcher, starting pitchers WHIP (walks + hits divided by innings pitched), team batting average verse right and left-handed pitchers, day/night statistics and bullpen earned run average.
- Be careful about games that the Public is on. Vegas is in business because it makes money off losers. Which side would you rather be on, the minority (with the bookmakers) or with Joe Public of which 90% lose over the test of time? The Yankees in particular lay more wood than they should nearly every game.
- Play the different "seasons." The baseball season is very long, spanning nine seven months. Not all months are equal. There are distinct "seasons" within each season. In April and May, underdogs generally rule the roost as favorites are overrated by the bookmakers. In June and July we see more of a mix and things again change as the season winds down. Know which sub-season you are in and bet accordingly.
- Shop the lines. There are wide price variations on games, and over the course of a season, getting the best possible lines will save, and or make you significant money. Playing baseball on a 10-cent line is a must. Each book will have different lines because they are trying to balance their action evenly. You have to take advantage of this if you serious about making money on baseball.
- Check out the parlays. Playing 2-team parlays in baseball can be beneficial to reduce the high juice of favorites. Avoid playing 3-team or more parlays as the books cut increases significantly. This is the only time that I recommend parlays, and I highly recommend only experienced baseball bettors use parlays.
In Baseball, as in Life, Patience is a Virtue
The bottom line in baseball is that information and patience pay off. For the patient informed better, gambling on America’s pastime can pay off higher than playing any other sport. Make sure you have take a long-term view (don't get too upset if you have a losing day and don't get too excited if you have a winning day). Manage your bankroll properly.