Win Money Betting on Baseball
Analytics and advanced statistics have recently crept into other sports, but the game of baseball has always been about numbers. Do you have the proper righty vs. lefty matchup? Is your team built for your home ballpark? What kind of strike zone does your umpire have? And with a 162-game season, baseball bettors and analysts can rely on the data that they receive a lot more heavily versus a 16-game football season. Betting on baseball requires you to sift through all of the hitting and pitching numbers that are available, determine what means the most to you, and turn that information into a wagering strategy.
How Does Baseball Betting Work?
Betting on baseball is different from basketball and football because the majority of baseball betting is done on the moneyline, and not with a point spread. Generally speaking, baseball betting is all about picking the winning team. When good teams play bad teams, it’s not uncommon to see the better team as a -300 favorite, or even into the -400’s. The average bettor is afraid to lay a price like that, but for some professionals, there’s still value in laying those big numbers in the right situation. But don’t forget: Even the worst teams in the league will still win 55+ times during the course of the season.
Baseball Betting Terms You Need to Know
Moneyline – The team just needs to win the game. No point spreads or other factors involved.
Runline – The runline is baseball’s version of the point spread in football or basketball. The traditional runline for baseball games is -1.5 runs. If you’re betting on the favorite on the runline, they need to win the game by two or more. If you are betting on the underdog on the runline, they are starting the game with 1.5 runs. The underdog can lose the game by one run, and still be a winner on the runline.
Total – The total number of runs scored in the game by both teams. You are placing a wager on whether or not you think the game will go over or under than number.
Parlay – Combining multiple events on one ticket for the hope of a larger payout.
First 5 – Just like a first half bet in basketball or football, you can wager on what the score will be after five innings of a baseball game. Bettors will look to bet on the first five instead of the full game if they are focused on a specific starting pitcher matchup and want to avoid bullpens later in the game.
How do Baseball Odds Work?
Baseball betting has evolved over the last few years to include an increased number of props and other wagering avenues, but at its core, betting on baseball can be done in three ways: The moneyline, the runline, and the total.
What is the Moneyline in Baseball Betting?
Moneyline betting in baseball just requires your team to win. Since there is no point spread involved, betting on the favorite requires you to bet more to win a desired amount on the moneyline. Conversely, betting on an underdog on the moneyline will earn a larger profit. If you are looking to play the favorite on the moneyline, the number that you see on the odds board is the amount that you need to lay in order to win $100. If you are betting on a -200 favorite, you need to lay $200 to profit $100, and you would collect $300. If you are betting on the underdog, the number that you see is the amount that you would win off a $100 bet. If you are looking to play a +175 underdog on the moneyline, you would lay $100 to profit $175 and collect $275.
How do Runlines (Spreads) Work in Baseball?
The runline is baseball’s version of the point spread in football or basketball. The traditional runline for baseball games is -1.5 runs. If you’re betting on the favorite on the runline, they need to win the game by two or more. If you are betting on the underdog on the runline, they are starting the game with 1.5 runs. The underdog can lose the game by one run, and still be a winner on the runline.
Most sports books offer a variety of runline betting options. The reverse runline gives the favorite a +1.5 head start and turns the underdog into the -1.5 role. The alternate runline bumps the point spread from 1.5 to 2.5 runs. So the favorite has to win the game by three or more, and the underdog can now lose the game by two runs and still cash the bet.
How Does Total (Over/Under) Betting Work in Baseball?
The total number of runs scored in the game by both teams. You are placing a wager on whether or not you think the game will go over or under than number. Some sports books offer team totals where bettors can place an over/under bet on one team, and not the combined score of both.
What are Baseball Prop Bets?
Prop betting has become increasingly popular in recent years. One of the most common prop bets is Runs + Hits + Errors. Bettors can place an over/under wager on how many runs, hits and errors the two teams will combine for. Another popular prop bet is the grand salami. Odds makers will come up with a projected run total for all of the games that will be played that day. Bettors can place a bet on whether the sum of that day’s runs will go over or under the salami number. Some sports books have now begun to offer detailed player props: Total number of strikeouts for the starting pitcher, will Player A score a run today, etc..
Baseball Betting Rules to Know
What does baseball have to deal with on a regular basis, that no other major sport encounters? Postponements and cancellations. Rain (and even the occasional snow) can delay games, cancel games, and cause games to end early. It’s up to you, the bettor, to understand the rules of the sports book where you are playing.
Not every sports book operates the same way, but here is how rain-shortened games are generally handled: Moneyline bets are graded after the completion of five innings. If the game gets stopped after the fifth inning and does not resume, all moneyline bets will be graded based on the score when the game was stopped. Over/under and runline bets must complete nine innings (or 8.5 if the home team is leading). If a game gets stopped in the seventh inning, all runline and totals bets will be refunded, no matter what the score is. If you bet New York -1.5 and they are leading 8-0 in the seventh inning when the game gets cancelled, that’s an unfortunate break. But if you had Cleveland +1.5 and they were losing 8-0 in the seventh inning, then it’s your lucky day because you are getting your money back. But once again, be sure to know your sports book’s house rules.
Listing pitchers is another aspect of baseball betting that you should become familiar with. If you walk up to the counter at most sports books and say, “I’d like $100 on rotation number 903 Atlanta,” you’re going to get an ‘action’ ticket. That means that you are betting on Atlanta, regardless if there are any pitching changes. If you are betting on Atlanta because their No. 1 starter is going that night, you’d want to say, “I’d like $100 on rotation number 903 Atlanta, and please list my pitcher.” Now you’re locked into Atlanta with their starting pitcher. If anything happens to him and he does not start that game, you’ll get a refund. You can elect to list the pitcher of the team that you’re betting on, the opposing team’s starting pitcher, or both. Generally speaking, you need to ask for the listed pitchers when making moneyline bets.