Baseball season is back with the start of spring training beginning the countdown to the 2020 MLB schedule. Betting on MLB odds is a long, winding road from April to October with 162 games on the calendar for each club before the postseason begins in the fall.
Before the first pitch goes out on betting trends for Opening Day on March 26, let’s brush up on the best MLB betting tips and smart ways to make money on the diamond this baseball season.
Manage your money
As we mentioned, the MLB season is long and challenging. Just as teams will go through streaks and slumps, so will baseball bettors. Because of this, it’s extremely wise to put a money management system in place before the season starts, knowing just how much you have to bet and how you’re going to bet it. Based on your bankroll, bet size will be one of the key factors is keeping your head above water during the MLB schedule.
Bettors should do their daily handicapping and rank their favorite MLB picks in order of confidence. Then, based on that confidence, assign a designated percentage of your bankroll on each bet, with the most confident having between 5-7% of your total bankroll on the line and decreasing that stake size as your confidence in each play comes down.
Mix up your bets
Baseball, like most sports, has seen an explosion in betting options over the last 10 years. Not only can you bet on the basics for each MLB game, like the moneyline, total and runline, but odds offerings have even expanded beyond the derivative 5-inning odds.
First-inning props are becoming hugely popular with bettors looking to turn around a quick win and team and player props have hundreds of micro ways to wager on a ballgame. While some bettors may scoff at these alternative odds, there is value to be had if you’re willing to put in the time and research where the edges are. Don’t just rely on which team will win and how many runs will be scored.
Baseball is unlike any other sport on the odds board in that the starting pitchers determine so much of how oddsmakers treat each matchup. Starting pitchers are the beginning of the road when it comes to setting and betting MLB odds, so designate most of your energy into dissecting each of the arms taking the mound.
Baseball bettors can look at the overall season and career starts for starters, but pay close attention to recent performances. Pitchers can be streaky, so riding hot arms and fading cold ones is not a bad practice to follow. Which hand (right or left), type of pitcher (flyball or groundball) and how that matches up against that day’s opponent is a good starting point when handicapping pitchers.
Baseball is also unique in the way outside factors can play into the outcome of a game. Home and road contests can produce varying results, specifically the ballparks those games are played in. Some parks help pitchers and some help hitter. Weather is another key factor to work into your MLB bets for outdoor venues, most importantly wind a which way its blowing and how strong.
Another factor to consider is home plate umpire and how those umps call balls and strikes: do they have a liberal strike zone or is it a smaller zone that produces more balls? Depending on the pitching matchup and the particular pitching styles, a home plate ump could be an added advantage/disadvantage for that pitchers’ team as well as anyone capping the betting total.