What’s America’s pastime? You probably answered baseball, pretty quickly. MLB Baseball in particular has been a fan-favorite across the globe, so it’s probably not a shock there are many reliable and trustworthy sports betting books to bet on your favourite baseball teams.
Even the European sportsbooks tend to offer a wide range of baseball betting opportunities, which can range from basic bets such as moneylines and props to multi-selection combination bets. As a result, many veteran baseball bettors prefer to compare the odds between sportsbooks for the highest payout.
Our MLB betting guide covers:
In MLB betting, when you bet on the moneyline, your goal is to guess which team will win the game.
In baseball, a baseball moneyline wager is the easiest bet you can make. This type of wager is not a point spread like the NFL or NBA. The only requirement is you pick which team will win the game. Bookmakers set a moneyline value for each team in every game. The favourite is marked with a (-) and the underdog with a (+).
For example, let’s say this is the moneyline:
In this example, the Yankees is the favoured team. The bookmaker might set both lines at -110 – in this case, you’ll have to wager $110 for a chance to win $100, regardless of which team you pick.
With run lines in baseball betting, the sports bettor doesn’t necessarily have to choose a winner, however, the winning team must win by at least two runs. The run line in baseball is typically set at -1.5 and +1.5 and is essentially the point spread. If the sports bettor picks the Boston Red Sox at -1.5, the Red Sox must win the game by 2 or more runs, if he chooses to wager on their opponents, the New York Yankees, the Yankees can lose the game by one run or win outright.
Here’s an example of how a baseball run line would be laid out for MLB betting:
Here, to bet on this run line, the Red Sox are the favoured team to win, and must win by 2 or more, or cover 1.5 runs.
Wager not on the favoured team in baseball betting, but if the combined score of both teams is over or under the amount posed by the sportsbook.
Totals betting is simple, you’re looking at the combined number of runs scored by both teams. This number is generally listed between 7.5-9.5, though in some ballparks such as Coors Field in Colorado, you may see the total in the double digits, and you bet on over or under that number. The first thing to look for when betting a total is to look at the starting pitching matchups.
In most cases, the total is set at 6. In this example, cashing on the over bet means the two teams combined to score at least seven goals. And the under would payout if the final score was less than 6.
Here’s an over/under baseball betting example in MLB betting. Let’s say the total is set at 40.5 for a game between Boston and New York:
Red Sox vs. Yankees
Numbers in brackets show the odds of each bet. Here, both are at -100, which means it’s an even bet. If Boston wins with a 50-30 score, the total is 45, which means the over hits since 45 is greater than 40.5.
A parlay bet is when you place several wagers at once on a single ticket, on various outcomes.
A baseball parlay in MLB betting is a ticket in which you bet on multiple games. The payouts on parlays are much larger than that of a straight bet, but have a much higher risk as you have to win every game that you bet on. There are pros and cons of betting parlays. The good is that parlays have larger payouts. The problem with parlays is they are difficult to hit as one bad pick can ruin your entire bet.
Examples of parlays can vary, since the types of bets you can make vary. Here’s an example of a baseball parlay ticket:
In this example, you’re betting on the outcome of two different games on one ticket.
A first 5-innings bet is when you wager on the props and/or the final score at the end of the 1st 5-innings.
In baseball betting, a 1st 5-innings bet allows a baseball bettor to bet the MLB moneyline, runline or total on the outcome of the first five innings of the game. The reason for making a 1st 5-innings bet is to try and handicap just the starting pitchers and taking the bullpens out of the wager. To win a 1st 5-inning bet, the first 4 ½ innings must be completed. The bet is void if a game rains out after three innings.
Prop bets allow you to bet on elements of the game besides the final score, ranging from which player scores first, to who sings the national anthem.
A baseball prop is a bet made that may not have anything to do with the final score of the game. An example of a prop bet would be how many strikeouts would Clayton Kershaw get in this game. One of the most popular props is will a team score a run in the first inning. Baseball props are viewed more as entertainment as most books will limit the amount you can wager on them.
Some examples of popular baseball props in MLB betting include bets on the result of the 1st inning (arguably the most popular), which players will hit the most homeruns all season, and who will win the World Series.
Wager on the future outcome of a baseball game or event.
A futures wager is a bet placed for an event that will happen later in the season. These types of bets are usually on team standings and individual player achievements. A Houston Astros fan might place a futures’ bet on the Astros to win the World Series, or Alex Bregman to lead the American League in home runs. Future odds can change very quickly and be very profitable, but can tie up your bankroll for months.
In MLB betting, placing a futures bet for baseball is likely going to one of the types of bets we mentioned here. In MLB baseball, some of the most popular futures bets are bets on the outcome of the MLB All-Star Game, the MLB draft, the World Series or events in the post-season.
Bet on props, over/unders and moneylines when the game starts.
Live betting in baseball depends on the sportsbook you are using. Every betting site will have in-game MLB moneylines, run lines and totals, but props wagers will depend on where you are placing your bets. Common live prop betting options are runs, hits, or strikeouts in a given inning. For the most part, you can also make these bets at mobile sportsbooks on your phone.
In baseball betting, the most typical live bets are moneylines, over/unders, or props for scores at the end of each inning.
Most baseball bets are on the MLB moneyline, bettors can still find value betting on totals in MLB betting. One big factor to consider before placing a bet is the weather. If the wind is blowing out from home plate, the ball is likely to travel further and that can make the difference between a long fly ball and a home run. The same goes for if the wind is blowing in toward home plate. That 10-mph wind can hold a fly ball up just enough to be caught on the warning track.
Umpires are human and like all of us they have inherent biases. It’s valuable to look at the umpire betting trends before making a bet. Some umpires are influenced by the crowd, which is handy for home teams. Some umpires have tight strike zones leading to more walks, more base runners and ultimately, runs, which is great information if you are leaning towards the over. Meanwhile, others may have giant strike zones, leading to more strikeouts and batters chasing pitches, which benefits under bets.
Sportsbooks know that casual bettors love to bet their favourite team and favourites. That means popular teams like the Yankees, Red Sox, Dodgers and Cubs are always a bit overpriced. These inflated lines mean you are going to get smaller payouts when you win and pay more for them.
The run line can help improve the odds in situations like this, but anytime you are betting on a public team, like the teams listed above, the line will be inflated with public money from casual bettors. Using the run line to improve odds should be part of your baseball betting strategy.
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Of all the factors baseball bettors should consider when making a bet, the starting pitchers are among the most critical in MLB betting. A first glance at the moneyline odds might suggest that team caliber has a lot to do with the final numbers, but a deeper look reveals that whoever starts on the mound have a major impact on the MLB moneyline odds.
There are plenty of options when looking to bet on baseball games, the first thing new sports bettors need to do is find an online sportsbook and set up an account. The next thing you want to look for are bets offered. The most popular plays for baseball betting are MLB moneyline bets, totals bets, and 1st 5-innings bets.
Yes, MLB betting is allowed as long as the online sportsbook they use is fully licensed, located, and operated outside of the United States. Online sports betting itself is not prohibited by Canadian law, so you won’t go to jail for placing a bet in Canada.
MLB moneyline betting is the most basic baseball wager available. In MLB betting, oddsmakers assign a moneyline figure to each team playing on a given day. The team with the minus symbol (-) is the favorite, and therefore offers a smaller payout in the event of a victory. Moneyline odds work around a base figure of $100, but apply to bets of any dollar amount.
For example, if you were to wager on a team at -150, that number represents how much money you would need to bet to earn a profit of $100. A team at -180 requires a bet of $180 to return $100, and so on. On the flip side, a team with a plus sign next to its moneyline odds is the underdog and will return that amount of profit on a standard bet of $100. So if you were to wager $100 on a team at +170 and that team is victorious, you would earn a profit of $170.
While betting on the moneyline is the most straightforward way of determining which team you believe will prevail straight up, there are several alternate bet options you can choose from. And one of the most popular of these is the runline. The sportsbook gives a 1.5-run betting line while boosting the underdog by the same 1.5-run total. This shifts the odds and increases potential payout.
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