Welcome to the 2012 edition of MLB Marketwatch, where the team at Sports Insights gives sports fans unprecedented insight into the MLB betting market.
Every week we analyze the sports betting marketplace to pinpoint which games the public is chasing and which the sharps are pounding.
Overall Record: 7-5 (+4.77 units)
The goal of this weekly column is to highlight games that offer true line value. Often, if a line looks too good to be true, there is a reason. You’ll occasionally need the worst teams on the board to come through. We typically buy on bad news and sell on good.
Colorado Rockies vs. St. Louis Cardinals – 8:15 PM EST
This week’s marketwatch will focus on the matchup between two starkly different teams as the defending World Series champion Cardinals (43-39, 20-19 home) host the Colorado Rockies (31-50, 13-25 away) — who are currently tied for the worst record in baseball.
Taking the mound for the Rockies will be rookie left-hander Christian Friedrich (4-5, 5.52 ERA), a former first-round pick out of Eastern Kentucky. The big lefty’s numbers have not been impressive this season, however the devil is in the details as Friedrich’s split stats tell a compelling story. Although he owns a 9.62 ERA in five home starts, Friedrich has actually been phenomenal outside the hitter-friendly confines of Coors Field. In six road starts this season, the 6’4″ southpaw has posted a 3-2 record with a 2.75 ERA.
Opposing Friedrich will be the hefty right-hander Lance Lynn (10-4, 3.62 ERA). Recently named to the NL All-Star team, Lynn has struggled in his past three starts allowing at least five earned runs in each outing. This shaky streak of performances has escalated Lynn’s ERA from 2.42 to 3.62. Still, with over a strikeout per inning and ten wins on the season, Lynn has been one of this season’s breakthrough performers.
The over/under on this game currently sits at 9.5 and, based on the performances of these two offenses, that high number should not come as a surprise. The Cardinals and Rockies rank one-two in both runs scored and team batting average, respectively, while also combining for 194 home runs.
St. Louis opened as a -188 favorite at Pinnacle and, according to Sports Insights’ MLB Betting Trends, has received 81% of moneyline wagers, 78% of runline wagers and 85% of parlay bets. Despite this heavily lopsided betting, the line has actually moved against the betting percentages with the Cardinals now listed as just -177 favorites. This reverse line movement is an indicator that sharp money has jumped all over the road dogs.
The public betting chart below is available on our Live Odds 3.0 page to all Live Odds and All-Pro Combo members and shows a breakdown of moneyline Betting Percentages from our six contributing sportsbooks.
According to our BetLabs software, road teams receiving less than 20% of moneyline wagers have gone 385-620 for +62.10 units and a 6.2% return on investment (ROI) since the 2005 season. That system has been especially profitable during the 2012 season with a 49-64 record — good for 19.3 units earned and a staggering 17.1% ROI.
The line history graph below, which is available to all Live Odds and All-Pro Combo members, shows how the public Betting Percentages have affected line movement for this game at Pinnacle.
At the time of publication, YouWager was offering the best price on the Rockies at +171, but as always, be sure to shop for the best line before getting down on this game.
Game to Watch (7-5, +4.77 units)
Colorado Rockies +171 (YouWager)
Enjoy the games!