7/3/2009 5:00 PM EST
By The Team at SportsInsights.com
Welcome to the 2009 MLB Sports Marketwatch, where the Team at SportsInsights gives sports fans unprecedented insight into the sports marketplace. If you ever wanted to know what was really happening on the sportsbook side, you now have an all-access pass with Sports Marketwatch! Sports MarketWatch will be published twice weekly on Tuesday and Friday, around 5PM Eastern Time.
Sports Marketplace – MLB Edition
Tuesday represented a solid rebound for Marketwatch, as we were perfect on the day with two rather emphatic wins. The Cubs, who have struggled mightily to score runs lately, couldn’t even plate one against Russ Ohlendorf in Pittsburgh. Former batting champion Freddy Sanchez went 3-for-3 and drove in two runs as the Pirates defeated Chicago’s north-siders 3-0. Of course, one win secures a profitable day in this feature, but we weren’t done there. Cliff Lee, who had absolutely owned the White Sox in his last few starts against them, gave up eleven hits and seven runs in only three innings. The result was never in doubt, but the game was called early due to inclement weather, securing an 11-4 victory for the White Sox over the Indians.
Baseball can be a very profitable sport to bet on when you base it off moneyline odds, especially when betting underdogs. The “plus odds” is a reason that MLB moneyline dogs can show value over time. Most people like to win – thus overvaluing winning teams. Our selections on moneyline underdogs will normally hit at less than 50%, but the “plus odds” payoff makes it a profitable investment.
2009 MLB Games to Watch: 26-23, 53.1%, +13.13 units
Sports MarketWatch – MLB Games to Watch
Cincinnati Reds +113 over St. Louis Cardinals
St. Louis may have the top-end talent and recognizable names in Pujols, Carpenter and Wainwright, but the Cincinnati Reds just keep chugging along, staying a nose above .500 and a whiff away from the division leaders. And while the Cardinals are clearly buyers at this point of the season, having acquired Mark Derosa from Cleveland and leaking rumors about interest in A’s outfielder Matt Holliday, you’d be hard-pressed to make the argument that the Reds shouldn’t be in the thick of things come September. Some of their young hitting is due for a positive adjustment – think Jay Bruce and Chris Dickerson – and they should be periodically bolstered by talented players returning from injury. Joey Votto is already back, Edwin Encarnacion is on the way and 2008 pitching phenom Edinson Volquez should be ready to go for the stretch run. Tonight they’ll send Homer Bailey to the mound, a young starter who dominates Triple-A but has faltered each time Cincinnati has given him a chance. This time around, he’s been more composed. With a slight improvement in control and pitch efficiency, he may stick in the rotation this time around and allow Micah Owings to do what he does best… pinch-hit.
The Cardinals opened as -121 favorites at Pinnacle, and they are drawing 70% of moneyline and parlay bets, as well as 86% of runline wagers. We’d expect the line to grow to encourage some betting on the other side, but instead it’s done the opposite. They are now -116 at Pinnacle and even lower across the sports marketplace. This reverse line movement is due, at least in part, to a Steam Move triggered at Bet Jamaica (55-30, +16.3 Units Won). It is always nice to pair a good number of units won with a great winning percentage, and Bet Jamaica’s Steam Moves are just the ticket at almost a 65% hit rate. Let’s play on the Reds tonight to close the gap in one of baseball’s tightest division races.
Cincinnati Reds +113
Baltimore Orioles +139 over Los Angeles Angels
Baltimore would probably like to go back to playing interleague ball versus NL East teams, against whom they are 11-7 on the season. Instead, they’re far from home and appeared appropriately lost against John Lackey last night in a 5-2 loss that wasn’t as close as it seemed. Perhaps they can find themselves tonight against Ervin Santana, who will be coming off the disabled list for the second time already in 2009. After exhibiting lightning stuff last season, he just hasn’t been able to get past arm injuries this time around. In fact, he has given up 6+ earned runs in three of his six starts this season. His ERA sits at 7.47, and although you’d like to consider his one-inning, seven-run outing against the White Sox a stat-skewing outlier, getting blown up in half your total starts is not at all promising. Baltimore lefties Brian Roberts, Luke Scott and Aubrey Huff all hit right-handed pitching well, and if Santana’s velocity or movement isn’t up to 100%, the Orioles could score early and often. In fact, they’ll probably need to score in bunches to take a victory in Anaheim, as the Angels have scored 5+ runs in each of their last five games.
The Angels opened as -160 favorites at CRIS and have taken a whopping 85% of moneyline wagers, in addition to 91% of runline and 88% of parlay bets. “Oh, reasonable sportsbooks, won’t you make the line larger, discouraging more bets on Los Angeles by diminishing potential profits?” The sportsbooks could not be reached for a reply, but in the meantime the line has dropped to Angels -148 at CRIS and even lower at a few other books. Baltimore has received the veritable Trifecta of Sports Insights Betting System plays, which, if you have a few moments, goes as follows: Smart Money plays at Olympic (+1.53 Units Won) and ABC (+4.01), a Steam Move also triggered at ABC (+4.8), and a Square Play due to the huge discrepancy in public money. If you hadn’t noticed by now, it’s time to take a look at our Square Plays this season, which are already up +23.6 units. It looks as though the sharps strongly expect Santana to struggle in his most recent return from injury, and with good plus-odds, we don’t want to miss out.
Baltimore Orioles +139
Games to Watch (26-23, +13.13 units)
Cincinnati Reds +113
Baltimore Orioles +139
It should be another exciting weekend in the sports marketplace. Keep Sports MarketWatch picks handy and your browser pointed to SportsInsights.com for the latest real-time updates, using our exclusive Sports Investing tools. We’ll be back Tuesday with the new edition of the Sports Marketwatch – MLB Edition.
Enjoy the games!
The Team at SportsInsights.com