MLB Odds & Playoffs Preview
by Richard Gardner | Bodog Sportsbook Manager - 10/6/2010
The 2010 MLB playoffs start Wednesday with three games on the slate, including the Yankees opening up their divisional series with the Twins in Minnesota.
You might be surprised to learn that the Bronx Bombers haven’t been too popular with our bettors when it comes to their odds to win the World Series, currently at 7/2. This is a pretty rare occurrence at Bodog, where we traditionally book a large amount of action on the high-profile Yankees.
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I’m not entirely sure why Yankees bettors are being so hesitant this year. Maybe the odds aren’t juicy enough, although that hasn’t been much of a deterrent in the past. Perhaps it’s the fact that New York didn’t finish the regular season too strongly, losing eight of its last 11 games and giving up a ton of runs in the process. Obviously CC Sabathia can’t do it all himself, but the Yankees are still stacked offensively. You have to think even mediocre pitching should be able to get the job done.
Another team that supports the theory that bettors look to pitching above everything else is San Francisco, which will take on Atlanta in a series that starts Thursday in the Bay Area. The Giants, currently getting 7/1 odds to win the World Series, are the hottest team on the board right now, thanks in large part to their guys on the mound. San Francisco pitchers were practically unhittable down the stretch. In fact, the Giants were like the anti-Yankees, in that run support was their biggest problem.
One other team that’s captured bettors’ imagination is Texas. The Rangers, getting 10/1 odds to win it all, will be in tough to knock off the Tampa Bay Rays, but bettors appear to like the underdogs’ chances of advancing given the tempting odds. We’ve booked a number of wagers on the Rangers to beat Tampa Bay in 4 games, at 4/1 odds.
As for the favorite to win the World Series, that would be the Philadelphia Phillies, at 2/1. We’ve seen steady action on this futures bet, but it really doesn’t offer much bang for the buck considering the risk involved. The Cincinnati Reds, who the Phillies face in the opening round, won 91 games in the regular season; the Phillies won 97. That’s not a huge difference. In other words, an upset isn’t entirely out of the question. If that’s a theory you can get behind, you might consider taking the Reds at +250 to beat the Phillies (-300). There’s no bigger underdog available when it comes to the four series’ odds.
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