MLB Handicapping: Top Five MLB Ballparks Where Weather is a Factor
by Aaron Smith - 5/4/2011
If you are betting on baseball, you definitely need to be well aware of the weather on a day-to-day basis. A baseball isn’t terribly big, so it’s easy to see how a strong wind or humidity levels can change the flight of the baseball. Unless the game is being played in a domed stadium, there isn’t a good excuse for not knowing the weather conditions before placing a wager. Most people hear the word weather associated with baseball and they automatically think of wind. While wind is a major factor, it’s certainly not the only factor to consider. The temperature and even more specifically the humidity level plays a large role in the outcome at many ballparks.
While moneyline and runline bets can be affected by the weather at times, the type of bet where a bettor most frequently can get an edge is through totals. Totals betting has become more popular through the years. I believe it is an area where the average baseball handicapper can do well over the long run if he or she is well-prepared. While weather plays a role of some kind in every outdoor stadium, there are some ballparks where weather affects the game more than others. Let’s take a look at a list of the top five MLB ballparks where you’ll want to be checking the weather frequently.
MLB Betting: Top Five MLB Ballparks Where Weather Affects the Game
5. Great American Ballpark (Cincinnati Reds) – Great American Ballpark is known for being difficult on pitchers, but it really depends upon the weather conditions. On a hot day with low humidity, a lazy fly ball has a solid chance of turning into a home run, but on a cool damp day early in the season the ball doesn’t carry well at all. Like many other ballparks, Great American tends to be much friendlier to hitters in the daytime.
4. Yankee Stadium (New York Yankees) – Games have only been played at the new Yankee Stadium since 2009, but the stadium has already gotten a reputation as a hitter’s ballpark. The dimensions of the field make it quite easy for a power hitter to hit it out to left or right field. The wall is quite a bit shorter than average, especially in the right field corner. Keep an eye out for strong winds that could funnel the ball toward the right field corner, since this is the ideal weather for numerous home runs.
3. Rangers Ballpark in Arlington (Texas Rangers) - Rangers Ballpark is a difficult one to figure out, mainly because there are some very interesting wind complications with this park. A strong wind blowing in from right field tends to actually push the ball out toward center field. The past few years has shown that a wind in from right field is perfect for an ‘over’ wager. The humidity level is something to keep a close eye on here as well. While heat is certainly good for the hitter, the high humidity levels seen in July and August make it more difficult to hit home runs here.
2. Chase Field (Arizona Diamondbacks) – Chase Field has a retractable roof and for about 85 percent of the games during the season in Arizona will be played with the roof closed. It’s during the early and late months of the year where the roof is sometimes left open if the temperature isn’t too terribly hot. When the roof is open, the thin desert air turns this park into a hitter’s paradise. It is quite common to see a 90 degree temperature with almost no humidity in April and May. Check on the status of the Chase Field roof before making your next wager on a Diamondbacks home game.
1. Wrigley Field (Chicago Cubs) – How important is the weather at Wrigley Field? The oddsmakers realize that the direction of the wind is so important here that they won’t even line the total or the runline until the day of the game. Extreme caution in releasing the line is a huge clue that the weather is crucial to the outcome of the game. Watch a Cubs game when the wind is howling off Lake Michigan, and you’ll quickly see how important the wind direction is at Wrigley.
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