MLB Season Win Totals: Last-Minute Betting Picks
by Trevor Whenham - 4/3/2012
We are almost at the start of the baseball season. You’ve probably looked at the regular season MLB season win totals predictions that have been posted already. Let’s take one last look at them before the season starts, though, to see if what we have seen so far this spring has changed anything (all odds are from Bovada):
Colorado ‘over/under’ 81.5
Last year the Rockies won 73 games, so they would need to be quite a bit better for this number to be possible. I’m reasonably optimistic.
What I liked about this spring more than anything else was the battle they had to make their rotation. Jamie Moyer made the cut, and he had to pitch very well to do so. They have seven pitchers on the roster who could legitimately and comfortably start, and that depth makes them attractive. I like the bullpen as well.
The lineup isn’t the best out there, but it’s decent. I think their division should be a little easier this year than it was last year, too. I’d lean towards the over. I don’t think this is a playoff team, but they should take a nice step forward.
Miami o/u 85.5
There is a lot of hype surrounding the Marlins this year. I was skeptical before the season, and that certainly hasn’t changed this spring.
Spring performance doesn’t mean much, but I still would have liked the new-look Marlins to have more spark. They limped to a 11-14 record, and they just weren’t that exciting.
I have some concerns about the durability of the rotation, I really don’t trust Jose Reyes, I think Logan Morrison could regress, and Ozzie Guillen seems a little bit too impressed with himself right now.
I expect some disappointment, so I’ll take the under.
Pittsburgh o/u 72.5
At some point the Pirates are going to be slightly better than horrible. I was convinced that this was the year. They have some nice bats in the lineup, and some decent depth for once. Their rotation features some risks — most notably Erik Bedard — but I like the upside. I think the bullpen is more than solid.
Before the spring started I was definitely liking the over here. I probably still am, but I’m not as excited about it.
Their spring was absolutely brutal. Just terrible. They sit at 9-19, and that is an accurate representation of their play.
Given the progress they made early last year I was really hoping that they would play with enthusiasm, but they looked very flat.
Toronto o/u 83
Toronto has been the best team in the league in spring. That doesn’t matter by itself, but I have really liked how the team has carried itself this year. They have a swagger and a confidence that seems very legitimate.
They have a great player in Jose Bautista to build around, and we’ve seen some youngsters show real signs that they are ready to step up to help him — especially Brett Lawrie.
The rotation was a bit of a disappointment last year, but should be better this year if health and luck are both more positive.
I confidently like the over here — even more confidently than I did a month ago.
Washington o/u 83.5
The Nationals are one of the most hyped teams in the league. They are young, they are exciting, and people are taking notice. The question going into this year was whether people were getting ahead of themselves by a year with their excitement. Signs seem to be that they are.
I didn’t like how the team attacked the spring at all — I was really hoping for their hunger and youthful enthusiasm to lead to more than a 12-16 mark. I was also a little surprised how quickly they sent Bryce Harper down to Triple-A. I figured he’d end up there eventually, but the fact it happened so soon set off some alarm bells.
I think the team is moving in the right direction, and I expect Stephen Strasburg to be very impressive. However, I’d lean to the under. If you gave me this number for next year, though, I’d be way over.
Texas o/u 91.5
The Rangers had a lousy 12-17 spring record, though they were a solid 7-3 in their last 10.
I wasn’t sure what to think about this team this year, but the further along I have gotten the more bearish I have gotten. I’d take the under here.
I think the last two years of postseason frustration could catch up with them, and they could take a step back. They play in a stronger division now than they have in a while. The Angels have looked good, and Oakland and Seattle were both surprising this spring.
I haven’t been overwhelmed by Yu Darvish so far, so my expectations for him — and for the rotation — have been tempered. It could be a mildly disappointing year in Texas.
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