This Week in MLB Baseball Betting By the Numbers
by Aaron Smith - 5/7/2013
The calendar has flipped over to May, and there are plenty of big stories in Major League Baseball. Los Angeles can’t seem to get a winner despite having two teams with payrolls as big as the state of California. The only thing hot in Los Angeles right now is the seat for both Don Mattingly and Mike Scioscia.
Houston has the worst record in baseball, and that should come as no surprise. You have to wonder if there aren’t Triple A teams that would be more competitive in the majors than the Houston Astros. The AL East looks like it will be an exciting race all year long. The AL Central is close for now, but something tells me it won’t be for long. Detroit is simply too good for everyone else in that division.
Baseball is a numbers-driven game, and keeping track of the data can put you one step ahead of most bettors. Here is a look at some important numbers to keep an eye on when betting on baseball in the week ahead.
0- The Los Angeles Dodgers are 0-4 in Clayton Kershaw’s last four starts against the Arizona Diamondbacks. It’s very strange to see a team that Kershaw hasn’t had much success against because of his amazing overall success in his young career. Before you get the idea that Kershaw has stunk against Arizona, I should probably point out that he has a very impressive 2.36 ERA against the Diamondbacks. Sometimes it can be all about the lack of run support.
1.07- Jake Westbrook has a 1.07 ERA so far in 2013. He sits just ahead of Justin Verlander and Matt Harvey for the league lead in this number. Westbrook’s lowest season ERA is 3.12, so it’s hard to imagine him keeping his numbers this low for too terribly long.
11- The San Francisco Giants are 11-0 in Barry Zito’s last 11 home starts. Zito will start at home in Wednesday’s game against the Phillies. A couple years ago almost everyone had written off Zito, but he has really turned his career around. Zito’s curveball is still one of the best in baseball.
14- Some very mixed numbers involving the Colorado Rockies. The Rockies are 14-5 in their last 19 home games overall. At the same time, the Rockies are 3-14 in their last 17 interleague home games. Which number 14 means more to the Rockies this week as they host the New York Yankees?
15- Ricky Romero is back in the Toronto Blue Jays rotation, but is that really a good thing for the team? The Blue Jays have lost 15 of Romero’s last 18 starts. This is the same guy who had a 2.92 ERA in 2011. That number ballooned to a ridiculous 5.77 in 2012. The team has been trying to work on his mechanics. Which Romero will show up in 2013? The Jays better hope for the good Romero if they are going to get back in the AL East race.
18- Boston has been beating the teams they are supposed to beat. The Red Sox are 18-5 in their last 23 games against teams with a losing record. Eventually, they’ll have to prove themselves against the top teams in baseball, but taking care of business against inferior teams is a good start.
69- The Texas Rangers are 69-26 in their last 95 games following a loss. If you haven’t already been doing so, you should probably consider backing the Rangers after a loss. It seems Ron Washington’s team is the best in the league at avoiding a losing streak.
245- The “over” has cashed in 245 (54.57 percent of games) times so far this year versus 204 times for the “under”. Offenses have been more productive in the first month of the season than they have been in the past few years. Don’t get too excited to start betting the over every game, because the oddsmakers are definitely going to adjust the numbers higher quickly.
575- The Detroit Tigers are listed as the favorite at +575 to win the World Series, according to odds from 5Dimes. Detroit’s offense was very good last year, and they are much better now with the additions of Torii Hunter and a healthy Victor Martinez. The Tigers starting rotation went from a question mark a couple years ago to a major strength now. The only remaining question is Detroit’s bullpen. Can they do enough to help this team win it all in 2013?
710- $100 bettors have already made $710 backing the Boston Red Sox in each of Clay Buchholz’s starts this year. The Red Sox right-hander is one of the main reasons the team has had such a great turnaround in 2013. Remember, Buchholz had a 2.33 ERA in the 2010 season, so he has proven before that he is capable of dominating for an entire season.
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