MLB 2015 Season Win Totals: Shopping for the Best Betting Odds
by Dave Schwab - 2/23/2015
Pitchers and catchers have already started reporting to MLB spring training sites, and the exhibition season gets underway in early March. Once the games start counting for real, all 30 teams will be under the gun to see if they can surpass the oddsmakers' projected win totals for this season.
Most sportsbooks have already posted their betting odds for these totals, but now that each team's roster is clearly taking shape, it's a great time to shop these odds for the best value on the board.
American League Win Totals
The Los Angeles Angels posted the most victories in the Majors last season at 98, and their win total for this season has been set at 88.5 with a -115 money line on either the "under" or the "over" with both Bovada andSportsbook.ag. If you go to BetOnline, the win total is 87.5 with a -110 money line either way. Going all the way back to the 2002 regular season, the Angels have won at least 89 games nine times in 13 years. The last time Los Angeles failed to win that many games was in 2013 when it went 78-84. Take the added value with BetOnline's one less game and go with the over on the Angels.
The Boston Red Sox stumbled to a 71-91 record last season following their MLB title run in 2013. Given some strong additions to both the pitching staff and the batting lineup, the oddsmakers are looking for a quick rebound with a projected win total of 86 with BetOnline and Sportsbook.ag and 86.5 with Bovada. BetOnline's money line odds are set at -105 for the over and at -115 for the under. Sportsbook.ag has a -115 money line either way, and Bovada's money line is set at -105 for the over and -125 for the under. The solid value for the Red Sox in my eyes would be on the over with BetOnline. Other than the two blips on the screen last season and in 2012 when it fell to 69-93, Boston has won at least 87 games 10 times since 2002.
One AL team that could be primed for another strong rebound in 2015 could be the Texas Rangers after going from four straight seasons of 90+ wins to a dismal 67-95 last season. This year's squad is definitely not a 90-win team, but it's still far better than last year's record may suggest. BetOnline has the Rangers' projected win total set at 77.5 with a -135 money line on the over and a +115 line on the under. Bovada bumps this up to 78.5 wins with a -125 line on the over and a -105 line on the under, and Sportsbook.ag has its win total for Texas set at 79 with a -115 money line either way. Once again, the best value is with the over with BetOnline as I can easily see the Rangers going at least .500 this year.
National League Win Totals
The San Diego Padres were one of the top movers and shakers this offseason in an effort to get back into the title hunt in the National League West. They finished last season 17 games off the pace at 77-85, but these offseason moves have bumped this year's projected wins to 84.5 games with all three books. Bovada's money line is set at -105 for the over and -125 for the under. The money line on the over with BetOnline is set at +105 and at -125 for the under and if you go to Sportsbook.ag the line is set at -115 either way. The competition in this division could once again be fierce, but I would still take the value in BetOnline's +105 line on the over.
Another team that has high expectations coming into this season are the resurgent Chicago Cubs, who pulled out all the stops this offseason to get competitive in the congested NL Central. The Cubs have not won more than 75 games in the last five seasons, but their projected win total this year stands at 82.5 with Bovada and 83 with BetOnline and Sportsbook.ag. Bovada's money line is -130 for over and an even +100 for under. BetOnline has it set at -105 for over and -115 for under, and Sportsbook.ag is once again set at -115 either way. Along with heavy expectations comes heavy pressure, especially with a team that could face an extended learning curve when it comes to consistently winning games. I would go with the more favorable +100 line on the under with Bovada despite having to give up half a game.
The top team in the NL when it comes to 2015 projected win totals is the Washington Nationals, who won the NL East last season at 96-66. Bovada and BetOnline are going with 93.5 wins and Sportsbook.ag is set at 94 with the same -115 money line either way. Bovada is set at -105 for over and -125 for under, while BetOnline is set at -120 for over and an even +100 for under. I still see the Nationals winning their division this season, but I think they will struggle to win more than 93 games. I am giving up the half game again for the more favorable +100 money line on the under with BetOnline.
Read more articles by Dave Schwab
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