2022 MLB Draft Odds: Termarr Johnson Now No. 1 Overall Pick Favorite Over Druw Jones, Jackson Holliday After Wild Swing
(Photo by Alex Trautwig/MLB Photos via Getty Images)
Prognosticators have swung and missed on just about every draft this year — and MLB’s is no exception.
Every single NBA mock draft expert, 13-of-13, slated Jabari Smith Jr. to go No. 1 overall to the Orlando Magic in the hours and minutes leading up to June’s selection day.
Even Adrian Wojnarowski, the NBA’s premier insider, indicated Smith Jr. would go No. 1 in the lead-up to the draft. Smith Jr. had been roughly -500 half an hour before the Magic were on the clock.
Woj, so-called mock experts and the markets were all wrong. Paolo Banchero was the eventual pick, and while sportsbooks corrected themselves fewer than five minutes before Adam Silver donned the podium, the bait-and-switch cost them quite a bit of money.
Banchero had been +250 or so in the minutes before the draft before shifting to -200 seconds prior to being selected.
For the NHL Draft, Shane Wright had been the heavy favorite for weeks before he was swiftly usurped by Juraj Slavkovsky as the favorite to go first overall. Most every hockey prognosticator had Wright as the No. 1 overall pick. Wright ended up going No. 4.
And while the majority of mock draft specialists had Aidan Hutchinson slated as the No. 1 overall pick heading into the week of the draft, Travon Walker made a late move to first.
While prognosticators and sportsbooks made the adjustments — most mocks had Walker at No. 1 by Thursday, and his odds to go No. 1 were as long as -450 — they were wrong for months beforehand.
For Sunday night’s MLB Draft, the same principles have held true. Druw Jones had been the heavy favorite for weeks, having been a consensus -250 favorite at most major American sportsbooks before experiencing a curious decline over the weekend.
By the time the dust settled on Sunday morning, Brooks Lee was the new, -350 favorite at DraftKings to go No. 1 overall. Jones was as long as +400.
That’s despite the fact that every MLB mock expert had someone else going No. 1 overall. MLB.com and ESPN have Druw Jones as the top man. Baseball America and The Athletic think the guy will be Jackson Holliday. FanGraphs is bullish on Termarr Johnson.
Then, came another ridiculous swing. Sharp action on Johnson across the market pushed his odds from +500 at 1:30 p.m. ET to -300 at 2:30 p.m. ET at DraftKings.
Handicappers everywhere had begun receiving notice late last week that Lee was the favorite to go No. 1.
Using that intel, sharp bettors steamed Lee to the top of every major American sportsbook before Sunday afternoon’s movement toward Johnson.
Lee’s odds went from as long as -400 to a current mark of +250, representing a decrease in implied probability of over 51%.
This saga mirrors what occurred in the NBA Draft between Smith Jr. and Banchero last month, in which the favorite lost poll position shortly before the start of the draft.
The moral of the story: No one knows anything. Buckle up.
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