MLB Betting Tip: 2 World Series Futures to Avoid During the All-Star Break

Jul 09, 2019 01:23 PM EDT
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Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Los Angeles Dodgers outfielder Joc Pederson

  • The Los Angeles Dodgers and New York Yankees are the favorites to win the World Series at the All-Star break.
  • Using consensus projections we explain why bettors should think twice before taking either of these two teams to win the 2019 World Series.

The MLB All-Star break is upon us and baseball has hit the pause button on the 2019 season. Before action resumes on Thursday, let’s take a look at the odds to win the World Series and determine which teams are offering bettors value to lift the Commissioner’s Trophy.

To determine a team’s probability of winning the World Series we created a consensus projection using simulations from FanGraphs and Baseball Prospectus. Then to find value we compared the model results to the betting odds at FanDuel.

Below are each team’s odds and projected chance to win the World Series:

The betting market is efficient and based on the consensus projection there aren’t any great value bets to be made, which is unfortunate. However, two teams standout as clubs gamblers should avoid.

Knowing what not to bet is just as valuable as finding a mispriced future.

Los Angeles Dodgers

  • Current odds: +280, Implied Probability: 26.3%
  • Dodgers win the World Series 23.2% of the time

The Dodgers own the best record in the majors and have a 13.5-game lead over the second-place Diamondbacks in the NL West, which is tied for the third-largest division lead at the All-Star break in MLB history. LA was the first team in baseball to top the 50-win and 60-win marks.

The Blue Crew dominated the first half and the models give the team a 23.2% chance to win the World Series — that’s the best in baseball. But this team isn’t unbeatable.

LA lost three straight and seven of its last 13 entering the break. The team’s biggest weakness is its bullpen which ranks 14th in the majors in WAR according to FanGraphs.

October is for relievers and with bullpens pitching a greater number of innings in the postseason, this could be a concern.

The Dodgers may very well end up winning the World Series, but bettors shouldn’t rush to wager on this team.

New York Yankees

  • Current odds: +350, Implied Probability: 22.2%
  • Yankees win the World Series 13.4% of the time

The Bronx Bombers have the best record in the AL and a 6.5-game lead in the division at the All-Star break. That’s an impressive accomplishment given the number of injuries to big name stars like Giancarlo Stanton, Aaron Judge and Luis Severino.

Injuries aside, the team has enjoyed some luck. In baseball, teams have little control over the clustering of hits both offensively and defensively. According to ThePowerRank, the Yankees have been the third-luckiest team in 2019 generating 48.8 more runs than expected based on clustering of hits.

If cluster luck runs out, injuries continue to be a problem and the team is unable to add pitching depth before the trade deadline it would not be surprising to see New York’s lead in the division vanish.

The Yanks are one of the most likely teams to win the World Series with a 13.4% projected chance. But because the team wears pinstripes the oddsmakers have inflated the line.

At +350 odds, the team’s implied probability of winning it all is 22.2% The 8.8% difference in projected chance and implied probability is the largest in baseball.

Like the Dodgers, the Yankees have the talent to win the championship but there is no value based on the current odds.

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