MLB Betting Tip: Favorites Are Undervalued on Opening Day

MLB Betting Tip: Favorites Are Undervalued on Opening Day article feature image

Winslow Townson-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Boston Red Sox starting pitcher Chris Sale

  • Opening Day provides baseball bettors a loaded 15-game slate of MLB action.
  • Using Bet Labs, we share a profitable MLB betting system that focuses on the right time to bet favorites on Opening Day.

Welcome to Opening Day of the 2019 MLB season. As a holiday for baseball fans and bettors, the first game of the season is an opportunity to skip work and if we are lucky, make a little money while out of the office.

Before I head to the bar to watch my beloved Cardinals beat the Brew Crew, I wanted to share a profitable betting strategy for Opening Day.

Betting favorites in baseball is rarely a good idea. Since 2005, a $100 bettor wagering on every moneyline favorite would be down $66,296 in the regular season per Bet Labs. But on Opening Day that isn’t the case.

Players are as healthy as they will be all season, aces are on the mound and managers have a full complement of arms in the bullpen. All of these factors give the better (likely favored) team in the first game of the season an edge.

Since 2005, favorites in the first game have gone 132-80. A $100 bettor would have returned a profit of $1,319 backing the chalk on Opening Day. The optimal situation is to bet favorites of at least -120 against opponents that didn’t make the playoffs the previous season.

By eliminating the weakest favorites, we improve our win rate and return on investment.

This system has cashed more than 70% of wagers and a $100 bettor has returned a profit of $2,356. This year, there are eight game matches that will have gamblers sweating from the first pitch to the last game of the day.

Opening Day Favorites

  • New York Yankees (-359) vs. Baltimore Orioles (1 p.m. ET, ESPN)
  • Washington Nationals (-124) vs. New York Mets (1 p.m. ET)
  • Toronto Blue Jays (-140) vs. Detroit Tigers (3:37 p.m. ET)
  • Los Angeles Dodgers (-161) vs. Arizona Diamondbacks (4 p.m. ET, ESPN)
  • Houston Astros (-123) at Tampa Bay Rays (4 p.m. ET)
  • Chicago Cubs (-121) at Texas Rangers (4 p.m. ET)
  • Colorado Rockies (-135) at Miami Marlins (4:10 p.m. ET)
  • Boston Red Sox (-194) at Seattle Mariners (7 p.m. ET, ESPN)
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