Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports. Pictured: Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton.
- The Yankees' two top sluggers, Giancarlo Stanton and Aaron Judge, have the best odds to lead the league in home runs this year at +700 and +1000, respectively.
- Last year's leader Khris Davis cashed tickets at 25-1, but can still be had at 20-1 this year.
- One value pick is Rhys Hoskins at 50-1, who could up his total of 34 from last year with a little more luck on his side.
It’s Super Bowl season, so here I am with home run leader odds for the upcoming MLB season. Why not, right?
Last year, Khris Davis with a ‘K’ launched 48 bombs to lead the way by five. He was +2500 to be the home run king in 2018 and has improved his odds to +2000 to repeat his feat.
Leading the way this year are a couple of big boppers on the world’s favorite baseball team. Giancarlo Stanton, 2017 league leader, is the favorite at +700, while his teammate Aaron Judge, 2017 runner-up, is next up at +1000.
2019 Most Home Run Odds
Before last season began, those two Bronx Bombers were hyped to the moon. Having hit 111 combined homers in 2017, oddsmakers were posting props on how many homers they’d hit in their first season together. They fell well short of the 87.5 number that was set, as Stanton hit 38 and Judge hit 27 in 112 games.
Though they fell short of expectations last year, we know that they are both capable of hitting upwards of 50 homers. With this prop, you’re going to want to pick someone who you believe has the potential to hit at least 40 homers, and hopefully upwards of 45.
There’s been four consecutive seasons in which the league leader has hit at least 47 home runs. The league is different these days. Launch angles, shifts, strikeouts … these guys are practically taught to sell out and hit bombs. Don’t expect to get lucky and win by taking someone with a 35-HR ceiling.
J.D. Martinez and Joey Gallo are next at +1800. Martinez’s 43 homers in his Sox debut was second best in the MLB behind Davis, while Gallo was the only other player in baseball to hit 40.
I’ll likely be taking him again due to his raw power and potential. He strikes out so freaking often (more than 35% in each of his two full seasons), but has also hit 40+ homers both years. When he’s not striking out, he’s either walking or hitting a lot of fly balls — a lot of which go over the fence.
My mindset is that Gallo is capable of 45 home runs regardless. If he strikes out a bit less, he’s capable of 50+. That’s a big if, but he did set a career “best” with a 35.9% strikeout rate last year. Sure, it was the second worst in the MLB, but a career best for him.
At 20-1, last year’s leader has value in my mind, too. Davis isn’t a household name, but has been perhaps the most consistent hitter in recent MLB history.
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Last year was his third consecutive season with at least 40 home runs and he’s somehow managed to hit exactly .247 in four straight seasons. His advanced batted ball metrics have also been very consistent, suggesting that he should be able to hit 40+ homers again as long as he stays healthy.
One name further down the list that I find intriguing is Rhys Hoskins. I took the over on his home run over/under last year and won, so he’s left me with a happy memory.
Big boy + small ballpark = home runs. He wowed in his 2017 debut with 18 jacks in 50 games. He couldn’t keep up with that absurd pace last year, but hit 34 in his first full season.
Like Gallo, he hits fly balls at a high rate. In 2017, 31.6% of those fly balls were homers. Last year, that number was basically cut in half to just 16.0%. Still better than league average, but lower than what I would expect.
The 30% is not sustainable long term, but 20+% is definitely achievable for a man of his size in Philadelphia.