MLB Betting

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MLB 2021 Season Update

Baseball is returning to as close to normal as possible in the current state of affairs. COVID-19 turned the 2020 campaign upside down, as the league managed just 60 delayed games with no fans in attendance. 2021 won’t return baseball to its past glory days, but we’ll at least have a 162-game schedule and fans will be in the stands in varying capacities across the United States. For Canadian fans, the Toronto Blue Jays will call Dunedin, Florida their home for the foreseeable future as cross-border governments try to reconcile border traffic during the pandemic. 

All of that aside, spring has sprung, and Spring Training has come to a close. The first pitch of this regular season will be thrown today and fans across the league will finally get a chance to see this year’s version of the top contenders on the MLB betting lines. We’ll break down what makes each club a legitimate betting option and how you may be able to capitalize on some enticing early-season World Series odds. 


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MLB 2021 Odds to Win the World Series

Los Angeles Dodgers +300 MLB Odds 

No team has been more consistent atop the MLB Vegas odds over the last two seasons than the reigning champion LA Dodgers. And while they seemed unstopped last season, the Dodgers have somehow gotten even better this season. They plucked prized free agent Trevor Bauer from the pool and signed the unorthodox righty to a healthy three-year deal for $102 million. That rounds out a starting rotation that is already made up of Clayton Kershaw, Walker Buehler, Julio Urias and Dustin May. Those are big-league arms that could carry any team to World Series glory, not to mention LA’s lethal offensive weapons.


New York Yankees +550 MLB Odds 

It was an up and down season for the New York Yankees last year. DJ LeMahieu continued his emergence as a perennial leadoff man and was awarded for his efforts with a six-year $90 million contact this offseason. Another bright spot on the Yankees’ rotation last season was Luke Voit, who led the Majors with 22 homers and paced the Yankees with 52 RBIs. However, Voit will be on the shelf for the early part of the season with a knee injury, so New York will need to rely on their other big boppers to carry the load. The biggest question that remains in the Big Apple is starting pitching. Will Corey Kluber and Jameson Taillon return to form and round out the rotation behind Gerrit Cole? 

San Diego Padres +800 MLB Odds  

For the first time in a long time the San Diego Padres appear to be the real deal. They’ve long been outshone by the California rivals to the north, but with Fernando Tatis Jr. asserting himself as arguably the most dangerous player in baseball, and the acquisitions of proven starters Blake Snell and Yu Darvish, the Padres may give LA a run for their money in the NL West. With this kind of top-heavy star power in LA and SD, you’ve got to feel for the likes of San Francisco, Colorado and Arizona, who must feel like their seasons are over before they’ve begun. 

Chicago White Sox +1000 MLB Odds 

The Chicago White Sox represent a curious choice among the favourite odds to win World Series hardware. They had a pretty underwhelming offseason, as they failed to address some significant gaps in the starting rotation. They’ll turn to an aging Dallas Keuchel and inconsistent Lance Lynn to provide quality innings behind middle-of-the-road Ace Lucas Giolito. With those obvious holes in the rotation left unaddressed, Chicago will need to rely on the reigning AL MVP winner, Jose Abreu, and a mixture of veterans and youth up and down the batting order to power the Sox to the pennant. That said, one area that received a significant boost is the White Sox bullpen. The acquisition of Liam Hendricks will ensure leads are locked down late in games, and makes an already good bullpen even better. 

Atlanta Braves +1000 MLB Odds 

The Braves have one of the most well-rounded offenses in the MLB and that gives them an edge on the MLB lines. Re-signing Marcell Ozuna this offseason to a relative bargain deal will again buffer Freddie Freeman and Travis d’Arnaud, who is coming off of a career year in 2020 based on prorated stats. Most importantly, the Braves will welcome back their Canadian Ace, Mike Soroka, who went down early last season with a torn Achilles. The righty will join newly acquired Charlie Morton, which immediately makes Atlanta a better team than last season.

*Odds as of April 4th, 2021

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How to Bet on Major League Baseball


The World Series is regarded as a national holiday for baseball fans everywhere making major league baseball one of the best sports to bet on. Even if the game has started, you can still get in on the action by live betting on MLB. The run line, total, and moneyline odds are all available live, along with a slew of at-bat betting options. Betting live is a great way to feel engaged with every second of the game.

Whether you’re a beginner sports bettor, or a seasoned vet looking for new ways to get in on the action, you’ll benefit from this guide on MLB betting. We’ve compiled this detailed guide to equip you with a betting edge throughout the 162-game season. Baseball fans love intensifying the viewing experience by betting on their favourite teams, and soon enough, you’ll be able to as well. Read on for everything you need to know about wagering on MLB baseball this season.



Betting on MLB


Just when you thought MLB baseball couldn’t get any better, you now have the opportunity to pick and choose your favourite teams and players and place a variety of interesting bets on every game you watch. A few examples of popular bets available at Bodog Sportsbook include props, parlays, and the big three single bets, but the MLB betting options are really limitless. We’ll explain how to bet on all aspects of the game, starting with one of our most popular bets: the MLB run line.



Betting on MLB Run Lines


One of the most common questions we get asked is: how do MLB run lines work? If you’ve asked this question before, this section is for you. Here is MLB run line betting explained in detail.


In most baseball games, there is a favourite and an underdog. In order to make both teams appealing picks for bettors, oddsmakers use MLB run line betting. The run line bet includes a 1.5-point spread (in most cases) that gives the underdog a boost. Think about the 1.5 points as an acceptable win/loss margin. The underdog can lose by 1 run and still pay its bettors. As for the favourite, they must win by more than two runs in order to pay their bettors. The result is stronger odds for the underdog and bigger payouts for the favourite. Let’s use an example to illustrate:


Los Angeles Dodgers –1.5 (–170)
San Diego Padres +1.5 (+125)


The team with the negative spread is the favourite, and the team with the positive spread is the underdog. In this example, Los Angeles is the favourite and is laying 1.5 points to the Padres on the run line. If the Dodgers win by 2 or more runs, Dodgers bettors win. If San Diego wins the game, or loses by just 1 run, San Diego bettors win.

The number in the brackets beside the spread are the attached moneyline odds for each team on the run line. By looking at the odds, you can tell how much you’d get paid for your bet. In our example, a $170 bet on Los Angeles yields a $100 payout (keep in mind LA is the favourite), whereas a $100 on San Diego yields a $125 payout. Oddsmakers can shift these odds in order to even out the betting on both sides, thus reducing the book’s risk of exposure.



Betting on MLB Moneyline Odds


For a simpler betting experience, consider betting on MLB moneyline. If you’re wondering what MLB moneyline odds are, you’re not alone. They’re not self-explanatory when you look at them. There’s no spread attached to the game, just odds for each team, so you’re simply picking the winner straight up. If your pick wins, you win.

Moneyline betting is very popular with beginner sports bettors and advanced bettors who are trying to predict an upset. The underdog doesn’t get any advantage, so they have longer odds than they’d have with the spread. Let’s take a look at an example of moneyline betting in MLB.


Houston Astros –300
Seattle Mariners +230


The moneyline odds are –300 for Houston; they’re the favourite as you can see by the “–“ sign. If the Houston Astros win the game, bettors get paid $100 on a $300 bet. Conversely, if the Seattle Mariners win the game, Seattle bettors get paid $230 on a $100 bet. Keep in mind, you don’t have to bet $100; this denomination is used industry-wide for the sake of simplicity. After five innings of play, moneyline wagers are official – even if the game doesn’t play to completion.



Betting on MLB Totals 


Total betting is unique in that you’re not betting on the winning team; instead, you’re betting on how offensive or defensive a game will be. MLB Totals gives bettors an opportunity to bet on the total number of runs scored in a game. Oddsmakers will come up with a prediction, and you bet on the actual total score between both teams going over or under the prediction.


Totals (over-under):
San Francisco Giants  6.5 (–120)o
Chicago Cubs  6.5 (+120)u



How does betting on MLB totals work?


In this example, oddsmakers have come up with a total of 6.5 for the Giants-Cubs game. The half-point in the total prevents ties from happening (if the total was 6, and the teams tied 3-3, the result would be a push). You’re betting on the total points scored by both teams being higher than 6.5 or lower than 6.5. The “o” is for Over, and the “u” is for Under.


The payouts for totals can be derived from the moneyline odds in the brackets. Bettors who take the Over will get paid $100 on a $120 bet, while bettors who take the Under will get paid $120 on a $100 bet. In this example, the Over is the favourite.






Betting on MLB Futures


The MLB futures market is the place to be for betting on the winners of major titles – like the World Series, or the AL or NL Championships. You’ll even find smaller victories like MLB division winners in the futures section of the sportsbook. A futures bet is a long-term wager on an outcome of a future event. In terms of value, quite often, the further away the event, the better the MLB futures odds are for you. For that reason, people like betting on MLB futures before the season starts.


To illustrate the way futures odds progress through the season, we’ll look at the World Series winners of 2017: the Houston Astros. People who snapped up the Astros preseason got them for +1400 – which was an absolute steal. They came out strong, causing their odds to shrink to +425 by midseason and then to +145 right before the World Series started. Think you know which team will win the World Series? Cast your vote in the futures section of our sportsbook, and you could walk away a winner.



Betting on MLB Props


MLB props give fans a chance to bet on events and stats that happen alongside games. These propositions don’t involve betting on the winning team in a game or series. They’re more like side bets that complement the betting action. An example of a prop is betting on how many games a team will win in the regular season, and how many homeruns a star player will hit.


MLB prop bets can use the “Totals” style of betting, where you bet over or under a specified number. For example, Will the Yankees win over or under 90.5 games? This is also an example of MLB season props. Another way that prop bets can be structured is with “Yes” or “No” as betting options. For example, Will Tim Tebow make it to the MLB? A third style of prop bet is a single proposition with several answers. For example, every season, there are props for the MVP and Cy Young winners. The potential picks are listed with odds beside each name.



Betting on MLB Parlays


If you have a number of bets you’d like to place, you could place them individually as single bets, or you could group them together in a "mega" bet, also known as a parlay. The benefit of parlay betting is the payout. You’d win a lot more from a parlay bet than you’d win if all your single bets came through. The flip side is all of the bets in a parlay must win in order for your parlay to win. If one of the bets loses, the entire parlay loses.


Between two and 12 bets can be parlayed together in our sportsbook, and when one bet results in a push, it’s removed from the parlay. For a single game, you can combine the totals with the moneyline or run line odds, but you can’t combine the moneyline with the run line. Some futures and props bets can also be included in parlays. To find out if it can be parlayed, add your bets to your Bet Slip and see if the word “Parlay” appears with a box to check. Let’s look at an example of a two-team parlay to compare the payout in a parlay vs. the payout in single bets.


Tampa Bay Rays  +175
New York Yankees   –210


Florida Marlins   EVEN
Chicago Cubs  –120


After doing some research, you feel confident that the Tampa Bay Rays will beat the New York Yankees and the Florida Marlins will beat the Chicago Cubs. You put $100 on the Tampa Bay Rays and $100 on Florida Marlins as two single bets. If the Rays win, you get $175. If the Marlins win, you get $100. Your total gain would be $275. If you put your $200 on a two-team parlay for Tampa Bay and Florida, you’d win $900. Doesn’t that sound better? When using standard –110 lines, two-team parlays generally pay 2.6/1, whereas three-team parlays pay 6/1. Always punch the numbers in the Bet Slip and to see your potential earnings.



MLB Live Betting Explained


It’s never too late to bet on a game at Bodog Sportsbook. Even after the game has started, you can still get in the action by live betting on MLB. The run line, total, and moneyline odds are all available live, along with a slew of at-bat betting options. Not sure who will win the game but think you can pin down which team will be winning at a specific point in the game? Bet on segments of a game such as the first five innings. You can even bet on the total runs in any given inning. Betting live is a great way to feel engaged with every second of the game, as you’re constantly assessing where the game is going in order to gain an edge. Here are some popular live bets:


• Bet on the outcome of the plate appearance. Think the batter at plate is going to get a homerun? Check the odds and assess the value. You can bet on several outcomes in the Live Betting tab, including a single, 2B, 3B, strikeout, walk, groundout, fly out, and several other combinations.

• Bet on the number of runs the at-bat team will have after a half-inning. These bets can be a total where you try to predict if the number will be over or under a specified number, or an exact bet where you select a specific number (0, 1, 2, 3 etc.).

• Bet on the number of hits the at-bat team will get during the half-inning. Just like the runs outcome, the number of hits can show up as either a total (or a few totals), or a specific number.

• Bet on the number of strikeouts that will be thrown in a half-inning.

• Bet on the number of pitches that will be thrown in a half-inning.


Every game presents a new opportunity for MLB betting magic. With a keen eye for a potential upset, picking pitchers’ duals for the under, or long-term World Series predictions in the MLB futures, there’s never been more options to add a new flavour to the Big League experience. Stay tuned for odds updates on every team in the Majors and watch the futures trends as the favourites emerge during the season.

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