how are you? I hope you are dong well and I hope you are making some profit as well.
The World Cup group stage games will be over today and if you watched my betting course about World Cup, you would make cca +10 units of profit so far. Depends on the odds you got, but I made +10.39 units of profit so far. The best odds are on Cloudbet.
If you didn’t watch the course about World cup and ideas how to beat the market, you can watch it here:
….because it will be closed on 2 days. So hurry up.
At the end of the course you get also a chance to learn how to easily turn the probabilities into the odds for football/soccer.
If you didn’t watch it – in short….
- World Cup is special event with 64 games
- There is almost no betting model for this world cup and if there is one, it is very hard to estimate probabilities. To many obstacles, like ranking teams, not enough statistics, huge psychological factors,….
- Nobody can guarantee a profit and mostly amateurs bettors and sports fans take this competition as a serious competition from sports betting perspective.
- This is biggest event in 2018 and many people that don’t watch sports, right now watch every single game. Many of them bet too and there was huge amount of money added to the market
- So, if we are regular daily bettors, right now we are not alone and there is huge amount of extra money involved
- Because of all that also the bookmakers don’t know how to set the odds properly, but they know one thing. They know how amateur bettors and sports fans think.
- Amateurs bettors will bet a lot on World Cup games, without any strategy or pre-research, they talk about every single game, they take this world cup very seriously, they also like to bet on huge favourites and we have probably couple of millions new “betting experts”.
- Because of all that, bookmakers offer them “tricky” odds on favourites.
Before the world cup, I researched the market and I saw, that betting blindly on underdogs in last couple of big competitions was profitable ting to do. This was announced in my video above. It is a combination of all those tings I mention here.
“What is your point to bet on all underdogs?”
That was the question I received yesterday. If this is so easy, why everyone don’t bet on all underdogs?
Why you bother with watching games, reading news, when you know that you don’t have any edge?
Many bettors think they have the edge in those games, but in fact they don’t have. I don’t have the edge in any of those games, you don’t have the edge and bookmakers don’t know how to set the odds, but they have margins and they have a lot of amateurs gamblers, that will lose money anyway. But in general it is almost not possible to have the edge compared to betting prices. And if there is someone who won couple of games without some strict strategy, system or estimation of the odds, it was probably pure luck.
Nobody can guarantee a profit in world cup games and nobody can guarantee that one team will win. We saw how Germany lost to Korea and focusing on one single game is in my opinion not right way.
It is little bit easier to beat the competition than one game. Even this is not a guarantee, but if you look at bigger picture, you have bigger chance.
Instead of focusing on on game, I focused on whole competition and on whole 64 games. I saw that betting on underdogs was profitable on big competitions and this is sample of 254 games now since 2010 (added 44 games now). I also recommended two other strategies, that have not such a good record in the past, but both could be profitable as well (betting on draws and betting on double chance against favourites – explained in video). I didn’t check the record on those two strategies, maybe some of you play this too and you can show us what is your record.
254 big competition games (EURO, WC) since 2010:
- +33.98 Units
- Yield: +13.38%
I think you can not do much better than this.
So, the answer on what was my point is this: I researched the market before the world cup. I didn’t just say – bet on underdogs without reason. I understand how bookmakers think and I know how sports fans/recreational/amateur bettors think. They also act very emotionally and they like to bet on huge favourites. So I looked at the bigger picture and I didn’t want to predict one game. I found some patterns, I researched past competition with betting odds (not who won, but how you can make money compared to the odds on the market). And of course when we take into account common sense and mentality of recreational bettors, I came to final conclusion.
When I see bets on the internet like Switzerland over 3.5 or Germany 1.40, I really don’t understand how those people come those those prices. So, if you bet on Germany 1.40, then you must estimate somehow, that this price should be lower (like 1.25 for example) and it is very hard to estimate those prices on such event. No games, very small sample sizes, confusion with the market, etc…
So, the point is that when I recommended to bet on underdogs, that was with the reason and there was some work behind this. The reason was – betting market and understanding it. I don’t care if Germany needs win, I didn’t care if Korea is not playing for anything. I knew, that betting on underdogs has probably some advantage, that was the pattern in the past and if we take into account mentality of amateur gamblers, who bet on huge favourites, there are strong reasons for doing this. I would probably never come to this conclusion if I would not understand the market, I would not come to this conclusion if I would not make every single mistake in the past and learn on my own losses.
If blindly betting on underdogs is very easy thing to do, why most bettors don’t do this?
I mentioned many times, that blindly betting usually doesn’t work, because bookmakers take such things into account. For example, betting blindly on underdogs or betting blindly on favourites will lead to a loss in MLB baseball. But bookmakers know how to set the odds there, because of many games, where it is easier to set the odds. On the other side, they are also confused with World Cup and because of this there was a chance to take the advantage.
There is of course NO POINT , if you wake up in the morning and you say, I will bet blindly on underdogs without a reason and have fun.
On the other side…
There is A POINT, if you wake up in the morning and say, I will research the market, I will research mentality of bettors, I will look at how bookmakers think, how bettors think and what was most profitable thing to bet in last big competitions, because of the same nature of event. After that I will make a conclusion and I will share those information with my followers, so they can look at the competition from different perspective than some amateur gambler, who will try to analyse every single game and bet on Spain 1.50 and Germany 1.40. If the message was completely understood, I think you could take the advantage so far and even have fun watching those games.
I bet only for fun….
In the video I said, that I will bet for FUN, I will bet SMALL and I will bet on underdogs (I recommended 3 different strategies, one of them was betting on underdogs). Why I decided for underdogs? Because I bet for fun, I don’t take this competition seriously and for me it is more exciting to cheer for underdogs. And also if we strictly stick with the research, the most profitable betting in the past was on underdogs:
- Bets on Favourites (last 210 big competition games): -14.46 Units
- Bets on Draws (last 210 big competition games): +11.04 Units
- Bets on Underdogs (last 210 big competition games): +23.59 Units
So, it was logical for me to bet on underdogs from both perspective.
This is not project for me – this is entertainment for me
I don’t gamble with such competitions. I bet for fun and very small. I could spend this money for parties, for drinking, cigarettes, but I decided that I will forget that amount of money. If I lose all, no problem. But if I bet it will make games more interesting to watch. That was my reason – just fun.
I know some people started to panic and this is what I announced in video as well and some people think that this is some serious project for me. I don’t gamble with those competitions. And this is not a project for me. With the video and with my information I wanted to help YOU, so you don’t make mistakes like most amateur gamblers. And I would not recommend to take this competition as some serious project.
Project for me is MLB for example. This is for me project, where I estimate the odds, try to beat closing line value, etc… but not World Cup. So, no matter what happen, this is not serious project for me and if you read and watch my videos, you should understand this.
If I say, that this is very risky competition, if I say, that I will bet only for fun and very small, if I say, that nobody can guarantee a profit,… and if you still decide to put your whole bankroll on this competition, it is your decision. I would definitely never recommend to bet big on such events. There are some ways how to take the advantage of this competition (like I explained in video above), but this is still not a guarantee, that it will work. It gives us just better chance against others.
So, what to do know if you still bet big and if you took my advice from video?
Right now the record is +10.39 units with the yield of +23.61%
If we go back and if I tell you before the world cup, that you will make exactly 64 bets and you will finish with the yield of +10% and +6.4 units of profit, I think everyone would take it. Yield of +10% or everything above +5 units on 64 games (if we bet 1 unit flat on each game) is very very good.
Right now we (or me) made more than +10 units. You can not expect much better result.
So, I recommend to take profits and don’t bet anymore on World Cup if you bet big and if you took this competition very seriously. This is nice profit. If you bet seriously always take profits. Simply take money, so you know, that you made a good thing. And expecting that you will finish this world cup with the yield of +30% or more is very optimistic. I don’t say it can not happen, but if you bet big, take profit if you listen to my advice and that’s it.
This is what I recommend now!
What about me?
I don’t care about this competition that much. I usually watch couple of minutes of every game, because I usually don’t have much time because of other work. I don’t even know if I watched full game yet. But I still have lot of fun. I consciously took some small amount of money to bet for fun in this world cup. And I will keep betting just for fun. I don’t care that much for profit here, because I bet one coffer per game. I still believe that I will finish with profit at the end. Maybe only +5 units, maybe less, maybe more, but I believe I will finish in profit.
WHAT TO DO NOW?
I am not important here, or what I will do, because I do this for fun. It is more about you and I wanted to help you with advice before the world cup and I want to help you with advice now. If you took my advice earlier, you made a profit so far. Right?
So here is my last advice if you bet seriously on this competition:
Stop betting and take profits, because you can not expect much better result than +10 units and yield of more than +20%. We call this – realistic epectations and sometimes you need to know when to stop.
If you bet for fun like me with the money you can lose without any problem, than keep having fun. I like to act as a sports fan here, I like to make some “fan tweets” on my twitter and I will say Croatia will be world champion and will beat England in final :-) :-)
But if you bet seriously – I recommend to take profit and stop. This is amazing result so far if you followed my advice before World Cup and you can not expect much better result than this.
I will show you today, how you can analyse baseball games and we will take a game between Boston Red Sox and Toronto Blue Jays as an example.
Boston Red Sox vs Toronto Blue Jays MLB Betting Analysis
Boston Red Sox and Toronto Blue Jays will play the first game of a 3 game series in Canada and both teams had a day off yesterday. Boston Red Sox will start with Rick Porcello, right handed pitcher, who is 4-0 to the season with ERA of 1.40, whip 0.818 and 23/1 K/BB rate in 25 innings. Toronto Blue Jays on the other side will start with J.A. Happ, let handed pitcher, who is 3-1 to the season with ERA of 4.50, whip 1.273 and 31/7 K/BB rate in 22 innings so fart this season.
Boston is 17-4 to the season and they have an amazing start so far. They score 5.9 runs per game and two of four losses came in last two games. They lost two straight games in Oakland.
Toronto Blue Jays on the other side is 13-8 to the season and they score 5.5 runs per game. They are coming home after two big losses against Yankees on the road. Yankees won 3 out of 4 games in this series and in the last two games, they outscored Blue Jays by 14-2 in runs.
Those are just basic information that we can find anywhere and of course, this is not enough to make a final bet.
Different approach betting
So, let’s start with couple of different approaches. Sports handicappers make bets on a different ways. Some bettors will make bets just based on their gut feeling, some bettors will just analyse line movement, some bettors will use strictly statics bets and some will combine all together. We have different methods, we have different styles and if your method is making a profit for you, this is ok.
Baseball Betting Model
I use my betting model to estimate my winning percentages. I turn those winning percentages into the odds and then I compare my odds with the bookmakers odds. My betting models are the heart of my sports betting decisions. But before we go to my projected odds on this game, let’s start with the odds. The odds are the key. Betting is not about finding the winners, but about finding the value. In other words it is about finding the right price in a sports betting market. And if you can get better price than market, then you are doing well. But to know what is a good price we need to research games and estimate our own odds somehow.
So, let’s research this game game as a sports bettors, not as a sports fans.
OPENING ODDS AND MOVEMENT
The first thing you can do is to check the opening lines or the odds if you like. There are couple of free sites, that share this information. Oddsportal and SBR are two of them.
I will take a look at Pinnacle sports odds. Pinnacle is probably the sharpest bookmaker in the world and what kind of information you get if you check the lines?
First (BOOKMAKERS OPINION)
when Pinnacle open the lines, you get their first opinion on this game. Of course this is not final, because they will later move the line because of betting action and possibly also because of some other information that they will get later (injuries, lineups,…). But let’s check their opening odds:
- TORONTO – 2.11 (+111)
- BOSTON – 1.83 (-120)
We can say, that this is bookmakers opinion on this game. We can easily turn those odds into percentages to see how much chances they give to home and away team. If we divide 1/2.11 and 1/1.83 we get implied probabilities. They added some margins this is why when you sum both numbers you will not get 1, but little bit bigger number:
If we cheat little bit, we can get probabilities on this game:
I simply take out the margins (juice): (1.020381737 – 1)/2
So, what kind of information you get with opening odds?
Bookmakers gave 53.63% of chance to Boston and 46.37% of chance to Toronto. In other words if they repeat this game a lot of times, bookmakers think, that Boston will win around 54 times out of 100 and Toronto 46 times out of 100.
Second (Bettors opinion)
After the opening odds we usually see some line movement and usually professional bettors opinion is little bit different then bookmakers opinion:
- 04/23 11:10 PM 1.93 2.00
04/23 09:38 PM 1.88 2.05
04/23 09:37 PM 1.91 2.02
04/23 09:26 PM 1.89 2.04
04/23 09:25 PM 1.88 2.05
04/23 09:24 PM 1.86 2.07
04/23 09:23 PM 1.87 2.06
04/23 02:41 PM 1.85 2.08
04/23 01:56 PM 1.83 2.11
The initial line movement shows, that there was an action on Toronto and bettors tried to get better price here. The odds started dropping later too. But initial line movement is something that we like to see. Note also, that sometimes such movement can be done intentionally too, because of better price later. But in general, initial line movement show that there is some action on Toronto. Bookmakers will move the line because of sharp bettors action. And we as a bettors we like to be on sharp side, not on public side.
Third (public opinion)
After bookmakers open the lines and move the line, public will later jump and there will probably be some other movement couple of hours before game starts.
What I wanted to show you here is that you can always check what is bookmakers opinion on games in terms of probability and what are initial line movements. If you estimate your chances and if bookmakers have the chance of around 55% on one team and you think or estimate your own odds on this team at around 95%, then something is wrong. Bookmakers opinions are pretty good and we are looking for games, where we think that their probabilities should be little bit lower or little bit bigger.
So, bookmakers gave Boston better chance, but the odds dropped after one hour on Toronto from 2.11 to 2.08 an later to 2.00. The question is will those odds go to 1.95 or will those odds go back to 2.05. This is the market and you can try to speculate and get the best price. And if your price will be better than it is a closing line, then you will bet closing line. Pinnacle says, that if you can beat the closing line constantly, this is better indicator of who is a winning bettor than a profit. And if you beat the closing line, but you still didn’t make a profit, you were unlucky.
BETTING MODEL, VALUE AND MY WINNING PERCENTAGES
There are different approaches and different betting styles, some bettors will say, that only line movement is important, some other will say, that only statistics/betting models is important and a lot of bettors will say, that we don’t need to use statistics and analytics and they have special gift for betting. If we exclude the last type of betting, because I unfortunately don’t have super-human betting power and I believe most of you also don’t have this power, we need to to work and research games. And one thing is for sure:
One baseball game is an event, where two possible outcomes are possible. Home team win and away team win.
I have projected my winning percentages for both teams. How, You can learn here.
I have projected that Toronto Blue Jay should have 58.7% of chance to win this game and Boston Red Sox only 41.30% of chance. If the model is correct somehow, I see that I give Toronto more than 50% of chance, while bookmakers give them less than 50% of chance.
My fair odds on Toronto are set at 1.70 and this is basically direct price, that I expect. Or in other words, if my trust the model, I would expect, that I make a profit of $70 for my risked $100 if I bet and win with Toronto.
But we saw, that bookmakers offer me the odds of around 2.00 at this moment. They are willing to pay me more than I would expect. If I bet $100 on Toronto, I will make a profit of $100. Because of that I have a value on Toronto Blue Jays. Of course, if I would be quicker and if I would take Toronto earlier (my betting model is not dependent on line movement), I would get even better price. Some better or smarter bettors were faster and take Toronto for much better price. But what I like here is that the initial line movement and my betting model are on the same side.
TRADITIONAL ANALYSIS OF THE GAME
After we have information about the odds and after you have estimated your own winning percentages, we can make an extra analysis. I usually don’t like to write analysis, because if you want to write good and unique analysis, you need at least 45 minutes. Bettors then read this analysis and from delivering to final bets we lose couple of hours. And let’s check what can happen if you are 2 hours too late:
Because of writing analysis we probably lose the opening price of 2.11, and let’s say, that you I write analysis and I get the price of 2.06 and you get this analysis 2 hours later. Yes, this is exactly this example
04/23 11:10 PM 1.93 2.00 (get analysis)
04/23 09:38 PM 1.88 2.05
04/23 09:37 PM 1.91 2.02
04/23 09:26 PM 1.89 2.04
04/23 09:25 PM 1.88 2.05
04/23 09:24 PM 1.86 2.07
04/23 09:23 PM 1.87 2.06 (write analysis)
04/23 02:41 PM 1.85 2.08
04/23 01:56 PM 1.83 2.11 (opening price)
What that means in reality if you constantly get 2.00 instead of 2.06 on 1000 bets? And in Toronto vs Boston game we are talking about only 2 hours later.
|Win%||W||L||Odds 2 (+100)||Odds 2.06 (+106)|
In the best case (52% winning percentage) you can lose 31.2 units of profit on the long run, just because you didn’t make your own bets at the right time, but you read and follow other people’s picks. With $100 per unit, this is loss of $3120, just because of 2 hours late. Let’s go further. Betting $100 per game usually requires bankroll of $10.000, right? And losing $3120 on initial bankroll of $10,000 just because you are always too late, is little bit to much, isn’t it? Yes, of course every game is a different case and we can not use this example and implement it on every single baseball game, but I wanted to show you how much money you can lose because of writing and reading analysis of other people, instead of making your own.
But let’s get back to analysis of this game:
The most important players in a baseball game are pitchers and because of them the odds changing on a daily basis, despite teams will play 3-4 games in a row against the same team.
Starting pitchers will start the game, which is 9 innings long (if we exclude extra innings if they happen). A lot of bettors will focus on ERA, which is not the best indicator of how good pitcher is, so I will show you couple of other things to check.
J.A. Happ is a lefty pitcher, who will start for Toronto and his ERA is 4.50 so far this season and this will tell us how many runs this pitcher allows per 9 innings. But ERA doesn’t include many other things and sometimes pitchers were just lucky. Imagine, that you have a pitcher with ERA 0, but he walked many hitters and he survived couple of bases loaded situation. Of course, ERA will be low, but on the long run, if he continues to play like this he will be hit hard. And ERA will not tell you this. ERA will tell you what happened, but we want to know what can possibly happen in the next game based on pitchers performance.
There are two very good sites like Fangraphs and Baseball-reference, where they provide some ERA metrics numbers and in this example we can check Happ’s xFIP (xFIP = ((13*(Fly balls * lgHR/FB%))+(3*(BB+HBP))-(2*K))/IP + constant). (fangraphs)
HAPP ERA = 4.50
HAPP xFIP = 2.97
As you can see in his example, despite his ERA is not that great his xFIP is almost excellent and xFIP for example is better future predictor than ERA. So with Happ we have very good pitcher on the mound.
He struck out 31 hitters in 22 innings this season, which is amazing. He went 5.5 innings per game, so we can expect that 3 innings will be pitched by bullpen and the biggest problem so far I see is that he allowed 5 home runs. This is the reason for big ERA.
What about his history against current Red Sox lineup?
|J.D. Martinez R||10||0||2||0||0.3||0.417||0.3||0.717||0.342|
|Eduardo Nunez R||21||0||1||3||0.286||0.318||0.381||0.699||0.309|
|Christian Vazquez R||14||0||2||4||0.286||0.333||0.357||0.69||0.31|
|Rafael Devers L||6||0||0||2||0.333||0.333||0.333||0.667||0.3|
|Hanley Ramirez R||32||1||6||6||0.188||0.308||0.344||0.651||0.292|
|Mookie Betts R||26||1||3||2||0.192||0.222||0.423||0.645||0.272|
|Brock Holt L||9||0||1||2||0.222||0.3||0.333||0.633||0.285|
|Sandy Leon S||6||0||0||2||0.167||0.167||0.167||0.333||0.15|
|Jackie Bradley Jr. L||14||0||1||5||0.071||0.133||0.143||0.276||0.13|
|Andrew Benintendi L||10||0||0||2||0||0.167||0||0.167||0.117|
|Mitch Moreland L||5||0||1||2||0||0||0||0||0|
|Boston Red Sox:||153||2||17||30||0.196||0.266||0.301||0.567||0.255|
As we can see, he has some very solid numbers against current Boston lineup, despite I would not pay such a big attention to those numbers because usually we have very small sample sizes and we must be careful how much weight we give.
However, Boston players combined 153 at bats against him with batting average of 0.196, which is also not most important metric for future predictions. But to get the first picture about how he played in the past against Boston Red Sox players we can check some numbers above in the table.
Happ is also 7-3 in his career against Boston and his team is 10-6 in those games. His career ERA versus Boston is 3.24.
Rick Porcello on the other side is a right handed pitcher, who will start for Boston. He is 4-0 to the season and he struck out 23 hitters in 25 innings. The most amazing thing about him so far is that he has amazing control. He walked only 1 hitter so far.
PORCELO ERA – 1.40
PORCELLO xFIP – 3.34
But if we check his xFIP numbers against Happ’s numbers, we see, that Happ has lower xFIP. At the end of the day, there will not be such a huge advantage and if we strictly stick with xFIP numbers, Toronto will have the advantage here.
Let’s check his numbers versus Toronto’s players:
|Luke Maile R||1||0||0||0||1||1||2||3||1.25|
|Steve Pearce R||9||0||1||0||0.444||0.444||0.667||1.111||0.478|
|Justin Smoak S||30||3||6||8||0.267||0.389||0.633||1.022||0.428|
|Kevin Pillar R||36||0||3||7||0.278||0.316||0.389||0.705||0.311|
|Teoscar Hernandez R||3||0||0||1||0.333||0.333||0.333||0.667||0.3|
|Aledmys Diaz R||3||0||1||1||0.333||0.333||0.333||0.667||0.3|
|Devon Travis R||15||0||1||1||0.267||0.312||0.333||0.646||0.291|
|Kendrys Morales S||39||2||5||7||0.205||0.244||0.385||0.629||0.272|
|Curtis Granderson L||13||0||1||4||0.231||0.231||0.231||0.462||0.208|
|Russell Martin R||29||1||4||7||0.103||0.188||0.207||0.394||0.184|
|Randal Grichuk R||2||0||0||1||0||0.333||0||0.333||0.233|
|Active totals for|
|Toronto Blue Jays:||180||6||22||37||0.239||0.297||0.4||0.697||0.307|
Toronto have 180 at bats against him, with batting average of 0.239 and 6 home runs.
Porcello is 9-8 against Toronto with ERA of 4.98 and his team is 10-10. Solid numbers, but if you strictly bet based on this pitcher vs batter information, then betting on Happ versus Boston would make you +5.2 units of profit in his career, while betting on Porcello would make you a loss of 0.9 units in his career versus Toronto.
The conclusion about pitchers: According to xFIP we have small advantage on Toronto’s side. Both pitchers have been playing very well so far and we will probably see very good pitching duel. Happ has pitched well against Boston in the past as well.
The old times, when pitchers went 9 innings and at the same time scored 3 home runs are gone. Starting pitchers average is around 5.5 innings per game (my number is 5.46 innings per game for qualified SP last 365 days). If we know, that the game is 9 inning long, we simply can not ignore last 3-4 innings right? This is still more than 30% of the game.
When you make an analysis on bullpen (relievers), you can always check bullpen usage and if their key relievers pitched in a game the day before. But in our case, both teams had day off yesterday, so I will consider that all relievers, that are not injured are available today and can be used.
|Team total IP:||6.2|
|Team total IP:||9.1|
I like to compare teams bullpens advanced ERA metrics numbers and according to my numbers I rank Blue Jays bullpen little bit better. I rank Blue Jays bullpen as 7th best and Boston as 16th best in the league (out of 30 teams).
TORONTO BULLPEN ERA – 2.12
TORONTO BULLPEN xFIP – 3.74
BOSTON BULLPEN ERA – 3.25
BOSTON BULLPEN xFIP – 3.83
As you can see, I would give small advantage here to Blue Jays.
HITTING AND THE OFFENSE
So, after we get the first picture about pitchers we need to check how many runs can our team score. Mainstream statistics that most sports fans and commentators use are home runs (HR), batting average (BA) and runs (R). Those are not the best future predictors and I see that more and more people started to talk about other metrics.
But let’s start with the basic picture about those two teams.
Boston scores 5.9 runs per game and they are one of the best offensive teams so far. Toronto on the other side scores 5.5 runs per game, which is also about league average. But instead of focusing on batting average you can focus on some other things, like OBP, SLG, OPS, WRC+,…
And what I like to focus is on lefty vs righty matchups against hitters. In general, when left handed pitchers face left handed batters they have big advantage. It is much harder to hit left handed pitcher if you are a left handed batter. Second interesting thing is that there is much less left handed pitchers in the game and hitters sometimes are not that familiar with them. Of course this can not be the rule for every single player, but teams like to have at least one lefty in their rotation and at least one lefty in their bullpen so he can go against left handed batters in crucial moments.
According to my rankings I rank Boston as a 4th best offensive team in the league and Toronto as a 10th best team in the league. But this game is special because Boston will face a left handed pitcher and they were in 101 at bats this season against lefties. And what is interesting, I rank them as 29th team vs lefties so far. And today they will need to face Happ, that has almost excellent xFIP numbers and has very good past numbers vs Red Sox. Even if we check only runs/game, we see that Boston scores only 3.3 runs per game versus lefties, while on the other side they score much more vs righties. Note also, that Boston score little bit less on the road (4.7 compared to their overall 5.9 number)
Toronto on the other side score 5.5 runs per game, but they are much better versus right handed pitchers – 6.7 (this is the situation for them today) and they score more against lefties too – 5.8.
I rank Toronto as a 6th best team versus righties so far, while I rank Boston as a 29th versus lefties so far.
(of course I can not reveal everything in this post, but you can check my A Journey course, where I reveal exactly how I project my odds and what kind of metric and rankings I use)
The next thing you can do is to research couple of other things. How teams play in the field, how many errors they make, how good they are in stealing bases, etc…
We all know, that teams play in different ballparks and we have ballparks that are hitters friendly and ballparks that are pitchers friendly. In other words if Albert Pujols would play his whole career in Coors Field his numbers would be much better. I use ballpark adjusted numbers for my betting model. If you don’t use ballparks adjusted statistics, you can take this into account too.
Here is one interesting table from fantasypros, where you can get little bit better picture, which ballparks are hitters or pitchers friendly.
Globe Life Park in Arlington
(Boston Red Sox)
Oriole Park at Camden Yards
Great American Ball Park
(Kansas City Royals)
(New York Yankees)
(Toronto Blue Jays)
Citizens Bank Park
U.S. Cellular Field
(Chicago White Sox)
(San Diego Padres)
(Tampa Bay Rays)
(St. Louis Cardinals)
Angel Stadium of Anaheim
(Los Angeles Angels)
(New York Mets)
(Los Angeles Dodgers)
(San Francisco Giants)
Minute Maid Park
If you like, you can compare umpires and how they call strikes, balls, some of them favour home teams, etc. This is also another thing you can take into account.
It is of course important to take into account injuries. I use active rosters numbers, so the numbers from injured players are excluded and two notable missings are Donaldson fot Toronto (injured from 13.April) and Bogaerts for Boston (from 11.April).
CONCLUSION AND RECOMMENDED BET
So, what we have here?
The bookmakers opened the odds at 2.11 on Toronto, but the odds dropped to 2.00 later. We have my betting model, where I have projected, that Boston should be an underdog and not Toronto.
We have Happ, who has very good history against Red Sox players and his advanced ERA-metrics (I used xFIP for this example) are even better than Porcello’s numbers. A lot of bettors will be fooled by ERA numbers, because we have Porcello with much better ERA and on the first look Happ ERA of 4.5 looks bad versus a team, that scores 5.9 runs per game.
But we can not take this 5.9 runs per game for Boston numbers, because they score much less against left handed pitchers (3.3 runs) and they will face one very good left handed pitcher today.
Toronto is an underdog here, despite they will probably have better pitcher on the mound and as we saw, they have slightly better bullpen so far too.
Toronto is also very good scoring home team and they play well against right handed pitchers too. I don’t see any big advantage from Boston in this game and I think we have a good underdog play on Toronto.
I would recommend to take Toronto up to 1.95. (Where to bet?)
Let’s say, that I tell you: “Mercedes is a very good car. Buy a Mercedes for $40.000”
- Bet on Lakers -7 (1 unit)
- Bet on Boston Red Sox +124 (3 units)
- Bet on Real Madrid @1.78 (1.5 units)
- Bookmaker: Lakers -8
- Bookmaker: Boston Red Sox +110
- Bookmaker: Real Madrid @1.97
- Lakers -8?
- Boston +110?
- Real Madrid at 1.97 only 1.5 units, despite the price went up?
- Lakers -12
- Boston +160
- Real Madrid 1.30
- Play Lakers if you get Lakers -11 or better (-10, -9, -8,…depends on betting model and method)
- Play Boston for the price of +161 or more (depends on the method)
- Play Real Madrid for the price of 1.31 or better
- I will play Boston only if someone (bookmaker) will pay me at least $160 for my every risked $100.
- Or for example….I will buy a Mercedes only if the price will be $41.345 or less
- PICKS will tell us nothing else, than what to bet
- PROJECTIONS will tell us for which price you should bet something
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A lot of bettors are confused with “THE BEST ODDS” and “THE BOOKMAKER WITH THE BEST ODDS”. Those two things are totally different and we should understand the difference.
THE BEST ODDS
So, what are the best odds? The best odds are those odds, which will give you the best profit. Simply as that. If you want to play on Team A, you will look to get the best price. So, if you have 5 bookmakers accounts and if you want to bet on Team A and the odds are:
- Bookmaker 1 (bet on Team A): +130 (possible profit for $100 risked = +$130)
- Bookmaker 2 (bet on Team A): +145 (possible profit for $100 risked = +$145)
- Bookmaker 3 (bet on Team A): +132 (possible profit for $100 risked = +$132)
- Bookmaker 4 (bet on Team A): +138 (possible profit for $100 risked = +$138)
- Bookmaker 5 (bet on Team A): +128 (possible profit for $100 risked = +$128)
You will bet on second bookmaker, because you will get the biggest return for the “same thing”.
BOOKMAKER WITH THE BEST ODDS
But does that mean, that the best odds have always the bookmakers with the lowest juice? NO. It depends on which team you want to bet. A lot of times you will find the best odds on TEAM A with bookmaker 1 and the best odds for TEAM B with bookmaker 4, for example. This has nothing to do with margins and it is recommended to have several bookmakers accounts, so you can always get the best price, which can be the difference between profit and loss at the end of the season.
So, what are the margins?
In a very simple way, this is how much money you lose when you bet. Every bookmaker will take some money, when you bet, for their service, if I can say so. Some bookmakers will take more, some will take less and the general rule is that we like to stick with the bookmakers, that have smallest margins/juice. Because of that, we can expect, that we will get the best price in most cases.
How to calculate margins?
When you have two teams and if bookmakers set the chances at 50-50, the fair odds would be +100 vs +100 (2.00 vs 2.00). Right? But of course, you don’t see this. They will offer you something like -105 vs -105 or -110 vs -110 or something like that. The easiest way to calculate margins is to turn the odds into the percentages, sum them and see how much far is from 100% (easiest explanation):
- TEAM A: -105 (1.952) turn into the percentages = 1/1.952 = 0.512295082
- TEAM B: -105 (1.952) turn into the percentages = 1/1.952 = 0.512295082
0.512295082 + 0.512295082 = 1.024590164 = 102.46%
The difference: 102.46% – 100% = 2.46%
You will lose that money every time when you bet. The biggest is this number the worse for you. Simply as that.
LET’S TAKE REALISTIC EXAMPLE AND EXPLANATION WITH TODAY’S GAME
We have a game between the Dodgers and Padres today and we have different prices and different bookmakers. So, the question is where to bet to get the best price for your bet and will this mean, that this bookmaker has the lowest margin?
Here is the table with the odds and margins, plus my projected lines for this game.
THE BOOKMAKER WITH THE LOWEST MARGIN
5DIMES (lowest margin of 1.97%)
5Dimes has the lowest margins and this is one of the bookmakers, that you must have and must play there, because in general, you will have the best odds in most cases. Their margin is just 1.97% in this game, which is by far the best among all those bookmakers.
THE BEST ODDS IF YOU WANT TO PLAY ON SAN DIEGO?
But of course, the lowest margins is not a guarantee if you want to play on your favourite team. Nitrogensports has bigger margins, than 5Dimes in general, but they sacrificed good odds on Dodgers to offer little bit better odds on the San Diego. If you want to bet on Dodgers, Nitrogensports is not the right bookmaker, because you will get better odds on all other bookmakers. But if you want to play on San Diego, Nitrogensports has the best price and this is the place where you should bet them. (And Nitrogensports is my favourite bitcoin bookmaker out there – SIGN UP HERE)
THE BEST ODDS IF YOU WANT TO PLAY ON DODGERS?
LUNARBETS at -227 (EU odds = 1.44)
On the other side if you want to bet on DODGERS, the best price is on Lunarbets. They have second lowest margins, which means, that you will get better odds in general still on 5Dimes, but for this game, if you bet on Dodgers, you must:
- pay $227 to win $100 on Lunarbets
- pay $341 to win $100 on Nitrogensports
And you don’t want to pay more for the same thing. Right?
WHAT MY PROJECTED ODDS SAY AND WHAT IS MY PREDICTION?
This is the second game today and in the first game Padres beat the Dodgers, but in this game, Dodgers will have pitching advantage in my opinion.
Jordan Lyles will start this season with first game for Padres, so he will be fresh and in this cases I stay away from bets, because I simply don’t know how he will perform in a new season. I like to see players in new season. So, if I put league average pitcher as a starter for San Diego, I give them around 35.25% of chance to win this game, which is still much less than 50%. My fair odds for San Diego is +184.
Dodgers on the other side will start with Darvish, who has been playing great (177 strikeouts in 160 innings this season) and he already beat San Diego in 2017. With the best NL team behind him, I have projected, that the Dodgers will have around 64.75% of chance. That gives me the odds of around -184.
And where is the value?
The value is with San Diego. I expect, that bookmakers offer the odds of around +184 on San Diego. Nitrogensports offer the odds of +287, which is more than I would expect. I would expect, that I make profit of $184 if I risk $100. But Nitrogensports is willing to pay me $287, which is $103 more than I expect. Because of that there is a value with San Diego.
The question is, are you willing to put a money on a game, that has only 35.25% of chance? On the long run, this is the right thing to do. But if you want to win today, your chances are less than 40%.
I will stay away from this game and I just wanted to show you on real example how important is to bet on “good” bookmakers to get always the best price. Check list of recommended bookmakers here.
And good luck whatever you take in this game.