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Avoiding Bad Odds

Avoiding Bad Odds by Line Shopping

By Loot, Major League Baseball Handicapper,

Even if you’re not a typically thrifty person, you should develop that trait when betting on Major League Baseball. It’s one thing to occasionally get a 6-pack for $8.99 at the liquor store when you could have bought it at the grocery store for $6.99. In baseball betting, we must look at the numbers with more reverence. Being able to gain several percentage points in your favor on a consistent basis can make a big difference over time.

We’ll never be able to be like those coupon maniacs who wind up with 14 carts of food for $17.49. At the same time, we can trim a little fat off how we operate. It adds up fast. We make so many wagers over the course of a 162-game season that being price-conscious becomes something to consider almost along the same lines as a strategy. A lot of handicappers spend time toiling away looking for edges within the sea of stats, yet fail to show the same yearning for edges when it’s time to actually bet. Deciding what we are going to bet on isn’t the last step in the wagering process. Now we have to find the best bargain.

This may be played-out advice, yet it’s still largely neglected: Have accounts at several different online sportsbooks. When you’re buying something twice a day, you go where the best price is. You have options. This isn’t some small item you get once a month. It’s like the guy who smokes two packs a day. You can bet he knows where he can his cigarettes for the best price around town.

There will be variations in the lines. With the limited time between games, the action can get heated with the wagers flying in quickly. By the time you go to wager, different books are likely to have different numbers. And this is easy. Normally, we need to handicap and spend a lot of time hunting down edges in our favor. This is one that doesn’t require any work. We should take full advantage of line shopping.

With enough experience, you will begin to know gutturally when the side you chose has an unfavorable line (odds). It will just hit your eye wrong. A good team at home has one of their mid-rotation guys starting and you’re thinking -160 and you see it’s -200. A lot of people neglect this aspect of wagering. They might just bet it anyway. In the long-run, taking favorites that should be -160 at -200 is a losing proposition. Being aware of value is a key aspect to any winner’s repertoire.

You might feel a twinge of pain when a bet would have won, but you didn’t play it because of perceived bad value. That will undoubtedly happen on a regular basis, but keep track of how well this plays out over the long-haul. Never get thrown off-center because of one or even a series of wagers that would have won, but you didn’t play them. Over time, being conscientious of value will pay off well.

You might see a few curveballs along the way. Let’s say you like the over in a game. At one book, it’s a 9-run total with the over at -110. Another book has it at 8.5 with the “over” at -120. You can take “over 8.5” at -120 or “over 9” at -110. It’s probably a good idea to lay the extra dime and take the 8.5. Considering in a game like football, it costs the same for an extra half-point, it’s not a bad deal in a game with far less scoring.

For the most part, however, we’re looking at the exact same bet, just with different numbers. It might seem like a pain to open and fund several accounts and maybe it is. If you want to become serious about baseball betting, however, that requires always nailing down the best number for your wagering dollar.

Another consideration is focusing on books that offer the “dimeline.” Dimeline Sportsbooks only have a 10-cent difference in the teams that are playing in a given game. At books where there is a 20-cent line, you will see Baltimore +120/Boston -140. The dimeline book would have it at something like Baltimore +130/Boston -140 or Baltimore +120/Boston -130. Depending on what side the line favors, you could be saving -10, which when done consistently, can really enhance your bankroll.

With that being said, the best baseball betting odds online can be found at 5Dimes, where you can find overnight nickel lines on MLB games!

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