Free Sports Picks: Home NFL CFB NBA CBB MMA Boxing
LootMeister Baseball Picks
Online SportsbooksBest Sportsbook Bonuses

Early Season MLB Wagering Strategy

MLB Betting: Early Season Wagering and Starting Pitching

By Loot, MLB Handicapper,

The way we look at starting pitching in the early season should be a little different. It’s changed in general over the years. It used to be a good starting pitcher would either complete the game or come really close. Nowadays, pitchers are pulled in the 6th inning. Pitch counts are at play and can alone decide whether or not a pitcher gets the hook. It’s really a different world in today’s baseball.

Early in the season, the last thing a team wants to do is put too much stress on the starters they will be depending on to carry them throughout the long season. When the baseball season is fresh out of the gate, more caution and discretion is utilized than normal. Pitch counts are lower and they are very hesitant to allow pitchers to rack up a lot of innings.

If you believe, as many do, that the importance of starting pitching is overstated in the world of MLB wagering, then it stands to reason that it’s really overblown early in the season. The best pitchers, the ones who command the big money lines, are just getting warmed up. They’re not in midseason form yet.

The key of all this to the bettor is that the odds early in a season will still be showing a lot of respect to the supposedly high-quality starters--the big names. This is a time where we don’t have much else to work on--being that the teams are still undefined. The public will bet on the teams that were good last year, the teams that are favored to win the World Series this season, and the pitchers who are thought of as being elite. The result is that there can be a lot of good value on the opposing team. The book can set a big number for the teams favored by the public and know the public will still bet it. That leaves a lot of potential spots for us to take the high-value side.

It’s just that early in the season, the public is going to load up on the big-name pitchers. Most of the general betting public is going to over-emphasize pitchers anyway. But when you combine that with the fact that they’re doing it in April, this could be one of the better times of the season to be betting on baseball. This is when the baseball betting market is at its most unstable. After 100-something games, things are more defined. With all the personnel turnover in MLB, things can change from year-to-year a lot easier than it used to.

The betting public will change their perception also. Sure, they’ll be hung up what happened last season, the bigger-name pitchers, and other factors that might or might not be all that important. But they’ll also take note of the more glamorous free agent signings over the offseason. In other words, a lot of gray area exists early in the baseball season. A lot of the betting lines are heavy on public perception. When that’s the case, the higher our chances become of being able to find good value going against the favorite.

It also doesn’t hurt to remember that pitching isn’t a constant. There aren’t a lot of guys like Tom Seaver and Roger Clemens in the league--guys where you can count on usually getting a good showing and that it will happen for years and years without much let-up. And guys like this still exist. But most pitchers, even the bigger-name ones, are not all that bankable--at least not as much as they’re being made out to be. Nowadays, a guy puts together a couple 14-9 seasons and he’s given a $50M contract.

No one is saying pitching isn’t critically important when betting baseball. It can really make all the difference. It’s just that with guys held to such short pitch counts early in the season, there’s an entire other element to handicap, which is the bullpen. Accounting for only the starter in a baseball game, especially in April, means you’re neglecting to account for up to 40% of the game.

April is an undefined time of the year. We have an idea who the good teams and good pitchers are, but we often don’t really know for sure. But the odds act like it’s more concrete than it really is, especially with the affects on the odds made by the identity of starting pitchers. It’s not always commensurate with reality. April can be a really good time of the year to bet on high-value underdogs.

Speaking of odds, it's imperative that you're betting into the lowest favorite lines and highest paying underdog odds. Bet on baseball at wholesale/discounted odds at the web's best sportsbook: 5Dimes. Dumping your overpriced book and hooking up with 5D will significantly increase your odds of winning long term!

Share this article with friends:

Leave a comment:

Quit wasting your hard earned money! Make the switch from -110 to -105 odds today!
Doc's Sports Major League Baseball Picks

Baseball Betting

  • Bovada Sportsbook - Your credit card WILL work here! Deposit from $100-$500 and get a massive 50% sign-up bonus! A huge wagering menu, fast payouts and top notch customer service is what you'll find at one of the web's biggest baseball bookies!
  • GTBets - Offers a 100% initial signup bonus! Deposit $150 and receive a matching $150 bonus! A great way to pad your bankroll before even placing your 1st bet! Great at getting credit cards to work for deposits!
  • World Series Odds - See which teams the bookies are predicting to win the Fall Classic this year and what odds are being offered for your pick to win it all.


  • How to Calculate ERA - Loot explains what earned run average is and how to compute this often misunderstood statistic.
  • How to Calculate Batting Average - The stat that all hitters are judged by! We break down the division of hits by at bats.
  • What is Baseball WHIP? - The walks plus hits divided by innings pitch stat is a huge variable when handicapping baseball games. But what is a good WHIP? What's a bad WHIP? Loot explains!
  • Infield Fly Rule Explained - Surely one of the most confusing rules in baseball but yet so simple.
  • Baseball Slang - There are TONS of terms, lingo and jargon that you'll hear during a baseball game that would make absolutely no sense unless you grew up with the game or had done your homework. We define them all here!
  • Baseball Acronyms - A MLB box score is absolutely jam-packed with abbreviations. Get educated here as we define them all! We also added in MLB team abbreviations as well.
  • Baseball Questions - The sport has tons of terminology, jargon and statistics which create many questions. We answer them here!
  • MLB Managerial Changes - In today's world, if a Manager doesn't cut it, they get canned quick. Check out the list of this year's new baseball Skippers.


  • Baseball Quotes - Famous sayings from popular MLB players, annnouncers and managers.
  • Greatest Baseball Players of All Time - My picks for the all-time best first basemen, second basemen, shortstops, third basemen, left fielders, center fielders, right fielders, right handed pitchers, left handed pitchers and closers.
  • Famous Baseball Players - There's greats and then there's famous players. The difference is that famous MLB players are names that even non-baseball fans are familiar with; Diamond Kings!
  • Triple Crown Winners - List of players who have led the MLB in batting average, homers and RBI's all in the same season.
Reduced Juice Sports Betting 100% Sportsbook Bonus Best Parlay Odds Online