Betting playoff baseball is a much different beast than wagering MLB during the regular season, and if you don't pay attention to the differences, you may find yourself losing more bets than you win this postseason.
First of all, the games are more public, and that has an effect on line movement, but also on the quality of the lines and totals. Public action has a greater effect on lines in the playoffs, because recreational bettors are paying more attention. There’s a big difference between 15 games virtually every day and a couple of huge games daily.
There are more one-run games in the playoffs, making the runline a more viable alternative than in the regular season. During the regular season, about 25% of games are one-run games, but in the playoffs, that number is closer to 40%. In the World Series, one run decides close to 50% of the games.
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It makes sense. After all, more is on the line in the playoffs. Managers that are content to rest players and pitchers in the regular season don’t have the same luxury in the playoffs. Starters that get in trouble early get yanked; the strength of the bullpen is huge in the postseason.
Following from that, pitching depth is a key predictor of which teams are set to succeed in the playoffs. Remember: These are the best teams in baseball. A great offense is good to have, but often those numbers are put up against lesser pitching. The big hitters won’t have that same luxury in the playoffs.
As a final rule of thumb, know which clubs are hot, and which are not heading into the playoffs. A team can be 100-62, but if they were mediocre down the stretch, chances are they’ll have some early hiccups in the Division Series. Teams that scratched and clawed to get in tend to be better bets – especially in the early going.
Winning more MLB playoff bets requires a different slant on your regular season baseball handicapping. See the latest MLB odds here and check out more baseball betting strategy articles here at Odds Shark.