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As most seasoned baseball bettors have learned from experience, wagering during the MLB postseason requires a much different strategy than during the regular season. Betting on baseball during the playoffs is like going to a buffet. You need to strategically plan each plate otherwise you’re going to get full too fast on that weird pasta salad with the ham cubes.

Over the course of the long 162-game regular season, it is possible to identify betting trends and betting opportunities for a certain club, based on the success of the club’s starters, bullpen strategy and offensive production in certain situations.

All of those factors can change in the postseason as teams usually shift to four-starter pitching rotations, which in turn impacts the dynamics of a club’s bullpen.

Baseball Bettors: Do Your Homework

And you thought you were done with homework! Don’t sweat it. Odds Shark has basically done the research for you. All you have to do is check out our MLB online resources. We track how many runs a team scores with specific starters on the mound, while comparing those numbers to the hurler’s regular-season ERA. A club’s historical record in the playoffs is also crucial information to have on hand when wagering on MLB postseason games.

The Odds Shark MLB Team Reports include complete regular-season and postseason game logs for all 30 MLB clubs, while our MLB Database enables sports bettors to review the head-to-head records of opposing clubs in both regular-season and postseason contests. Our database also allows you to see how starters have done vs any team in the regular season or postseason both on the road and at home.

Watch for a Playoff Line Movement

Sports bettors must also look for dramatic betting line movement on MLB postseason games. Playoff games see more action from the public and that can lead to wide and rapid swings in game betting lines. A useful tool to track this is the Line History feature on Odds Shark baseball game line pages. These pages show betting line movement from opening to right before the first pitch at multiple online sportsbooks.

Don’t Forget about the Runline

Baseball’s postseason also gives new life to runline betting. Although the runline sounds like a movie from the early ’90s starring Jean-Claude Van Damme and Damon Wayans as two renegade cops trying to stop the villain, played by Dennis Hopper, from poisoning the water supply, the runline can be a very profitable MLB postseason wager to make. Real opportunity can exist to boost the value of favorites using runline odds if you think they’re going to blow the other team out.

Momentum Can Play a Major Role

Often, the momentum behind a team of destiny can provide a guide for sports bettors wagering on the MLB postseason. A total of seven wild-card teams have won the World Series, and most of these wins were at the expense of teams who owned strong records and top futures odds. Remember the 1997 and 2003 Marlins squads who overcame the odds and won the World Series? Edgar Renteria and Josh Beckett sure do.

Consistent pitching, offensive production, staying healthy and getting hot at the right time can have as much to do with World Series success as any other statistics. Understanding how these factors carry over or change from the regular season is important in developing a strong MLB playoff betting strategy.

Besides the pages we’ve linked to above, the following will help you make smart postseason baseball wagers:

Other MLB Postseason Handicapping Pages