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Baseball Stats Every Gambler Should Pay Attention To

June 24, 2014

Major League Baseball has long been a game that idolizes players that post impressive meaningless statistics. For example, pitcher wins and batter RBI’s are, as it turns out, incredibly meaningless stats. Wins are a product of playing for a team that has a good lineup, and RBI’s are a product of having many runners on base.

The problem many baseball bettors make is to factor in statistics such as these. They’ll see a pitcher with a 16-5 record up against a pitcher with a 9-8 record and think the pitcher with the 16-5 record is a lock to win. That’s not necessarily the case. Pitcher wins is one of the last things you should take into consideration when handicapping games. These are the stats you should pay attention to:

 

Day/Night Splits

You can find any advanced stat on sites such as baseball-reference.com. This first stat is the day/night splits of each pitcher. You can also check the team day/night splits. Some pitchers, for whatever reason, perform better either at night or during the day. So let’s say Pitcher A is great during the day, Pitcher B is bad during the day and they are playing a day game, Pitcher A has an edge. You do need to make sure the sample size is large. A few games doesn’t prove a trend, so check past results, not just results from that season.

 

Lefty/Right Match-Ups

In baseball, match-ups are a big deal. If you have a left-handed heavy lineup that struggles against lefties, with a lefty on the mound, that’s an advantage for the pitcher. The best way to win at baseball betting is to find match-up advantages one way. These are rarely taken into consideration by the general public. Most pay attention to meaningless stats such as overall record.

 

Home/Road Splits

Some teams perform well on the road, others don’t. Some teams have decent records thanks to playing in a ballpark conducive to their style of play. For example, a power hitting team would benefit from playing in Fenway Park because of the short dimensions. On the other hand, certain teams are built for success at home or on the road. Or they aren’t affected by the road environment.

 

Recent Performance

Baseball teams are often very streaky. A team that has a mediocre overall record just might be playing better baseball the week prior against a team with an impressive record. You should look at recent records when handicapping a game. Sometimes you just have to ride a hot streak. Baseball is a long season. Teams can’t perform at a high level for 162 games straight. This is where you can find value. Let’s say a team with a 30-50 record is +180 against a team with a 50-30 record, but the 30-50 team enters the game on a 5-game winning streak, while the better team has lost 4 of 5. That doesn’t mean the 30-50 team is going to win the game, but it means there just might be good value in betting on that team.

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