MLB is back, and it’s bringing the DH with it

Baseball is coming back towards the end of July, officially on the 23rd or 24th. I am genuinely really looking forward to it, it’s going to be great to have competitive team sports getting back.
We are getting a much shorter season, of 60 games, I feel cutting the season down to less than 40% of the normal season will give it more importance in regular season play. Baseball is a traditional summer sport, and has always been a great American pastime, but, for me, it’s slow patient pace has always left it behind football, basketball, and hockey.
All much faster paced sports.
But, here I am, and I couldn’t be happier about baseball coming back, sure it is going to be a strange season, with just 60 games. We are getting sports back, and that’s great!
Now, not to be “that guy” – but players did come off pretty greedy during the negotiations – the entire labor negotiation between everyone involved, actually, was pretty derisive to the fans. Personally, I was turned off by the greed on all sides, with players saying that they just wanted to play, and then blaming the owners. Meanwhile, then saying they won’t play – unless they get their 30 million. The whole thing was a mess and didn’t paint the players in a good light – but, I digress. I think in the end, we are long overdue for a serious salary cap to be put in place.
But, anyway, in the end, they were able to hammer it out, and get us games on the field.
The season is going to be bringing in a big change and some are not looked at in the most favorable light. The one I think is the most intriguing and bugs traditionalists the most, is the universal designated hitter.
There will be a DH on every team.
Personally, I love the universal DH idea. For years, we have been watching pitchers struggle to make any sort of contact with the ball – it is beyond embarrassing. When you have .135 and .156 averages coming to the plate, it is not competitive, and it is extremely downtrodden when there are 2 outs already. I feel the DH is better for the game, bringing a player who you know can swing the stick.
I feel the introduction and coming of the DH to the National League was coming either way, so I am all for the universal DH adjustment. And I don’t think anyone should be shocked if it sticks around after this season is over. I think this is going to be the norm, going forward, after this is over. The players seem like they all want it – and it is great for guys that can’t really play a position on the field anymore, but can still hit.
Especially the older guys, like Ken Griffey Jr. and Albert Pujols played parts of their great careers at DH. Does anyone think any less of them?
I don’t think so.
It seems that the ones that don’t want it – are the traditional baseball fans. I understand the culture – but maybe it is time for a change.
A change to improve upon a sport that America holds dear, but can use some changes and upgrades. And, as far as a batting pitcher goes – when a team is paying a guy $30 million a year to pitch – it’s irresponsible to risk losing him to injury from running the bases or going to bat.
Don’t get me wrong – change isn’t always good.
But, sometimes it isn’t so bad.
After all this quarantine and absurdity that we have been dealing with for the last 3 months and then with no sports, for sports fans, it has been rough. It is inspirational and outstanding that we’re slowly trying to get back to normalcy, Japan and China have been playing baseball for some time now – so, so can the MLB.
I strongly think that every team has a chance to get in, if I were a team, I wouldn’t even focus on looking to get the best record, I would aim more for about 35 wins. I think that will be a solid number to get to the postseason. The MLB didn’t have to bring back the season – I am grateful that they are bringing us something. I will truly appreciate having some baseball in this weird year – even with all the complaints that are coming with it.

MLB is coming back, and it’s bringing the DH with it

The 2020 Major League Baseball season will begin on July 23 and is scheduled to end on September 27. The postseason will begin on September 29. The World Series is set to begin on October 20 and a potential Game 7 will be played on October 28.

I am genuinely really looking forward to it, it’s going to be great to have competitive team sports getting back.
We are getting a much shorter season, of 60 games, I feel cutting the season down to less than 40% of the normal season will give it more importance in regular season play. Baseball is a traditional summer sport, and has always been a great American pastime, but, for me, it’s slow patient pace has always left it behind football, basketball, and hockey.
All much faster paced sports.
But, here I am, and I couldn’t be happier about baseball coming back, sure it is going to be a strange season, with just 60 games. We are getting sports back, and that’s great!
Now, not to be “that guy” – but players did come off pretty greedy during the negotiations – the entire labor negotiation between everyone involved, actually, was pretty derisive to the fans. Personally, I was turned off by the greed on all sides, with players saying that they just wanted to play, and then blaming the owners. Meanwhile, then saying they won’t play – unless they get their 30 million. The whole thing was a mess and didn’t paint the players in a good light – but, I digress. I think in the end, we are long overdue for a serious salary cap to be put in place.
But, anyway, in the end, they were able to hammer it out, and get us games on the field.
The season is going to be bringing in a big change and some are not looked at in the most favorable light. The one I think is the most intriguing and bugs traditionalists the most, is the universal designated hitter.
There will be a DH on every team.
Personally, I love the universal DH idea. For years, we have been watching pitchers struggle to make any sort of contact with the ball – it is beyond embarrassing. When you have .135 and .156 averages coming to the plate, it is not competitive, and it is extremely downtrodden when there are 2 outs already. I feel the DH is better for the game, bringing a player who you know can swing the stick.
I feel the introduction and coming of the DH to the National League was coming either way, so I am all for the universal DH adjustment. And I don’t think anyone should be shocked if it sticks around after this season is over. I think this is going to be the norm, going forward, after this is over. The players seem like they all want it – and it is great for guys that can’t really play a position on the field anymore, but can still hit.
Especially the older guys, like Ken Griffey Jr. and Albert Pujols played parts of their great careers at DH. Does anyone think any less of them?
I don’t think so.
It seems that the ones that don’t want it – are the traditional baseball fans. I understand the culture – but maybe it is time for a change.
A change to improve upon a sport that America holds dear, but can use some changes and upgrades. And, as far as a batting pitcher goes – when a team is paying a guy $30 million a year to pitch – it’s irresponsible to risk losing him to injury from running the bases or going to bat.
Don’t get me wrong – change isn’t always good.
But, sometimes it isn’t so bad.
After all this quarantine and absurdity that we have been dealing with for the last 3 months and then with no sports, for sports fans, it has been rough. It is inspirational and outstanding that we’re slowly trying to get back to normalcy, Japan and China have been playing baseball for some time now – so, so can the MLB.
I strongly think that every team has a chance to get in, if I were a team, I wouldn’t even focus on looking to get the best record, I would aim more for about 35 wins. I think that will be a solid number to get to the postseason. The MLB didn’t have to bring back the season – I am grateful that they are bringing us something. I will truly appreciate having some baseball in this weird year – even with all the complaints that are coming with it.

Mike Handzelek’s Late Summer MLB’s & Football Summary

Late season MLB action.

Clayton Kershaw’s has been MORE than excellent @ home. He’s been even tougher against the patsies! The Los Angeles Dodgers can hit much better than last year’s rendition. In fact, they’ve pulverized RHP over the long haul going 42-9 @ home. There’s no Monday hangovers for Kershaw as witnessed by a superb 23-7 record on Tuesdays. He’s also looked super-sharp his last 3 outings posting a 3-0 slate accompanied by a get-out-of-my-way 1.35 ERA! On the flip side, the Blue Jays are a PERFECT 0-6 in inter-league play along with a no-show 2-12 versus the NL West. With Toronto 26-54 versus LHP, we’ll gladly go to Dodger Stadium in Chavez Ravine to lay & play the LOS ANGELES DODGERS as my 8* MLB Earlybird Dependable!

The St. Louis Cardinals look to solidify their momentary percentage-point hold on 1st place in the NL Central over Chicago. They have MORE than a great chance here when they take on a team with an exhausted pen – the Milwaukee Brewers. Things are looking up with Dakota Hudson & the Cards who are 4-0 their last 4 when he takes the hill. Over the long haul, Hudson is responsible for a super-solid 13-3 St. Louie run in his last 16 starts. The flip side of the coin finds Zach Davies on the mound for the Brew Crew. Davies’ mechanics have looked more than shabby over his last 3 starts posting a ballooned 11.77 ERA. When it counts, he not only struggles mightily versus winning teams going a putrid 4-12 his last 16 but also has lost his last 3 starts versus these same Red Birds. The kicker for us has to be St. Louis being the 2nd-best team in overall pitching among the NL along with holding bragging rights to the #1 bullpen in ERA in the Senior Circuit. Let’s gladly go to Busch Stadium to play the ST. LOUIS CARDINALS as my 9* MLB Earlybird Dependable!

Don’t forget to sign up for a football package that best suits your needs. Last season, we finished 1st in NFL win percentage @ VegasTopDogs with 64% (31-18) along with ALSO ending the CFB season in a 3-way tie for best win percentage @ 62% (29-18). Review articles from Week 1 on for accurate records.

Mike’s MLB Record the last 6: 6-0 100%

The Best Things in Life are Free

Sportsbooks are always looking for an effective way in which to cut costs’ while maintaining the level of service that betting clients have come to expect. Now you can do just that, not only can you maintain a superior level of service, and experience phenomenal growth, you can enjoy the good things in life; you can finally take some much-needed time off! Work is good for the soul and most folks thrive on what they do, they thrive on building a brand, and what you do, is who you are. However, most folks want to enjoy life, after all, what is life worth if there is no time to relax?

 

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Exploring What Betting Clients Expect of You—

 

  • Reliable service, dependability. Are you there for them every time they call, show up, or email? If not, you need to be, or they will find a bookie that is. Remember; there are a lot of fish in the sea! Clients will drop you like a hot potato because they can, there are dozens more out there at the click of a mouse. Offer them what they want, and they will never leave you.

 

  • Are you offering competitive lines and odds? You are not in this business to give your product away, you are a bookie because you want to earn a great deal of money and you are putting your bankroll on the line in order to do just that; make money. Always keep this in mind… You are in the business to build a brand, along with a solid client base that returns the goods. You must stay competitive when it comes to lines and odds or you are dead in the water. Bettors will put up with many things they don’t like in order to get a better line on a game, or to get a better payout on a money line, etc.

 

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  • Clients want their bet graded within five minutes after a game has ended, are you delivering?

 

*Life as a bookie can be overwhelming, knowing how to manage your business is the key to success or failure. The best part – you have a support system that’s free of charge if you decide to use it.

 

Steps to Freedom – How to Cash in on Bookie Freebies—

 

  • If you are a bookie on any level (you take at least one bet per week from a paying-betting client) then you must discover what a Pay Per Head provider can do for you.

 

  • A Pay Per Head (PPH) is a service that’s provided to bookies for free. If you want to grow your client base and have all the support of an experienced bookie-making service, then you must find a great PPH provider. They do not charge for the support they offer you and your clients.

 

  • Every PPH charges a per head fee for every client that you bring to the betting table, but the cost is deferred.

 

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Example: You have 10 clients, you sign up with a PPH and all 10 clients bet with you at least once per week – the cost to you, for your betting clients would be in the $100-$150 range, depending on the level of service you elect.

 

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Open your free online sportsbook and casino today. Don’t go this alone. A fully functional gaming website is expensive and difficult to maintain. With a PPH, you get all of this thrown in for free! Your focus as a bookie should be building your client base, not doing administrative work. Stop the hassle and start making real money today.

 

Learn more about Pay Per Head:

 

1.Ways to Expand Your Current Pay Per Head Bookie Business Model

2.Common Bookie Questions For Pay Per Head Services

  1. Let Pay Per Head Help Promote your services

4 Real Time Betting Alerts with Pay Per Head Bookie Software

Jeff’s 2019 MLB Predictions and Awards

AL EAST

1) New York Yankees (97-65)

2) Boston Red Sox (89-73) WILD CARD

3) Tampa Bay Rays (85-77) WILD CARD

4) Toronto Blue Jays (76-86)

5) Baltimore Orioles (59-103)

AL Central

1) Cleveland Indians (97-65)

2) Minnesota Twins (82-80)

3) Chicago White Sox (73-89)

4) Kansas City Royals (68-94)

5) Detroit Tigers (66-96)

AL WEST

1) Houston Astros (97-65)

2) LA Angels (81-81)

3) Oakland A’s (79-83)

4) Seattle Mariners (78-84)

5) Texas Rangers (70-92)

NL EAST

1) Washington Nationals (92-70)

2) Philadelphia Phillies (90-72) WILD CARD

3) New York Mets (87-75)

4) Atlanta Braves (84-78)

5) Miami Marlins (67-95)

NL Central

1) St. Louis Cardinals (90-72)

2) Milwaukee Brewers (88-74) WILD CARD

3) Chicago Cubs (84-78)

4) Cincinnati Reds (81-81)

5) Pittsburgh Pirates (79-83)

NL WEST

1) Los Angeles Dodgers (95-67)

2) Colorado Rockies (85-77)

3) San Francisco Giants (80-82)

4) San Diego Padres (79-83)

5) Arizona D-bax (73-89)

AL Champion: New York Yankees

NL Champion: LA Dodgers

World Series winner: LA Dodgers in 7

AL MVP: Mike Trout (LA Angels)

NL MVP: Bryce Harper (Philadelphia)

AL CY Young: James Paxton (NY Yankees)

NL CY Young: Aaron Nola (Philly)

AL Rookie of the Year: Vladimir Guerrero Jr…….Easily! (Tor)

NL Rookie of the Year: Victor Robles (Wash)

AL Comeback player: Carlos Correa (Hou)

NL Comeback player: Corey Seager (LAD)

AL Manager of the Year: Kevin Cash (Tampa Bay)

NL Manager of the Year: Gabe Kapler (Philly)

Good Luck this baseball season!

Follow Jeff on Twitter @ jhsportsline

Top 5 MLB Left-handed Starting Pitchers age 27 or Younger

The elite left-handed starters have a big advantage just for the simple fact that most players see a lot more right-handed pitching. Look for teams that have not faced a Quality Left-handed starter for some time (five games or more) and you will have a nice winning investment. Here are my Top 5 Left-handed starting pitchers age 27 or younger going forward for the 2019 MLB season.

No. 1 Blake Snell (Tampa Bay Rays) Age: 26 (2018: 21-5, 1.89 ERA, 0.97 WHIP)

Blake was #2 on this list last season and he came thru by winning the AL Cy Young award. Not too shabby. Snell struckout 221 batters in only 180.2 innings last year. Blake Snell was the Minor League Player of the Year back in 2015, which goes to show you his skill-set is for real. Snell can reach the mid to upper 90s on the radar gun along with sharp sinking action. Very tough pitch to hit when he keeps it down in the zone. His Slider has shown tremendous break away from left-handed batters. His changeup is now considered to be well above average. Snell has 438 strikeouts in 399 career innings. Very impressive. Blake will be Rays’ opening day starter this season. The Rays play in a pitchers park. Tropicana Field was the 7th toughest (tied) stadium in runs according to ESPN park factors last season. Snell should be drafted as a dependable #1 starter this season.

No. 2 Sean Newcomb (Atlanta Braves) Age: 25 (2018: 12-9, 3.90 ERA, 1.33 WHIP)

Sean was #3 on this list last season. He started strong and than faded in the second half. He also spent some time on the DL. This will be his third season with the big club. Sean certainty looks the part standing 6′ 5″ and weighing 255 pounds. Sean Newcomb could be a nice sleeper this season after posting 160 strikeouts in 164 IP last year. He held opposing hitters to a .226 batting average. Sean will need to cut down on his walks (81) to become a dependable starter. Sean throws in the mid to upper 90s, but also has tremendous downward movement on his four-seamer. His curveball ranks higher than his changeup and there is room for improvement with both off-speed pitches. This guy has been compared to Chris Sale, who appeared on this list for 5 seasons before turning 27. That’s good enough for me. Mid round sleeper and potential breakout in his third season. He’s currently listed as the team’s 2nd starter. Huge upside!

No. 3 Robbie Ray (Arizona Diamondbacks) Age: 27 (2018: 6-2, 3.93 ERA, 1.35 WHIP)

This will be the final time Robby Ray appears on this list. Robbie spent a lot of time on the DL last season. I don’t think he was healthy all year. Robbie Ray had his best season of his young career in 2017. Ray posted a 15-5 record, 2.89 ERA, and 1.15 WHIP. He held opposing hitters to a .199 batting average in 28 starts. Ray is primed for a bounce back season even though the Dbax figure to take a step back. Robbie has 739 strikeouts in 616 career innings. Really good! Don’t hesitate to grab him as a solid #2 or #3 SP on your fantasy squad this year. Ray is currently being drafted in rounds 8-15. Great value. He’s currently listed as the team’s 3rd starter.

No. 4 Joey Lucchesi (San Diego Padres) Age: 25 (2018: 8-9, 4.08 ERA, 1.29 WHIP)

Joey is physically opposing on the bump standing 6″5. He should improve quite a bit in his sophomore season. Had 145 strikeouts in 130 IP. Joey held opposing hitters to a .228 batting average before the All-Star break and .280 after the break. He wore down in his rookie season, but has the skill set to be an ACE. Joey has a drop-and-drive delivery and extreme overhand arm slot, two opposing forces which creates an odd look for batters. His fastball sits in the low 90s, maybe touching 94 MPH at times. I would like to see more first pitch offspeed pitches this season. Players have been sitting on his fastball especially after the All-Star break. This guy has the potential to reach double-digit wins with lots of strikeouts. The Padres offense looks better with Manny Machado in the middle of it. Steal him in the mid rounds. He is listed as the team’s ACE. Should start opening day.

No. 5 Justus Sheffield (Seattle Mariners) Age: 22 (2018: 0-0, 10.13 ERA, 2.63 WHIP)

Might be #1 on this list in the very near future. The Mariners received Sheffield in the James Paxton trade to the Yankees. He is ranked #9 on Keith Law’s Top 20 Impact players for 2019. It’s easier for rookie pitchers to succeed over rookie hitters. Had 84 strikeouts in 88 innings with a 2.56 ERA and 1.16 WHIP for AAA Scranton last season. He has nothing left to prove in AAA, although the Mariners have him listed as the team’s 6th starter according MLB.com depth charts. You will love his Mid 90s fastball, mid 80s slider, low 80s changeup. All three pitches are elite. Great athlete and he can field his position. Keep an eye on Sheffield as we get closer to opening day. Justus should crack the Mariners’ rotation at some point this season. One of my top MLB starting pitcher sleepers for the 2019 season. Pitchers park alert. T-Mobile stadium ranked 4th toughest in runs scored last season according to MLB park factors. Low risk, high reward.

Jeff’s success in MLB is well-documented here, The Sports Monitor of OK and Sports Watch Monitor. Jeff was ranked #3 last season at TSM of OK. Early Bird MLB package is now available.

Good Luck this Baseball Season!

Written by expert handicapper Jeff Hochman of VegasTopDogs.

MLB Baseball – Mariners Becoming a Good Bet?

The New York Yankees are 33-17, the Seattle Mariners are 33-20. What do the two records have to do with each other you may ask? Not really anything other than a comparison between a “powerhouse” and a basically “no market” town. Notice we said “no market” not small market. The Mariners have been small market since their inception in 1977. There isn’t a rich history there isn’t 27 World Series wins, there isn’t even on World Series appearance let alone 27 wins. What the Seattle Mariners do, they do quietly and this year looks like it could stack up to be yet another quit one but a winning one.

 

Americas Bookie – What is a MLB adjusted Run Line – How to Bet Baseball

 

The Yankees are expected to win but in Seattle folks don’t know if they have won or lost the next day! The Yankees must live larger than life number one, because this is what they do best and number two, the media is all over their face on a daily basis. Credit must be given where credit is due, the Mariners do have a friendly group of fans that have supported this team through thick and thin and mostly through the thin.

 

The Mariners have been cranking it out the last couple of weeks and they are rolling. When a team is hot, you bet them, you dial up the bookie and you get the deposit in and you stick with who’s winning. Seattle has won four in row and their pitching has been surprisingly stellar.

 

10 Star Picks – Baseball Betting – Betting Value Across MLB

 

Spann, the just acquired outfielder by way of Tampa should add some much needed experience in the lineup and is expected to take over in the left field position. Here is an amazing number; the Mariners have won 9 of their last 10 and have gone 11-3 since the loss of Robinson Cano. The Mariners are hitting .254 as a team and their individual talent at least some of it, they are having a great year.

 

Seattle is playing great defense and their hitting is getting better. They are a great bet right now and who’s to say that they won’t go on a very big winning streak? The schedule is favorable with three more against Texas three against Tampa, then on the road for two against Houston, four in Tampa and then four against the LA Angels before a back to back series against Boston and the Yankees.

 

How to win playing this game…

 

Stick with what you know and if you don’t know it then handicap it. If you don’t have the time to do some major sports handicapping then by all means get online and find a sports adviser site.

 

Find a online sportsbook that is offering top notch baseball bonuses. The season is still young and you have nothing to lose but some serious money to win. Baseball is lucrative and there are many ways to bet the game.

 

As the race heats up in the West so go the Seattle Mariners. They are looking good and right now, they are a great bet. Find a solid run line, and try betting round Robins. There is always value in playing round robins and much easier to manage then a parlay card.

 

Dealing with the Houston Astros could be a big problem, it is for every other team, why not the Mariners. Have fun and enjoy watching a team that is actually a contender.

2017 Baseball Underdogs

Many square gamblers tend to play the favorites more often than they bet on an underdog in baseball. The average baseball gambler sees the team that is supposed to win and looks at the other team as the one who is supposed to lose. Losing is no fun so it’s tough for some players to realize it can be profitable to lose more games than you win as long as your return on each bet is greater than your risk.
The real key to being successful if you are going to bet on baseball is to find value. Value is the difference between the price you are getting with the odds and the true chances of a team winning. For instance, if you think a team has a 50% chance of winning a game and you are getting +110 on the team, that’s a great bet and you should make your wager. If you are getting -110 on that team, that means you have a negative expectation and should not. Going back the last five years in MLB combined you will find the following results for underdogs and favorites:
Favorites: 7,476-5,580 (57.3%) Avg. Line = -142.8
Underdogs: 4,443-6,360 (41.1%) Avg. Line = 137.6
With the 57.3% winning percentage you would have to get odds of -134 on each game just to break even. The true odds were closer to -144 so you can see the 10 cent expected loss on each favorite.
On the other hand if you won only 41.1% of your games you would only need to get odds of +143.3 to show a profit. The true odds were 137.6 for a difference of 5.7, a lot less than with the favorite but still not profitable.
You can see if you stick to underdogs you are ahead of the game, but you can’t bet them blindly because you will still end up behind.

Written by TJ Masterline of VegasTopDogs.

MLB Action: Don’t Forget About Playing Defense

Los Angeles Angels center fielder Mike Trout dives for a fly ball against the Seattle Mariners in a baseball game Thursday, May 29, 2014, in Seattle. (AP Photo/Elaine Thompson)

Nobody forgets about the importance of defense when it comes to football or basketball. You often hear about defense winning championships in those sports. Why don’t we hear about it more in baseball?  I’ve found that the single most common mistake in baseball is overlooking the importance of defense.

How can you best measure which defense is good? While some simply look at how many errors a team has committed, that is far too simple and is very subjective. What if the scorer at their home park is particularly tough or easy when it comes to rulings on errors? Also, it doesn’t  factor in how many runs were saved by good defensive plays. You can’t only look at the negative side of things. Defensive runs saved is a sabermetrics statistic that is among the best out there to help us know which defense is doing things the right way.

Let’s take a look at a couple examples of how important defense is in baseball. First of all, can you remember when the Kansas City Royals were a terrible team? Last year, they lost in Game 7 of the World Series. What has been the biggest reason for the Royals turnaround? Defense! In 2010, the Kansas City Royals ranked dead last in the majors in defensive runs saved with -95 runs saved. In 2013, Kansas City led the league in defensive runs saved. In 2014, they ranked fourth in defensive runs saved.

While it’s possible for a bad team to have a good defense and vice-versa, it doesn’t happen all that often. Only one playoff team ranked in the bottom ten teams in the league in defensive runs saved in 2014. That was the Detroit Tigers, and they were able to hide their defensive problems with great starting pitching and a great lineup. Three of the top four teams in defensive runs saved and six of the top nine were playoff teams in 2014.

No matter how you slice it, defense matters a lot in baseball. Don’t be one of the bettors that undervalues the importance of defense on the diamond!

Written by Kyle Hunter of VegasTopDogs.com

Getting Injured Players Back Can Be as Important as a Trade

Injury

So who is ready to win the World Series? Well, relax , folks, it is only June and baseball is a marathon. Patience and consistency are keys to being the best in baseball, the same two qualities that are necessary in the world of sports wagering.
After all, it is not the hot teams in May and June that win the World Series, it is the team hottest in October. The 2002 and 2003 Angels and Marlins were great examples, along with the 2004 Red Sox and 2006 Cardinals. One year ago this week the San Francisco Giants were riding a six-game losing streak trying to hang on for first place. Cracks in the armor? No, just a short losing streak in the grind of a 162-game season. Or in the case of the 2014 Giants, more games than that as they rolled to another title in October.

Go back to 2010, the start of their title run, the San Francisco Giants (19 to 1 to win the World Series) were in third place in the NL West in mid-June, five games over .500 with a losing road mark. All those teams were less than stellar in the first half of the season before catching fire down the stretch and winning the World Series.
That 2010 Giants team really made their move in July, starting 15-4 after the All Star break. At the end of the first month of the 2002 season, the Angels were 11-14 and no one was talking about them as challengers in October. A year later, on June 1, 2003, the Florida Marlins were 26-32, looking up at the Braves, Phillies and Expos in the NL East. They were just one-game out of last place in the division and 100-to-1 shots to win the World Series. In October, they did.

Many times a roster a team currently has will not be the one they will be using in October, or even July. Managers are still tinkering with lineups, or practicing patience with slumping players hoping they will bust out of it. General Managers are reviewing team needs and plotting trades to upgrade positions and even minor leaguers can come up to help out.
This season, many talented teams have been waiting for key players to return from injuries or trying some new talent. The Reds have ace Johnny Cueto dealing with injuries, while the Detroit Tigers are hoping to get a boost from Justin Verlander and Victor Martinez.

The Miami Marlins probably won’t be repeating their incredible 2003 campaign from worst to first in a few months, but they have a lot of pitching talent banged up in Mat Latos and Jose Fernandez. A pair of hot, healthy arms in the second half of the season can change a pitching staff immensely. And while Ryan Braun’s thump ever get healthy to provide some offense to the punchless Brewers? The Mets would love to help their offense with a trade – or to simply get David Wright healthy.
Maybe we shouldn’t count out the defending champion Giants just yet, either, as former ace Matt Cain is making rehab starts. The Nationals are already a strong team but could get much better soon if Stephen Strasburg and Doug Fister return to action.
Another factor is the minor leagues, with teams sometimes able to bring up rookie talent to plug into holes. Sometimes they can be key contributors in the second half, and other times it will be done to showcase the young talent because they want to use the kids as trade bait for an established player. Minor league surprised and getting injured players back can be as important as a trade.

Written by Jim Feist for VegasTopDogs.com