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Betting Baseball Moneylines

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Betting Baseball Moneylines

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Baseball betting is slightly different than any other sport. If someone wants to know the line on a game in football or basketball, they are usually referring to the spread. In baseball, they most likely are referring to the moneyline. Every sport offers moneyline bets and most sports also offer spreads. Baseball is no exception. If you like the idea of betting spreads, baseball does have run lines on every game. Even though they have them, it is not the most common way to bet the game.

What is a moneyline?

If you are on the Tipico Sportsbook app, the moneyline is the far left column. In baseball, you will always see at least one team listed as a number with a minus in it. It’s possible that both teams could have a negative number here, but that is more the exception than the rule. Most of the time one team will have a negative number and one team will have a plus sign in front of their number. The team with the (-) is the favorite in that case and the team with the (+) is the underdog.

How are moneylines made?

Every moneyline equates to a percentage chance of winning. Different line originators give different weights to various factors of any sporting event, but the ultimate goal is to try to figure out what the percentage chance of each team is to win the game. Once a line originator, whether a sportsbook or a bettor has that percentage chance of winning, they can convert that number into an actual moneyline.

For example, if each team has a true 50/50 chance of winning a game, then the moneyline would be +100. If Team A has a 66% chance of winning, that would equate to a moneyline of -200. Team B would then have about a 33% chance of winning, which would equate to +200. If you want to know how to calculate the moneyline for any given percentage, check out the math in this previous Tipico piece.

Remember that sportsbooks are in the business of making money, so if they think the percentages should be 66% and 33%, you will not actually see the moneylines at -200 and +200. The books have to keep a little something for their trouble here, so they add a few percentage points on top of the number in either direction. If the true numbers are -200/+200, you will likely see Tipico list it as maybe -215/+180. This is how a sportsbook makes money. They build in a little profit margin, just as any other business that buys goods from a supplier and sells them at a slight markup in order to turn a profit.

Why bet moneylines?

Baseball is not a sport that lends itself to big spreads. A touchdown in football is worth seven points and a field goal is three. Two scores can swing a game 10-14 points in either direction. In basketball your typical basket is worth two points and you even have some teams predominantly shooting three-pointers. Those can add up fast if you hit a few in a row. The final scores of these sports are also well above what you typically see in baseball. Coors Field has been the friendliest offensive park in the majors for some time and even there we rarely see totals over 12 or 13 runs. Basketball totals tend to be in the 200s and most football lines are in the 40s or higher. I mention these things because you can cover larger spreads in football and basketball. It is rare a team would cover a monster spread in baseball. In fact, most of the run lines you see in baseball are +/-1.5 (The run line is the same as the spread in other sports). Plus, in baseball each run is only worth one. If the other team is out of outs in a tied game or with your team trailing, you do not even get a chance to score more than the one run you need to win in the bottom of the last inning of the game unless it’s a multi-run homer.

The moneyline is available to bet in most if not all sports, but it is especially important to understand for baseball betting. You can bet moneylines for any sport, but in baseball it is by far the most popular way to wager on a game. Now that you know how Tipico makes the moneylines and why it is the best way to bet baseball, it’s your turn to step up to the plate and swing for the fences.

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