Time-Proven Strategies for Interleague Betting
Tony Salinas: Time-Proven Strategies for Interleague Betting
I've been beating Las Vegas in baseball since before the Designated Hitter rule was invented. So, I remember the earliest days of Interleague Play...and I've watched with interest as some very clear strategies have proven time and time again that they're worth betting at Las Vegas sportsbooks.
I'm going to outline a few of those for you today to help you get you ready for this first big weekend of National League vs. American League action. I hope you'll print out this article and save it for when the IL schedule really gets busy next month.
The first rule of thumb is a simple one. Look for value teams from the superior league. Many years ago, it was the National League that had the better teams and got the best of it in these head-to-head matchups. In recent seasons, the American League has been the much stronger group. That's one reason Albert Pujols has had such a slow start this year (and Prince Fielder as well).
I'm going to start 2012 Interleague play assuming the AL is still stronger until results prove otherwise. That means I'm going to look at any AL underdog or small favorite if I feel they have a pitching advantage. I won't go whole hog on the AL because oddsmakers are finally aware of what's been happening (it took them forever to notice!) and have made some adjustments. But, I'm confident there will be some "off the radar" games where we'll be getting 10-20 cents the best of it, and maybe even 40-50 cents the best of it by taking the AL side.
I will avoid this rule in some rivalry matchups though. Emotions aren't as big a deal in baseball as they are in other sports. But, they CAN be a big deal in the regional rivalries like Mets-Yankees, Astros-Rangers, Cubs-White Sox etc... If the National League team is being blasted in their local media has having "no chance" to compete with their American League rival, I'll gladly take the NL dog at a good price. When the local press tells a team they have "no chance," that team will do whatever they can to prove the naysayers wrong.
The next edge I want to tell you about involves pitching. Any hurler who has a weird delivery, a unique assortment of pitches, or just flat out good stuff has a big edge in IL play. Opposing hitters who haven't seen him are going to be in big trouble. You can get some of these guys at great prices, particularly lefthanders who are new to the majors because no two southpaws throw exactly the same way. The last thing you want to do is lay a big price on a generic righthander. Look for underdog and small favorite spots with pitchers who are in position to throw 6-7 shutout innings against befuddled hitters.
My final point today is to remind you about the streak theory. When a team has won three games in a row or more, back them until they lose. When a team has lost three games in a row or more, fade them until they win. There are often a few EXTREME teams in Interleague play who run off win after win because they're playing well against the inferior league...or teams who lose day after day because they're slumping against the superior league. This will be a bigger factor in a few weeks when we have sustained Interleague play for several days in a row. The streak theory is even better in IL play than normal play except for the rivalry series that get the attention of slumpers. Be sure you're still on top of streaks as you handicap the bases.
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A lot of bettors take the worst of it through Interleague play because they're not paying attention to league strength or the unique advantages certain pitchers have against teams who have never seen them before. You can put many oddsmakers on that list because some of them post really bad openers in these games! We're coming up on an easy time to pick baseball winners. Sign up with TONY SALINAS so you can GET THE BEST OF IT!
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