Handicapping Low MLB Totals

With Oddsmaker Nick Bogdanovich


This past Tuesday Night we saw a couple of very low totals in Major League Baseball. The Roy Halladay/Josh Johnson pitcher's duel in Florida only carried a 6 for the Over/Under. That was the same number in most places for Ian Kennedy and Tim Lincecum later in the evening. If you shopped around, you could even see 5.5 with extra juice on the Over.

Whenever squares (the general public) see a very low total in any sport, they immediately want to jump on the Over. If there's an NFL total of 32 with great defenses on the field, squares want the Over. If there's a 110 in a college basketball tournament game that features slow teams, squares want the Over. If there's a six in baseball with great pitchers on the mound, squares want the Over.

Think about that approach as a strategy for a second. How smart can it be to bet Overs with great NFL defenses on the field...slow college basketball teams on the court...or Major League aces on the mound? You're going to bet against proven tendencies and home you get lucky?!

As you probably know, Philadelphia/Florida ended 2-1, only getting halfway to a total that struck a lot of squares as being vulnerable. Arizona/San Francisco was scoreless into the bottom of the ninth before the Giants won 1-0. They might have played 30 innings before getting to six runs!

Now, I'm not saying that the Overs never win against small numbers. They do just enough to keep squares coming back to make more dumb bets. If a square goes 1 out of 3 with a dumb strategy, he'll remember the winner and come back for a fourth bet. Squares that go 4-6 every 10 plays will literally brag about the four winners at the top of their lungs to anyone who will listen. This continues until the inevitable bust out.

Are there times where I will bet the Over against a very low number? It happens. But, I'll need very good reasons. Maybe there's a bandwagon effect that's made the numbers too low all the time in a certain circumstance. It's gotten to the point now in San Diego that you see low baseball totals no matter who's pitching. Back of the rotation guys probably shouldn't be priced at 7 regardless of the stadium they're playing in. If a great NFL defense is in a letdown spot after a string of big games, maybe I'll bet the Over looking for a letdown. The game needs to be mispriced for me to get involved. A lot of low totals on the Vegas boards are actually the right totals. Squares just don't know how to figure out what "right" is.

The mainstream media is already calling 2011 "The Year of the Pitcher" again because of the recent no-hitters and stellar mound performances. They called 2010 "The Year of the Pitcher" too! Taking steroids out of the game may make every season "The Year of the Pitcher" until new developments arise. That means you'll be seeing a lot of low totals. Learn how to handicap them!

  • Evaluate pitchers based on their strengths and weaknesses...not just based on what you remember from some start you watched on TV.
  • Evaluate offenses up and down the lineup. Far too many Vegas handicappers just look at pitchers and call it a day. If you don't know the differences between offenses, you have little chance of doing well with baseball totals.
  • Evaluate the ballparks. Do you know which ballparks are hitter's parks, and which are pitcher's parks? Or, are you the type to say "that stuff doesn't matter" before you finally bust out for the season in June. I know sharps (professional wagerers) who make their annual nut in baseball. They know the ballparks inside and out.
  • Evaluate the weather. Some ballparks are hitter's parks in warm temperatures but pitcher's parks in cool temperatures. Stop watching your local weather on TV, and start watching the national weather.

If you're struggling in the bases so far this year, I strongly encourage you to sign up for my personal service. You can purchase my BEST BETS here at the website with your credit card. Try things out for a few days to see how you like it. Or, enjoy discounted rates with longer term packages. If you have any questions, call me in the office at 1-877-822-2276.

My unique position in the heart of the legal betting markets lets me see the best and worst from all angles. I know what the sharps are doing right. I know what the squares are doing wrong. That's why the best information will always come to you DIRECT FROM NEVADA!


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