Getting into the game of baseball can be a bit overwhelming. While it can seem like a relatively straightforward game, for the practised viewer it’s a thrilling combination of action and strategy. If you want to know more about baseball and how to bet online, check out our helpful tips and advice below and we can help you find the best baseball betting sites with our guide to the top games and sites.
A guide to betting on baseball online
Baseball is one of the United States’ most popular sports, being described as early as 1919 as a national religion. It has played a central role in American culture and is an exciting and popular sport to bet on or just to watch. It remains a lucrative pastime and continues to gain popularity throughout the Americas and parts of Asia.
The main organisation for professional baseball is Major League Baseball (MLB), which boasts 30 professional teams across the United States and Canada. The MLB is subdivided into two leagues of 15 teams, National and American, each of which has an East, West and Central division. The Major League Baseball Season generally runs from April until October, with teams in the National and American leagues competing for their respective championship, known as the pennant. The top championship teams then compete in the post-season, culminating in the World Series.
Betting on baseball is an exciting way to get involved in the game and with a long season, 30 major league teams and lots of games, there are plenty of opportunities for baseball bets. When you visit BestDealCasinos.co.uk, you can find a guide to the UK’s leading casino sites and the games that they offer. We are sure to have discovered a betting site that suits your preferences.
The Baseball base-ics
Baseball takes place on a field, also known as a diamond, where there are three bases laid out counter-clockwise, going from first to second to third. The area inside these bases is the infield, while the area outside of them is the outfield. Home plate is at the bottom of the diamond and in the middle of the diamond is the pitcher’s mound.
Each game consists of nine innings, each of which has two halves. During each half, one team will bat while the other team play defence and tries to catch the other team out. The main action takes place between the batter and pitcher at home plate with the pitcher trying to get the batter to strike out by swinging and missing the ball. The objective of the offence is to get their batters around all the bases back to home plate to score a run. Every time the batter hits the ball, he heads for first base and so on but if the ball is caught in the air or he is tagged with the ball he is out. The umpire in chief is based at home plate and officiates the game with the assistance of other umpires based on other parts of the field; together they call the outs and determine the validity of different plays. After three outs, the teams switch places. Unlike other sports, there is no clock in baseball, though games typically run around 2½ hours.
The team that scores the most runs in the nine innings wins the game. In the event of a tie, the game continues in extra innings for as long as it takes for a team to win – for instance, in April 2015, the Boston Red Sox beat the New York Yankees after playing for nearly seven hours and 19 innings!
Watching the game
When you’re preparing to watch a game or bet, make sure you pay attention to number of factors – first off, the weather! Most baseball fields are outdoors which means in the event of really bad weather they can be rained out. This can also affect your bets, depending on the type of bet you place. Another important factor is the starting pitcher. He is one of the most important players on the field, as he will determine the defensive play for the first part of the game. Teams rotate their pitchers regularly and the order in which they play is important, particularly if you’re betting. Every team will have a number one pitcher in the rotation, also known as an “Ace” and teams will attempt to match these players against each other during the game. Similarly, keep an eye out for the final pitcher, particularly in a close game as this player will be the ‘closer’ and will determine the winner or loser depending on how well they pitch.
While the basics of the game are pretty easy to figure out, there are a lot of particular rules and jargon that will get thrown around. Before the game starts, it’s always helpful to get used to the basic terms, the key players on each team and some general baseball statistics as these can be very useful if you want to place more advanced bets.
Aside from an enjoyable game, baseball generates a huge number of statistics and specific terminology. The analysis of baseball statistics is known as sabermetrics and received a lot of public attention in the 2011 film Moneyball. The study of baseball stats helps teams determine trades, establish trends and devise a strategy for the season. While you don’t have to be a statistics professor to place bets on baseball, if you have a good grasp of the terminology and statistics involved you can feel confident when placing a bet.
For those really keen on statistics, there are well-developed internet fantasy leagues that allow keen followers to win big prizes, depending on how they manage their teams throughout the season. The large international fantasy community offers an opportunity to meet and chat with fellow baseball fans around the world.
If you’re looking to bet on baseball online, BestDealCasinos.co.uk brings together the very betting sites so you can take your pick. You will also get to enjoy a whole host of member benefits and deals through each site’s sign-up offers, so get involved today and have some fun online. Watching baseball is a great way to pass the time and if you make the right bets you never know what you could be taking away after your game.
Types of baseball betting
There are several different kinds of betting on baseball and you can choose the method that best suits your particular preference. Make sure you never bet more than you’re prepared to lose. Betting on baseball rewards those with an eye for statistics and trend spotting – if you spot the right one it’s possible to win big! Baseball is one of the easiest sports in which to show a profit but generally one of the least wagered on. Once you’re familiar with the different strategies outlined below we recommend placing bets through quality betting providers we’ve selected.
Unlike most other sports that have a point spread, baseball betting’s most popular method is the ‘moneyline’ bet. The odds used in betting on baseball look a little different to the usual point spread style of betting. Don’t let this deter you! Placing a moneyline bet involves simply picking the winner of the game but keep in mind that the odds can vary dramatically depending on the team. The team with the negative sign in front is generally favoured to win so, for example, a team rated -110 you would need to bet £110 to win £100, conversely the team with the positive sign in front is the underdog, so a rating of +130 means £100 wins £130. These bets remain in action even if the game is cut short due to bad weather.
These are similar to moneylines but also include a point spread. However, unlike in other sports, the runline in baseball is usually -1.5 or -2.5, meaning to cover, the favourite has to win by two or three. Generally the odds offered with this kind of betting is closer to 1:1, which can avoid the higher odds that are sometimes found in moneyline betting. This kind of betting generally requires a deeper knowledge of baseball statistics and offers better payoffs later in the season when trends have started to emerge. It also allows you to increase your payout if you favour an underdog or marginalise your risk in other cases.
Despite the standard runline, there are often larger point spreads available which offer bigger odds.
- Over/unders (Totals)
This is another popular baseball bet, where bookmakers set a total number of runs they expect between both teams and you have to choose whether the total will be over or under that number. This type of bet is one of the easiest types of bets to make, as it generally only relies on the team’s performance for that particular game. The game has to be played to the full nine innings and is considered to be no action if it’s cut short due to weather.
- 5-inning line
This is similar to the moneyline but uses the score after five innings instead of the final score and as a result, is more akin to betting on the first half of the game. The odds usually reflect the moneyline but there is more riding on the team’s starting lineup. In particular, this type of bet focuses on the strength of the starting pitcher and with sufficient research can reap big rewards.
- Futures or season wins
These are probably the least common bets and generally take place before the season begins. They are long-term bets with strict betting limits and generally have significant odds. Futures are bets placed on certain teams achieving specific goals during the season, such as winning their division or reaching the World Series. Odds increase depending on how unlikely each event is to occur.
Season wins is a bet placed on a team as a whole but taking the over or under on total wins for a baseball club in the upcoming season, with odds being roughly around the standard.
These types of bets are based around betting on several teams and events and all must win for the parlay to pay off. If you have multiple teams chosen and just one of them loses, you lose the entire bet. The more teams and events chosen, the higher the payoff should they be successful. Generally, these bets have fixed odds and are sometimes referred to as “sucker” bets. There are specific strategies to undertaking parlay bets in baseball, so you should make sure that you’ve sufficiently researched and wagered carefully before undertaking them!
- Grand Salami
This is usually offered before the day’s action starts and all of the Over/Under totals are added together and you can bet on whether the combined runs scored from the entire day will be over or under that total.
- Proposition or ‘Prop’ Bets
These are wide-ranging bets that can focus on anything to do with baseball statistics and can include things such as how many strikeouts a pitcher has; how many bases a batter takes or how many errors are made in play. These bets are really easy to make once you have a basic grasp of baseball stats.
Making the most of baseball betting
Still feel daunted? Never fear! By checking out the sites we’ve partnered with you’ll soon have a grasp of the key concepts of baseball and how to place bets on the game. The more you watch and get a feel for the game, the better you’ll understand the rhythm and the mechanics of it. Once you feel comfortable with the game, you can start to place bets – it’s always wise to start with a bet that matches your budget before escalating. The stakes will rise throughout the season into the playoffs and championships so you can be assured that there are plenty of opportunities to raise your stakes as you become more comfortable with the game.