MLB Betting On Detroit Tigers April 14th, 2008
By: Matt Fargo
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MLB Baseball Betting – Tigers making bettors nervous
If you bought into all the preseason hype and did some futures MLB betting on the Detroit Tigers last month you’re probably not feeling too comfortable about that wager right now. The Tigers have been absolutely brutal over the first two weeks of the season, and they have fewer wins than any other team in the American League so far.
So what’s been Detroit’s problem? Well, having multiple slumping hitters at the same time isn’t helping their cause, as only Carlos Guillen and Brandon Inge (and reserve outfielder Clete Thomas) had respectable starts to the season. Much more had been expected from newly acquired Miguel Cabrera, while veterans Ivan Rodriguez, Gary Sheffield, Magglio Ordonez, and Placido Polanco haven’t been comfortable at the plate.
Starting pitching has been an issue as well – especially with ace Justin Verlander. The righthander is 0-2 through three starts, and he’s allowed at least four earned runs in every outing. In fact, Verlander is coming off his worst start of the season Saturday, in which he gave up six earned runs over 7 2-3 innings of work versus Chicago. Verlander had actually been cruising along on that day until the White Sox got to him in the eighth.
Until the Tigers start winning consistently they aren’t going to see any improvement in their World Series odds at BetUS.com – which currently sit at +750. That puts them tied with the Chicago Cubs for fourth spot on that futures chart, with the Boston Red Sox (+500), New York Mets (+500), and New York Yankees (+600) sitting atop that odds list.
Of course, none of the Red Sox, Mets, Yankees, or Cubs have had a great start to the 2008 season either, so bettors haven’t had any reason to jump on one of those leading contenders’ bandwagons. So which teams are the most tempting to baseball futures bettors at this time? It looks to be the Arizona Diamondbacks and the St. Louis Cardinals.
The D-Backs advanced to the playoffs last season, and the 1-2 punch of Brandon Webb and Dan Haren combined with some hot hitting has them looking good in the National League West standings right now. Arizona is also expected to get Randy Johnson back from the disabled list this week, and if he can regain some of his old form the D-Backs’ rotation will look even better. Arizona is currently listed at +2500 to win the World Series.
The Cardinals have been a big surprise in the NL Central, as they currently lead that division despite a patchwork rotation. Each of Kyle Lohse, Adam Wainwright, Braden Looper, and Todd Wellemeyer has been able to get the job done on the mound through two weeks, and Albert Pujols and Rick Ankiel have been leading the way on offense. St. Louis is a longshot on the World Series odds chart at just +6500 right now.
Elsewhere, the Oakland Athletics hold down the lead in the AL West entering the week, but they’re way back at +8000 odds to win the World Series this season. Other championship longshots who have started off well include the Baltimore Orioles (+25000), Florida Marlins (+15000), and Chicago White Sox (+3500). Chances are that those teams will fall back to the pack quickly, but it doesn’t hurt to keep an eye on them.
Along with the Tigers, the Cleveland Indians are also struggling in the early going despite high expectations. The Tribe sits at +1200 odds to win the World Series heading into play this week. Other projected contenders with middling results so far include the Los Angeles Angels (+1100), Philadelphia Phillies (+2100), Colorado Rockies (+2500).
Check the Top Sportsbooks MLB betting lines page for all the updated futures plus daily odds and totals.
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