Major League Baseball is set to take centre stage over the summer as the premier sport to consume. In this article we will attempt to tell you everything you need to know about betting on baseball!
MLB Betting Sites Guidelines and Handbook
Best Betting Sites for MLB Betting
Understanding the MLB
Major League Baseball is the premier sporting league of the summer. The boys of summer compete over a 162-game season, culminating in the postseason and eventual World Series. With 30 professional teams (29 in the United States and 1 in Canada), there is a large pool of talent in between the white lines of baseball.
The league is separated into 6 divisions, 3 in the American League and 3 in the National League. Each league has 15 teams, with one team representing their respective league in the World Series. Major League Baseball added new rules to the 2023 season, like the pitch clock and the removal of defensive shifts. These changes may seem minor but have impacted MLB betting odds since its implementation in Spring Training.
Betting on baseball is an exhilarating experience. From classic wagers such as the Runline and Moneyline to the always entertaining prop bets, MLB odds are a hot-commodity for online sportsbooks.
What makes baseball betting is the unknown. On any given night, a star could be born. Players from small town USA to hotbeds like the Dominican Republic and Japan have changed the game with each appearance, allowing fans to witness something never before seen!
The partnership of baseball and betting has been a dynamic duo thanks to baseball’s interesting betting lines and unpredictability.
MLB Betting Sites FAQ
Do MLB betting sites only offer the MLB?
No! Even though the MLB becomes the primary focus of the sports world during the summer more often than not, baseball betting sites offer a plethora of alternatives. Formula 1 Betting, eSports Betting and CFL betting are just a few of the options that MLB sportsbooks offer to bettors as alternatives.
Are MLB parlays worth the risk?
In sports betting one of the most popular options is betting a parlay. In a parlay, you have multiple outcomes that must win in order to ensure a successful parlay. It is an exciting way to bet, but it is risky. My recommendation is to wager less on parlays, because of the added risk involved. Your “bigger bets” should be done on single bets. A parlay is a fun way to consume sports, but you can quickly fall into the trap of thinking “I am due to win a parlay eventually”. Parlays are recommended for more experienced bettors.
Are there sportsbook bonuses and promotions available on Canadian betting apps?
Absolutely! Almost all Canadian betting apps offer different bonuses and promotions tied to MLB betting and welcome bonuses. It is important to do your research and find which bonus or promotion best fits your wants as a bettor.
Bodog offers live cash outs on their MLB MLs and ML parlays, which can give bettors extra flexibility. Additionally, they have a “listed pitcher” option, which could help bettors avoid betting on a team or betting against a team who has a late scratch for their starting pitcher. When betting on baseball, the starting pitcher in my opinion is one of the most important attributes, so it is crucial to utilize a feature like this that essentially acts as insurance. Bodog also offers MLB Daily Specials. These specials are usually a bevy of prop bets and parlays, which are used to give bettors exciting options to bet on multiple games.
Betting Promotion: 100% Deposit Up to $400
Bet99 offers an excellent promotion where you can get free bet bonuses simply by betting on the MLB 10 times.
- MLB Bonus offer is available for all MLB regular season games on pre-game and in-play, single bets from Wednesday, May 24 2022 to Wednesday, October 5 2023.
- Place 10 single bets of $20 or more on odds of -200 or higher (-100, +100 etc.), on pre-game or live MLB regular season games and you will receive a $20 Bonus. Bets that are cashed out do not qualify.
- Bonuses are awarded within 48 hours of bet settlement.
- Each MLB Bonus qualifying bonus must be wagered 5 times, on sports events with odds of -200 or higher (-110, +100 etc.) before you can withdraw your bonus and any winnings resulting from it.
- Each customer can be rewarded with a $20 bonus up to 10 (ten) times, to receive a maximum bonus of $200 from Wednesday, May 24 2022 to Wednesday, October 5 2023.
Betting Promotion: 100% Deposit Up to $500
Betway offers Canadian bettors a unique way to bet on Blue Jays games. During every Blue Jays game you can get up to $50 in bet tokens if your “Bet Your Way” or Specials bet loses, but the Blue Jays hit 3 home runs. Having these built in insurance promotions is always beneficial when chasing a bet that may have longer odds in particular. Betway also offers daily boosts on the MLB. These boosts can range from prop bets to ML parlays where the price is enhanced for bettors. A third promotion that Betway offers is called the Parlay Club, if you opt in and spend at least $25 on any trebles or parlays in a week you will be credited with two $5 Bet Tokens.
Betting Promotion: Up to $200 bet token refund if first bet loses
Betsafe offers a form of safety for parlay bettors by offering “safe multiples”. If only one leg of your parlay loses, you can receive up to $15 back in insurance. These parlays must have at least 5 selections, but the minimum bet is below $1, which makes this a nice low-risk insurance option. Betsafe has a long list of dozens of pre-built prop parlays available for each individual game and hundreds of different bets to use on each MLB game. Betsafe’s futures market is extensive and even during mid-season play they offer futures bets on the majority of popular future bets.
Betting Promotion: 100% Deposit Up to $500, 100 free spins, and $5 in live casino bonuses
Parlay payday offers you the chance to cash in on a free bet. If you stake at least $50 on parlays during the Promotion Period you qualify for a $20 Free Bet on Monday. Just like Bodog, Spreads.ca have a “listed pitcher” option, which could help bettors avoid betting on a team or betting against a team who has a late scratch for their starting pitcher. Spreads.ca also has a feature called pre-packs, which is a new feature that offers pre-made parlays for each individual game.
Betting Promotion: Get a 100% match up to $750.
How to Bet on the MLB
Now that we have seen some options for sportsbooks to use and have general information on the MLB and baseball, let us look at it from a betting perspective. How does a bettor wager on the MLB or baseball?
Moneylines: Obviously the classic wager on any sporting event or competition is betting the moneyline. The moneyline in baseball is determined at the end of each game. It does not function like a 3-way moneyline unless otherwise specified, so if your moneyline bet goes to extra innings, it is still live. The MLB is special in that there are 162 regular-season games for each team, which means there are many games to bet almost every day of the season. When betting on these games there are so many different factors that go into an MLB moneyline bet. Who is the starting pitcher? Does the batting lineup have left handed hitters and/or switch hitters? Who is the home team? Is it a divisional game? You must ask yourself all these questions as with a 162 game season, there is bound to be a fair bit of parity.
Personally, for myself I typically try to look for moneylines that are -130 or greater odds. It is really hard to justify betting on a moneyline favourite with odds of say -175, because you must risk 1.75 times more to win only 1 times your wager. As of the end of May, if you had bet $100 on the underdog’s ML in every game excluding the Oakland Athletics (the worst team in the MLB), you would be up $1944.55. If you love betting favourites, then I have another option that may favour your betting desires for baseball.
Runlines (Spreads): Runlines in baseball refer to the spread on a game. Your standard MLB runline will set one team as a -1.5 favourite and the other team as a +1.5 underdog. So this means if you are betting on a favourite, they must win by 2 runs or more and if you are betting on the underdog, they can either win outright or lose by 1 run and your bet would still be considered a winner. Now it is important to understand that if you are betting underdogs here at +1.5 spread, you still need to try and find value. Runline underdogs are covering in 58% of games, but a $100 bettor would still be down $1262.01 this season, because some of these +1.5 underdogs are -200. It is important to look for value. For example, road underdogs typically get greater odds and it has proven to be a more profitable avenue this season. Road underdogs are cashing at 59.7% and would leave $100 bettors up $254.90 on the season.
Totals: Just like NHL Betting, NBA Betting, NFL Betting or Soccer Betting, the MLB offers totals on the runs scored in every single game. Baseball much like football, can be greatly affected by the weather, so it is important to note when a game is being played indoors and when a game is playing outdoors. Baseballs will encounter less air resistance during warmer weather versus colder weather. The lower resistance means the ball will carry further in warm weather. Therefore, early in the season run totals will start off lower more often than not and increase as we reach the summer.
Additionally, there are certain stadiums that are considered more of a “hitter’s park” or alternatively a “pitcher’s park”. This insinuates that the hitter or pitcher may have an advantage based on the layout of the park and in special cases, like Coors Field they may have an advantage because of altitude. Coors Field in Colorado consistently has the highest run totals in the MLB, because of altitude which makes the air thinner and results in balls carrying further.
Accordingly, sport betting apps juice the run totals up much higher for a game at Coors Field compared to somewhere like Nationals Park in Washington.
First 5 Innings: One of the worst feelings when betting on baseball is when you pick the right starting pitcher, but the bullpen lets you down. When betting on the first 5 innings, you can usually avoid wagering on bullpens. On average starting pitchers should be able to pitch for 5 innings, which makes a first 5 innings bet the perfect bet if you are focusing your research and knowledge on starting pitching. Most teams have a rotation of 5 pitchers and depending on which pitcher is starting, it can greatly sway the odds and outcome. For example, the San Francisco Giants are 28-28 on the season, but their F5 record is 25-19-12, which is obviously a much more profitable number.
Alternatively, some teams are very reliant on their bullpen and it may be worth fading their starting pitching. The New York Mets are 30-27 this season, but their F5 record is 23-30-3. It should also be noted there are F5 totals as well, so if you find the total for the game to be an intimidating number, perhaps the F5 total may be more attractive. For example, when a game has a total of 8.0 runs, the F5 total could be anywhere between 4-5 runs, which leaves a fair bit of room for a value play based on the F5 line itself.
MLB Bonuses and Promotions
MLB promotions are integral for users. When registering for an online betting site, you’ll want to join one that has great MLB bonuses and promotions to help your money go further!
Two bookmakers we highly recommend for MLB promotions and bonuses include Bodog and Bet99!
Bodog’s offer of daily specials are enticing for baseball fans of varying experience. Their daily specials are usually prop bets or parlays but the boosted odds and potential payouts are unreal. These daily specials are a hit among baseball fans and a sure-fire way to get baseball bettors to join their site. Furthermore, Bodog also offers live cash outs and a 100% matched deposit up to $400. It’s no surprise Bodog’s baseball betting is top notch.
Not to be outdone, Bet99 comes in clutch for baseball fans. Bet99’s ongoing promotion of offering free bet bonuses after 10 MLB wagers has baseball fans excited. On top of that, Bet99’s welcome bonus features a 100% matched deposit up to $500. This extra bonus is quite generous and is considered for its great value. Bet99 also has tons of betting options and markets for you to take advantage of!
MLB Betting Rules
When placing bets on the MLB, you need to follow the rules! Below, we look at popular MLB betting sites and how the rules can shift between different sportsbooks.
- Extra innings, if played, will count in the final result for all bets except highest scoring inning, team to win the most innings, most runs scored in an inning, and team with the highest scoring inning in the game.
- When betting on the moneyline, team to score first wins, last team to score, odd/even game total or odd/even team totals the game must go to the losing team's 5th inning at least for 'action' to count (or 4 ½ innings should a game be called in the bottom of the 5th and the home team is ahead).
- On player related markets, the listed player(s) must start in the designated game for the wager to have action, otherwise bets are void. Player prop bets stand provided that 8 ½ innings are played
- Team Totals - subject to 8 ½ innings rule EXCEPT where the team total has already gone over (if team total has already gone over the quoted total, then bets on the over will be settled as winners, with bets on the under settled as losers).
- All baseball wagers are action regardless of the starting pitcher
- During MLB playoff games even if the game is suspended midplay, all bets will stand until the game is completed. This is counter to regular season games, where the 4 ½ inning rule comes into play during regular season betting. Meaning if a regular season game is suspended during the Top of the 5th or earlier, then bets associated with this game are voided.
MLB Betting FAQ
Still looking for additional information?
These baseball betting FAQs should cover anything we missed in the content above!
Which MLB Bet is Right For Me?
Choosing the correct MLB bet is imperative to having fun and success. To decide which MLB bet is right for you, there are several factors to consider. Betting experience will be a factor. If you are new to baseball betting, we’d recommend wagering on some of the easier betting lines (to understand). This would include the Moneyline, Spreads and Totals. These are the most common betting lines for new players. Bankroll management and statistical lines such as total pitcher Ks, first five innings and other betting lines may be reserved for more experienced bettors.
Can You Wager on Parlays and Props?
Yes! MLB parlays and props are two of the biggest betting markets in the sport. Usually reserved for more experienced bettors, betting on props can be fun because the options are limitless. Prop bets are not directly tied to the outcome of the game, so you can wager on such things like total bases for a player to how many strikeouts in the second inning. Some betting sites even allow you to create your own prop bets! As for MLB parlay betting, this is another popular market. Parlay betting allows bettors to combine multiple bets into a single wager with increased oods. However, if one of their bets fails, the entire bet loses! This is posed as a riskier bet but can be lucrative if you manage to pull it off.
What Happens if a Game is Rained Out?
This can be sportsbook specific but the most common result will be a void bet. This means that the bet will be as if it never happened. Note, this may only apply if the first pitch has not been thrown yet. If the first pitch has been thrown and the game is played before being called off due to rain, sportsbooks may consider the bet placed if a certain milestone has been reached, like the first 7 innings played. To avoid any issues, contact your sportsbook and read the fine print for potential rainout incidents.
What Factors Should I Consider When Betting?
Betting on baseball can be rewarding but homework is necessary! Everyone will weigh factors differently but we suggest looking at things like the starting pitching matchup, umpires, location, weather and streaks. Factoring in these stats and metrics can help you have success when betting on professional baseball.
How Can I Find Value with the Underdog/Favourite?
Underdogs will usually have value because they are projected to lose the game. So, when betting on the underdog, consider pitching match ups, umpires, location of game and streaks. Even the worst teams in baseball can win games! Starting pitchers can play a huge role in the outcome of the game, so finding an underdog with a great pitcher can help your value. As for the favourites, look for value in betting lines like the Runline. Moneyline bets won’t offer the best value, but the Runline will!
- Betting Sites
- MLB Betting Sites Guidelines and Handbook