How To Bet Responsibly On MLB

9 min read
Author
Sol Fayerman-Hansen
Sol Fayerman-Hansen
Editor-in-Chief
Fact checked by:
Paruyr Shahbazyan
Founder
Last Updated: Jul 8, 2024, 4:39 PM

Betting on Baseball

Fans at a Baseball Stadium

In Major League Baseball (MLB), the excitement doesn't just unfold on the field; it extends into the stands and living rooms of fans who engage in any form of mobile or online betting. All sportsbooks based in the U.S. provide odds and diverse betting markets on the MLB, and most have baseball bonuses for new players to learn about. It is America's pastime and still one of the most bet upon sports in the world.

Best Baseball Sportsbooks

Understanding MLB Odds

MLB betting odds mirror those found in other sports, presenting various markets at the leading baseball sportsbooks:

Moneyline Odds Format

This straightforward bet involves choosing the team you believe will win. Odds are indicated by a plus (for underdogs) or minus sign (for favorites).

  • Example: Calculating the Payouts: Chicago Cubs: -160 vs Milwaukee Brewers: +140
  • With the Cubs at -160, they're the favorites. A $160 bet is required to win $100, reflecting the sportsbook's commission. On the other hand, a $100 bet on the underdog Brewers at +140 would return $140 in profit if they win.

Runline Bets

Similar to point spreads, runline bets predict the victory margin in runs, usually set at 1.5.

  • Example: Calculating the Payouts Atlanta Braves -1.5 (+130) vs. Miami Marlins +1.5 (-150)
  • Betting on the Braves means they need to win by 2 or more runs. A $100 bet yields a $130 profit. For the Marlins, a loss by 1 run or a win secures the bet, but a $150 bet is needed for a $100 profit.

Totals (Over/Under Bets)

These bets are on the cumulative runs scored by both teams, with sportsbooks setting a run total for gamblers to bet over or under.

  • Example: Calculating the Payouts Over 9.5 runs: -110 vs. Under 9.5 runs: +110
  • An over bet wins $100 for every $110 bet if total runs exceed 9.5. Conversely, betting under means winning $100 for every $100 bet if the total falls short of 9.5.

Prop Bets

Proposition bets span various outcomes beyond the final score, like individual performances or specific in-game events.

  • Example: Calculating the Payouts Fernando Tatis Jr. to steal a base: +250
  • A successful $100 bet on Tatis stealing a base at +250 returns $250 in profit.

Player Props

These focus on individual achievements, such as a player's hits or strikeouts.

  • Example: Calculating the Payouts Jacob deGrom over 8 strikeouts: -120
  • A bet on deGrom to exceed 8 strikeouts at -120 requires a $120 bet for a $100 profit.

Team Props

These bets relate to a team's overall performance, like scoring or defense within a game.

  • Example: Calculating the Payouts Houston Astros to score over 5.5 runs: +160
  • A $100 bet on the Astros scoring more than 5.5 runs at +160 wins $160 if successful.

NRFI & YRFI Props

First inning bets, predicting if the inning will be scoreless (NRFI) or not (YRFI), add early excitement.

  • Example: Calculating the Payouts NRFI (No Run First Inning): +130 or YRFI (Yes Run First Inning): -150
  • A $100 NRFI bet pays $130 profit for a scoreless first inning. A YRFI bet at -150 needs $150 to win $100 if any runs are scored.

Live in-Play Betting on MLB Games

In-play betting on MLB games offers the opportunity to bet on events as they happen, such as the result of the upcoming at-bat, if a team will notch runs in a certain inning, or predicting a homerun from a particular player during the match.

Benefits of Live Betting on MLB:

  • Informed Decision-Making: Watching the game progress allows for bets based on real-time performance assessments, like identifying a struggling pitcher or a batter in good form, leveraging this insight for better baseball betting decisions.
  • Increased Betting Options: A game rich in runs opens up numerous chances for betting, with each inning and at-bat offering fresh opportunities.
  • Dynamic Odds: As the game evolves, so do the odds, potentially offering more favorable conditions for bets you're considering, especially if you time your bets well.

Tips for Successful Live MLB Betting:

  • Stay Engaged with the Game: Keeping a keen eye on the gameplay helps in understanding how teams and players are shaping up, aiding in predicting future plays. Familiarity with teams’ dynamics, strengths, and strategies enhances betting outcomes.
  • Seize the Right Odds: Be vigilant for shifts in odds that work to your advantage and be prepared to place your bets swiftly before another shift.
  • Analyze the Game Context: Take into account the current state of the game, including the score, which inning it is, the number of outs, runners on base, the pitcher’s count, and the matchups between batters and pitchers to make more strategic bets.

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FAQs

How to Bet on the MLB
Is Betting on MLB Legal?
Key Types Of MLB Bets
What is the MLB Live Bet?
What is the Easiest Bet in MLB?
What is Over and Under in MLB?
Tips on Emotional Management When Betting on MLB
How Do You Bet on MLB for Beginners?
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Meet Our Authors

Paruyr Shahbazyan began his business career in 2000 as a private entrepreneur. Over thirteen years, he developed a deep understanding for business and leadership, laying a solid foundation for his professional journey.

In 2013, Paruyr stepped into the sports and betting industry as the founder and president of Bookmaker Rating. This online mass media platform, which he led until 2020, focused on providing in-depth analysis and insights in sports betting, earning a reputation for its quality content. 

Continuing his innovative approach in 2022, Paruyr co-founded Azuro, a decentralized betting protocol. This venture showcases his dedication to integrating advanced technology in the evolving landscape of sports betting. Through these diverse experiences, Paruyr has continuously influenced and shaped the betting industry, driving new trends and setting high standards.

 ExperienceYear
Engaged in private entrepreneurship2000-2013
Founder and President at Bookmaker Rating, an online platform focused on sports and betting2013-2020
Co-founder at Azuro, a decentralized betting protocol2022

"Innovation in sportsbetting comes from a deep understanding of both technology and the human element of sports." 

- Paruyr Shahbazyan, Founder, RG

 

Principles and Ethics

Paruyr Shahbazyan's core beliefs lie in the power of informed decision-making and integrity in the betting industry. He understands that the foundation of successful betting is not just about odds and predictions, but also about the trust and reliability of the information provided. Paruyr advocates for a betting environment where transparency and knowledge are paramount, ensuring that bettors are well-equipped with accurate data and insights.

Strategic Vision

Paruyr's vision is to revolutionize the sports betting industry through the integration of technology. He sees the future of betting as a blend of traditional sports knowledge with innovative tech solutions, like decentralized protocols, to enhance user experience and fairness. His aim is to create platforms that are not only user-friendly but also uphold the highest standards of ethical betting, contributing to a more responsible and enjoyable betting culture.

Future Perspectives

Looking towards the future, Paruyr envisions a betting landscape that is more inclusive, technologically advanced, and globally connected. He anticipates a significant shift towards more decentralized and transparent betting systems, driven by blockchain technology. Paruyr is committed to being at the forefront of this change, continuously exploring new possibilities and innovations that can redefine what it means to engage in sports betting in a digital world. His focus is on building systems that prioritize user empowerment, fairness, and the global growth of the sports betting community.

 

Sol Fayerman-Hansen
Sol Fayerman-Hansen
Editor-in-Chief

Sol's interest in sports was sparked at a young age, inspired by athletes such as Barry Sanders, Michael Jordan, and Wayne Gretzky. This early fascination evolved into a deep-seated passion, guiding him toward a career in sports journalism in 2007. Over the years, Sol has contributed thousands of articles and reviews to dozens of online platforms, sharing his research, knowledge, and perspectives.

“In the world of sports betting, truth is more valuable than any bonus offer.”

ExperienceYear
Content Manager, OnlineCasinoReports2012-2021
Sports Journalist, Dottraffic2009-2011
Content Writer, HouseTech2007-2009
Cristina Varela Galan
Cristina Varela Galan
Problem Gambling Expert

Cristina used to work as a Psychology Assistant in the Bizkaia Pathological and Risky Gamblers Association. She was also part of a research team in Deusto University, specializing in pathological gambling area. While working there, she managed to develop her own project 

 “Exploring the association between emotional regulation, alexithymia, stressful life events and gambling in adolescent and young adult women”.

Nick Ashbourne
Nick Ashbourne
Senior Writer

Nick has been fascinated with sports since he was first taken to a Toronto Maple Leafs game back in 1998, and he's written about them professionally since 2014.

Nick has covered baseball and hockey for outlets like The Athletic, Sportsnet, and Yahoo Sports, and his sports betting expertise has grown since its legalization in Ontario in 2022. 

Between 2022 and 2023 he worked for a betting startup called NorthStar Bets, and in 2024 he contributed to Oddspedia before joining the Responsible Gambling team.

Anna Kravtcova
Anna Kravtcova
Problem Gambling Expert

Ph.D. in organizational psychology, an internationally certified psychologist (EuroPsy 2022, Cognitive behavioural therapy of mindfulness 2020, International Society for Emotional Intelligence 2017, Russian Psychological society 2014, American Psychological Association(Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychologist) 2011), speaker of many international conferences (USA, Brazil, Portugal, Czech Republic, Russia, etc.). TEDx speaker.

Mike made the decision to dive headfirst into the booming world of sports betting fresh out of college. Back in the day, when 1-800 pick lines and sports pagers were all the rage, he couldn't resist the allure, having grown up idolizing sports legends like Sweetness, MJ, and Slammin Sammy. Mike dedicated his early years to the industry, tirelessly analyzing games, writing articles with free picks, and selling his expertise on reputable handicapping sites. Unlike many others, Mike was known for his integrity and only released one Game of the Year per sport, per season. His hard work and unwavering commitment paid off, earning him a devoted following and propelling his career to new heights. Then came the explosion of Daily Fantasy Sports. Believe it or not, companies like DraftKings and FanDuel used to pay Mike's company to increase their brand exposure. Now, those same industry giants don't even bother responding to his emails. While Mike appreciates the convenience of being able to place legal bets in his own backyard, he can't help but feel disheartened by what has become of the industry. People are being led astray, falsely believing that a mere $5 wager on a 20-team same-game-parlay will be their ticket to financial security. If there’s one thing Mike learned from making book back in the day, it’s that parlays are a bookie’s best friend. A bankroll is the only leg you have to stand on in the battle with the books, and Mike’s here to offer up advice on how to protect it.

Mark Medina
Mark Medina
NBA Reporter

Mark Medina is a longtime NBA reporter that includes stints as a Lakers blogger with The Los Angeles Times (2010-12), Lakers beat writer with the Los Angeles Daily News (2012-17), Warriors beat writer with Bay Area News Group (2017-19) as well as an NBA reporter/columnist for USA Today (2019-21) and NBA.com (2021-23). Medina is also an NBA insider with Fox Sports Radio and frequent contributor to CBSLA's SportsCentralLA with Jim Hill and with Spectrum Sportsnet.

Daria Tuboltseva
Daria Tuboltseva
Hockey Journalist

Daria went to St. Petersburg State University and earned a bachelor of international journalism. Working as a sports journalist from 2014, from 2016 as a hockey journalist. Covered 5 World Championships, 2022 Winter Olympics, 2020 World Juniors, 6 Gagarin Cup Finals. 

Owner of a telegram channel Coolest Game on Earth.

Integrative nutritionist specializing on sports nutritionology.