MLB Betting: 2016 Run Line Update And April’s Shocking MLB Results

Joe Gavazzi

Tuesday, May 3, 2016 7:06 PM GMT

The dust has cleared from the first month of the 2016 MLB season. Though some expected faces are at the top of their divisions, there are also some major betting surprises in the MLB odds. 

First, let’s look at a couple of individual teams. Among the surprises in MLB must certainly be the Chicago White Sox, who finished April with a record of 17-8 and a comfortable lead in the AL Central. In the National League, the major surprise team could well be the Philadelphia Phillies, who after yet another disastrous season last year, have bolted to a 15-11 start (despite being outscored by 23 runs)! 

On the downside of the ledger might be American League teams, such as the Houston Astros who, were expected to duplicate their improvement of last season, but finished April just 7-17 (tied for the worst record in the AL). Yet another underachiever might be the NY Yankees who, at 8-14 for the month, clearly underperformed expectations.  

On a wider scale, we all understand that scoring has been down this season. Remember it was not long ago that the average in an MLB game was significantly over 9 RPG. The low scoring, however, is a bit of a surprise, considering that the OPS in MLB is .721 in April (a bit higher than usual), which implies more scoring will follow. Even more shocking (due to the fact that the American League has the DH) is that the National League has a .732 OPS compared to .710 for the American League!   

Finally, it will surprise many of you, when I tell you that home teams who normally win 53 to 54% of their games each season actually finished April below .500 at 174-180.

With parity and return to the norm being the long-term rules in MLB, it would not be surprising if many of these early season results adjust themselves in the weeks to come.  Turning our attention to run line results, finds some equally shocking numbers! After tracking run line results for 7 years, I found that MLB games were consistently decided by 2 or more runs 70% of the time. This year, even with scoring declining, 256 of 354 MLB games (that’s 72.3%) have been decided by 2 or more runs.

This includes 69% of home games and 75% of road victories. Below, I have listed 2 categories of run line results, which may provide interest to the run line MLB odds bettor. The first is a group of results by team which shows the divergence of victory in all games (either overall or by site). The second is a list of teams, whose patterns have replicated those of last year or previous seasons.

 

Teams whose games are consistently decided by 2 or more runs through April 30th 2016:

Chicago Cubs … 19 of 22 games were decided by 2 or more runs.

Colorado Rockies … 19 of 23 games were decided by 2 or more runs.

Boston Red Sox … 13 of 14 home games were decided by 2 or more runs.

Baltimore Orioles … all 12 Baltimore road games have been decided by 2 or more runs.

LA Angels … 11 of 12 home games were decided by 2 or more runs.

 

Teams whose patterns have replicated last season through April 30th 2016:

St. Louis Cardinals … 7 of 7 road wins by 2+ after 37 of 45 away wins by 2+ LY.

Boston Red Sox … 7 of 7 home wins by 2+ TY after 33 of 43 home wins by 2+ LY. 

Boston Red Sox …    6 of 7 home losses by 2+ TY after 34 of 38 home losses LY and 178 of 233 L5Y.

Cincinnati Reds … 4 of 5 home losses by 2+ after 37 of 48 LY and 161 of 218 L5Y

LA Dodgers … 4 of 4 home wins by 2+ TY after 40 of 55 home wins 2+ LY

Colorado Rockies … 7 of 8 home losses by 2+ after 34 of 45 LY and 130 of 162 L4Y.

San Diego Padres … 7 of 8 home losses by 2+ after 34 of 42 home losses by 2+ LY.

Boston Red Sox … 7 of 7 home wins by 2+ TY after 33 of 43 home wins by 2+ LY.  

Toronto Blue Jays … 5 of 5 home wins by 2+ TY after 44 of 53 LY and 80 of 99 L2Y.

Detroit Tigers … 5 of 6 home losses by 2+ TY after 33 of 43 LY and 88 of 110 L3Y.

LA Angels … 6 of 6 home losses by 2+ TY after 28 of 37 home losses 2+ LY.

Remember, MLB is a game of parity in which 90% of teams each year have a winning percentage of 40 to 60%. Many of the first month trends will return to the norm, as the weather warms. Yet, some of the long-term run line records have such strong history that they may well continue to replicate themselves and be worthy of your MLB picks