Everyone loves to weigh in during the offseason and tell you how the Detroit Tigers will perform and which players will do what over the course of the season. However, few do it with greater accuracy than good ol’ Las Vegas.
Bovada Las Vegas sets lines for just about every sporting event you can imagine. This time of year is when it’s fun to take a peek at the ‘over/unders’ for the 2014 Tigers. And if you’re feeling really confident, you can hop on a plane and find a casino in the desert willing to hold your money while the bet slowly comes together over the course of the six month season.
The thrill of sitting in a Vegas sports book, holding a parlay ticket in your hand, and watching the 4th leg of your parlay swaying in the balance is electric……or so I’m told.
In this article I’ll tap into my inner Jimmy the Greek by laying out Bovada’s over/unders and telling you which side of the line to place your cheese.
At last check, Bovada has the Tigers winning 89.5 games in ’14. A few weeks ago I felt like 92 wins was the number. With each fallen Tiger I become slightly more worried about this one. That being said, I still believe in the starting rotation and the star power across the offense, at least enough to get to 90 W’s. This one might be really close, and if you have ever laid down a sports bet you know how close these lines generally are, but I’m taking the over. Barely.
End of Year Awards
MVP – Miguel Cabrera is 2nd behind Mike Trout in the AL MVP prognosticating. Trout’s odds are 4/1 and Cabrera’s are 6/1. Trout has put up two of the most impressive seasons in baseball history each of the last two years but has had the pleasure of watching Cabrera win the award both times. At 6/1 Cabrera is a strong bet, but Trout is my pick to win it this year.
Cy Young – For the Cy Young, the Tigers have Justin Verlander and Max Scherzer both at 10/1 and Anibal Sanchez at 18/1. Yu Darvish leads the pack at 7/1 and David Price is next in line at 9/1. Darvish is having neck issues and might miss a few starts. Counting numbers are critical in Cy Young voting so if he misses too many turns in the rotation it makes the Tigers trio look like strong bets. At 18/1 Sanchez is an intriguing option. Personally, as I posted a few weeks ago, I have Darvish winning the Cy Young with Sanchez 2nd, Max 3rd, and JV 4th. Let that be your guide. Oh, and if you’re feeling really lucky, Joe Nathan has 66/1 odds. Bet $10 to win $660? If he saves 50 games and is the only viable member in the pen on a playoff team then you never know.
Individual Player Performances
Miguel Cabrera – Bovada has Cabrera’s over/unders at a .325 average, 39.5 homers, and 129.5 RBI’s. Run a 3-bet parlay here by taking the overs in average and RBI’s and the under in homers.
Ian Kinsler – Bovada set Kinsler at 15.5 homers, 72.5 RBI’s, and 95.5 runs. Three way parlays pay 6/1 so if you lay $100 on the overs in homers and runs and the under on RBI’s you’ll be collecting $600 in early October, and have another Vegas trip on the books. What could be better?
Torii Hunter – Bovada gave us two numbers to chase on Hunter, 17.5 homers and 85.5 RBI’s. Take the under on both. My gut says Torii sees a DL stint at some point this year, which would derail any hopes at catching either of these figures. And you should always bet based on solid data and a heavy dose of gut instinct.
Victor Martinez – A .300 batting average and 89.5 RBI’s are the benchmarks. Hitting cleanup behind Cabrera means I like the overs on both of these. Get busy. Easy money here.
Justin Verlander – 16.5 wins, 219.5 strikeouts, and a 2.99 ERA are the numbers to consider here. Wins are a useless measure of a pitcher’s effectiveness, and given the state of the Tigers’ pen, could be a difficult stat to register for Tigers starters this year. That being said, I’d take the over on wins and K’s and the under on ERA. JV is going to dominate in 2014. I’m all in.
Max Scherzer – 16.5 wins, 235.5 K’s, and a 3.25 ERA. Here I’d take the over on wins (but just barely) and the under on K’s and ERA. Max is playing for big dollars in ’14 as he prepares for free agency. He should be lethal once again.
Anibal Sanchez – Bovada set his wins over/under at 13.5. Last year he set a career-high with 14. He’ll win at least 15 this year. This is my favorite bet of all Tigers starters. Go big or go home.
Rick Porcello – 12 wins is the breaking point, something Porcello has done in three of his five big league seasons to date. This is another over. The Tigers’ wins won’t come from the bullpen after all.
Joe Nathan – 40.5 saves is the hurdle to clear with Nathan, which is convenient as Nathan saved 80 games over the past two seasons combined. I have him at 45+ this year. Book the over, then hop on kayak.com and book your flight.
See you in October.
[Follow me on Twitter @isportsJoe]
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