MLB Awards Betting Primer: MVP, Cy Young, Manager of the Year and Rookie of Year Picks
Finalists have been announced for the top four MLB Awards: MVP, CY Young, Rookie of the Year and Manager of the Year.
Here is the schedule of announcements:
• Monday November 15: Jackie Robinson Rookie of the Year Award
• Tuesday November 16: Manager of the year award
• Wednesday November 17: Cy Young Award
• Thursday November 18: Most Valuable Player Award
Is there any value in these futures? Let’s break it down.
Angels SP / DH Shohei Ohtani (-5000)
Blue Jays 1B Vladimir Guerrero Jr. (+1500)
Blue Jays Marcus Semien (+20000)
Shohei Ohtani is the big favorite and his value as a two-way player is unmatched. As a batter, he smashed 46 homers, had 100 RBIs and stole 26 goals. As a pitcher, he went 9-2 with a 3.18 ERA. There should be a WAR category just for Ohtani.
It is, literally, the very definition of Most Valuable Player. It would take a minimum of two players to replace its production.
It’s unfortunate for Vladimir Guerrero Jr., who has had a stellar season and tied the league-leading Sal Perez with 48 homers with a .311 strike.
If you like the long shot based on how Ohtani has already won the Commissioner’s Historic Excellence Award, you might be betting on Guerrero. Or you could just set your money on fire. There is no money to be made here.
THE CHOICE : Ohtani
Phillies RF Bryce Harper (-222)
Nationals RF Juan Soto (+200)
SS Padres Fernando Tatis Jr. (+1000)
Bryce Harper did his best to help the Phillies in their short playoff push, scoring 0.307 with 35 homers, 84 RBIs and a base percentage (OBP) of 0.427.
Not that those numbers aren’t impressive, but doesn’t that hurt you a bit for Guerrero, who would run away with that award if he played in the NL? But, I digress.
Although Harper is favored, Juan Soto had a better batting average (0.313), more RBIs (95) and better base percentage (0.465) for the Nationals.
Finally, my choice at the start of the season for this award was Fernando Tatis Jr. for this award. Tatis has more power (42 home runs) and more speed (25 goals stolen) than Harper and Soto. Tatis has missed 22 games due to a shoulder problem and his contact skills (.282 BA) are not as elite as his competition, but +1000 is great value for an electric player who has seen a lot more national projectors as the other two nominees.
THE CHOICE : I don’t think Harper is a lock on this one, and I’d rather back Soto at +200 or sprinkle a few bucks on the +1000 odds on Tatis.
Blue Jays LHP Robbie Ray (-1500)
Yankees RHP Gerrit Cole (+550)
White Sox RHP Lance Lynn (+3300)
Gerrit Cole was the favorite for most of the season, but a late-season blast provided some value if you like the Yankee pitcher.
Here are the statistics:
Cole: 16-8 with a 3.23 ERA and 243 strikeouts in 30 starts
Lynn: 11-6 with a 2.69 ERA and 176 strikeouts in 28 starts
Ray: 13-7 with a 2.84 ERA and 248 strikeouts in 32 starts
On paper, it certainly looks like Ray is bringing the material home. I took Ray at +440 in July, and I’m feeling pretty good.
THE CHOICE : I would take the value with Cole at +550.
Phillies RHP Zack Wheeler (+140)
Brewers RHP Corbin Burnes (+160)
Dodgers RHP Max Scherzer (+190)
Two of those three pitchers helped their teams advance to the playoffs, but Zack Wheeler is sort of the favorite at +150.
Corbin Burnes has been masterful all season, anchoring a stellar Brewers rotation that saw Milwaukee advance to the playoffs with little help from former National League MVP Christian Yelich. Burnes is at +160, and I like him better than Wheeler at +150.
Max Scherzer has been excellent for two teams in the Dodgers and Nationals.
Here are the statistics:
Burnes: 11-4 with a 2.43 ERA and 234 strikeouts in 27 starts
Scherzer: 15-4 with a 2.46 ERA and 236 strikeouts in 30 starts
Wheeler: 14-10 with a 2.78 ERA and 247 strikeouts in 32 starts
One thing these stats don’t show: just how dominant Scherzer was after dressing in Dodger Blue. He went 7-0 with a 1.98 ERA and 89 strikeouts in 11 regular season starts with Los Angeles.
THE CHOICE : My value pick is on Scherzer at +190 to win the prize.
Rays OF Randy Arozarena (-260)
Spokes 3B Wander Franco (+225)
Astros RHP Luis Garcia (+900)
Randy Arozarena made the club 20/20 with 20 homers and 20 interceptions in 141 games while hitting .271. Voters will surely remember his dominant playoffs in 2020 – although that was not part of the voting consideration – which inspired many people to start a regular diet of chicken and rice, even if they can’t. do 300 push-ups. He’s a stallion.
Wander Franco was very good after joining the greats, averaging 0.288 with seven homers and 39 RBIs in 70 games, but it’s not enough to pass Arozarena.
Luis Garcia is the only long bet I would make at +900. Garcia was one of the main reasons the Astros won the AL West and made their third World Series appearance in five years. He was 11-8 with a 3.24 ERA and 167 strikeouts in 28 starts. In case the Rays hitters share some votes, the pitcher could sneak in for a win.
THE CHOICE : There is no money to be made with Arozarena, but he is the choice. Garcia is a better option than Franco if you are looking for a value option.
Reds 2B Jonathan India (-2500)
Marlins LHP Trevor Rogers (+750)
Cardinals of Dylan Carlson (+2000)
This is perhaps the second most lopsided race, as Jonathan India is the favorite at -2500 with Trevor Rogers following next at +750. India’s stats are consistently better than Carlson’s, so I don’t see the +2000 for Carlson paying off in any way.
Rogers has been very impressive with a 7-8 record and a 2.78 ERA with 167 strikeouts in 25 starts, but that’s the price of India.
THE CHOICE : India’s 3.9 WAR and 5th place at NL OBP seal the deal.
Rays Manager Kevin Cash (-110)
Sailor Manager Scott Servais (+110)
Astros Director Dusty Baker (+550)
A 100-win season at the top of the AL and back-to-back division titles made Kevin Cash the frontrunner for his second straight AL Manager of the Year award. But you know what? I moved on. The Rays are a boring team and they take the fun out of baseball. Yeah, I said it. So, I’m not supporting Cash, because you know who made baseball fun again this year? Seamen.
Servais surprised everyone by having the Mariners in contention until last weekend. Servais did more with less. Dusty Baker at +550 won’t bring this one home. Let’s face it, the Astros were dominant and no one wants to see them win another award. Sorry, Dusty. But keep being Dusty because baseball fans love you.
THE CHOICE : Served.
Giants coach Gabe Kapler (-1000)
Director of Brewers Craig Counsell (+500)
Cardinals coach Mike Shildt (+1200)
All of these guys are worthy of accolades in my book, but Gabe Kapler takes this one.
Throughout the season, we’ve been waiting for the geriatric giants to come back to earth, and guess what? It never happened. The Giants recorded a dominant season of 107 wins, forcing the 106-game Dodgers to find their way into the NLDS via a Wild Card game (against the Mike Shildt Cardinals). Those three managers should be hired, but Kapler wins this one at -1000, so there’s no money to be made here.
I don’t see anyone choosing NL Central managers.
THE CHOICE : Kapler, but there is little value.
Check out the latest odds on SI Sportsbook
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