2018 MLB Betting Odds to Win National League Cy Young Award

As the MLB season continues on, the award races continue. Read below as we highlight the pitchers with the best odds of winning the NL Cy Young award!

Max Scherzer (-200)

Already a 3X Cy Young award winner, it’s no surprise that Scherzer is right near the top of the voting yet again. He has been absolutely dominant, and on some nights, unhittable. In 154 2/3 innings of work, he has posted a 2.33 ERA, striking out 210 batters while walking 38. He has gone 15-5, one win away from tying last year’s total.

In what’s been a surprisingly trying season for the Nats, he has been a constant sign of hope. Every time he takes the mound, the team is racking up a win. He hasn’t gotten beat up on AT ALL.

Aaron Nola (+350)

In what has been a career year for the fourth-year man, the Phillies have had team success follow. Having already tied his career-high with twelve victories, he has been major for this team. Nola has gone 12-3 this year, posting a 2.37 ERA. In 148 innings of work, he has struck out 144 batters, while walking 40.

The one thing he hasn’t yet done in his career, is throw a complete game. But sooner rather than later, we should expect that to happen. As long as he’s continuing to dominate, Philly will have a chance to remain atop the NL East.

Jacob DeGrom (+450)

While a pitcher’s record certainly isn’t everything in a Cy Young race, if it looks like DeGrom’s, then well, the odds don’t look so good. This man has a 1.85 ERA after 146 1/3 innings of work. 173 strikeouts and just 33 walks. But, he hasn’t won a start in multiple months because he NEVER gets the run support that he needs. For all the great stats he’s posted this year, DeGrom has gone just 5-7.

Felix Hernandez once won a Cy Young with a 13-12 record, but DeGrom’s team in is in the cellar and look even worse whenever he takes the mound. He’s going to have a chance, but let’s hope to see him win at least one more game this year.

Jon Lester (+1000)

Quite a bit far behind the rest of the candidates, 2018 has been kind to Jon Lester. He’s posted a 12-4 record, striking out 100 batters and walking 51 in 130 2/3 innings of work. His ERA currently sits at 3.44. He’s allowed nine runs in his last ten innings of work, and gave up eight a few starts ago, taking his ERA from 2.58 to 3.14.

It’s going to be tough for him to overtake any of the three NL East candidates ahead of him, but Jon Lester does have a shot, if he’s perfect the rest of the way. Likely ends up being between Nola and Scherzer, though.

That’s a look at our updated odds to win the National League Cy Young. We will continue to monitor the odds and bring them to you here at Vegas Odds!

Full MLB National League Cy Young Betting Odds

  • Here are the current Cy Young odds from SportsBetting.ag and as of August 6, 2018:
Max Scherzer (Nationals) -200
Aaron Nola (Phillies) +350
Jacob deGrom (Mets) +450
Jon Lester (Cubs) +1000
Clayton Kershaw (Dodgers) +1600

 

2018 Major League Baseball: Odds to win American League MVP

Yesterday, we gave you the NL MVP candidates, and today we’ll be going over the AL. Read below for more!

  • Before we get started, if you are interested in the NL MVP betting odds – you most likely are interested in reading about the MLB World Series Betting Odds as well.

Mike Trout (-150)

Already a 2X MVP and a top-5 vote getter for the award for six straight years, nothing has slowed this man down. He has shown tremendous base-stealing ability, home-run hitting, and a great eye at the plate. This year, Trout is batting .310 with a .454 OBP (!!), and has hit 25 HR’s and driven in 50 runs. He is 15-16 on stolen base attempts.

The one knock on Trout is the fact that his team continues to miss the postseason, no matter how well he performs. This won’t have an implication on whether or not he wins the award, but it’s something he has to fix. TAKE LA to the playoffs Trout! He is likely to finish the year as a top-three candidate.

JD Martinez (+275)

Mike Trout has some serious competition, as Martinez is outdoing him in just about every category. The first year Red Sox DH hit 29 HR’s, while driving in 80 runs in the first half of the season. At the same time, he recorded 116 hits (12 more than Trout), and has a .328 batting average. He helped the Sox to an MLB record 68 wins before the All Star Break.

There is hardly anything he could be doing better right now, as he is making a serious case for his first MVP Award.

Mookie Betts (+300)

It’s been another sensational year for Mookie Betts, as he is batting .359, with a .448 on base percentage. He’s hit 23 HR’s, while driving in 51 runs. He just got voted to his third straight All Star Game, and he’s stolen 18 bases in 20 attempts. He’s been a dynamic presence in the field as well.

Still just 25 years of age, Betts is still just getting started. He finished a close second in award voting in 2016, before finishing sixth last year. The only knock on him, and it’s not saying much, is his lack of RBI’s. He’s in the same boat there however, as Trout.

Jose Ramirez (+800)

Jose has come out of almost nowhere this year to have a tremendous season. Yes he was an All Star a year ago, but he’s batting over .300 for a third straight year, and has already tied his career-high for HR’s in a season, hitting 29 before the break. His strong play has helped th Indians to stay atop their division.

We’re also in an age where stolen bases are less and less common, and Ramirez has nabbed 20 for the second time in his career. He will continue as a prime candidate for the award as the season goes on, as the AL has produced some tremendous candidates this year.

Full MLB American League MVP Betting Odds

  • The American League MVP Betting Odds are from BetNow and as of July 20, 2018:
Mike Trout (LAA) -150
J.D. Martinez (BOS) +275
Mookie Betts (BOS) +300
Jose Ramirez (CLE) +800
Jose Altuve (HOU) +2000
Francisco Lindor (CLE) +2000
Aaron Judge (NYY) +4000
Giancarlo Stanton (NYY) +5000
Shohei Ohtani (LAA) +5000
George Springer (HOU) +5000

 

2018 Major League Baseball: Odds to win National League MVP

As we get ready to dive in to the second half of the baseball season, it’s time to examine the competitors atop the race for NL MVP. Read below for more!

  • Before we get started, if you are interested in the NL MVP betting odds – you most likely are interested in reading about the MLB World Series Betting Odds as well.

Freddie Freeman (+145)

He just made his first All Star Game in four years, partook in his first HR Derby, and also has the Braves on the Phillies tail for first place. It has been a great year for the first baseman, who has continued to show how talented he is. With 16 HR’s and 61 RBI’s this year, his resume is looking good.

Freeman is currently batting .315, and has an OBP of .405, as he has been a very tough guy to retire. His 114 hits to this point gives him a legitimate shot at his first 200-hit season. The better the Braves finish the season, the better Freeman’s odds. He’s got some legit competition.

Freeman is not a huge power hitter, and is okay with it. Freddie talks about his hitting here:

” For me, feeling good is line drives to left field. “

Nolan Arenado (+155)

Another year, another monster stat line from Nolan Arenado. If the season ended today, Arenado would have a career-best batting average (.312) as well as on-base-percentage (.395). He has been tough for opposing pitchers to retire, as he is in search still of his first MVP award. Arenado’s power numbers have been on point as usual, with 23 HR’s and 68 RBI’s.

With 130+ runs driven in and 37+ HR’s hit over the past three seasons, it is hard to believe that Arenado hasn’t even finished top-three in MVP voting in the past. This year is looking rather different, so be on the lookout for the Rockies star to be a final candidate.

Max Scherzer (+450)

In order to a pitcher to win the MVP award, their numbers really have to be fantastic. Justin Verlander was ridiculous in the year he won the award. Thus far, it is visibly apparent that Scherzer deserves great consideration. Through his first 20 starts, he has gone 12-5 with a 2.41 ERA, while striking out 182 batters and walking only 34.

There has been no weak point in his game this year, and all of Scherzer’s losses (with an exception) have been a result of little to no run support. He has already won the last two NL Cy Young’s, so he’s looking good in that race as well as that of the NL MVP.

Paul Goldschmidt (+800)

After a slow start to the year, Paul Goldschmidt has sure rebounded well. He made it to the All Star Game, while starting to find his power. He’s launched 21 home runs, while knocking in 52 runs. His .281 batting average was barely over .200 midway through May, showing his far he has come this year.

All has been well for him and the DBacks, who have catapulted themselves into playoff position. He has twice finishes top-two in MVP voting, but never won. Might this year be different?

Full National League Betting Odds

Freddie Freeman (ATL) +145
Nolan Arenado (COL) +155
Max Scherzer (WAS) +450
Paul Goldschmidt (ARI) +800
Kris Bryant (CHC) +1100
Bryce Harper (WAS) +1200
Anthony Rizzo (CHC) +2500
Matt Kemp (LAD) +2500
Anthony Rendon (WAS) +3000
Joey Votto (CIN) +4000
Nick Markakis (ATL) +5000

 

 

 

MLB Betting Odds to Win the World Series At All Star Break

As we come into the All Star break, now is the perfect time to look ahead to the question everybody has on their mind. Who will win this year’s World Series? Read below for the team’s with the best odds!

Before we do so – the latest on end of the season awards coming later:

New York Yankees (+475)

Already leading the major leagues in home runs, and owner of a pitcher who has already won 14 games, life has been very good to the Yankees this year. Stanton is no longer being booed, and the team continues to get more and more guys to help them win games. Their bullpen has been as good as any part of the team, which is really saying something.

It’s truly not surprising this team, now 3.5 games behind the Red Sox, who have won ten in a row, are listed with the best odds. Led by Judge and Stanton and their incredible ability to go deep at any time, the Yankees have been dominant.

Yankees manager Aaron Boone knows the expectation of winning a title is there. He is also impressed with his group of guys and their willingness to go all in this year. He had this to say:

“Last year was great. A lot of these guys came of age and viewed it as a very successful season, but I think what stands out being in that room right now is each guy I’ve spoken to, the hunger is there and there’s no satisfaction with what they’re able to accomplish. We understand it’s a very tough road. That will be one of our messages, especially for young players who have had success.” – Aaron Boone

Houston Astros (+500)

The reigning champions have gotten off to a start many teams can only dream of. 62-34 record, the best starting rotation in baseball, and also the best second baseman in the league. They are well managed by AJ Hinch, and really haven’t shown a weakness. Surprisingly, they are only three games ahead of the Mariners, who have fought hard this year.

Once the playoffs come around, there will be questions as to who should start and who should join the bullpen for this team, but when that is your biggest concern, it’s pretty clear you’re in a good spot. Watch out for the ‘Stros.

Boston Red Sox (+600)

Things just keep getting better for the Red Sox. They’ve won ten games in a row, have their largest lead of the year on the Yankees, and have seen their starting pitchers thrive. They haven’t had a weak link, as they have in years past, plus an offense led by Mookie Betts and JD Martinez is as good as it gets.

Once the playoffs come around, they will need to figure out how to discover some old magic. In the last few postseasons, it was an early exit for Boston, but this year figures to be different. It’s crazy to believe though, that a possible 100-win team in the AL will have to be knocked out in the division series.

Chicago Cubs (+750)

Though they aren’t in first place, the Cubs have been playing well of late and are 14 games over .500. They have a great squad right now, led by Javy Baez, leading in home runs, RBI’s, and stolen bases. Their pitching has come around, as they are close to finally catching the Brewers.

As a team, they are hitting .264, an incredible feat considering their opponents are batting just .229, and a number of teams in the league are around .230. Life has been good in recent weeks for the Cubs, and if their current pace continues, we’ll be seeing them in their second World Series in three years.

Full Betting Odds to Win the 2018 World Series

The odds in this article come from SportsBetting.ag and are accurate as of July 13, 2018

  • New York Yankees +475
  • Houston Astros +500
  • Boston Red Sox +600
  • Chicago Cubs +750
  • Milwaukee Brewers +1000
  • Cleveland Indians +1200

Betting Odds to Win the 2018 American League Rookie of the Year Award

The 2018 MLB season has shown us many talented young players for the first time. Read below as we highlight some of the favorites for AL Rookie of the Year!

Before we start, make sure you check out some of the other Major League Baseball articles we have been working on:

Shohei Ohtani

What can we say about Shohei? How about starting with the fact that he has successfully juggled serving as a DH and a starting pitcher so far? He has started just six games on the mound, but has looked very solid.

Through these six starts, he has posted a 3.58 ERA in 32 2/3 innings. Ohtani has struck out 43 thus far and has hit 100 MPH on multiple occasions. He is showing that he can be a legitimate force for the Angels. In his recent start, Ohtani was extremely impressive. His catcher Rene Rivera had this to say:

“He was fantastic. All his pitches were working, not only the splitter but the slider was nasty. The curveball was good. He mixed everything up to get those hitters off balance. He did a great job.” – Rene Rivera

At the plate, he has also been very solid. In 23 games serving as the DH, Ohtani has recorded 26 hits in 86 at bats, including 4 doubles, a triple, and 6 home runs. He has driven in 17, and accumulated a .321 batting average.

Ohtani is showing us that he can do both. Pitchers who rake are pretty cool. BUT pitchers who can also hit full time and bat over .300, as a rookie? AWESOME.

Gleybar Torres

The 21-year-old infielder had a lot of expectations when the Yankees called him up a month ago. He has without a doubt met them head on and been sensational.

He is batting .324 with 3 HR’s, including a walk-off, and 12 RBI’s in the 71 at bats he has taken. He has been producing a lot of hype and showing that he has got some big-game talent.

Playing for a title-contending team as a rookie can be scary for some, but Torres was groomed for these moments. He’s well on his way as the 2nd best AL rookie.

Hector Velasquez

It’s rare to put a reliever in the ROY race. It’s even more rare when that rookie is 29. But here we are. Velasquez, a native of Mexico, has been a stud out of the Sox bullpen and as a fill-in starter.

Through his first 10 outings, he has posted a 2.10 ERA in 25 2/3 innings, while striking out 18. Boston struggled to find good relievers to help set up Kimbrel last year, but this rook is getting it done.

It’s perfect timing to see this emerging pitcher for Boston.

Joey Wendle

In a normal year, the production of Wendle would not be highlighted among the best rookies. But, this year is different.

The 28-year-old rookie is batting .284 through 116 at bats this year, and has accumulated 33 hits, including 1 HR, and has driven in 11 runs. He has been sound for an offense that hasn’t been too impressive.

Like Velasquez, Wendle is also on the older side. He’s 28 years of age, as he got to the majors a bit late. He won’t garner too many votes, but it’s important to note he’s a very solid hitter.

Full Rookie of the Year Betting Odds

  • Check back shortly for full American League ROY betting odds.

National League Rookie of the Year Betting Odds for 2018

The 2018 MLB season has seen strong performances from a number of young players. Read below we as we highlight some of the best NL Rookies!

Before you do so, you may want to check out a few of these other Vegas Odds articles regarding Major League Baseball:

Joey Lucchesi (Padres)

After starting the year as an ace, he has come back to earth a bit. Still, by the numbers, Lucchesi is without a doubt the leading candidate here in the NL ROY race.

Pitching for a team that doesn’t produce too many runs, he is off to a 3-2 start with a 2.98 ERA and 46 strikeouts in 42 1/3 innings. In what has been a rough year for San Diego, it has been a great campaign for him.

Andy Green, the Padres manager has had some high praise for Lucchesi, following another solid outing:

“It’s fun to watch that kid pitch. He competes. He’s not afraid. He throws his pitches with conviction.” – Andy Green on Joey Lucchesi.

It is good to see a legit starter in San Diego finally.

Colin Moran (Pirates)

After trading Andrew McCutchen, a real void was left in this outfield. Enter Colin Moran.

The Pirates rookie is tied for the most RBI’s among all NL Rookies with 20 and he has gone deep three times. He is also sporting a .288 BA which leads all rookies in the NL and has been swinging a very solid bad.
It is pretty clear that Moran is a legitimate part of the team’s future and as he ages, things should continue to look up for him.

Shane Carle (Braves)

Remember when Kris Medlen was a healthy stud on the Braves? This is what Shane Carle is resembling. A guy who enters the game and blows away the opposing hitters.

He has appeared in 18 games this year, striking out 18 batters in 24 innings, and he has put up an incredible 0.75 ERA. He comes in as a middle-to-late inning reliever and he does his job.

It has been exciting to watch him and his progress. Atlanta has a key foundational piece to build around in that bullpen.

Walker Buehler (Dodgers)

With Clayton Kershaw going down and this team struggling, Walker Buehler came in and has been the best sporter of this last name since the great Ferris.

Through his first four starts this year, he has posted an astounding 1.64 ERA over 22 innings, while striking out 27. His velocity has surely been there, and he’s gone 2-1.

Buehler has helped a team that badly needed some wins, to come out on top and claim a few. This has been vital. And though they are 8 games under .500, they may have a future gem here.

Christian Villanueva (Padres)

While the Padres have overall struggled to hit, they have found themselves a new power hitter. The rookie 3B for San Diego has gone deep nine times and driven in 20 runs to this point in the season.

While his overall batting average of .226 isn’t impressing anybody, his .310 OBP looks very solid. Playing on a young team will allow for a lot of opportunities, and this man is looking good so far.

Probably not a prime candidate to win the award, Villanueva is showing he has pop.

Full MLB National League Rookie of the Year Betting Odds

  • Check back soon for a full listing of MLB NL Rookie of the Year candidates and betting odds.

Updated Odds to Win The 2018 American League Cy Young

The 2018 MLB season has seen a number of major pitching performances. Read below as we highlight some of the favorites to win this year’s AL Cy Young award!

Chris Sale Cy Young Betting Odds (+300)

The Red Sox ace has gotten off to another (not surprisingly) hot start in 2018. He has posted a 3-1 record in his first 9 starts, striking out 78 over 58 innings and posting a 2.17 ERA.

Sale’s greatest strength, more than his ability to get constant strikeouts, is his consistency. He has been so consistently dominant for the Red Sox since coming over. When they have a big game and he is on the mound, there is no need to be concerned.

Sale took a bad image leaving Chicago, but recently he talked about his move:

“I want to win a championship in Chicago. That’s been my goal from Day 1. It has never changed. I only get more passionate about it because I know that it’s not easy winning a championship. There’s a lot that goes into it.” — Chris Sale

A bet for Chris Sale is a bet that after finishing top 6 in Cy Young voting for 6 years in a row, this is the time he finally gets the nod.

Corey Kluber Cy Young Betting Odds (+300)

Here’s the man Chris Sale lost to in the voting last year. What a run it has been in Cleveland for Kluber over the past five years in Cleveland.

To this point in the season, he has posted a 5-2 record with a 2.62 ERA and 57 strikeouts in 58 1/3 innings of work. His strikeout numbers have been down to this point in the year, but as a workhorse, he should get a chance to reach the 200 strikeout plateau again.

A vote for Kluber is a vote for a 2X CY Young winner, trying to add to his regime.

Gerrit Cole Cy Young Betting Odds (+450)

It is unbelievable how much a change of scenery can help to improve your game. The Gerrit Cole pitching for the Astros this year is hardly the same man he was in Pittsburgh last year.

Through his first eight starts, Cole has posted a 4-1 record with a 1.43 ERA. He has already struck out 86 batters through just 56 2/3 innings and is looking like a seriously well-oiled machine. His previous career high in strikeouts was 202, and that took him 208 innings.

This year’s Nolan Ryan is going to garner a serious number of votes. A vote for Cole is a vote to allow the Astros to continue dominating the Majors. (It’s a good idea to vote for him)

4) Justin Verlander (+450)

Gerrit Cole’s pal in the team’s rotation is just below him here, with the same exact odds to win the award. He has been a legitimate stud since coming over from Detroit.

It could be argued that he has been even better than Cole. He is 4-2 with a 1.21 ERA (!!!) through his first 9 starts, spanning 59 2/3 innings, with 77 strikeouts. Now 35 years of age, it seems that Verlander has been drinking Michael’s secret stuff.

To see a team with Cole and Verlander, both acquired after the 2017 season began, just wow. They are thriving right now.

Full MLB American League Cy Young Betting Odds

  • Check back soon for a full listing of AL Cy Young candidates and betting odds.

Follow VegasOdds as we’ll keep you posted throughout the year on this award race!

Sean Manaea Fires First No Hitter of 2018 Season

Sean Manaea fired the first no hitter for the Oakland A’s since 2010 on Saturday. Read more about his historic day below.

Who is Sean Manaea?

Originally born in Valparaiso, Indiana, Manaea attended Andrean High School in Merrillville, IN. He then attended Indiana State University. As a 21-year-old, he was drafted by the Kansas City Royals with the 31st pick in the 2013 MLB Amateur Draft.

Manaea’s major league career officially got underway for the Oakland A’s on April 29, 2016, when he allowed 4 runs in 5 innings of work against the Houston Astros. He would start 24 games that rookie season, finishing with a 7-9 record and a 3.86 ERA in 144 2/3 innings of work.

He has shown tremendous growth so far this season, posting a 1.23 ERA through 5 starts and 36 2/3 innings of work. He’s striking out 6 batters for every walk that he is issuing and all seems to be going well for him.

How did he do it?

As mentioned above, 2018 has been very kind to Manaea. He has been able to record strikeout after strikeout while really being able to efficiently limit runs against any team that he faces. The A’s haven’t had any really good pitchers in the past few seasons aside from Sonny Gray who they sent to the Yankees, so it has been a breath of fresh air to see Manaea doing his thing.

Going against the MLB’s best team, the 17-2 Red Sox, is probably intimidating for 99.9% of all major-league pitchers. But, not for this guy. He came in right from the outset by getting the first few outs, and that would set the tone. The run support was not great for Manaea in this start so it was really going to take a special day to earn his team a victory.

Only two players would reach base the entire night, and that happened via walk. After walking a batter with two outs in the ninth, Manaea got Hanley Ramirez to ground into a fielder’s choice, the ball was fired to second, and history was made.

The first no-hitter in A’s history since Dallas Braden in 2010, Sean Manaea cemented himself into Oakland A’s history. Already off to a sensational start in 2018, this only further exemplifies how dominant he is going to become. This is only the beginning for Manaea as his career winds on.

What is next for him?

What’s next for Sean Manaea is now, a chance to follow up his no-hitter to see how ready he is for his next start. He obviously isn’t the first pitcher to ever toss a no-no, but following up a start like that is surely not easy. How prepared he will be for his next outing following history is what will be watched for.

Dallas Braden, as mentioned earlier, threw his no-hitter in 2010, but after that we never really heard too much about him. Eight years later he’s just 34 years of age and is already retired and commentating MLB games. Manaea is 26, roughly the same age that Braden was when he tossed his perfect game.

This is an interesting trend to notice, as a pitcher in his mid-20’s is out there firing a gem, the same age as the previous A’s pitcher who did the same. Manaea, by the numbers, was a lot more impressive than Braden, so he has a better chance at continuing to be relevant in the majors.

The next step for Manaea is not to rest on his laurels and go out and pitch 6-8 strong innings in his next outing.

Follow VegasOdds as we post MLB stories each Tuesday!

5 MLB Players With a Red Hot Start to the 2018 season

The season is only a few weeks in, but read below as we highlight some hot MLB starts that are flying under the radar.

Jose Pirela:

In his first full year as a starter for the Padres, the outfielder has not disappointed. Leading the MLB with 24 hits, he has gone unnoticed because of the struggling team he is playing for.

Pirela already has nine extra base hits through 17 games, and that only includes doubles and triples. Though players on his team have been consistently failing to get on base, he has managed to drive in 10 runs. He’s done a very admirable job to this point in the year.

While many now think of the Padres best player as Eric Hosmer, Pirela has done his part to show them how good he can be, as he looks to be a franchise cornerstone for a team who needs one.

Joe Mauer:

It wouldn’t come as a surprise to many if Joe Mauer was hitting over .400 if it was 2013 or 2014, but here we are in 2018 and he is still swinging a red hot bat. Every time he makes contact, it seems to just fall in for a base hit.

Mauer is hitting .412 through the first 10 games he has appeared in this year. Picking up 14 hits in 34 at bats, he has recorded 4 doubles while knocking in 6 runs. The team has been unfortunate to have so many games cancelled due to weather, but it has become a given that Mauer will record at least one hit every time he is in the lineup.

In his age 34 season, he is showing no signs of slowing down.

Jed Lowrie:

The infielder, who actually turns 34 today, has been swinging a hot-as-the-desert bat this season. Leading the A’s offense, Lowrie has a .348 average with 4 HR’s and 14 RBI’s. He has spent 5 of the past 6 seasons in Oakland, but this start without a doubt stands out among the rest.

He is showing that he can be a leader for a team that seems to be going through an ‘endless’ rebuild, constantly bringing in new players. He is providing some stability, in addition to help for the young power hitting duo of Matt’s, Chapman and Olson.

Lowrie’s start is just the beginning of what is to come for this team.

Adam Ottavino

Now in his seventh year as a reliever in Colorado, many fans have gotten used to Ottavino. He will be a decent reliever when he is given the chance to pitch.

This season, he has picked up 3 wins from the bullpen in his first nine appearances. He has finished out three games for them, and shown to be reliable. He has an ERA of 0.93, and 20 of the 29 outs he has recorded have come via the strikeout.

Every year, one or two middle-relievers get the chance to play in the All Star Game, and it seems this is Ottavino’s year.

Joey Lucchesi

You never know what you are going to get when you throw a rookie starting pitcher out there. But, with Joey Lucchesi, it seems you will get a steady arm for however many innings you need it, and a ton of strikeouts.

He has posted a 2-0 record with a 1.66 ERA through his first four MLB starts, spanning 21 and 2/3 innings. He has record 25 strikeouts so far. He is pitching for a team that is without a doubt, desperate to find some big arms as they try to finally start to limit runs and opposition opportunities.

This could not come at a better time as the 24-year-old rookie will throw his hat into the ring for NL Rookie of the Year, and may very well emerge as the future ace of the San Diego Padres.

Follow VegasOdds as we bring you the latest MLB news every Tuesday.

Shohei Ohtani Has Taken The MLB By Storm In 2018

Shohei Ohtani has taken the MLB by storm in 2018. Read below to find out just how he’s done this.

His offensive prowess

It all started for the Angels prized offseason acquisition when he got a single off of the very first pitch he saw in the majors. He’d go hitless for the remainder of his first game before starting to find a groove. He’s got 7 hits in 18 at-bats so far, including 3 home runs and 7 runs batted in. He isn’t going to be a regular in the lineup, but when he does play, he’s shown to be a fantastic complement to the likes of Mike Trout, Albert Pujols, and Zack Cozart.

The fact that he’s been able to shrug off his struggle of a rough spring training, tells us all we need to know about him as a player and professional. For the cheap price (only cheap in sports terms) of $545Km, the Angels are getting a dominant hitter in the lineup every few days. He’s showing that it doesn’t matter who he is facing, the dingers won’t stop for Ohtani.

His pitching prowess

Through two starts and 18 innings pitched, Shohei Ohtani is off to a fantastic start. He’s allowed just 4 hits and 3 runs while striking out 18 and walking two. The stat that immediately stands out: a 9-1 strikeout to walk ratio. Coming over to the home-run crazed MLB, he’s been able to consistently make players swing and miss. All three runs he has allowed came on a moonshot home run from Matt Chapman early in his debut.

In a starting rotation that struggles with health and dominance, Ohtani is a breath of the world’s freshest air. He’s been whizzing balls past every batter, and not allowing very many baserunners. After the early blip in the radar from the Chapman home run, he has been absolutely perfect. While he can only pitch every sixth day or so, every time he takes the mound, it will be with great confidence from the entire club.

How has he done it?

He’s done this by, well, for starters, coming in as an experiment that many doubted from the beginning and succeeding tremendously. Many around the league, writers, managers, didn’t believe in the guy who could both hit and pitch. That would end in high school, or early in college for most players coming through the American system. Not for Ohtani, who crushed it in Japan and is showing the MLB that he may be a revelation.

We’ve seen NL pitchers who can hit before with the likes of Micah Owings, Carlos Zambrano, and most recently Madison Bumgarner. However, while these guys can be used as a pinch hitter, they aren’t starting in the lineup solely just to be a bat. Managers love to get pitchers who rake, but for an AL team to have the luxury of a designated hitter who is also the team’s ace, it is unforeseen.

He’s done this by never changing his approach. Ohtani wanted to come to a small market, and while he is in LA, he’s with the smaller team there and it’s worked. He tuned out everybody who said he wouldn’t succeed and has, as Rihanna put it, “Shined bright like a Diamond”.

It’s been a very exciting ride while following Ohtani and the journey he has been on to re-define the norms of the MLB. It’s clear to see that he has got the potential to succeed as a part-time starting pitcher, as well as a part-time designated hitter.

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