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!

2018 MLB Betting Odds to Win National League Cy Young Award

The MLB season has seen a number of great pitchers emerge. Read below as we highlight some of the favorites for the NL CY Young!

Max Scherzer Cy Young Odds (+160)

He entered the season with back-to-back Cy Young titles and is now trying to three-peat. Well, so far so good for Washington’s ace with two different eye colors.

He has posted a 6-1 record through eight starts with a 1.74 ERA and has recorded 80 strikeouts in just 50 innings of work. In what has been a down year for his team, Mad Max is still showing that he is on a mission.

The clear best pitcher in the NL so far, a bet on Mad Max is a bet on somebody who is looking for some Cy Young history and has good odds.

“It’s a funny game. Sometimes it’s the little things that don’t go your way. As a pitching staff, we are just going out there and try to throw up zeros because we know we want the next guy to go up and put up zeros. Everybody is trying to pull up each other.” — Max Scherzer

Clayton Kershaw Cy Young Odds (+260)

This has been a rough year so far for Clayton Kershaw. He’s been injured for the third year in a row, and is struggling to win ballgames when he is out there.

With just a 1-4 record to show for his 7 starts, Kershaw does have a 2.86 ERA and 44 strikeouts. Wins and losses are not a category you judge a pitcher by, but in retrospect, you expect more than one win in 7 starts from your $30 million per year ace.

A bet on Kershaw is a bet on a big-time bounce back when he returns.

Noah Syndergaard Cy Young Odds (+650)

Along with Jacob DeGrom, Thor poses a fantastic 1-2 punch in NY. Coming off an injury-shortened 2017, Syndergaard has pitched well in the early portion of the season.

Through 8 starts, he has posted a 2-1 record to go with a 3.09 ERA and 54 strikeouts. While those numbers don’t jump off the page, this is after starting just seven games in the prior season. So far so good for Thor and his hammer.

There is a lot to be desired before Syndergaard can start really garnering your votes. He needs to hold up his pace for a few more months to join Scherzer and the candidate below as the favorites to win this year’s award.

Stats at a Glance

  • Record: 2-1
  • ERA: 3.09
  • Strikeouts: 54

Carlos Martinez Cy Young Odds (+850)

The Cardinals ace has gotten off to a smoking hot 2018. After three years of double-digit wins and sub-4.00 ERA’s, the improvement is still coming for this guy.

Through his first 8 starts, he has posted a sensational 1.62 ERA, marking it even lower than where Max Scherzer is at right now. He has shown that every night he can get it done and be their guy. He has a 3-2 record with 47 strikeouts through his first 50 innings.

So far so good for Carlos. A bet for him is a bet on an emerging star. He has never finished in the top-20 in Cy Young voting, but the 26-year-old has his time coming.

“If Martinez can work on his control and emotions this season and get it all figure out soon, we are looking at the 2018 Cy Young Award winner.” –Redbird Rants

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

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

2018 Major League Baseball: Odds to win American League MVP

The first two months of the MLB season have provided great excitement. Read below as we highlight some of the AL MVP favorites!

Mike Trout MVP Betting Odds (2/3)

The LA Angels have been one of baseball’s best teams so far this year, in large part thanks to the big fish in the city. Mike Trout has been on a role and is off to a .331 BA with 12 HR’s and 25 RBI’s so far.

While Trout has already won 2 MVP’s and finished top 2 in voting on 5 occasions already, this start is still relevant. He is still doing what he does, and there is no cap on how many MVP’s a player can win.

Similar to LeBron James in basketball, he seems to be getting it done at a high-level night in and night out. A bet on Trout is a bet on a man who has won voter’s hearts multiple times already.

“Mike Trout is unbelievable. He’s one of the best players in baseball right now, if not the best.” – Bryce Harper on MLB.com

Mookie Betts MVP Betting Odds (3/2)

It came as a great shock to all of us that Mookie didn’t take home the 2016 AL MVP, as he posted absolutely incredible numbers. After taking a step back last year, he is back and is now batting .347 with 13 HR’s and 27 RBI’s, putting Trout’s amazing numbers to shame.

It has been a long time coming for Betts, who has really become one of baseball’s best. The start he has gotten off to this year has coincided with the strongly successful team they have fielded.

You’d be hard-pressed to find many other guys who can produce at the level of Mookie night in and night out. A bet on him is a bet on somebody who is looking to finally finish on top.

Manny Machado MVP Betting Odds (15/1)

Machado has gotten off to the best start to any season in his career in 2018. If the MLB were like the Premier League, this Orioles team would have gotten relegated if not for Machado’s strong play.

Baseball is not a sport where a team’s record plays in necessarily to who they pick for awards. Manny has been a BEAST thus far. He’s batting .343 with 9 HR’s and 27 RBI’s, He has an incredible .428 OBP and has shown to be a dominant force. He is the only guy who is doing his job for Baltimore.

Quick Look

  • Average: .343
  • Homeruns: 9
  • RBI’s: 27

A bet on Machado is a bet on one of baseball’s best, playing for a team 20 games below .500.

Jose Altuve MVP Betting Odds (18/1)

The reigning AL MVP has gotten off to an insane career start. He possesses a career .317 batting average through 4,000 at bats and entered this year off of 4-straight 200+ hit seasons.

Altuve is batting .331 this year with 2 HR’s and 17 RBI’s, but has stolen just two bases. That is one category he has been surprisingly quiet in.

As long as he continues producing, he will be in the tops of the MVP conversation for years to come. A vote for Altuve is a vote for a repeat.

“It’s an honor to be MVP, but I really have to say the fans back in Houston and my teammates made me an MVP this season,” Altuve said after winning the 2017 MVP award.

Full MLB American League MVP Betting Odds

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

2018 Major League Baseball: Odds to win National League MVP

The 2018 MLB season has provided a lot of intrigue so far. Read below as we highlight some of the top candidates for the NL MVP Award!

  • 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.

Bryce Harper MVP Betting Odds (9/5)

The Nationals best player got off to a scorching start this year but has since slowed down. He’s batting just .237 but his power has been on full display. 12 home runs and 28 RBI’s through 36 games are the numbers he has posted.

Harper, despite his poor average, boasts a .420 on base percentage and has come around to score 29 times. He hasn’t made a single error in the field and is without a doubt one of the team’s key players in their recent turnaround.

As Washington starts to get more of their top hitters healthy, the pressure should ease off Harper and his production should begin to rise again.

It’s easy to bet on a guy who has been among baseball’s best for years now.

I really want to have a possibility of going into the Hall of Fame one day. I think that’s huge with a lot of baseball writers and old school guys. Of course, that’s not the main goal – the main goal is winning a World Series. Hall of Fame is so far away. It’s just something I’ve always thought about doing. I want to be as clean as I can.  — Bryce Harper

Kris Bryant MVP Betting Odds (9/5)

The 2016 NL MVP is back and he is hungry for more. Batting .290 through his first 28 games, Kris Bryant has hit 5 HR’s and driven in 15 runs. He has an OBP of .412, and has come around to score 18 runs.

While the overall dominant production hasn’t been there for him quite yet, it is going to come soon. This young man has been one of baseball’s best since entering the majors, and that is likely going to continue for the years to come.

The Cubs are only going to be as good as Bryant is, and so we see just how valuable he is to this organization.

Nolan Arenado MVP Betting Odds (12/1)

It is truly surprising that the Rockies power-hitting third baseman hasn’t won an NL MVP yet. He’s driven in 130 or more runs in each of the past three seasons and has really been making a name for himself.

Off to a strong start in 2018, he is hitting .315 with 8 HR”s and 21 RBI’s. Boasting an OBP of .409, he is on pace with his production from the past few years. There are very few players who play this position, if any, with the pure power of Arenado.

Quick Look

  • Average: .315
  • HR’s: 8
  • RBI’s: 21

He has been one of the major keys to the Rockies turnaround over the past few seasons.

If you like to bet on home run specialists, place your wager on Nolan.

Rhys Hoskins MVP Betting Odds (15/1)

The second-year player for the Phillies took the league by storm last year and he has continued to impress this season as well.

Batting .281 thus far, Hoskins has an OBP of .428, indicating how smart a hitter he is at the plate. His 5 HR’s and 23 RBI’s have helped to lead the surprisingly resurgent Phillies on their hot start.

He is without a doubt going to be a fixture among the MLB elites for the years to come.

If you like betting on the underdogs, Rhys Hoskins is your guy.

Full MLB National League MVP Betting Odds

  • Check back soon for a full listing of NL MVP candidates and betting odds.

 

 

 

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.

Follow VegasOdds on Twitter as we post MLB articles every Tuesday. You can bet your chips that you’ll be seeing a lot more Ohtani stories as the year goes on!