MLB Betting: Finding Value in American League Cy Young Futures
We've reached the halfway point of the MLB season, and it's time to take a look at the futures market -- specifically for the American League Cy Young Award.
Which MLB futures offer betting value on Soccer odd? Let's see where we can zero in.
Please note that lines are subject to change after this article is published, which impacts betting advice. All betting lines were taken from FanDuel Sportsbook, and you can check here to see their most updated numbers.
Dylan Cease to Win The American League Cy Young (+1200)
The futures market is always a spot to look for plenty of value, and this year is no different.
The halfway point of the MLB season is a time to take a step back and evaluate what we've seen, what we should be seeing, and how we should approach current betting markets. To start, we'll look at the American League Cy Young Award.
Let's take a look at the top five players with the best odds to win the American League Cy Young:
|Player||Odds to Win|
(AL Cy Young)
Cease is among the elite pitchers this season and actually ranks higher than some of the pitchers who have better odds than him.
Let's start with the simple stuff. Cease has the most strikeouts (150) in all of Major League Baseball. Cease also has the highest K/9 (12.90) of any pitcher in the MLB with at least 80 innings pitched this season.
The righty holds a 2.15 ERA, which is slightly worse than McClanahan (1.71) and Verlander (1.89) but better than Shohei Ohtani (2.38) and Gerrit Cole (3.02). Cease has allowed fewer HR/9 (0.69) compared to the other four pitchers mentioned.
When it comes to Wins Above Replacement (WAR), Shane McClanahan leads this group with a 3.2 WAR, while Cease, Ohtani, and Verlander are all tied with a 2.9 WAR. Cole sits in last at a 2.2 WAR.
However, it's not all sunshine and rainbows for Cease, who is worst among this group with 4.13 BB/9. No other pitcher is higher than 2.38 BB/9.
Cease is tied or better than some of the pitchers on this list and yet, he has the longest odds among them to win the American League Cy Young. This list is filled with veterans, stars, and household names, but Cease deserves a spot at the table with his performance thus far.
Shohei Ohtani to Win The American League Cy Young (+850)
Next up, let's take a look at Shohei Ohtani's case for the American League Cy Young award.
Much of what was said about Cease is similar for Ohtani, yet his odds are also noticeably longer compared to the two favorites.
Ohtani has the second-highest (12.72) K/9 in the league among pitchers with at least 80.0 innings this season, behind only Cease. He allows fewer HR/9 (0.83) than McClanahan (0.98), Verlander (0.91), and Cole (1.35), bested by only Cease (0.69).
If we want to dig into xERA, McClanahan leads the way with a 2.24 xERA, but Ohtani is right behind him at a 2.44 ERA. Following that pair is Cease at 2.68 xERA, Verlander at a 3.06 xERA, and Cole at a 3.08 xERA.
Again, we have a pitcher who is better or right behind the best options in the league in most stats, but their odds are much longer.
The question becomes, why? Why are Ohtani's odds (+850) a step behind McClanahan's (+210) or Verlander's (+260)?
It may come down to one simple thing, innings pitched. Ohtani has 87.0 innings pitched this season, which puts him in last place among these five pitchers by a considerable margin. Cole has thrown the most with 113.1 innings, McClanahan is at 110.2, Verlander is at 109.2, and Cease is at 104.2.
This puts Ohtani 17.2 innings behind the lowest of the other four pitchers, which is essentially three starts.
Ohtani can go head-to-head with any of these pitchers based on stats, but he just needs to pile up the innings to have a comparable body of work. If he is able to do that in the second half, there's no reason he shouldn't be able to have a shot at the American League Cy Young.