Betting on the Home Run Derby betting is a great way to find sports betting action where there isn't any. That is because the MLB All-Star break is a dead period for sports wagering. The NBA and NHL are finished with their seasons, and the NFL is not yet in action. The All-Star Game itself is on a Tuesday night, with the Home Run Derby taking place the night before. With so little to bet on at that time of year, the MLB All-Star Game and Home Run Derby get all of the gambling eyeballs. And many gamblers are surprised to find how much fun they have betting on the Home Run Derby. It is an exciting way to bet on baseball and does present the opportunity to win money while having fun. Best of all, you can handicap the event. Let's take a closer look at how the Home Run Derby and wagering on it all works with some tips for a winning experience.
Home Run Derby Format
Major League Baseball has tweaked the Home Run Derby format in recent years, and with that has come to a change in strategies for Home Run Derby betting success.
The current format features the contestants in a single-elimination tournament. There are four first-round matchups. Players must simply beat their opponent to move on.
Previously, each player would compete against a handful of other batters in each round. The two players who hit the most home runs would advance to the next round.
Concurrently, contestants get ten outs per round. The goal could not be more straightforward. The batter must hit as many home runs as he possibly can. Like in a regular baseball game, batting last can be advantageous because you know precisely how many home runs must be hit to win for advancement to the next round.
Find Out Who Has The Hot Bats
Discovering which players are hot and which ones are not is one of the basic handicapping jobs to work on to bet on the Home Run Derby. You are ultimately trying to avoid betting on a player during a bad slump. Conversely, you will be more inclined to bet on a contestant with a hot bat heading into the Home Run Derby. Best of all, such information is easy to find. Finding a batter with the hot hand is one of the most effective ways to pick the Home Run Derby's probable winners.
A great example of this came from the 2019 Home Run Derby when eventual winner Pete Alonso entered the competition with eight home runs in the 21 games before it.
Therefore, track the performance of all players and their recent form entering the All-Star break. The most useful stats that will help you measure power and slugging ability. SLG and ISO are vital metrics to utilize. So too is the more basic statistic of the number of home runs each batter has tallied straight up.
Location, Location, Location
The ballpark that hosts the Home Run Derby is another crucial factor to utilize in your handicapping efforts. Check for statistics on each contestant and how they have performed at that particular stadium. If you pull up player statistics, you can go into a "splits" section to locate this information.
A great example comes from the 2018 Home Run Derby. That year, Bryce Harper won the event at Nationals Park, his home team Stadium that season as a member of the Washington Nationals. Similarly, Giancarlo Stanton won the 2016 Home Run Derby held in San Diego, where he was comfortable playing full time.
New vs. Veteran Contestants
Finally, it is smart to focus on players who have participated in past Home Run Derby competitions. If a player has taken part before, that can provide the most solid preview of how they'll perform in the future. The Home Run Derby is more like batting practice than an actual game. Inexperienced players often try too hard and don't adjust to the dynamics of the pitching and event.
You Will Pay for Name Brands
Home Run Derby betting success resembles any other form of gambling. You must assess the highest probability with the best price. Don't overpay for big-name players that may not deliver.