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MLB Betting Odds in Indiana

The MLB regular season is right around the corner. That has new meaning for folks in Indiana, as this will be the first full season in which they are able to legally and safely place wagers on baseball.

From opening day through the MLB playoffs, there are ballgames being played in parks across the nation. While the game known as the national pastime is entertaining enough in and of itself, being able to wager on the games takes it to an entirely new level.

Each pitch and at-bat means that much more when you have a little skin in the game. Speaking of which, there are a number of different ways you can bet on baseball.

You can bet on which side will win the game, how many runs will be scored, the individual performance of players, the winner of the next World Series and a whole lot more.

We’re going to walk through everything you need to know right here. From how to read the odds to the various wager types and all points in between, we have it all covered.

First things first, let’s take a closer at the legal environment for sports betting here in the Hoosier State.

Is it legal to bet on baseball in Indiana?

Yes, it’s completely legal and safe to bet on sports in Indiana. In May 2018, the Supreme Court of the United States weighed in on the longstanding question of the federal ban on sports betting.

As the justices saw it, this was a matter for the states to decide for themselves. Several states have taken the ball and acted since that time. Indiana is included on that list. Retail sports betting was up and running in September 2019, and the online and mobile rollout followed a month later.

You can bet on all of the major sports in Indiana at legal and regulated sportsbooks without issue, including MLB.

Best MLB betting apps in Indiana

Here are the top betting apps you can use to wager on MLB in Indiana.

It’s a quick and painless process to sign up for each of these operators. For starters, click on our exclusive links to take advantage of the generous sign-up offers. From there, you’ll be brought to a new page where you just have to enter a few details.

Your new account will be created in no time. Afterward, you can download the app for your iOS or Android device right from the main website. Follow the simple instructions, log in on mobile and you’re all set.

You’ll find that each of these apps is very user friendly. Mobile betting in Indiana is incredibly convenient. You can perform all account functions on the go, such as placing bets, checking the odds or managing your account balance.

In order to use the app, you’ll be prompted to enable geolocation tracking software. This helps the sportsbook confirm that you are where you say you are. This is standard procedure in legal sports betting states and nothing out of the ordinary.

Example of an MLB betting line

There are three main parts to an MLB betting line that you need to understand.

  • Moneyline: This tells us which side is the favorite and which is the underdog.
  • Run line: Similar to a point spread, it’s typically set at 1.5 for MLB games.
  • Totals: A projected amount of runs scored for the game.

MLB betting odds

For each of the different MLB bet types, there will be odds attached by the sportsbook. Oddsmakers release what are known as opening lines, and then the public has its say from that point.

As a result, the odds may shift from the time they are released until you are ready to place your bets. In addition, news that breaks after lines are unveiled — such as a change in starting pitcher, for example — can lead to a shift in the betting odds.

How to bet on baseball

Let’s walk through some examples for the most popular ways to bet on MLB.

Moneyline

For these wagers, you are simply choosing which side you like to win the game between the favorite and the underdog. The former is listed with negative odds, while the latter will have odds with a positive value.

  • New York Mets +110
  • Washington Nationals -130

Run line

A run line is similar to the point spread found in other sports such as basketball and football. To cover the run line, favorites need to win by more than the amount, while underdogs can cover as long as they keep the margin closer than that.

  • Oakland Athletics -1.5 (-110)
  • Los Angeles Angels +1.5 (-110)

Totals

Also known as over/under bets; oddsmakers set an estimated number of runs scored for the game. Bettors then decide if they expect the total runs scored to be over or under that number.

  • Over 7.5 (-110)
  • Under 7.5 (-110)

Innings betting

These bets are most commonly used for the first inning of an MLB game. Bettors have to choose whether or not there will be a run scored in the inning.

  • Yes -120
  • No +110

First five innings

This bet covers the first five innings of a game. It theoretically removes bullpens from the equation and allows bettors to zero in on starting pitching matchups. If your team is in the lead after the first five innings, you win.

  • Philadelphia Phillies +120
  • Atlanta Braves -140

Alternate run lines

In MLB, the run line is traditionally set at 1.5. For bettors looking for a little more bang for the buck on heavy favorites, they can raise the run line in a bid to get greater returns if all goes well.

  • Toronto Blue Jays -2.5
  • Houston Astros +2.5

Series betting

When MLB teams hook up, it’s typically for a series of three or four games. Bettors can place their wagers on which team they think will win the most games over the series.

  • Pittsburgh Pirates +140
  • Chicago Cubs -150

Futures betting

MLB has an active futures market on events that have yet to happen. Examples include the winner of the upcoming World Series, or which players will take home individual awards at the close of the season.

  • New York Yankees +325
  • Los Angeles Dodgers +375
  • Houston Astros +550

This is an example of what the odds would look like for the top contenders to win the World Series. There will be odds listed for each team as long as they remain in contention, and they’ll move based on market action.

Prop bets for MLB

In a nutshell, a prop bet is a side wager on something that may happen during the course of a game. Prop bets can be found at all of the major sportsbooks, and there will be both player- and team-based options to consider. Here are some examples of what you might see.

  • Which team will score the first run in the game?
  • How many runs for the first five innings? Over/under 3.5
  • Will there be a triple hit in the game?
  • Winning side plus total runs
  • Will Giancarlo Stanton hit a home run?
  • How many strikeouts will Jacob deGrom have? Over/under 8.5
  • Which player will get more total bases in the game — Bryce Harper or Pete Alonso?
  • What will be the total of runs, hits and errors for the White Sox?

You’ll find plenty of opportunities for each of the games on the docket. Prop bets can typically be found by selecting the “more wagers” option for games you are interested in betting on.

What are MLB win totals?

MLB win totals are part of the futures market. They’re released in advance of the regular season. Oddsmakers place a benchmark number on the amount of wins a team will accumulate during the year.

The betting market then has its say and decides if it likes a team to go over or under the projected total. For example:

  • Houston Astros over 96.5 wins (-110)
  • Houston Astros under 96.5 wins (-110)

Upon release, the odds will be the same on both sides of the equation. They’ll begin to shift as betting action comes in, as well as based on how the team performs during the year.

Betting on MLB win totals requires a long-term view. However, it makes for an outstanding way to get a handle on the lay of the land before the season gets underway, as well as another way to keep the interest level high all throughout the campaign.

MLB live betting

If you don’t get a chance to get your bets in before the game starts, you’re not completely out of luck. That’s thanks to the wonders of live betting. Also known as in-play betting, these are wagers that can be placed after the action has already begun.

Here are some examples of the betting opportunities you may come across.

  • What will be the outcome of the next at-bat?
  • Which team will get to three runs first?
  • Updated moneyline odds for outright winner.
  • How many pitches in the next half-inning?
  • Will the total number of hits be over/under a certain number?

The offerings will vary based on what’s happening on the field. The action moves fast with live betting, but there will be plenty of choices to consider throughout the course of the game.

The MLB season

You won’t be lacking for games to wager on when it comes to MLB. Each of the league’s teams plays a 162-game regular season schedule. When you tack on spring training and the postseason, you have games nearly every day from February through October. Here’s what you need to know for each portion of the MLB 2020 schedule.

  • MLB preseason 2020: Spring training begins when pitchers and catchers report in mid-February, with the rest of the team following soon thereafter. Preseason games then get underway, and you will find odds for them. However, keep in mind that action is limited here and that results can be wildly unpredictable.
  • MLB regular season 2020: The games that matter begin in late March and run through the end of September. There are two halves of the season, wrapped around the All-Star break. You can find some good value in the early going, but the league’s top teams will be readily apparent on the odds board once the season gets long in the tooth.
  • MLB playoffs 2020: The top five teams in both the American and National League qualify for the postseason. There’s a wild card game in each league, which is sudden death, followed by the divisional round and the league championship series. The winners of the respective leagues square off in the World Series.

How to watch MLB games in Indiana

While there are no MLB teams that make their home in Indiana, that doesn’t mean you won’t find plenty of games on the tube. ESPN, MLB Network and Fox Sports all broadcast games from across the nation.

For example, here’s what you’ll be able to find on opening day, which takes place on Thursday, March 26.

  • Washington Nationals at New York Mets, 1 p.m. ET, ESPN
  • San Francisco Giants at Los Angeles Dodgers, 4 p.m. ET, ESPN
  • Los Angeles Angels at Houston Astros, 7 p.m. ET, ESPN
  • To Be Announced, 10 p.m. ET, MLBN

For streaming options, there’s MLB.TV, which allows you to stream out-of-market games either live or on demand. There are a number of different packages to consider, including single team and monthly plans.

Midwest MLB teams

While Indiana may not have its own MLB team, there are several in neighboring states to consider for those looking for some extra rooting interest.

Chicago Cubs

  • Home games: Wrigley Field
  • World Series titles: 1907, 1908, 2016
  • 2019 record: 84-78, 3rd in NL Central
  • 2020 futures market win total: 85.5
  • Top hitter: Kris Bryant
  • Top pitcher: Jon Lester

Chicago White Sox

  • Home games: Guaranteed Rate Field
  • World Series titles: 1906, 1917, 2005
  • 2019 record: 72-89, 3rd in AL Central
  • 2020 futures market win total: 83.5
  • Top hitter: Jose Abreu
  • Top pitcher: Lucas Giolito

Cincinnati Reds

  • Home games: Great American Ball Park
  • World Series titles: 1919, 1940, 1975, 1976, 1990
  • 2019 record: 75-87, 4th in NL Central
  • 2020 futures market win total: 85.5
  • Top hitter: Joey Votto
  • Top pitcher: Luis Castillo

Cleveland Indians

  • Home games: Progressive Field
  • World Series titles: 1920, 1948
  • 2019 record: 93-69, 2nd in AL Central
  • 2020 futures market win total: 85.5
  • Top hitter: Carlos Santana
  • Top pitcher: Mike Clevinger

Based on the projected win totals for these four squads, they could all be in the running for playoff berths in their respective leagues. As always, we’ll have to wait and see what the regular season brings. Teams out- and under-perform projected win totals on the regular.

5 MLB players from Indiana

Several hundred players who have made it to the big leagues have called Indiana home. Here are five of the top names on the list.

  • Max Carey: 20-year Hall of Fame career wrapped up in 1929
  • Sam Rice: Another 20-year HOFer who last played in 1934.
  • Kenny Lofton: Speedster who racked up 622 career stolen bases.
  • Don Mattingly: One of MLB’s top hitters of the 1980s.
  • Tommy John: 26-year career and a groundbreaking arm surgery that bears his name.

Tips for betting on MLB

Getting started with betting on MLB is very similar to beginning with any other sport. There are key pieces of intel that you need to consider while breaking down games. From there, there are tons of other factors that you can consider.

Some of them can really move the needle, while others are little more than noise. When starting out, keep it simple. Start with these four points.

  • Know what the odds are telling you: When you see big favorites and underdogs, they’re there for a reason. Oddsmakers have lots of data at their disposal when building lines. However, that doesn’t mean they’re right every single time. It’s up to you to figure out when they’re wrong.
  • Recent performance for both teams: During the course of a season, teams will trend up and down. As part of your research, examine how each side has done over the last 10 games for a good sense of recent play.
  • Pitching matchups: Starting pitching matchups are critical, but don’t overlook bullpen performance. Teams hit certain staffs well and are shut down by others, and vice versa for pitchers.
  • Hitting matchups: In addition to the arms, examine how the bats match up for the day. Among the factors to consider are how a team’s hitters fare against the hand of the starting pitcher they’re facing, as well as how many runs the team has been scoring of late.

Once you have a good handle on researching these factors, you can begin to further build out a betting system that makes sense for you. There are a countless number of stats for you to consider.

Before getting lost down the rabbit hole, take some time to research different MLB betting strategies. Make note of the pieces that you like from each and merge them into your own MLB betting system.

MLB betting mistakes to avoid

Just as there are things you want to do when betting on MLB, there are also plenty of things you’ll want to avoid. Here are three potential bankroll killers.

  • Betting every game: Pick your spots and aim for overall profitability. It’s a lot easier to manage that when you’re doing three games per night in comparison to 15.
  • Not shopping for lines: Moneyline is a huge part of MLB betting. You’ll find better prices on other books at certain times, but you won’t know unless you look.
  • Always betting the favorite: To maximize profits on the MLB moneyline, you’ll have to take some well-planned shots with underdogs.

MLB Betting FAQ

What is MLB futures betting?

The MLB futures market revolves around events that will happen during the course of the season. Examples include team win totals, winner of individual player awards, pennant winners and the team that will win the World Series.

What is the run line in MLB?

A run line is very similar to a point spread that’s found in sports such as basketball and football. For MLB, the run line is generally set at 1.5 runs. To cover the run line, favorites need to win by a margin greater than that. Underdogs cover by keeping the margin closer than that or by winning the game outright.

What is an MLB action bet?

An action bet means that the wager will be live even if there is a change in the starting pitching matchup. For those looking for protection on pitchers, there is a listed pitcher option for bettors to consider using.

What happens to an MLB bet with suspended games?

Rules may vary, so consult the sportsbook you are playing on for exact details. As a general rule of thumb, a suspended game that has gone at least five innings with no clear winner is considered a push.

What does F5 mean in MLB betting?

F5 stands for first five innings. These are bets that have been growing in popularity in recent years. As opposed to picking the winner of the entire game, the focus is on which team will hold the lead after five innings are in the books. Part of the reason for the growth spurt is that these wagers allow bettors to focus on the starting pitching matchup as the bullpen impact is somewhat limited.