The Boston Red Sox still aren’t getting the proper respect from American bookmakers.
Despite sweeping the rival New York Yankees in the Bronx over the weekend, the Sox have the third-best odds at most sportsbooks to win the American League East. Most shops have the Tampa Bay Rays favored, then the Yankees, then the Sox.
FanDuel didn’t even adjust its price on Boston by Monday at lunchtime.
The best available divisional betting price is +425 on the Red Sox over at FOX Bet. So a $100 wager would win you $425 and pay out $525 if the Sox take care of business. That’s the only price higher than 4-to-1 in the American market.
Red Sox odds to win AL East
+350 William Hill
+390 Golden Nugget
+425 FOX Bet
Why would you bet +250 when prices like +390 and +425 are available?
We wrote about betting the Red Sox +450 on May 21 because it felt like the right team at the right price. Boston’s offense had a rough week at the plate, so oddsmakers dropped them to the three-line behind the Yankees and Toronto Blue Jays.
My how things have changed since then.
The Yankees were a notable favorite at -110, so you would’ve had to risk $110 to win $100. New York’s price has since ballooned out to +215 or higher. And the Tampa Bay Rays had the fourth-best odds at +500 — now they’re the consensus AL East favorites. You’re lucky to find anything higher than +150 right now.
Consensus AL East odds as of June 9
Red Sox +350
Blue Jays +550
I just can’t get over the Yankee infatuation behind the counter. That team stinks right now. Liability and reputation are the only things keeping them in front of the Sox at the window. People love to bet the Yankees and there’s already enough money in the kitty. Bookmakers also make you pay a “Yankee tax,” so you’ll never really get true value because of their team popularity.
Baseball Reference gives New York a 2.3 percent chance to win the AL East, but bookmakers are saying the Yanks have an implied probability of around 30 percent with betting odds of +215.
Clearly there’s a disconnect in the calculus.
I believe the Sox offense is good enough to keep them afloat and that the eventual return of superstar starter Chris Sale will be a huge boon for the rotation and team morale.
The strategy is simple: if you believe the Red Sox will be in contention for a division title by September, you should definitely strike now. There is absolutely zero chance that you’ll be able to find a price of +390 or +425 on a contending team heading into the final month of the season.
Always buy the right team at the right price.