Major League Baseball bettors have an early playoff trend to sink their teeth into.
Though the MLB division series’ only started Tuesday, it has become clear that smart bettors should be keeping their eye on the underdogs. The lower seed has won seven of the first 11 postseason games in 2022, while the underdog has won eight of the first 11. And they’ve done so with relative ease.
The third-seeded Cleveland Guardians were the only higher seed to take home a Wild Card series this season, sweeping the sixth-seeded Tampa Bay Rays in the American League. The other AL matchup was another sweep, only this time it was the fifth-seeded Seattle Mariners taking down the fourth-seeded Toronto Blue Jays up in Canada. In the National League there were two upsets, with the fifth-seeded San Diego Padres and sixth-seeded Philadelphia Phillies taking their series’ over the fourth-seeded New York Mets and third-seeded St. Louis Cardinals, respectively.
While looking at seeds doesn’t necessarily give a great indication of how you should bet individual matchups (especially in the playoffs), game odds usually do, and the first two games of the division series’ saw the underdog come out on top.
The Phillies (+170 at DraftKings Sportsbook) took Game 1 of their series against the Atlanta Braves (-200) in just one example of the underdog winning this postseason. Despite having considerable better odds than their counterpart, the Phillies only received 20% of the handle placed on the moneyline of their game, per DraftKings data analyst Cassie Buontempo.
Headed into the second pair of Game 1’s, the New York Yankees (-205) and Los Angeles Dodgers (-225) are heavy favorites, with 72% and 85% of the money being placed on them to take the first game of their respective series.
If the early portion of the postseason has taught bettors anything, you may consider sprinkling some money on the Cleveland Guardians and San Diego Padres.