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Home Run Derby Betting News and Notes

Home Run Derby Betting News and Notes

Sizing up the sluggers and odds for the 2014 MLB Home Run Derby
By Jason Logan

Monday marks a dark, dark day in sports betting.

The World Cup is over, football season is still more than a month away, and with the MLB on hiatus for the All-Star break, the only thing to wager on is how many balls some guys can hit over a fence. Hell, the WNBA and MLS aren’t even around to save us.

Better make the most of this.

The MLB All-Star Home Run Derby steps up to the plate Monday night, wowing baseball fans for a few rounds before Chris Berman’s voice eats through our brain like a parasitic worm. But, like sprinkling bacon bits on a boring salad, throwing down some coin on who can hit the most home runs makes the Home Run Derby tolerable. And there’s always the mute button for Boomer.

Here’s a look at the field and their odds to win the 2014 MLB All-Star Home Run Derby:

Giancarlo Stanton, Miami Marlins (+250)

Stanton is the overall favorite to win the derby, coming in with 21 home runs on the year, however he hasn’t gone yard since June 26. On top of that, the Marlins’ are currently shopping their slugger which could have Stanton focused more on his future than the derby.

Yasiel Puig, Los Angeles Dodgers (+450)

This is strictly a popularity contest here. Puig opened at +550 to win the derby and has been bet up to the second overall choice. The bat-flipping phenom has just 12 dingers and just one home run in his last 43 at-bats this month.

Jose Bautista, Toronto Blue Jays (+500)

“Joey Bats” is the captain for the American League squad and brings 17 long balls to Target Field. Bautista actually rocked a home run in his last stop in Minnesota back on April 17, but hasn’t posted a HR since July 2.

Yoenis Cespedes, Oakland Athletics (+500)

The defending Home Run Derby champ is being offered at favorable odds but there hasn’t been a back-to-back derby winner since Ken Griffey Jr. in 1998 and 1999. Cespedes comes in ice cold, not registering a hit in four straight games with seven strikeouts as of Sunday. He cashed in at +600, hitting 32 total home runs in 2013.

Troy Tulowitzki, Colorado Rockies (+650)

The National League captain leads the NL with 21 round trippers – 14 of those coming in the hitter-friendly thin air of Coors Field. Tulo won’t have that pop in Minnesota but does have three home runs in his last three games, as of Sunday. All of which were at home.

Josh Donaldson, Oakland Athletics (+1,000)

The A’s better hope the derby doesn’t wreak havoc on Donaldson and Cespedes’ swings like it has with some contestants in the past. Donaldson has 20 home runs and also put one over the fence at Target Field this year, back on April 10.

Brian Dozier, Minnesota Twins (+1,200)

There is no doubt Dozier will have the home crowd behind him Monday night. Have you seen this Twins fan’s back hair Dozier jersey? *Insert dry heave here* The second baseman has 16 home runs – nine of those coming inside Target Field.

Todd Frazier, Cincinnati Reds (+1,200)

Frazier upped his home run total to 18 with a bomb against the Pirates Saturday night – his first homer since June 22. His brother - Charlie Frazier – is going to be tossing to him during the Derby. Charlie is a former Triple-A player who throws batting practice for his local ball club.

Adam Jones, Baltimore Orioles (+1,200)

The Baltimore slugger has just 16 home runs on the year and got into the derby field because teammate Nelson Cruz passed on the invite from Bautista. Hopefully Cruz and Orioles slugger Chris Davis passed along some pointers.

Justin Morneau, Colorado Rockies (+1,500)

It’s a homecoming for the former Minnesota star. Much like Tulowitzki, Morneau has benefited from the live balls in Coors Field, hitting eight of his 13 home runs at home. He won the 2008 Home Run Derby with 22 total dingers at +320 – even though Josh Hamilton hit 35 total HRs but ran out of steam in the final.

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Re: Home Run Derby Betting News and Notes

Giancarlo Stanton tops LVH's Home Run Derby odds board
By: Craig Williams

Some of MLB's top sluggers will put on a power display in tonight's Home Run Derby at Target Field, the cavernous home of the Minnesota Twins. The LVH SuperBook is offering odds for the event.

Giancarlo Stanton of the Miami Marlins tops the board at a 5-to-2 price. Despite being outpaced in the home run category by guys like Edwin Encarnacion, Nelson Cruz, and Jose Abreu -- none of whom is participating in this year's Derby -- Stanton may own the game's most raw power. Have a look for yourself:

Jose Bautista and Yoenis Cespedes, both at 9-to-2, are solid candidates to put on a show as well. Cespedes won the event in 2013 at Citi Field and is more than capable of setting off some fireworks again tonight.

A word of caution for those interested in finding value with guys like Troy Tulowitzki and Yasiel Puig, both at 7-to-1, or any of the guys drawing 10-to-1 odds: there is a difference between pure power hitters and guys with game power. The former, your Giancarlo Stanton types, can hit homers seemingly at will. The latter, while able to hit homers in games, struggle when tasked with hitting homers on command.

If you're looking for a bigger price than the top three guys on the LVH board offer, Justin Morneau (12-to-1) may be the best value. At 33, he's not the same guy he was when he won the event in 2008, but in a derby field devoid of several of the game's top power hitters, Morneau deserves a look.

























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Re: Home Run Derby Betting News and Notes

All-Star HR Derby Odds

The Home Run Derby has always been a big draw for the MLB All-Star game, as one of the most exciting moments in a baseball game is put on display by some of the most powerful hitters in the game. Once again, the format for the derby has changed as they have moved to a bracket style where the top scores from the AL and NL in the first round will receive a bye into the semifinals. The captains this year are Jose Bautista for the American League and Troy Tulowitzki for the National League as they picked eight other great hitters to join them.

This year’s contest will have 10 players rather than the eight that participated last year, and the bracket will have AL on one side and NL on the other. Three players from each side will advance to the second round with the top score earning a bye into the semifinals. In the end, just one player from each league will remain as they battle it out in the final round. Another change this year will be that batters will receive just seven outs rather than 10.

Home Run Derby Notes

The AL has won at the derby in six of the past seven years as big boppers like Prince Fielder (2009, 2012), David Ortiz (2010), Robinson Cano (2012) and most recently Yoenis Cespedes (2013) all taking the crown. Cespedes’ win last year was the first by a right-handed hitter since Vladimir Guerrero did so in 2007, and the only chance at a lefty winning this year will be Justin Morneau, as all the other competitors are righties.

Target Field has been a tough place to hit home runs in and it ranks 20th among MLB stadiums this year in homers per game (1.63). One of the factors that could have attributed to this is the fact that the Twins do not have many power hitters, with Brian Dozier -- a Home Run Derby participant -- being the only player with double-digit blasts on the team, and the club ranking 25th in total four-baggers. With all these factors considered, the field should be thought of as neutral with no real advantage for either righties or lefties.

GIANCARLO STANTON (+240), Marlins – Bats Right Stanton has some of the most unbelievable raw power that the sport has seen for a long time and he was an easy pick for captain Troy Tulowitzki as he is tied for fifth in the league with 21 monster homers. His large stature (6-foot-6, 240 pounds) and ability to get his hands through the zone at a tremendous speed make him the favorite in this contest.
Season Home Runs: 21
Career Home Runs: 138
Career at Target Field: 0 HR in 7 AB

YOENIS CESPEDES (+500), Athletics – Bats Right Cespedes put on a show last year, winning the derby by eight homers over second-place finisher Bryce Harper. He does not necessarily have the same type of in-game power that others in this year’s contest have, but he has the ability load up his stocky 5-foot-10 frame and hit some very long shots. While he should provide some fireworks once again, his value is inflated by a surprise win last year and a repeat should not be expected.
Season Home Runs: 14
Career Home Runs: 63
Career at Target Field: 2 HR in 38 AB

JOSE BAUTISTA (+500), Blue Jays – Bats Right The American League’s captain is probably the best bet on their side to take the crown on Monday night. While his batting average has fluctuated over the past five seasons, his power has not, as he has averaged a home run in every 15.7 plate appearances with an isolated power over .210 in each of the past five seasons. This will be Bautista's third derby, as he was the runner-up in 2012 and should be a solid bet to win it all this year.
Season Home Runs: 17
Career Home Runs: 228
Career at Target Field: 11 HR in 59 AB

YASIEL PUIG (+500), Dodgers - Bats Right Puig has lit the league on fire since making his debut last season and many thought he was going to slow down in his sophomore year, but he was not going to let that happen. His home run total in 2014 is nothing out of this world, but his ISO (.212) is still well above the league average of .139 and his tendency for theatrics makes him perfect for this venue. His play and demeanor are very reminiscent of Bryce Harper last year, and it would be no surprise if he matched or did better than Harper’s runner-up performance.
Season Home Runs: 12
Career Home Runs: 31
Career at Target Field: 0 HR in 14 AB

TROY TULOWITZKI (+650), Rockies – Bats Right Tulo has been one of the best slugging shortstops in recent memory and the only thing that has held him back are injuries. One worry that bettors should have is that 14 of his 21 home runs this year have come in the thin air of Coors Field. Overall in his career, he has hit 56% of his bombs at his home stadium and while his strong, compact approach is impressive, he does not seem to have the right swing to get past some of the other hitters in the field.
Season Home Runs: 21
Career Home Runs: 176
Career at Target Field: 1 HR in 10 AB

JOSH DONALDSON (+850), Athletics – Bats Right Donaldson burst onto the scene last year with his 24 homers and has seemingly fell in love with the long ball as he is on pace to hit many more this season while sacrificing average. He has a long stride when attacking the ball, and his timing could be better than ever with consistent pitching coming from the soft tosses. Donaldson is a smart player and can adjust his swing as needed, so he should be considered a strong value play with the odds given.
Season Home Runs: 20
Career Home Runs: 54
Career at Target Field: 1 HR in 29 AB

ADAM JONES (+1200), Orioles – Bats Right Jones is actually having his worst season in three years in terms of power with his ISO (.185) being the same as it was back in 2011 when he hit 25 dingers. Like Tulowitzki, Jones plays in a hitter’s park that has ranked in the top-eight in home runs per game in each of the past three seasons. The difference is that he hits homers everywhere and has actually split his 16 long balls this year between home and away. While Jones is still a long shot to win it all, he should be a better bet than the opposing captain.
Season Home Runs: 16
Career Home Runs: 156
Career at Target Field: 3 HR in 68 AB

TODD FRAZIER (+1200), Reds – Bats Right With home runs in each of the past two games before the All-Star break, Frazier comes into this contest with some momentum. He has been consistently improving his power since becoming a professional and has put it all together this year while being just one away from his career high in taters. While his improvement is great, he has hit 14 of his 18 balls out of the park in the bandbox that is the Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati. With his limited experience in this situation and inflated numbers due to playing half of his games in Cincy, Frazier should be off the radar for bettors.
Season Home Runs: 18
Career Home Runs: 62
Career at Target Field: 0 AB

JUSTIN MORNEAU (+1200), Rockies – Bats LeftMorneau is a former winner at the derby back in 2008 and has gone through much turmoil since that time. Now, as a member of the Rockies, he has been able to resurrect his career and is hitting for his most power (.191 ISO) since 2010. The veteran was likely chosen due to his experience at Target Field, but in his 766 at-bats there, he hit a home run just once every 38.3 times up to the plate. He is the only lefty on the docket for Monday night, and that may give him a small leg up with it being shorter out in right field, but Morneau should not be expected to get too far in this competition.
Season Home Runs: 13
Career Home Runs: 234
Career at Target Field: 20 HR in 766 AB

BRIAN DOZIER (+1450), Twins – Bats Right Dozier is representing his home team on Monday night, as he has 10 more homers this season than anyone else on his club. He also has five more home runs than any other second baseman in the league thus far, and is coming off a two-homer game on Sunday. His momentum and home crowd could actually give Dozier a fighter's chance to get somewhere in this bracket-style derby. At his long odds, Dozier is worth a flier if you are feeling risky.
Season Home Runs: 18
Career Home Runs: 42
Career at Target Field: 23 HR in 611 AB

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