Why use our method     How to use our method     Past results with our method      

See how we're doing so far this year (by day) (by team)

See how we've done in past years

How To Use Our Method

On this page, we describe what each column of our daily information page means and the relationship between the payoffs given in your local newspaper and the probability that each team wins a game.

Although there are various options to bet on, (for example one can bet on Over/Under, the number of runs you expect the teams to score) we only deal with betting on a team to win a particular game.

It is important to note that our betting decision depends heavily on the payoff. If the payoff is big enough, we would recommend betting on the underdog, not the favorite. For example, if our model predicts that Team 1 has a 1/3 chance of winning a game, but the payoff is well over 2 to 1, we would recommend a bet on the underdog, since then our expected return is positive. Of course, this means we should "lose" many of our bets, but over the long run (if our probabilities are correct) we should be ahead.

How to read our daily information page:

The first column is the team name (a 3 letter symbol representing the city or state, CHW for Chicago White Sox -  CHC for Chicago Cubs, NYY is for New York Yankees, NYM for the Mets, SFG for San Francisco, SDP for San Diego, LAA for the Los Angeles Angels and LAD for the Los Angeles Dodgers; the rest are obvious). Two consecutive lines represent visiting team followed by the home team that day.

The second column represents the starting pitcher. If we do not have what we consider to be enough historical data on that day's starting pitcher, we may write Average or Rookie as our pitcher. Such results may not be as reliable.

The third column is our computed probability of the team winning the day's game. (This number must lie between zero and one and closely matched games should have win probabilities around 0.5).

The fourth column is what that probability gives us as a necessary payoff to make it worthwhile to bet on the team that day. If the number listed is negative, we find the team to be the favorite and it is only worthwhile to bet on the team if you can get a more favorable (less negative) price. For example, if the number in the column is -150 and you are able to get -140, we would recommend the bet. If not, we do not recommend betting on this team. If the number listed is positive, then we recommend betting on this underdog if you can get a larger payoff. For example, if we list +140, then if you are able to get +141 or better, we recommend betting on this team. If not, we do not recommend betting on this team. Since the bookies all take a spread, you should never find us recommending a bet for both teams. Sometimes, it will not be worth it to bet on either team. Furthermore, we add an extra margin to our computed probabilities so we won't recommend betting on games where the payoff is extremely close to the bookies' implied probability limit. (Some years we decided that our probability had to be a given amount 2% or 6% more than the limit, but lately we've used an expected value cutoff; the model has to imply that we expect to win a certain amount, or more, in this wager.)

The fifth column is the payoff listed in our local newspaper (The Star-Ledger) or on a wagering website - we've used donbest most often - which may vary with your local paper or betting establishment (NA means we haven't gotten the listing yet or that no line was listed in our paper, or that there is a line listed but a different pitcher started for one or both teams). The sixth column tells whether we recommend this bet ONLY given the number in the fifth column. The seventh column gives the gain or loss on the recommended action and is filled in after the game is played.