Major League Baseball, known as the MLB, is America’s oldest pro-sport. The National League began in 1876 before the current competition, the world’s premier baseball tournament, was founded in 1903.
There are 30 MLB Teams facing off for a spot in the postseason, with the ultimate goal being a World Series title. The tournament is separated into the National League (NL) and American League (AL) that boast 15 teams each. Modern day baseball has provided plenty of drama and excitement, with the last back-to-back World Series champion being the New York Yankees in the 1998, 1999 and 2000 seasons.
The most successful Major League club with a bumper 27 titles also happens to be the Yankees. The St. Louis Cardinals sit a distant second with 11 titles to their name.
In order to reach World Series glory, all 30 teams play 162 regular season games each, with the top five clubs from both the American League and National going forward into the Major League Baseball playoffs. This postseason tournament takes place over four rounds and comes to an end with the World Series in October.
Baseball is one of the most watched and supported sports in America and betting on the MLB is popular with Aussie punters drawn in by big name clubs like the Boston Red Sox and Chicago Cubs. The daily nature of the sport provides punters with plenty of options and value, while the change in lineups and pitching also offers plenty of upset opportunities.
The biggest MLB betting event is of course the best-of-seven World Series Championship Series. The MLB World Series pits the two MLB League Champions against each other in a fight for the title and betting on the World Series Winner is open all season.
2018 MLB SEASON BETTING
The 2018 MLB Season runs from March 29 – October 31, 2018 with the World Series set to kick off on October 24.
Early MLB predictions have the defending World Series Champions the Houston Astros to go back-to-back after winning their first title in 2017, but the market remains tight as the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox pose a serious threat to Houston’s repeat chance.
- MLB 2018 Regular Season: March 29, 2018 – October 31, 2018
- MLB 2018 Post-Season: Begins November 2, 2018
- MLB 2018 World Series: Begins November 22
- 2018 Major League Baseball All-Star Game: July 17, 2018 at Nationals Park, Washington (89th Edition)
MLB betting is open right across the season at Ladbrokes including all-in prices on the MLB World Series Winner, as well as daily promotions.
MLB odds are open for all matches during the regular season and some of the most popular Major League Baseball bet types are detailed below.
HEAD TO HEAD MLB ODDS
Open on all MLB games these baseball odds offer a price for each of the two teams to win. The shorter-priced MLB team are the favourites and punters can also take advantage on MLB Line Betting plus Total Runs – under or over a set number.
1ST INNINGS MLB MARKETS
A popular MLB betting market is to tip which team in a match will be ahead after the first inning. A high volume of runs can often be scored in the first frame of a game, especially if a less established pitcher is on the mound. There are also prices offered on whether or not a Run will be Scored in the 1st Innings.
MLB TOTAL RUN MARKETS
Get MLB Odds on the total runs made in the 1st 5 innings, plus betting on the Highest Scoring Innings, whether the total Match Runs will be and Odd / Even number and whether there will be Extra Innings.
There are three divisions within each of the MLB Leagues – East, Central and West – below is a brief summary of each team, followed by a brief look at the history of all 30 clubs.
AMERICAN LEAGUE EAST
Baltimore have some decisions to make. This club looks on the verge of a serious rebuild, with the trade of star third baseman Manny Machado looking almost inevitable. The Orioles have won the World Series three times, with their last pennant dating back to 1983.
BOSTON RED SOX
The Red Sox are perhaps the most well-supported professional baseball team in Australia. Having made the playoffs for two consecutive years, the Red Sox figure as one of the top teams to beat in the American League this season. Offseason signings such as J.D. Martinez have helped the Red Sox compete with fellow division rivals the New York Yankees so far, and with a strong rotation that features ace Chris Sale and reliever Craig Kimbrel, Boston has the firepower to go all the way.
NEW YORK YANKEES
Money and prospects, that’s the modern day Yankees. New York bought one of the league’s top sluggers in Giancarlo Stanton during the offseason, and alongside Aaron Judge and other young guns like Gleyber Torres, this team is capable of going all the way for many seasons to come. The Yankees are a dynasty, thanks in large part to names like Babe Ruth, Joe DiMaggio and Lou Gehrig. With 27 World Series titles to their name, it’s no wonder the Yankees have achieved a worldwide fan base.
TAMPA BAY RAYS
Enter one of the most painful franchises to recent date. Joining the league in 1998, Tampa’s last twenty years in the league have equaled just one American League pennant and two division titles. Things don’t look like they’re going to get any better in a hurry, either. The offseason trade of star first baseman Logan Morrison only further distanced the Rays from their dwindling fan base, but with a range of great prospects in the minors, not all hope is lost.
TORONTO BLUE JAYS
Speaking of prospects, the next ten years should be fun if you’re a Blue Jays fan. Names like Vladimir Guerrero Jr. and Bo Bichette are the future of this team, following in their fathers footsteps as potential Hall of Famers. The Blue Jays last World Series titles came during their glory 1992/1993 seasons, and with a raucous home crowd inside the Rogers Centre in Toronto, they are one of many teams you don’t want to meet in the playoffs.
AMERICAN LEAGUE CENTRAL
CHICAGO WHITE SOX
While not completely irrelevant, the White Sox have taken a back seat to their crosstown rivals the Chicago Cubs as of late. Last winning the World Series back in 2005, the White Sox have undergone a steady rebuild that hasn’t seen them feature in the playoffs since 2012.
Cleveland has been on the cusp of World Series glory for each of the past three year’s. They lost a heartbreaking World Series Game 7 to the Cubs in 2016, following it up with a 3-2 series exit in the ALDS against the Yankees the very next year. The Indians are still one of the top teams to beat in the American League though, featuring one of the best defensive shortstops in Francisco Lindor and one of the most powerful designated hitters in Edwin Encarnacion.
Five year’s ago the Tigers were always a threat, but they’ve seen turned into one of the bottom dwellers of the American League. Headlined by star outfielder Nicholas Castellanos, this is a team to watch going forward, injected by plenty of youth and a strong focus on drafting and building the team from the ground up. Having joined the league in 1901, the Tigers are the oldest team in the American League to keep the same name.
KANSAS CITY ROYALS
World Series success graced this team in 2015, ending a previous 30-year title drought. Now in the midst of a steady rebuild, the Royals remain one of the most well supported expansion teams in baseball. Joining the league in 1969, Kansas City’s rivalry with fellow intrastate team, the St. Louis Cardinals, is a must-watch.
The Twins magical run towards the playoffs came to an abrupt end in the Wild Card round in 2017, but this is still a team capable of shocking a few people. Headlined by second baseman Brian Dozier and young studs like Byron Buxton and Max Kepler, the Twins future looks bright, even if they find ways to lose games in frustrating fashion.
AMERICAN LEAGUE WEST
Last year’s champs dominated the postseason with clutch hits and big time pitching performances, gifting the Astros their first ever World Series title. Featuring one of the best young lineups in the league, the chances of a back-to-back repeat are high, especially with All-Star players like Jose Altuve, Carlos Correa and George Springer all under the age of 30. The Astros’ hitting is complimented by pitching ace Justin Verlander, a fastball guru who recorded 219 strikeouts last year.
LOS ANGELES ANGELS
Mike Trout is one of the most famous players in baseball. With six All Star appearances next to his name, the Angels are fortunate enough to feature one of the best all-round players in the last 10-years. The end goal is a World Series title, something the Angels have achieved just once back in 2002.
The recent version of the A’s has been average, but this is still a team with nine World Series titles to its name. Made famous in the movie ‘Moneyball’, President of Baseball Operations, Billy Beane, has become an infamous figure in Oakland baseball.
When you think of the Mariners, do you think of the longest postseason drought in North American sports? Seattle no doubt have the talent to get the job done. Powerful hitters like Robinson Cano and Nelson Cruz make up a star-studded lineup, but playing in what is one of the most competitive divisions in baseball hardly helps their chances.
Two chances, and nothing to show for it. The Rangers made the World Series in back-to-back seasons in 2010 and 2011, but came up empty handed against the Giants and Cardinals. It’s hard to get a read on this current Texas team. On one hand it looks like a serious rebuild is ahead, while on the other, the front office still thinks the Rangers can compete for a spot in the postseason.
NATIONAL LEAGUE EAST
Featuring one of the most young and exciting lineups in the Majors, the Braves are far and away the number one team to watch over the coming years. Following several seasons of irrelevancy, Atlanta’s savvy drafting and acquisition skills landed them Ronald Acuna and Ozzie Albies, two of the most exciting prospects in baseball. Atlanta will have a tough fight on their hands in this division for years ahead, but expect the Braves to be right in the thick of the playoff race.
NEW YORK METS
The Mets have their fair share of history. Last winning the World Series in 1986, their second of two titles, New York came close to winning a third back in 2015. The present day version features two great starting pitchers in Noah Syndergaard and Jacob de Grom, but that hardly equals wins in modern baseball. Entering 2018 the Mets were favoured to have a losing season, and since this lineup features close to no power, so far that prediction has rung true.
How do you ruin a fan base in the span of just two months? Sell off all of your players and basically admit that your team will be tanking for the next few seasons. Part owner and former New York Yankees legend Derek Jeter has been the face of controversy for the Marlins for the past year, while the Marlins continue to struggle at the bottom of the division.
Like the Braves, the Phillies are on their way back. Success came easy for this team in the early 2000’s, winning their second World Series title in 2008. Since then Philly has undergone a gradual rebuild as veteran stars retire paving the way for names like Scott Kingerey and Aaron Nola.
Over the last decade the juggernaut of the East division has been the Nationals, but unfortunately, they have nothing to show for it. Headlined by one of baseball’s biggest stars, Bryce Harper, for all of Washington’s success they have still failed to secure a World Series title or a National League title in their 49 year history.
NATIONAL LEAGUE CENTRAL
The Chicago Cubs are one of America’s oldest baseball franchises. Founded in 1903, the Cubs endured a 108-year World Series title drought between 1908 and 2016, the longest championship drought of any North-American pro sports team. Having finally captured a pennant in 2016, the Cubs remain one of the most popular teams in terms of fandom, in large part thanks to their success on the field. Star players such as Kris Bryant, Anthony Rizzo and Javier Baez have helped the Cubs finish inside the Top 5 in runs scored in each of the last three years.
First established in 1881, the Reds remain one of the oldest teams in Major League Baseball. With five World Series titles to their name, the Reds have certainly found success, although it’s been a long and torturous three decades since their last title in 1990. Featuring star first baseman and five time All-Star, Joey Votto, Cincinnati has the hitting talent to compete in this division, but their starting pitching needs some work.
World Series glory has eluded this team since forming in 1969. Having won the Central Division title just once, Milwaukee has had some unbelievable playoff runs, which could soon be the case once again. The Brewers are currently the number one threat standing between the Cubs and another Central division title.
Pirates fans last tasted success in 1979, and since then, it’s been nothing but misery. The Pirates failed to make the postseason between 1992 and 2013, and with the team now is a mini-rebuilding mode, it’s tough to see Pittsburgh competing anytime soon.
Just behind the New York Yankees, the St. Louis Cardinals have won the second-most World Series titles in MLB history (11). The Redbirds last title came in 2011, while their home attendance at Busch Stadium has exceeded 3 million in each of the last 22-years. The Cardinals have a long and historic friendly-rivalry with the Chicago Cubs.
National League West
Originally entering the league as an expansion franchise in 1995, the Diamondbacks went on to win their first and only World Series title six years later. Since then Arizona has been up and down the standings, but the current day Diamondbacks, led by first baseman Paul Goldschmidt, shape up to be one of the most dangerous teams in baseball.
The Rockies play their home games at Coors Field, a ballpark that lends itself to monster home runs given the altitude in Colorado. The Rockies have never won a World Series title, let alone a World Series game. They last made the big dance in 2007, only to be swept by the Red Sox 4-0. Colorado has flirted with success recently, mainly thanks to three time All-Star third baseman, Nolan Arenado.
LOS ANGELES DODGERS
The Dodgers were unlucky to finish 2017 as the World Series runner-ups. They capped off a fabulous 104-win season with Game 7 disappointment in October, but there’s nothing to say Los Angeles can’t rebound and find themselves back in the hunt in 2018. The Dodgers were unlucky to lose star shortstop Corey Seager to a season-ending UCL injury, but the likes of 22-year old first baseman Cody Bellinger and arguably the best starting pitcher of this generation, Clayton Kershaw, can certainly carry the load.
SAN DIEGO PADRES
Established in 1969, the Padres have made the World Series twice, only to be completely overrun by their opponents. Still without a title, the Padres have faded into obscurity recently, mainly due to a lack of talent and a long and arduous rebuild.
SAN FRANCISCO GIANTS
The Giants are one of the most successful franchises of the modern era. San Francisco has captured three of their eight World Series titles in the last 10 years, in large part due to clutch hitters like Buster Posey and future Hall of Fame pitchers like Madison Bumgarner. The Giants glory days are certainly coming to a close, but their fierce rivalry with the Los Angeles Dodgers remains a must-watch every season.
AMERICAN LEAGUE MLB TEAMS
|East||Baltimore Orioles||Baltimore, MD||Oriole Park at Camden Yards (45,971)||1901|
|East||Boston Red Sox||Boston, MA||Fenway Park (37,949)||1901|
|East||New York Yankees||New York City, NY||Yankee Stadium (49,638)||1901|
|East||Tampa Bay Rays||St. Petersburg, FL||Tropicana Field (31,042)||1998|
|East||Toronto Blue Jays||Toronto, ON||Rogers Centre (49,282)||1977|
|Central||Chicago White Sox||Chicago, IL||Guaranteed Rate Field (40,615)||1901|
|Central||Cleveland Indians||Cleveland, OH||Progressive Field (35,225)||1901|
|Central||Detroit Tigers||Detroit, MI||Comerica Park (41,297)||1901|
|Central||Kansas City Royals||Kansas City, MO||Kauffman Stadium (37,903)||1969|
|Central||Minnesota Twins||Minneapolis, MN||Target Field (38,871)||1901|
|West||Houston Astros||Houston, TX||Minute Maid Park (41,676)||1962 (NL) / 2013 (AL)|
|West||Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim||Anaheim, CA||Angel Stadium (45,957)||1961|
|West||Oakland Athletics||Oakland, CA||Oakland–Alameda County Coliseum (35,067)||1901|
|West||Seattle Mariners||Seattle, WA||Safeco Field (47,943)||1977|
|West||Texas Rangers||Arlington, TX||Globe Life Park in Arlington (48,114)||1961|
NATIONAL LEAGUE MLB TEAMS
|East||Atlanta Braves||Cumberland, GA||SunTrust Park (41,500)||1871 (NA) / 1876 (NL)|
|East||Miami Marlins||Miami, FL||Marlins Park (36,742)||1993|
|East||New York Mets||New York City, NY||Citi Field (41,922)||1962|
|East||Philadelphia Phillies||Philadelphia, PA||Citizens Bank Park (43,651)||1883|
|East||Washington Nationals||Washington, D.C.||Nationals Park (41,313)||1969|
|Central||Chicago Cubs||Chicago, IL||Wrigley Field (41,268)||1874 (NA) / 1876 (NL)|
|Central||Cincinnati Reds||Cincinnati, OH||Great American Ball Park (42,319)||1881 (AA) / 1890 (NL)|
|Central||Milwaukee Brewers||Milwaukee, WI||Miller Park (41,900)||1969 (AL) / 1998 (NL)|
|Central||Pittsburgh Pirates||Pittsburgh, PA||PNC Park (38,362)||1882 (AA) / 1887 (NL)|
|Central||St. Louis Cardinals||St. Louis, MO||Busch Stadium (43,975)||1882 (AA) / 1892 (NL)|
|West||Arizona Diamondbacks||Phoenix, AZ||Chase Field (48,519)||1998|
|West||Colorado Rockies||Denver, CO||Coors Field (50,398)||1993|
|West||Los Angeles Dodgers||Los Angeles, CA||Dodger Stadium (56,000)||1884 (AA) / 1890 (NL)|
|West||San Diego Padres||San Diego, CA||Petco Park (40,162)||1969|
|West||San Francisco Giants||San Francisco, CA||AT&T Park (41,915)||1883|
Ace: a team’s elite starting pitcher.
Bullpen: a group of four to five pitchers used to relieve a starting pitcher and close out a game.
Designated-Hitter: a player who bats in place of the pitcher in the lineup. Used only in the American League.
Grand Slam: a home run hit with the bases loaded, resulting in four runs scored.
No-Hitter: a team that was unable to record a single hit against an opposing pitcher/s.
Perfect Game: a pitcher/s that throws a minimum of nine innings without allowing a single opposing player to reach base.
RBI (Runs Batted In): a stat that credits a batter for creating a hit or play that allows a run to be scored.
Walk-Off: a game-winning run scored in the bottom of the ninth or final inning.