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We are often asked
what our best sport is in handicapping.
At GodsTips.com we’ve gotten to the point where we are at the
top of the list in every sport, so it’s difficult to single one out. However there is no question that our mastery
of baseball in the early 1990s is what vaulted me to the point where
professional sports handicapping would be my lifelong profession.
Yet, to be perfectly
frank, while continuing to improve upon our results in other sports, over the
last year and a half, I returned to the pack in baseball. It was time for some serious introspection. Fortuitously,
going back to my handwritten spiral notebook scorephone days, I saved my picks,
analysis and results from decades past.
Was I doing something
differently all of a sudden? After a few hours of soul searching, it became
obvious I slowly but surely abandoned some of the basics that got me to the
pinnacle in the first place.
In some respects, I
became a victim of my own success. In 2005, I had probably my best year winning
what we call “Dandy Dogs”. Dandy Dogs are moneyline dogs of 140 or more
(includes runline plays getting back 140 or more).
The downside was it
led me to develop a bias against even small favorites. I’ve known and preached for years the basics
of risk/reward ratio. For example, a 150 favorite needed to have a 60 percent
chance of winning to be a break even bet or based on our threshold had to have 70
percent chance of winning to be a premium play.
Yet there were nights I’d go 3-4 and still win money because of betting all
dogs. Bit by bit, I developed personal chalk reluctance in betting.
Too many well-handicapped
favorites of more than 120 became passes for me simply because of my increasing
acute prejudice against laying the juice.
Since returning to my roots, the 120-160 favorites have been a major
reason behind my return to MLB handicapping prominence.
But even with picking
our baseball underdogs, we became victims of the successes we had in other sports. We take great pride in being ahead of the
curve with modern technology. The Internet made every team the “local team”
from a handicapping standpoint because once regional information is now so
The World Wide Web
has been a boon to us in preseason NFL with accurate key player rotation and
motivation info. In college football and basketball it has revolutionized the
way sharp players bet.
While super systems
have been a great addition in all sports including baseball, our self scrutiny
brought to light that we were allowing the Billy Beane
and Bill James inspired new fangled stats to convince us out of winning picks.
In our first two
decades of handicapping, we have had significant success with big underdogs by
riding either hot but non-elite pitchers and/or fading struggling star
pitchers. Yet information overload had us finding a fly ball/ground ball ratio
or walks/strikeout percentage that talked us out of the same kind of plays that
for decades won for us.
Let there be no doubt
whatsoever that ERA and WHIP are still the two most important statistics in
foretelling future results of pitchers. Likewise in handicapping offense we
have streamlined with great success. Just like for 20 plus years, we returned
to utilizing on base percentage and slugging percentage foremost.
We never stop fine
tuning our techniques but our introspection reminds us sometimes we need to
remember “if it ain’t broken, don’t fix it”. Since
returning to our roots in baseball handicapping, not-so-coincidently we have
returned to the results our clients and we desire.
With all other
sports, utilizing the Internet and cutting edge computer software is imperative
to staying ahead of the curve, but MLB is the clear exception. Baseball
handicapping is much like playing the game: master the basic fundamentals.
Joe Duffy’s sports
betting selections are at www.GodsTips.com He is former General Manager of the
Freescoreboard scorephone network and CEO of OffshoreInsiders.com, the
premier hub of world-class handicappers.