New York Yankees Season Prop Bets: Why I am betting against the Yankees this year.

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Kevin Davis
Kevin Davis is an NYC-based sports bettor who travels to New Jersey to lay his legal sports bets. He is a former elected official, who is also a fourth-generation sports handicapper. As a sports handicapper Davis focuses on international baseball, MLB, NBA, College Football, and Canadian Football. Davis is an analytical sports bettor who builds his own mathematical models for betting on sports. He is a profitable sports bettor who enjoys sharing his insights with aspiring sports handicappers.

Kevin Davis aka the Props Professor has looked at all the New York Yankees Season Prop Bets and picked out the best bets for the upcoming Major League Baseball season.

What is a Season Prop? A season proposition or futures wager is a wager on the outcome of a future sporting event. It could be anything from how many games a team will win in a season, which team will win the championship, or a player related proposition. It typically means placing a wager and waiting six months to get paid, but compared to single game wagers it results in keeping you interested for a longer period of time.

What is PECOTA?: PECOTA is a sabermetric Major League Baseball player forecasting system that was originally developed by Nate Silver. Baseball Prospectus has owned the PECOTA system since 2003, and they publish their annual projections on their website.

Favorite Bets against the Yankees:

Yankees Under 101.5 Wins: +105 Bet365

Tampa Bay Rays win AL East: +650 Bet365

Aaron Judge (NYY) Under 39.5 Home Runs: -118 FoxBet

Gleyber Torres (NYY) Under 34.5 Home Runs: +100 FoxBet

Yankees Under 101.5 Wins: +105 (Bet365)

As a lifelong Yankee fan and Bronx resident, I am setting aside my personal biases and betting that the Yankees will win fewer than 101.5 games this year at better than even money odds. PECOTA projects the Yankees to have at least a 60% chance of winning fewer than 101.5 games. Before spring training started, the Yankees win total was set at 102.5 wins which at that time was a stretch. Since 2010, no MLB win total number has been set at over 97.5 wins. The sportsbooks are inflating their win total numbers on the Yankees because they know that people, especially passionate Yankees will blindly take the over.

Did the Yankees win total number drop from 102.5 wins to 101.5 wins because the betting public got wise? No, it dropped because several important Yankee players got getting injured.  The Yankees best pitcher Luis Severino is now out for the season, the Yankees two best position players Aaron Judge and Giancarlo Stanton are already having trouble with nagging injuries, and Starting Pitcher James Paxton will be out for at least the first two months of the season. Based on the preseason projections for all four of these players, I believe that this will cost the Yankees more than one win.

Tampa Bay Rays to win the AL East: +650 Bet365

If the Yankees as the prohibitive AL East favorite significantly underperform and finish 2nd or worse, which AL East team will benefit the most? The Baltimore Orioles are the worst team in baseball, the Blue Jays are not ready for primetime, and the Boston Red Sox just traded away the 2nd best player in baseball. That leaves Tampa Bay, the city with the 2nd most strip clubs per capita and their Tampa Bay Rays as having the second-best chance to win the AL East. Tampa Bay made the playoffs last year as a wild card team, and they retain most of their team. While Tampa Bay has the 4th smallest payroll in Major League Baseball, they continue to find ways to win. For bettors who like long shots, this is a bet to make.

Aaron Judge (NYY) Under 39.5 Home Runs: -118 FoxBet

Gleyber Torres (NYY) Under 36.5 Home Runs: +100 Foxbet

When it comes to season long player proposition bets, the best strategy to take is the Nancy Reagan strategy of β€œjust say no”. For a player prop to go over for a season-long prop bet, two things need to happen. The player needs to stay healthy, and the player usually needs to exceed expectations. Aaron Judge if he plays a full season is capable, but not guaranteed to hit 40 or more home runs. If Aaron Judge misses time due to his nagging injuries, he will most likely go under.

PECOTA projects Aaron Judge to have a 90% chance of having fewer than 39.5 home runs which would translate to a -901 payout in order to break even as opposed to the -118 payout that is currently being offered. PECOTA also projects Gleyber Torres to have a 90% chance of having fewer than 36.5 home runs. By taking the under on home runs for both Judge and Torres, you would have a 40 and 36 percentage point edge against Fox Bet.

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