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Home / Articles / How to Bet MLB Run Lines

How to Bet MLB Run Lines

America's Bookie

AmericasBookie Sportsbook/Casino and Horses.

By: America's Bookie
Date: May 21, 2022
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Key Points

– When done correctly, bettors can benefit from betting MLB run lines.

– There are situations where betting the run line gives bettors an advantage.

Bet MLB Run Lines

Betting on MLB baseball is becoming more and more popular with the rise of sports betting in general. When the summer hits and the NBA and NHL seasons are over, MLB becomes the hot betting ticket.

Since baseball tends to have more low-scoring games, most bettors wager on the moneyline. It is still possible to bet on the point spread.

Baseball’s version of the point spread is the run line. The run line is established by oddsmakers and is typically 1.5 in all MLB games. Favorites must win by two runs and underdogs must either lose by one or win the game outright in order to cover.

Betting the spread in baseball can be profitable as long as you know how to bet MLB run lines.

Before we move on, how have you been doing betting the NBA Playoffs? Check out our article, it might save you the rest of the way.

One-Run Games

One statistic MLB bettors should be aware of is this one. Roughly 30 percent of all MLB games end up being decided by a single run.

Whether it is 2-1, 4-3, or 7-6; one out of every three MLB games ends up as a one-run game. That’s an important statistic because it shows how difficult picking MLB teams to cover can be.

It is also worth noting that in nine-inning games, the home team does not bat in the bottom of the ninth when it has a lead. A one-run game after the eighth inning remains a one-run game if the visiting team doesn’t score in the top half of the ninth.

That makes backing home favorites a tough choice.


The Heavy Favorite

You have likely seen MLB games with favorites of at least -250. You typically have a really good team with one of its best pitchers going up against a below average team and a mediocre pitcher. Take the following example from an online sportsbook.

Arizona    +240 +1.5 (+130)

                     LA Dodgers -280 -1.5 (-150)

The Dodgers are a huge favorite in this case and you would have to wager $280 to win $100. With L.A. as such a big favorite, it’s expected they will win and based on your research you like them to win by more than one run. 

This is an opportunity to get a better price on a heavy favorite. Instead of laying out $280, bet $150 on the Dodgers to win $100 when they win by at least two runs. If this is a little confusing, check out our free baseball picks.

Better Payout

There are times when bettors can find a smaller betting favorite and bet the run line in order to take advantage of a higher payout. You should also take a look at live betting MLB games.

Let’s take the same two teams - Arizona and the L.A. Dodgers - only this time the line looks like this:

Arizona    +120 +1.5 (-170)

                     LA Dodgers -130 -1.5 (+150)

Based on some other factors - maybe the pitching matchup - you still like the Dodgers. You like the Dodgers so much instead of betting $130 to win $100, you’ll bet the run line.

On the run line, you get a higher payout on the better team when you wager on the run line. A $100 bet wins $150 when you bet on the better team - the Dodgers - to win by two.

Betting MLB run lines, when done right, is one more way for bettors to enjoy wagering on baseball and enhance their bankroll.

What do you know about anonymous online sports betting?


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