MLB Baseball Live Betting Weekend Preview at Bovada
It has been a potentially pennant-shifting type of week in Major League Baseball already with a few major trades along with key injuries that could alter the races in both the American and National League.
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It started Monday when the New York Yankees shocked almost everyone by acquiring future Hall of Famer Ichiro Suzuki, the best major leaguer ever from Japan (and first position player), from Seattle for the stretch run. The 38-year-old Ichiro -- a 10-time All-Star, former AL MVP, single-season hits record-holder and career .322 hitter -- is having his worst season, hitting .261 with four homers and 28 RBIs, but could be reinvigorated by returning to a pennant race for the first time in years.
Bovada has posted from player props for Ichiro for the rest of this season with New York: over/under a .270 average (over the -140 favorite), 11.5 steals, 28.5 runs, 15.5 RBIs, 2.5 home runs (all those options both at -120) and whether he will re-sign as a free agent this offseason with the team (yes the even-money favorite). Ichiro figures to be a marketing bonanza for the Yankees in Japan, so if he performs at all it would seem the Bombers would bring him back.
After New York's 5-2 win at Seattle in Wednesday's series finale, Ichiro is 3-for-12 (.250) with no runs scored or RBIs and one steal. Ichiro hit leadoff for the first time as a Yankee on Wednesday as New York made some lineup changes after the broken wrist suffered by third baseman Alex Rodriguez on Tuesday night on a hit-by-pitch. Rodriguez, who is batting .276 with 15 home runs and 44 RBIs this season, will miss up to two months.
It appears that the Yankees aren't planning on another trade before the July 31 deadline to replace A-Rod as GM Brian Cashman says the team is comfortable with Eric Chavez, and he started at the hot corner on Wednesday. Chavez is hitting .266 with eight homers and 20 RBIs this season.
Could A-Rod's injury help Texas finish ahead of the Yankees in the standings to secure potential home-field advantage in an ALCS matchup? The Rangers, who are neck-and-neck with New York for the AL's best record, have their own problems as they lost workhorse starting pitcher Colby Lewis to a torn tendon earlier this week. Look for them to make a trade for pitching.
New York is off Thursday before starting a three-game home series with the rival Red Sox on Friday night, and Bovada will offer live play-by-play betting for all three. The Yankees will be a significant series favorite at the book as they appear to have the pitching edge in all three matchups: Phil Hughes vs. Aaron Cook (Friday), CC Sabathia vs. a struggling Jon Lester (Saturday) and Hiroki Kuroda vs. Felix Doubront (Sunday night ESPN national TV game). The Yankees have won four of five meetings vs. Boston this season, all at Fenway.
There are plenty of other live betting options at the book outside of Red Sox-Yankees this weekend. On Thursday, the series finales of Rays-Orioles and Tigers-Indians will have live betting, as well the series opener of Royals-Mariners.
On Friday, Cardinals-Cubs and Dodgers-Giants will be offered. Los Angeles made the other big trade so far, acquiring shortstop/third baseman Hanley Ramirez from the Miami Marlins on Wednesday. Ramirez is a three-time All-Star and former NL batting champion but hasn't been the same player since hitting his 2009 season when he hit .342 with 24 homers and 106 RBIs.
Ramirez hit just .243 a year ago and was at .246 entering his Dodgers debut Wednesday night. He moved to third base for the Marlins this season to accommodate Jose Reyes but will move back to shortstop for L.A., at least initially. The Dodgers, who have struggled offensively, didn't give up a ton to get him but will pay the entirety of his remaining $38 million salary. They believe that surrounded by hitters like Matt Kemp and Andre Ethier, Ramirez will shine.
On Saturday, live games also offered at the book are Cardinals-Cubs and Phillies-Braves. And on Sunday, Phillies-Braves and Dodgers-Giants will again be offered. Philadelphia made big news on Wednesday by agreeing to a six-year, $144 million extension with pitcher Cole Hamels, keeping the top potential trade piece in MLB off the market ahead of next week's deadline. He is scheduled to pitch in Friday's series opener in Atlanta.
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