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Seattle Mariners (Young) vs. Oakland A’s (Hammel) – Preview Sept. 1st, 2014

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Seattle Mariners
Seattle Mariners 
O/U :83.46
Vs.Date: 2014-09-01
Time: 15:05:00Generated from 77 Previous Games
Oakland Athletics
Oakland Athletics
SIDE :-143
3.74 = 7.2


Pick: Seattle Mariners ML +133 (1 unit)


Let’s look at some stats and follow the money and see what we find with this pick…

Oakland is on a cooler these last few games where they’ve scored 1 run in their last 27 innings played and 2.7 RPG L7G. This does not bode well for them as they step up to the plate against Hammel today.

Hammel is 2-1 vs Oakland with a 3.13 ERA and a WHIP of 1.261 making him a plausible threat to put another goose egg on the A’s run tally today.

Young has a very comparable record vs the Mariners (3-2) with a 2.95 ERA and a WHIP of 1.235, but the big difference here is that Seattle doesn’t seem to be in any kind of a cooler right now.

Seattle is marking a 3.7 RPG average L7G, which is not glorious by any stretch, but at least they don’t qualify as having “cold bats” like the A’s.

The A’s normally have a huge advantage in the back 3 innings where their bullpen can take over and shut down the game, which is arguably where they owe this season’s success to, but with Seattle, they don’t enjoy this privilege. A’s pen is 2.37 ERA and the Mariners are only slightly behind with a 2.89 ERA out of their pen.

Mariners’ Young:
3.17 ERA all season.
4.24 ERA on the road.
2.30 ERA last 3 starts.

A’s Hammel:
3.72 ERA all season.
2.70 ERA at home.
3.86 ERA last 3 starts.

Pitching is just about even down the middle.

  • Seattle is 2-3 L5G when priced as chalk.
  • Oakland is 1-4 L5G when priced as chalk.

So to sum up the obvious stats, pitching is not a factor, Oakland is slightly better hitting over the stretch, but is cool lately. So this seems like it should be priced basically perfectly even on these factors alone. Both teams are sloppy right now and losing

Normally, what we would want to do is to look at this line and say that Seattle is priced far too good to be true and we would then suspect that the sharp money is on Oakland.


In this case today, we have to understand and adopt the extenuating circumstances that show Seattle to actually have legitimate value here.

It needs to be noted that this contest has these teams PowerRated at PK, just as we thought, and that Oakland, at -142, is severely deflated.

It needs to be noted that this kind of severe deflation stems from 1 of 2 things:

a) Sharp Money.


b) Negative progression system bettors. (Martingale)
c) Population
d) Team Standings
e) Team “namebrand” popularity
f) The day the game is being played on


In today’s case, we see factors b-f play out and come together to show that this is NOT a matter of sharp money on Oakland but rather a fortunate circumstance where an experienced sports handicapper can earn some rock solid value betting the dog.

Oakland is among the top 3 most winningest teams in the league.
This means that after they lose 2 straight, negative progression bettors are starting to double their bets that they will win. With A’s having had lost 4 straight games, this is providing plenty of unearned money on Oakland that’s got nothing to do with who’s playing, but simply on the fact that they lost their last games and are due to win one.
This is not sharp money on Oakland. This is Negative progression inflation.

California has nearly 28 million people.
Washington has about 8 million people.
For every 1 biased bettors to bet Washington for no other reason than it’s their home state, there are 3 more to bet Oakland. All the more considering Oakland has a superior WL record in comparison to Washington.
This is not sharp money on Oakland. This is Population bias.

People feel better betting the chalk favourite especially when it’s a top tier team.
“They likely won’t lose today because they had a few great months a month ago.”
This is not sharp money on Oakland. This is Winner’s bias.

Oakland has been rumored a favourite for this years championship. Who doesn’t want to back a champion? The issue is, Oakland is not playing champion baseball the way they were in order to get here. They are playing like a team possessed, recently, and not by a spirit that knows how to play good baseball. 1 run in 27 innings? That’s bottom tier baseball by any measure.
This is not sharp money on Oakland. This is Namebrand bias.

Finally the day of the game. Given all of the above, and given the fact that today is a North American holiday where everyone can have some time to enjoy a ball game…we can expect more action on today’s game now that people have time to bet and watch a game. With all the above factors, this once more amplifies the amount of undue money put on the Oakland ball club to win.
This is not sharp money on Oakland. This is Holiday inflation.


So don’t get us wrong, we agree with the PK power rating. It’s fair and makes complete sense.

Both teams have been playing sloppy ball lately and both teams have equal chances to win this, 50/50.

But we are extremely interested in the massively inflated odds of the Seattle ML. We feel we are getting about +30% for free and we’d be absolutely crazy not to pound that kind of legitimate value.

Of course it could be asked, “if Seattle is so valuable, then where is the sharp action?”

We’ll answer that in the next article.




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