Week 7 results:
Season so far:
That's more like it. 7-5 against the point spread with my base package of underdog picks and 2-0 with my "value" overdogs.
Baseball World Series Pick:
Take Tampa +1.05 in game 1 and in all subsequent games both home and away if you're in a baseball pool that finishes with the World Series.
Taking the American League (AL) in inter-league contests has been the most reliable pick in all of sports over the past few years and the World Series is no different. The AL has won 7 of the past 10 World Series and 10 of the past 15.
Leaving aside the 11-inning tie in 2002, the AL has won the last 11 all-star games to reach a decision and 17 of the last 20.
There haven't been enough all-star and World Series games to rule out AL dominance as part of random variability. But, the record from over 1,000 inter-league regular season games over the past 4 years provides clear evidence that the AL has a clear majority of the best players in baseball. The AL sports a 57% record against National League (NL) opponents from 2005 through this season.
This year AL teams were especially dominating winning 62% of all inter-league games hosted in AL parks and 56% of all games when travelling to NL parks. AL dominance playing in NL parks is particularly impressive. NL home teams won 55% of contests hosting NL opponents, but only 44% against AL visitors.
Evidence from this season indicates that oddsmakers may be underestimating AL dominance, particularly when AL teams visit NL parks. Playing in a non-profit baseball pool similar to toy boy Archibald's office pool with points awarded based on the posted odds, you would have earned a net gain of 24.3 points this year by backing all AL teams visiting NL opponents and 8.8 points picking all AL teams hosting NL visitors.
Take Tampa and stick to Tampa in all games if you are playing in a non-profit baseball pool that includes picking World Series games. Tampa's not a glamour team with any history, so the bettors and oddsmakers may underestimate just how much better Tampa is than Philadelphia. Sure, there's a small chance of the Phillies getting enough breaks to win a 7-game series. But, the odds are stacked in Tampa's favour. The talent imbalance between leagues is so great that even mediocre AL teams like Toronto or Cleveland could probably beat the NL champion Phillies more often than not.
Whatever happens, Tampa's management team can take a well-deserved bow for building a champion the right way through draft picks. I live in Canada where we're green with envy at Tampa's success while our Toronto Blue Jays go nowhere under the misrule of owner Ted (Only Know How to Run a Monopoly and Can't Handle Competition) Rogers and general mismanager JP (Legend in My Own Mind) Ricciardi.