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The Dynamics of a Game 3 Baseball Series
The expected return on your investment of a $100 bet on teams in the following situations. Consult this chart whenever you are looking to bet on a team in the third and final game of a series.
The top column represents the outcomes of game 1 and 2 with the leftmost character representing game 1. [DR - division rival. NDR - non-division rival. IL - interleague]. The betting lines are dissected below.
What we learn from all of this in terms of betting the third and final game of a series is:
- Go for teams up 2-0 in a series so long as it is not an interleague game.
- Go for interleague teams off of a loss in the third game of the series.
I am sure you guys were wondering if it mattered whether the team was at home or on the road in the third game of the series. We saw that road teams had an E[x] = -10.2 while home teams had an E[x] = -3.6. This makes sense in the sense that a home team has a higher propensity to be able to come back while a road team, mired in a slump, will invariably stay that way. Road teams down 2-0 in a non-Interleague series are overvalued by 4 points at home and a whopping 10 points on the road! But that overvaluation grows to over 15 points if they lost by exactly one run the previous game.