Spring training, which starts in mid-February and goes until late March, is the time when baseball teams get in shape. This is when veterans and new players come to camp, and management works toward formulating their rosters for the majors and minors. For MLB sports bettors and fans, it’s an exciting time. If you take the right approach, you can get some useful information from spring training.
Follow Sports Websites
ESPN, FOX Sports, and MLB.com, as well as other sites, will offer spring training news. Read everything that you can about spring training so that you have a feel for each team. You’ll find information on individual players, managers and coaches, and the front office. Controversies, injury news, information on promising players, and more will become available at this time. As spring training progresses, you’ll also start to get an idea of what the final roster of each team will look like on Opening Day.
Once the teams start playing, you should monitor the box scores. It’s important to understand that these games, which start in late February and run until late March, are the time when new players are seen and veterans start to warm up in order to go the distance. You don’t want to make too much out of final scores.
You are looking to see how pitchers are progressing, who’s hitting the ball, and which players are healthy or hurting. Also monitor how new guys are doing and any prospects that are showing promise. Pay attention to each aspect of the pitching staff: starters, middle and late relief, setup men, and closers. Is the team going to have a deep group of hurlers?
There are usually a lot of interviews during spring training, which you can find on various websites, including MLB.com, and also on sports channels such as ESPN. How do players, coaches, and front office people respond to questions? Are they genuinely optimistic about the season? Are the front office people interested in improving the team? What holes are there, and how does the manager expect to plug them?
Season previews will usually list anywhere from six to ten prospects. See if these players are at spring training and monitor their progress. Are there any other players that you did not know about who are making an impression? If they don’t make the majors, where will they be? Might you see them later? What do they say about the depth of the organization’s minor league system?
Does a Team’s Record Matter?
Some people get very concerned about a baseball team’s spring training record. It’s difficult to say why they feel as if spring training wins and losses are important or indicative of anything. Many teams will have terrible records at this time and go on to win their division and do well in the playoffs. Other teams may win almost every exhibition game, but during the regular season when games count, they end up in the cellar. A team’s spring training record means nothing at all.
Ready to Bet Everyday
If you correctly prepare during spring training in the manner described above, you will have a step up on the MLB season as a sports bettor. Of course, once the season opens, the players start to perform, and the results of games are known, the preseason information becomes less important. Eventually, the promise of preseason will become a memory and the reality of the regular season will become important in your handicapping.