The start of the Major League Baseball season is just around the corner, making this a great time to take a look at the futures markets for the 2020 MLB season!
This time, we’ll be covering the National League MVP race and the investment opportunities it presents us. You can check out our detailed look at the American League MVP race for comparison.
Before we start, a friendly reminder in case you missed it; don’t forget to take a gander at the futures for the World Series winner in 2020!
National League MVP Odds
Here’s what the top 5 National League MVP favorites and their odds looked like on the 29th of April 2020 on DraftKings.
Ronald Acuna Jr.
It’s apparent from the odds that this is a tight and unpredictable race. The odds have also already been adjusted many times since the start of the year. Ronald Acuna Jr. led the race in the minds of many bookmakers early on in 2020, before Mookie Betts became the consensus favorite after his move to the Dodgers.
Please do note that the odds might vary between different sportsbooks and will change over time, so go take a look at the latest ones before making any decisions.
Let’s take a quick look at the cases for the top 5:
The 2018 AL MVP and World Champion with the Red Sox was shockingly traded this summer from Boston to LA. The Dodgers clearly look like one of the best teams in the league this upcoming season, and Betts should benefit from that in the MVP race. He is a generational talent that hits over .300 in his career. Having also won the Silver Slugger, the Gold Glove, and the batting title in 2018, his resume sure indicates the ability to bring in trophies. Despite changing teams and leagues, most bookmakers have him at number one for the 2020 MVP trophy.
The Dodgers have a double lead for the trophy at DraftKings! The 24-year-old reigning NL MVP and 2017 NL Rookie of the Year finished last season with 47 home runs and 115 RBIs while hitting at a .305 clip and leading the majors in WAR. With a season like that and a strengthened team around him, his chances of back-to-back MVPs should be pretty good.
The 2018 NL MVP was in the mix for the trophy again last season before an injury ended his season in September. Despite missing a month’s worth of games, he still hit 44 homers, ended up winning the 2019 batting title (hitting .329), and came in second in MVP voting after Bellinger. At 27, Yelich is still improving every year and should have a good chance at the trophy if he stays healthy.
Ronald Acuna Jr.
Atlanta’s young star batted in 101 runs and hit 41 homers in 2019 – just his second season in the league. If the 22-year-old keeps on developing at this rate, he’ll surely be an MVP at some point in his career. But is it too early for him in 2020? At +900, he might be worth a shot.
Fresh off of winning the World Series with the Nationals in 2019, “Childish Bambino” finds himself the fifth most likely player to collect the NL MVP trophy this year according to DraftKings. The co-winner of the Babe Ruth Award led his team in home runs, runs scored, hits, and walks in the World Series and had 34 homers and 110 RBIs during the year.
Diversifying your futures portfolio
Investing in any single one of the players in this unpredictable MVP race is a risky affair. But instead of investing in just one, it’s possible to craft a portfolio of, for example, five players where hitting on the winner guarantees a profit.
Let’s look at this through an example where we invest in the top four favorites from the table above. And to spice things up, let’s also add Bryce Harper into the mix at +1800, which many consider to be a good value opportunity.
The Phillies heavy hitter was not a high-profile success in his first season in Philadelphia, but that was more due to the team not performing rather than his personal performance. With an improved lineup around him this year, Harper could provide value at this number.
Here’s one way how one could construct a $1000 investment to all five, where any one of them winning the MVP trophy would guarantee a profit:
$ 2 275
$ 1 275
$ 1 800
$ 1 800
Ronald Acuna Jr
$ 1 350
$ 1 235
$ 1 000
In this example, we are putting weight on the favorites and looking to cash in the biggest on them if they win, while hedging the investment with the players with higher odds.
To be clear, this is not a recommendation from us on how to invest in the NL MVP race this year, but rather an example of how a portfolio of investments could be structured after careful analysis. So do not make an investment decision just based on this article!
Stay tuned in for more intriguing baseball content and don’t forget to check out John Todora’s new book – “Zero Correlation Investing – The Score Metrics Secret” – to learn all about smart investing in the sports betting marketplace. It’s currently on sale for a limited time, so go get your copy now!
The ScoreMetrics Lab is the engine that runs the Sports Trading System operation, consisting of a team of researchers and writers who are constantly testing and retesting algorithms. They work hand in hand with our Head Trader and Creator of ScoreMetrics, John Todora to help find new breakthroughs and develop new systems.