Back before the season started, we gave you the Vegas lines for a number of bets on Arizona, both collectively and as individual players, Readers were given $1,500 SnakePit dollars and asked to wager on whether the actual totals would be above or below the expected lines. Yesterday's game was the 27th of the season, marking the exact one-sixth point of the campaign, so it seems a convenient point to take a look at the lines, see what the pace of the various players concerned is to date, and see whether the 'Pitters have been breaking the sports books' hearts.
But if you want a quick summary: there's a lot of people who will be extremely welcome in the state of Nevada. But it would probably save time if they simply handed over their wallet at Hoover Dam and headed back whence they came. For the results so far are not pretty...
Let's take a look at each of the lines. For each, I'll give you the original projection, then in brackets, how much SnakePit money went on each side of the line, with the first amount being the total bet on over. Then, there's the current pace, based on number through the end of Friday's game, and whether that will end up being over or under the projected line.
Diamondbacks Wins: 86½ (5550-1100). Pace: 84 - UNDER
Thus far, Vegas has done a pretty good job of predicting the overall team performance, though obviously, it's still very early days. This category saw more action than any other, with money flowing heaving to the over, at more than a 5:1 ratio. Given the team is almost on pace, with injuries to two starting position players and a member of the rotation, the majority shouldn't be tearing up their betting slips as yet, but for now, nor should they be making plans for a Hawaiian vacation.
Justin Upton - BA: .290 (1517-900). Pace: .232 - UNDER
Justin Upton - Total HR's 29½ (2850-200). Pace: 18 - UNDER
Justin Upton - Total RBI's 90½ (800-100). Pace: 48 - UNDER
We can probably lump all these three together, and collectively, they represent one of the disappointments of the 2012 season to date. That's especially so when you look at his MVP rivals last year. Matt Kemp has... Well, you know, but even Ryan 'FedEx' Braun had has many home-runs in one game, as Justin has hit all year. Oh, and that was at Petco. To make the batting average mark pay out, J-Up will now need to hit about .302 for the rest of the season, and he's even further off the pace for RBI.
Chris Young - Total HR's 22½ (1350-900). Pace: 30 - OVER
What's incredible is that Young is easily on top of the line, despite having missed the majority of the team's games - he only played in eleven contests, but had five home-runs in these. Obviously, we'll have to wait and see when exactly he comes back - and this afternoon's Tweet doesn't sound like that will be any time soon - but he could miss another nine games and still be ahead of the pace.
Jason Kubel - Total HR's 20½ (2409-500). Pace: 18 - UNDER
So where were all these Kubelites who bet heavily on him for the first two weeks of the season? Because they certainly weren't in the GDTs... It's a shame there wasn't a line available on Kubel's outfield assists, because we could have cleaned house on that one. Instead, this one is there or thereabouts for now: while shading marginally under, it's just one good swing from being on the other side, so no cause for concern.
Aaron Hill - Total HR's 17½ (200-5323). Pace: 24 - OVER
Oh, ye of little faith. This was among the most one-sided of all the wagers, and 96% of the money said Hill would end up with 17 or fewer home-runs this year. But if the early trends continue, that won't be the case. He currently has four, which would reach the line somewhere in mid-August. Of course, as with all these, the key words are "if early trends continue". Hill has only one home-run in his past 16 games, so comfort for both sides.
Ian Kennedy -Total Wins 14½ (3800-700). Pace: 18 - OVER
Daniel Hudson - Total Wins 13½ (4858-100). Pace: 6 - UNDER
Trevor Cahill - Total Wins 12½ (2000-100). Pace: 12 - UNDER
I'll lump all the starters together. Kennedy score one for the SnakePit punters, with Ian getting the W in three of his first four starts, to roar out of the gates. That said, his recent outings have felt more like he has toughed his way through them, than the smooth stylings of our Opening Day ace. Cahill is right on track at this point: fractionally below the line for wagering purposes, but as close to it as anyone could expect. He's been very solid, and I think people would likely be more likely to put money above the line, if I re-ran things at this point.
However, Hudson illustrates one of the perils from our point of view, that it's easy to overlook injuries. Sure, 35 starts and a healthy Hudson probably wins 14 times. But it looks like he won't be back until May 26th at the earliest. That's mean 35 team games missed, so now the line has become 14 wins in roughly 28 starts, which is a good deal tougher. Given virtually all the money went on that side, it seems like a poor proposition, until Hudson proves otherwise.
J.J. Putz - Total Saves 35½ (350-3193). Pace: 36 - OVER.
It's weird how almost all the close lines e.g. this one, Cahill, team wins, all fallen delicately on the right side, as far as Vegas is concerned, allowing them to take the SnakePit's collective money. In this case, last night's game allowed Putz to pick up his sixth save, flipping the line from under to over, and what would have been nastily expensive for the bookies, turns into a nice little earner. So far, Putz's health seems fine. His effectiveness, on the other hand....
So, how are we doing?
Badly. As in, really badly. If a carefully-targeted series of meteor strikes took out all 30 major-league parks this afternoon, and the season was to end....albeit with the lines projected forward at their current rates... Okay, so I'm beginning to wish I hadn't bothered going down this particular line of literary thought. Cut to the chase: at this point, we would owe Las Vegas a total of $21,400, or about $823 per person on average. Fortunately, these are only SnakePit dollars, so we'd be able to pay them off in pull, after checking down the back of the sofa. Of the 26 entrants, only two are in positive territory. Here's the full chart:, which gives us the following rankings....
|15||4 Corners Fan||-1000|
|Dallas D'back Fan||-1300|
AzDbackfanInDc is ahead, due to having adopted the "all eggs in one basket" approach. He wwasn't the only one to have done so, but everyone else's baskets appear to have been made out of wet dollar-store paper bags - there's an awful lot of omelets to be found, as a result. Our leader backed Kennedy's wins, and that is currently sufficient to provide him with a clear lead. The only other person to have come out ahead at this point is deerhaven, who took the under on everything, proving the power of pessimistic thinking. It's nice to have a philosophy.
Everyone else... Not so much, ranging from the approaching break-even of Bcawz, who went for the over on Young and the under on Upton's BA, down to the five people at the bottom, who currently find themselves sitting on the wrong side of every bet placed. Still, early days yet, and enough of the lines are close that things could change radically, shaking up the standings, by the time we reach the one-third point at about the beginning of June. Check back then for more updates. Until then, take in a show, and be sure to try the buffet. It's that way, through the casino...