Chronicles of a Sports Betting Enthusiast – “Getting to know Sports Wagering”
Author: J. Scott Miller
I have been betting on sports most of my adult life. I have seen “The good, the bad and the VERY ugly,” when it comes to betting on sports. Unless you are a professional gambler (Very few of those), and I will bet you are not, then you need to admit to yourself that you bet on sports for the “fun of it.” I am not suggesting that you are betting for the fun of losing, but merely saying that you are betting to win on occasion. So if you want to bet on sports to win more frequently, then listen up.
You need to first dump your “local bookie” right now. Rocko, Jocko, or whatever his name is, needs to hit the bricks. Find yourself a legitimate online gaming source. I choose Intertops.com, but there are many very good and trustworthy sites to choose from. Your payout odds will be much more up to standard and you will not get ripped off. Plus, when betting online, you have to have money in your account to bet. You cannot bet anything without having the money, unlike your local bookie. This way you cannot bet money “you do not have!” Yes, I have been there.
I once had two bookies, and bet $50 per NFL game, through both bookies. I had about $300 in my bank account. Yes, I had issues, to say the least. But betting online you will not be able to bet anything you do not have. Plus, if you know anything about local bookies, their payouts are crap versus legitimate gambling sites. Take into account a four-pick in football. Your bookie is giving you this “generous” 10-1 odds on that? Wow, what a nice guy to do that for you, when the actual odds of winning a four-pick are 18-1. That is why you must bet online.
Let us now begin to dabble in the “how’s and why’s” of sports betting. I used to have a friend tell me, “If you have any four-picks, just call me, I’ll take the action.” I asked him why, and he basically said the afore mentioned reason. The odds of hitting a four-pick were not good and therefore it was considered a “sucker’s bet.” I will agree, that making multi-picks in any sport increases your payout, but decreases your chances of winning. Yes, it is worth a shot to bet those on occasion, but straight bets are where you want to lay down your cash.
Let us now talk about betting ‘money-line bets.’ What is a money-line bet? This is when you bet a team (and this can be in any sport) straight up, without any points. In baseball these odd are usually done in decimal points. Basically you are betting on pitchers. Rarely are you betting on a team with good hitting, unless the opposing team has very bad pitching. So take today’s opening match-up in baseball; San Diego Padres are +165 at the Saint Louis Cardinals (And the Cardinals ate -175. This means if you bet a $100 on the Padres you would win $165, however if you bet the Cardinals, you would have to bet $175 to win $100. That is a money-line bet. I personally like to bet 3 games in baseball, and then wrap those three games into a three-team parlay as a money-line bet. The three team “money-line” parlay (depending on the odds) would pay less than say a regular three team parlay, but it is easy to win.
Money-line bets are great, but never are they a “lock.” The “lock of the week” bets I will get into some other time. Just for the record, there are no experts in sports betting. There are four teams in the Final Four in the NCAA Tournament in Men’s Basketball this year. No expert picked any of them!
So go get yourself an online account. Bet a few games, and good luck.
J. Scott Miller is a freelance writer as well as a poker and sport betting enthusiast. Decades of experience as both a poker player and professional sporting news junkie plus his continued dedication to journalism has made him more than qualified to be our leading writer at OGN.
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