2022 MLB Futures
Updated: Mar 31, 2022
Let's get this out of the way early. I do not consider myself what we call "good" gambler. I am not "positive" money in my lifetime. But that doesn't matter, right? It's all about the fun we have along the way. Anyways, here are my favorite bets of the 2022 Season. Most will be Red Sox specific, but I do sprinkle a few of my other picks in there.
*I think I have to say for legal reasons that I am not advocating for gambling illegally or something? I don't know I'm not a lawyer. Go to a state where it's legal and place bets if you want to place bets, like I definitely will be doing and not doing it on an unregistered book*
The Pick-off Moves
*6/10 baseball pun. Needed something with Pick and a pickoff move is all I can think of. Suggestions needed.*
1. Total Wins - The Red Sox are O/U 84.5, are you kidding me? Vegas has this Red Sox team being just over .500! That is simply preposterous considering this same core squad, WITH the addition of Trevor story, was 2 wins away from the World Series last year. I am absolutely dropping a hammer on the over for wins. To be honest, I do expect a somewhat slow start. I think the shortened spring training will hurt us a bit more-so than other teams with our pitching staff not having any roles really hashed out, and there is also the obvious loss of Sale earlier this spring. But let's not forget we were missing Sale for some of last season too, and that was a 92 win team. The other part of this that worries me is how stacked the AL East got, especially the Blue Jays. That being said, I think the Rays and Yankees take a step back this year. We should also never lose a game to the Orioles when anyone not named Means is pitching. I also have a second pick that I am not as confident in, but still really like. The Rangers are the Rodney Dangerfield of MLB. No respect. This team made some serious acquisitions this offseason signing both Marcus Semien and Corey Seager to long contracts. They have made it clear that they want to get back to being contenders. Their pitching staff clearly needs some help (they signed Red Sox legends Martin Perez, Garret Richards, and Brandon Workman this month) but I think the Rangers could outperform their projected total this year, currently listed at 73.5. Red Sox over 84.5 wins, Rangers over 73.5 wins.
2. AL East winner - The Sox are +510 and listed as fourth in odds. All of what I said above still stands. I think the Rays and Yankees regress. I think Toronto faces some unique challenges again this year, with Canada's COVID regulations playing a factor. But, that will play to their advantage in home games, with unvaccinated players not being able to cross the border. I think the Red Sox are absolutely worth a look at those odds, but gun to my head I am going with the Blue Jays at +180 to take the East this year. They added too much talent (Jose Berrios and Kevin Gausman replace the Cy Young award winning Robbie Ray, Yimi Garcia bolstering their pen, plus Matt Chapman and George Springer's bats elevate an already stacked lineup) and have no real holes in their roster. I think the Sox get the first Wild Card, but do have a better chance to win a division that will cannibalize itself over the course of a full 162. Blue Jays to win the AL East (+180), with a sprinkle on the Sox (+510).
3. 2022 NL Rookie of the year - To no one's surprise, the Cub's big offseason acquisition of Seiya Suzuki is the early favorite to win ROY in the NL. As he should be, he has proven himself at a professional level in Japan and is absolutely ready to help the Cubs start their rebuild centered around himself and Patrick Wisdom. HOWEVER, Skip Bayless, he is NOT my pick to win NL ROY honors. My pick is Oniel Cruz from none other than the Pittsburg Pirates at +375. Cruz is one of my favorite players from another team and I think he has seen 9 ABs in the bigs. If you'll indulge me for a moment - Cruz is 22 years old. He is six foot seven. That is 6 feet tall with another 7 inches added on top of it. On top of that, he doesn't hide in right field like that coward Aaron Judge. He plays shortstop, and from everything I have seen, he has done a mighty fine job at it. This video below was taken last week and was Cruz's most recent home run in Spring Training. My only worries with this bet are that A) the Pirates are a loser organization and he will not be on the roster to start the year, and B) he may hit balls too hard and hurt too many spectators, forcing Manfred to ban him from being allowed to bat with his dominant hand (although I am not unconfident in him being able to the same thing batting from the right side of the dish). Oniel Cruz to win NL ROY (+375).
4. AL MVP - I have 2 picks here. The first could be considered a chalk pick, but that doesn't make it a bad pick. Shohei is listed as the third favorite at +400, behind Vladdy Jr. and teammate Mike Trout at +300 and +375 respectively. I mean, how could you not pick the reincarnation of Babe Ruth at those odds? The only thing that could hinder him is the amount of off-days he gets. With that being said, MLB literally made a rule for him this offseason, allowing a pitcher to come out of the game, but continue as a DH. He is going to be a sweetheart to the media and in my opinion is the current Face of Baseball. My second pick, shockingly, is someone on the Red Sox. It is not Raffy though, it's X. I am seeing his odds at +4000. A long shot to be sure. But, Bogaerts is expected to test free agency (please extend him before that happens Chaim) and he wants to prove that he is the best shortstop in the league. He has shown that he has the capability to be among the best hitters in the league, and my expectation is he has worked on his defensive range and positioning in the offseason to be at least average. I don't think MVP is out of reach for Bogaerts, and if he even receives votes, expect one of the largest contracts in MLB history to be given as a reward. Shohei Ohtani to win AL MVP (+400) with a sprinkle on Xander Bogaerts (+4000).
There you have it. Those are the 7 bets I will be legally placing for the 2022 MLB season. I may pick some more as opening day gets closer, but these really jumped out at me. Ride with me, fade me, I really don't care. My Dad hates these picks, but as they say in Boiler Room, he won't be laughing when I'm making his fucking Lexus payments.