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MLB Futures Best Bets: MLB Picks on DraftKings Sportsbook for the 2023 Baseball Season

Julian Edlow gives his best MLB futures bets on DraftKings Sportsbook for the 2023 season.

I’m not a guy that goes through the day-to-day grind of betting baseball games all summer. I’ll dabble here and there, but with my focus on basketball and football, MLB will never be a primary sport for me. That said, I’ve had my most success betting MLB futures markets, and actually enjoy those much more. I have some win totals, a division winner and even some season-long player props I’m backing, with odds via DraftKings Sportsbook.

All odds provided by DraftKings Sportsbook and all odds subject to change.

Boston Red Sox OVER 77.5 Wins (-115) — 2-units

I gave this play out on Twitter back in February, but am good with the over still after it has moved to 78.5.

As a Red Sox fan, this team wasn’t much fun last season. They’re easy to dislike at the moment. That said, Boston still won 78 games in 2022, and I don’t think they got any worse. The Xander Bogaerts departure sets them back on offense, but that should be offset by key additions to the bullpen. Blowing games late was a big issue in 2022. Cutting down on those mistakes will help.

The main thing that puts me on the Sox here is just the schedule. I know this isn’t football, but I think the schedule makes a big difference this season. Last season MLB teams played 76 division games. The Red Sox went a putrid 26-50 against the AL East, while going 52-34 against everyone else. In 2023, the rule change means 24 fewer division games. That’s a huge win for Boston.

Chicago Cubs OVER 77.5 Wins (-115) — 1.5-units

The Cubs were dreadful last season, but like the Red Sox, they weren’t too far off from their win total this season, landing on 74 wins. But Chicago made some major additions on offense, which should be good for a few more wins if everyone can stay healthy.

The Cubs ranked just 22nd in runs per game in 2022, but made a point to address their weakness in the offseason. Cody Bellinger, Dansby Swanson and Trey Mancini are all solid bats that were added to the lineup, and to a lesser degree, Eric Hosmer and Tucker Barnhart should play regularly. I feel like there’s enough of an overhaul here to give the offense a boost.

NL West Division Winner: San Diego Padres (+120) — 1-unit

A square play here with a lot of money on the Padres to finally overtake the Dodgers. After years of the Padres being super aggressive, we hadn’t seen a passing of the torch in the regular season. But the Padres beatdown of the Dodgers in the postseason might be that turning point.

In the offseason, the Dodgers made some very minor moves, and actually lost more impactful pieces than they gained. Meanwhile, the Padres might have the most terrifying stretch of bats that a pitcher has to get through — Fernando Tatis Jr., Manny Machado, Juan Soto and now Xander Bogaerts in the heart of the order. If that playoff series was any indicator, this is going to be the year the Padres finally takedown the division.

Race to 10 Wins: Tampa Bay Rays (+900) — 0.3-units

Credit to Steve Buchanan for pointing this one out to me, but the Rays have as cushy a schedule out of the gates as you could ask for. Tampa opens the season hosting the Tigers for three games, then travel to the Nationals for three game and then host the A’s for another three.

Oakland and Washington are the two worst teams in baseball, and Detroit isn’t exactly a contender. There’s a real chance to open up 8-1 or 7-2, which puts us in a very strong spot to be holding a +900 ticket in a race to 10.

Jacob deGrom UNDER 198.5 Strikeouts (-120) — 1-unit

Julio Urias UNDER 170.5 Strikeouts (-120) — 1-unit

Pretty simple through process on the season-long player props. It’s almost always an under, just because there are so many more ways to win.

With deGrom, it’s always scary to play an under on him. But outside of the peak of his prime, when he registered at least 239 strikeouts in every season from 2017-2019, deGrom has been staying under this number. Particularly each of the last three seasons, with injuries playing a role, deGrom hasn’t gone over 146 strikeouts in a season. Going to the AL likely won’t help either.

Urias has stayed under this mark in all but one season of his career. Will require perfect health and a career year for an over here.

Kyle Schwarber UNDER 38.5 Home Runs (-120) — 1-unit

Ronald Acuna Jr. UNDER 29.5 Home Runs (-120) — 1-unit

Eloy Jimenez UNDER 28.5 Home Runs (-120) — 1-unit

More unders! Hope you’re having fun. Schwarber has been an everyday player since 2017, and his 46 homers last season was the only time he’s surpassed this mark. I’ll leave it to him to duplicate last season.

Acuna smashed 41 homers in 156 games in 2019, but outside of that, injuries have kept him well under his number in the other four seasons of his career. Similar story for Jimenez, who burst onto the scene with 31 dingers in 2019. Since then, he hasn’t played more than 84 games or gone yard more than 16 times in any of the last three seasons.

Wander Franco OVER 13.5 Home Runs (-110) — 1-unit

Fine, I’ll mix in an over. It’s pretty remarkable that with all the hype, Franco only has 13 regular season home runs in 153 games. But those were unique circumstances in my mind. His first season he had just been called up in-season, and last year he was dealing with injuries. Now healthy, this number feels like it’s set too low for what could become one of the game’s elite power hitters.

Opening Day Bet (Thursday March 30)

ATL/LAA ML Parlay (+105) — 0.75-units

Backing a couple of Aces on Opening Day, but both of these teams have advantages all over the field. The Braves play the Nationals and Patrick Corbin, while the Angels face Kyle Muller and the A’s. Washington and Oakland should be the two worst teams in baseball, and win totals indicate they both may not get to 60 wins this season. Their lineups are dreadful, and Corbin and Muller are about as poor an Opening Day starter as you could imagine.

The Braves have Max Fried going and the Angels have Shohei Ohtani on the mound. Both obviously have full bullpens behind them, as well as massive advantages when it comes to the bats on offense.

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All views expressed are my own. I am an employee of DraftKings and am ineligible to play in public DFS or DKSB contests.

The contents contained in this article do not constitute a representation that any particular strategy will guarantee success. All customers should use their own skill and judgment.