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70 MLB betting nuggets to know

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National League predictions (2:20)

ESPN Chalk's Joe Peta picks his winners for every NL division, along with wild-card representatives and his World Series pick. (2:20)

The baseball season is a betting grind over six months of the regular season and then the playoffs. But don't worry, ESPN Chalk is here to help, providing the most important betting nuggets you need to know before the season starts.

Nevada nuggets

• In 2015, $897.3 million was wagered on baseball at Nevada sportsbooks, an all-time high.

• Nevada sportsbooks won $39.39 million on baseball in 2015, less than half of the $82.54 million the books won on football last year. (Football includes college in addition to the NFL.)

• Nevada sportsbooks' hold percentage on baseball -- the amount the books kept from the amount wagered -- was 4.39 percent in 2015, the lowest of the three major sports (football, basketball and baseball). (Source: UNLV Center for Gaming Research)

• For the past two years, the race and sportsbook at the Wynn has offered a wager on whether the Cubs will win the World Series before the 2018 season. Last year, "yes" opened at +500 with "no" at -700; currently "yes" is +250 and "no" is -300. Asked whether he has taken any action on "no," Johnny Avello, Wynn executive director of race and sports, said, "Very little."

• William Hill prop: total number of no-hitters thrown -- 3.5. Ninety-one percent of the money is on the over.

Top five teams to win the World Series by money wagered at the Westgate SuperBook:

1. Cubs
2. Giants
3. Mets
4. Dodgers
5. Royals

Top five teams to win the World Series by number of bets placed at the Westgate SuperBook:

1. Cubs
2. Giants
3. Mets
4. Cardinals
5. Royals


Season win-total movement

(Teams that have seen their season win total move the most at the Atlantis sportsbook in Reno, Nevada)

Notable futures bets

(Bets on the odds to win the World Series at William Hill's Nevada sportsbook)

• $25,000 bet on the Rangers at 15-1
• $10,000 bet on the Tigers at 30-1
• $5,000 bet on the Rays at 60-1
• $3,000 bet on Marlins at 100-1


Umps to know

(Since 2005)

Top five "over" umps:

• Sam Holbrook (173-129)
• Larry Vanover (185-158)
• Gabe Morales (39-18)
• Paul Emmel (174-149)
• Jerry Meals (180-158)

Top five "under" umps:

• Ron Kulpa (138-194 to the under)
• Bill Miller (146-201)
• Dan Iassogna (155-189)
• Doug Eddings (151-188)
• James Hoye (140-171)


Sharpest stat

In an informal survey of analytic-minded handicappers, Skill-Interactive ERA, or SIERA, was the consensus answer when asked about their preferred advanced metric for pitching -- the sharpest stat, if you will.

According to FanGraphs.com, SIERA is a complex ERA estimator that attempts to identify the skill level of a pitcher and how well he actually pitched over the previous season. You can learn more of the ins and outs at FanGraphs, but for now, just know that it's respected by smart guys.

Top three starters by SIERA in 2015:

Clayton Kershaw, Dodgers -- 2.24
Jake Arrieta, Cubs -- 2.75
Gerrit Cole, Pirates -- 3.23

Bottom three starters by SIERA in 2015:

Aaron Harang, Phillies -- 4.87
Hector Santiago, Angels -- 4.52
Rubby De La Rosa, Diamondbacks -- 4.19

Top three hitter-friendly parks

(By Park Factor, which "compares the rate of stats at home vs. the rate of stats on the road. A rate higher than 1.000 favors the hitter. Below 1.000 favors the pitcher. Teams with home games in multiple stadiums list aggregate Park Factors."

Below are the top three parks in terms of runs:

• Coors Field (Denver) -- 1.436
• Progressive Field (Cleveland) -- 1.261
• Oriole Park at Camden Yards (Baltimore) -- 1.228

Top three pitcher-friendly parks:

• AT&T Park (San Francisco) -- 0.845
• Angel Stadium of Anaheim (Anaheim, California) -- 0.861
• Citi Field (New York) -- 0.870


Diamond notes

Most profitable teams to back over past five seasons:

(Dollar figure based on $100 wager on every game's money line.)

• Orioles +$6,244
• Pirates +3,606
• Royals +$2,604
• Cardinals +$2,350
• Yankees +1,336

Most costly teams to back over past five seasons:

• Rockies -$9,408
• Astros -$8,949
• Marlins -$5,961
• Red Sox -$4,765
• Cubs -$4,371

Most profitable starting pitchers to back over past three seasons:

Jorge De La Rosa +$2,108
Chris Tillman +$2,048
Dallas Keuchel +$1,874

Most costly starting pitchers to back over past three seasons:

Jeff Samardzija -$2,168
Matt Cain -$1,810
Edwin Jackson -$1,721

Most profitable teams to back in April over past three seasons:

• Braves +$1,384
• Royals +$1,231
• Yankees +$1,072

Most costly teams to back in April over past three seasons:

• Indians -$1,608
• Mariners -$1,261
• Blue Jays -$1,220

The three teams that have produced the highest percentage of overs in April the past three seasons are:

• A's -- 55-23
• Angels -- 47-25
• Orioles -- 40-26

Statistical information from BetLabs on SportsInsights and FanGraphs was used in the article.