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Sports Gambling 201


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#41 Dirtydutch

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Posted 17 July 2008 - 07:31 PM

View PostShimmering Wang, on Thursday, July 17th, 2008, 7:05 PM, said:

No drama in gambling thread please.
Drama? None here, boss. Just bustin' chops (god, I love that expression).

#42 BigDMcGee

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Posted 17 July 2008 - 08:37 PM

What are the important stats when considering a wager on a baseball team? Meaning, what are the true stats that truly matter, and what are the false ones that the public loves that inflates lines and creates value?
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#43 Shimmering Wang

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Posted 17 July 2008 - 10:35 PM

View PostBigDMcGee, on Friday, July 18th, 2008, 12:37 AM, said:

What are the important stats when considering a wager on a baseball team? Meaning, what are the true stats that truly matter, and what are the false ones that the public loves that inflates lines and creates value?
A list of relevant statistics, both those of perceived importance, and their counterparts of real importance.Wins/Losses vs. Baseball Prospectus Adjusted StandingsWins and losses are generally a good barometer of how good a team is, but in limited (sometimes as limited as a full season) sample sizes, the standings can play tricks, and lead the public to perceive a team to be significantly better than they are. The solution? BP Adjusted Standings. Very basically, they take the key numbers -- on base percentages, slugging, home runs, etc. -- and then normalize it to minimize the importance of luck, and then again adjust to reflect the quality of pitching/hitting a team has faced. (On the above page, the numbers on the far right -- W3 L3, or third order wins and losses -- are the most important, and context adjusted.) The Twins, for example, are 10 games above .500, but based on their performance so far this year, they're really a sub .500 quality baseball team. In this specific instance, it comes from their unsustainably high batting-average with runners in scoring position. Find a team whose record does not accurately reflect the quality of their on-field performance, and you've found a team the public will valuate poorly. A good example of this? The Angels. They're six games better than the A's in the standings, but the A's -- if not for bad luck and poor timing -- would be six games better than the Angels. I fade the Angels a lot, and back the A's. ERA vs. FIP (found easy in the stats database at fangraphs) [or DIPS or QERA, etc.]ERA is not as good a predictor of future performance as: K/9, BB/9, HR/9, GB/FG ratio. ERA's can be inflated by bad luck (if, say, the league is hitting .380 on groundballs against a certain pitcher), bad bullpens, bad ballparks, and bad timing. (If you want some background, here's a link to the wiki article on FIP/DIPS. Voros McCracken and Tom Tango are legends in the sabermetric community.) If a particular pitcher has a fantastic and sparkling ERA, but his FIP is unspectacular, you can bet he's due to regress to the mean, and will subsequently be overvalued by the wagering community. So: fade this shit out of his fat ass, especially if he plays for an egregiously overvalued squad that the public is in love with.On the other hand, you'll see some pitchers whose ERAs are atrocious, but are actually pitching pretty well, and can give you some real value going forwards. Understanding the very, very, very variable nature of wins/losses and runs is important. We don't care who WON, we care WHO SHOULD HAVE WON, all things being equal. Lucky for us, all things are never equal, so bad teams become public darlings, and good teams get lost in the shuffle. This is exploitable. The books are willing to trap the public for us, we just have to jump on the "OMG RU SERIOUS?!EIO" numbers when we see them.Wang

#44 Shimmering Wang

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Posted 17 July 2008 - 11:24 PM

I'd like to make a quick point. (<---- totally unnecessary introductory sentence)It is a fine line between searching for value using basic statistical metrics and using that data to evaluate the strength of side, and straight-up handicapping a game. We're not trying to discern on face which side is most likely to win, or what the REAL price should be; we're simply trying to determine whether the public's misperceptions are likely to drive a price up or down. Keep in mind, the book knows all this -- Adjusted Standings, Luck, FIP vs. ERA, etc. -- already. I operate under the assumption that the books could choose to never give the player any value, but instead, as profit optimizers, decide giving a good price on one side is more than offset by the equity they gain from giving an even worse price on the other. They will exploit public perception -- of pitchers, of overall team strength -- to make a greater profit than they could by setting a near-perfect price every time. I liken it to the notion of perfect, optimal poker play vs. exploitative play. Against another perfectly rational actor, I would play a flush draw one way, but against a less skillful player, I would play it a different way, that is itself exploitable. The public is exploitable, which means the books can maximize return by setting a line that differs significantly from the true line. If you see that all your data line up -- for example a lucky pitcher for an overperforming, large-market team on a legendary, media-referenced hot-streak, vs. an abysmally unlucky pitcher and his can't-catch-a-break, typically unpopular squad -- but the public is still all over the second team (unlikely), you should stay away. Because, now, you're effectively saying "I think the book is giving value to the public, here," and that runs contrary to the very nature of the book, and violates one of the principle tenants of Contrarianism. Sure, it's possible they made a mistake, but isn't it simply more likely they know something you don't? Sometimes you'll notice one side is getting lopsided action, but the pitcher for the other side has an ERA of 3.1, and a FIP of 4.6. Maybe the second team is also outperforming their pythagorean won/loss record (the number of games a team should win/lose based on runs scored and runs against) by 8 games, too. There still might be value on the second squad, because the public thinks they suck really bad anyway, and that team -- even though they've been lucky to be as good as they've been -- is still severely undervalued by the public. Wang

#45 leftygolfer

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 05:02 AM

Wang - always been a big fan. Excellent stuff here boys. Looking forward to your football analysis.One (contrarian?) thought on baseball. My brother and I were talking at lunch about 3 game series. We thought there would be some value in betting on the team in game 3 of a 3 game series that lost the first 2 games. The thinking being that most series go 2-1 or 1-2 as matchups, days off, travel catch up and in essence teams move back toward the mean.We of course got lazy and didn't follow through.

View PostBigDMcGee, on Wednesday, July 16th, 2008, 5:00 PM, said:

well, it turns out you need that pang of humiliation, because all I have is an non-passworded pdf file copy of the book. I did do my download from Demoniod, not the link I linked above, so it's possible the one I linked requires a password..To prove that I have the unpassworded, here's the table of contents...
That would be lefty@leftygolfer.com. Pleazkthnx.Oh and for you bookies, the Michael Konik book on NCAA basketball betting was a good read. I may have to go back through it.
QUOTE (speedz99 @ Monday, May 4th, 2009, 11:09 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I find you all to be unfunny and annoying.

Ok, I think I'm going to venture out of the house for the first time in a few days. A round of golf in the sun will do me some good.


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#46 BigDMcGee

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 06:29 AM

View Postleftygolfer, on Friday, July 18th, 2008, 5:02 AM, said:

We of course got lazy and didn't follow through.That would be lefty@leftygolfer.com. Pleazkthnx.
IF you're asking for the MoS book, I believe Dutch provided a link for you to download it from..
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"Dust. Wind. Dude."
-Ted Theodore Logan

"I'm a basketball player and a businessman, not a Thundercat,"
-Lebron James

#47 Shimmering Wang

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 02:36 PM

View Postleftygolfer, on Friday, July 18th, 2008, 9:02 AM, said:

Wang - always been a big fan. Excellent stuff here boys. Looking forward to your football analysis.One (contrarian?) thought on baseball. My brother and I were talking at lunch about 3 game series. We thought there would be some value in betting on the team in game 3 of a 3 game series that lost the first 2 games. The thinking being that most series go 2-1 or 1-2 as matchups, days off, travel catch up and in essence teams move back toward the mean.We of course got lazy and didn't follow through.That would be lefty@leftygolfer.com. Pleazkthnx.Oh and for you bookies, the Michael Konik book on NCAA basketball betting was a good read. I may have to go back through it.
The idea that "most series end up being 2-1, so I should bet on a team that's lost the first two games of the series" is definitely flawed. There's no reason to believe that games 1 and 2 will somehow influence the outcome of game 3. That being said, if the Cubs embarrass the Pirates in games 1 and 2, the Pirates will probably have even more value in game 3 than usual. Or if the first two games of a series gave gone over the total by 6 and 7 runs respectively, there's going to be a lot of value in the under, especially if the books throw a super-low number out there, like 8.0. That's a dream spot for me. "I am 90% sure that the Cubs will score 8 runs by themselves. (shrug) I'll take under 8.0 for 2 units please."Does anyone want to take a shot at predicting what baseball sides I've got tonight, and why? I've got a super-full card, with 9 sides and 4 totals, so it should be pretty easy. Do some analysis, boys, and tell me what games have value, and why.Go.Wang

#48 bigkg

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 03:05 PM

View PostShimmering Wang, on Friday, July 18th, 2008, 6:36 PM, said:

The idea that "most series end up being 2-1, so I should bet on a team that's lost the first two games of the series" is definitely flawed. There's no reason to believe that games 1 and 2 will somehow influence the outcome of game 3. That being said, if the Cubs embarrass the Pirates in games 1 and 2, the Pirates will probably have even more value in game 3 than usual. Or if the first two games of a series gave gone over the total by 6 and 7 runs respectively, there's going to be a lot of value in the under, especially if the books throw a super-low number out there, like 8.0. That's a dream spot for me. "I am 90% sure that the Cubs will score 8 runs by themselves. (shrug) I'll take under 8.0 for 2 units please."Does anyone want to take a shot at predicting what baseball sides I've got tonight, and why? I've got a super-full card, with 9 sides and 4 totals, so it should be pretty easy. Do some analysis, boys, and tell me what games have value, and why.Go.Wang
I won't guess all of them but I'm positive you're taking KC over the White Sox.

#49 Shimmering Wang

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 03:06 PM

View Postbigkg, on Friday, July 18th, 2008, 7:05 PM, said:

I won't guess all of them but I'm positive you're taking KC over the White Sox.
Yup. KC has ****ed me in the ass all year long, so I particularly hate this play.

#50 BigDMcGee

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 03:34 PM

Boston +132 over the angels, and under the 7.5Boston has been the second most money bet on them, but the angels have had the most, and Lackey is highly reguarded. 7.5 seems like a really low number, so contrary thought would say under. Also, if they game is thought to be low scoring, I would think low scoring games favor the underdog. Cinnci +100 over the mets. The mets are getting pounded this year in wagering, they are hot, and they are going against a pitcher with an almost 6 era. And yet the game is almost even odds, so it seems like they are just screaming to take the mets. The mets are also on a 10 game winning streak. So take the redsBalt -126 over Detroit. I looked at the numbers, and there's more wagering going on the Detroit dog. From my limited experience, usually people bet hard on the favorite, not the dog. So that seems fishy to me, so I'll take the O's. Oakland +160 over the yankees. This seemed like a confusing line at first, as oakland doesn't seem like they should be that big of dog. Granted, mussina has a better record, but they have the same whip. But then, I figure I'll just chauk this up to "Yankee tax" Kansas City +140 over the White sox. Lots of money going down on the white sox in the last month, and KC is always ill regarded. Washington +199 over ATL and over 8. ATL tax. Betting is 2-1 on the under but the line has only moved .5 runs, so I take the over. Houston +102 over the cubs This seems like a standard fade the cubs play. Seems like -110 is an attractive price for cubs fans. Pitchers seem very similar. Toronto +148 over Tampa. This was a hard one to figure. Tampa is on a 7 game losing streak I can't understand why they are such big favorites. So vegas must know something I don't.... but then, I checked on wager line, and the betting is about 2-1 on tamp, so... when in doubt, go against the trend. San Fran +116 over Mil. Mil's been hot, they have recently been getting pounded by the betters, and they just signed CC. Who is starting for them tonight. It seems like Mil should be a much bigger favorite. Add on that MIl's getting pounded by a 2-1 clip.. and all that leads us to San Fran.I don't know the other two over/under totals, I dont' know much about them, or the thinking behind them. If you could go into more detail, that would be great..Results..BostonunderCinnci +1Balt +1oak -1Washington -1over +1Toronto -1Houston +1.02San FranKC -1
"We are only wise in knowing that we know nothing"
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"Dust. Wind. Dude."
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"I'm a basketball player and a businessman, not a Thundercat,"
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#51 Shimmering Wang

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 04:44 PM

Oh my God. I am going to go 4-9 AT BEST right now. What a terrible week. Come Sunday, I am very, very, very possibly going to be -30x or worse for the week.Just a contrarian bloodbath.

#52 runthemover

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 06:58 PM

Are you sure you got this contrarian thing from Keynes and you weren't just stoned and watching Seinfeld but realized that probably isn't a good way to start off a thread?Either way the thread has been a good read even though I don't bet on sports. Or bet in general for that matter. runthemover: poker forum frequenter

#53 BigDMcGee

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 07:14 PM

so far, I'm up .02. If boston scores one and holds, I'm in good shape, but that would be real hard. the night will detirmine the day.
"We are only wise in knowing that we know nothing"
-Socrates

"Dust. Wind. Dude."
-Ted Theodore Logan

"I'm a basketball player and a businessman, not a Thundercat,"
-Lebron James

#54 Shimmering Wang

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 07:19 PM

View Postrunthemover, on Friday, July 18th, 2008, 10:58 PM, said:

Are you sure you got this contrarian thing from Keynes and you weren't just stoned and watching Seinfeld but realized that probably isn't a good way to start off a thread?Either way the thread has been a good read even though I don't bet on sports. Or bet in general for that matter. runthemover: poker forum frequenter
Yes.

View PostBigDMcGee, on Friday, July 18th, 2008, 11:14 PM, said:

so far, I'm up .02. If boston scores one and holds, I'm in good shape, but that would be real hard. the night will detirmine the day.
Haha, yeah, I don't think that's gonna happen. You'll be lucky to get out of that one with your shorts. 7.5 was a pretty ****ed up number for the books to throw out there. When the Pirates tie that stupid game up, I'll end up 3-1 on my totals for the day, which is not at all how I expected to finish up there. I still have an outside shot at ending the day in decent shape (read: somewhere near even).EDIT: FUCKING PADRES RUIN EVERYTHING

#55 BigDMcGee

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 07:30 PM

well, I can only push the boston game ( well, take a small V if boston wins..) If the angels win, I hope the score stays the same. Things are looking dark in mudville.
"We are only wise in knowing that we know nothing"
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"Dust. Wind. Dude."
-Ted Theodore Logan

"I'm a basketball player and a businessman, not a Thundercat,"
-Lebron James

#56 BigDMcGee

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Posted 18 July 2008 - 08:44 PM

-2.98 bets for the day. Boston killed me.
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"I'm a basketball player and a businessman, not a Thundercat,"
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#57 Shimmering Wang

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 03:53 PM

The St. Louis Cardinals are going to be so overvalued that it's not even funny.EDIT- Actually it's kinda funny

#58 BigDMcGee

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 06:21 PM

View PostShimmering Wang, on Sunday, July 20th, 2008, 3:53 PM, said:

The St. Louis Cardinals are going to be so overvalued that it's not even funny.EDIT- Actually it's kinda funny
Why do you think that is? do you think they are like the Packers of base ball, a relatively small market team that really, really loves their sport, and fans of other teams all sort of like?
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"Dust. Wind. Dude."
-Ted Theodore Logan

"I'm a basketball player and a businessman, not a Thundercat,"
-Lebron James

#59 Shimmering Wang

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 08:07 PM

Well, actually just because they have like 23 1-run wins, and they are -- at best -- a little better than a .500 team. My dream is to see a huge sportscenter/baseball tonight focus-piece on them to drive the value up even more. Ravech: "Can the Cardinals contend? Steve Phillips?"Steve Phillips: "I'm retarded, and my hair is freakishly silver, but yes." (Correct answer: no)Remember that PM I sent you, in which I said it was going to be sweet when the Cardinals swept the Padres? Luckily, I am going to get those 4 units back and then some by turbo-fading Lohse and co. I've still managed to have a pretty good Thurs-Sun on the bases, almost enough to make up for the British Open debacle. Thanks, Henrik, for Top 5-ing and saving me from complete disaster.Wang

#60 Shimmering Wang

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Posted 20 July 2008 - 08:27 PM

Okay, so I make a little book on the side, mostly with 3 or 4 guys that play cards where I work. Most of them are pretty small time, quarter players. I take their action, and either use it to get a better price on the games I want, book it off at a better price on one of my accounts and lock it a guaranteed 2-3% profit, or sell it off to a local who wants his books balanced, and in exchange lets me know what kind of action he's getting on sides (an agreement that works well for both of us). Anyway, the last few days, I've had a pretty action-packed card. I've had between 8x and 13x on the line, which -- for me -- is a pretty big day of bases. Not once -- not a single time! -- has a player taken a side or total that I've been on. I probably booked 20 bets in the last 3 days for my degenerates, and not one of those bets was a play I decided to touch DURING MY HEAVIEST 3-DAY PERIOD OF THE YEAR. From a bookie's perspective, I can totally see why/how contrarianism is so profitable. These guys are so predictable. They're going to take the White Sox vs. KC, no matter what. They're going to take the Yankees vs. Oakland, etc., etc. I knew what games these guys wanted before they said a word. If I were just letting these bets ride, I'd give them nickel splits but move the line 15 cents to the public-side's detriment, and clean up. FWang



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