- We helped line the pockets of bettors in 2018
- Our advice about the American League award races was particularly prescient
- You might be in a different tax bracket now if you listened to us about the 2018 Miss Universe Pageant
The 2018 season may not have been a good year for the Baltimore Orioles or Arizona Cardinals, but it was a spectacular year here at SBD, as we helped bettors make a windfall with our weekly picks and locks.
Whether we were weighing in on pro sports, entertainment, or college athletics, we repeatedly came through with stellar betting advice that led to sizable paydays.
We hate being the guy who says, “we told you so,” but here are five times you really should have taken our advice in 2018.
5. 2018 American League MVP Award
It may not seem surprising now that Mookie Betts won the 2018 AL MVP award, but it was far from a foregone conclusion back on August 24th when Mike Trout was the odds-on favorite at -180 and Betts was solidly in second place at +180.
Our MLB expert Sascha Paruk went to bat for the Red Sox outfielder and encouraged our readers to bet big on Betts.
He believed that the size of Boston’s media market and the franchise’s historically good record would ultimately sway voters.
What a year for Mookie Betts!
All-Star, Gold Glove, Defensive Player of the Year, Silver Slugger, Batting Champion, World Series Champion, MVP, Heart and Hustle Award, and just became a dad pic.twitter.com/xLHr5sNCw4
— Baseball Bros (@BaseballBros) November 16, 2018
Turns out Sascha was right. Betts’ odds eventually went as short as -1250 and he buried Trout by batting .377 with nine doubles, three home runs and 10 RBIs during the final month of the season.
4. 2018 New York Yankees
Some sportsbooks were in a New York state of mind in early September when they released a quartet of new props about the Bronx Bombers.
The first of the four wagers had to do with the potential return date of slugger Aaron Judge, who had been absent from the Yankees’ lineup since July 26th when he fractured his right wrist in a game against the Royals.
We had reason to believe the 6’7″ outfielder would return before the playoffs and encouraged readers to take the +140 odds available. Sure enough, All Rise came back on September 14th and proceeded to club three home runs in the 2018 postseason.
RT if you’re excited for Aaron Judge’s return to the Yankees lineup ?9️⃣9️⃣ pic.twitter.com/HBDsIWZieJ
— YES Network (@YESNetwork) September 18, 2018
The next two props centered on newly acquired outfielder Andrew McCutchen, who joined the Yankees on August 31st.
Some sportsbooks allowed bettors to wager on whether the former NL MVP would go over or under 5.5 home runs and 16.5 RBIs in September. We crunched the numbers and strongly advised readers to take the under for both bets. The final tally was close, but we got it right, as McCutchen hit .253 with five homers and 10 RBI during the stretch run.
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) August 31, 2018
The final prop has yet to be resolved, but we feel good about that one too as we encouraged readers to take the -300 odds that Aaron Boone will be the Yankees’ manager at the beginning of the 2019 season.
Anything can happen between now and Opening Day, but the 45-year-old skipper earned rave reviews during his first year on the job by leading the Yankees to 100 wins.
3. 2018 American League Cy Young
We’ll be the first to admit that we weren’t savvy enough to wager on Blake Snell winning the 2018 AL Cy Young Award on March 16th when he was available at +30000.
If we had been, this article would have been written by one of our servants on our fleet of private yachts.
However, we did recognize that Snell still presented enormous value on September 4th, when his +700 odds had him fourth in the pecking order behind Chris Sale (-200), Justin Verlander(+400), and Corey Kluber (+450).
The first-time All-Star had gone 5-0 with a 1.10 ERA since the Midsummer Classic and, unlike Sale, was completely healthy.
We liked the fact the Rays were scheduled to face only three plus .500 teams in September and thought Snell had an excellent shot of winning 20 games.
Blake Snell Wins AL Cy Young ?
? MLB-leading 21 wins
? 1.89 ERA (1st in AL)
? Rays’ 1st winner since 2012 pic.twitter.com/9q9PSOG4ZH
— Bleacher Report MLB (@BR_MLB) November 14, 2018
We got it right once again as Snell finished first in the American League in wins, ERA and ERA+. He was so dominant during his final few starts that his odds were as short as -400.
2. Kentucky at Florida
Some readers probably thought our college football guru Alex Kilpatrick had gone off the deep end when he suggested they bet on Kentucky to beat Florida in Week 2. After all, the Wildcats were 14-point underdogs and hadn’t beaten the Gators in 31 years.
Alex knew the history between the two schools, but liked Kentucky’s experienced defense and distrusted Florida’s passing game.
His instincts paid off as the Wildcats (+375) downed the heavily favored Gators (-550) 27-16 thanks to big days from running back Benny Snell and quarterback Terry Wilson, who accounted for three touchdowns.
1. 2018 Miss Universe Pageant
Our writers don’t just look at one sportsbook – they look at them all.
When SBD entertainment correspondent Michael Harrison was tasked with writing about the 2018 Miss Universe Pageant, he was floored to discover that Catriona Magnayon Gray was listed as a +6600 longshot at some sportsbooks, despite the fact she was the betting favorite at several other prominent sportsbooks.
— Miss Universe (@MissUniverse) December 19, 2018
The discrepancy was glaring, and Harrison pleaded with our readers to take a chance on the 24-year-old Filipina beauty. He was so convinced that she would win that he even put down his own hard-earned cash before sportsbooks had a chance to shift its odds.
— SBD (@SBD) December 17, 2018
It turned out to be a wise investment for Harrison – and others – as Gray beat out 93 other contestants to become the fourth Filipina Miss Universe in the event’s 67-year history.
Let's have fun and keep it civil.