MLB Opening Day Betting: Predictions for Game 1 Kick-Offs & Full Schedule

MLB Opening Day Betting

Major League Baseball betting returns to the calendar on April 1, when all 30 teams will begin their 2021 season in synchronised fashion ahead of what promises to be a special year for the sport.

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Here is MLB Opening Day betting peview and picks

And it all starts in Week 1 as this will mark the first time since 1968 that every team begins their campaign on the same day. Anticipation has been building for a return to regular programming after the 2020 season was shortened drastically due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Los Angeles Dodgers were crowned World Series champions in October and come back to the plate as +350 favorites to retain their title, but what upsets can we expect as the best team in baseball going about proving that tag?

BetMGM sports betting site is ahead of the crowd in offering Game 1 moneylines for each one of the Opening Day fixtures, and we break down a selection of the best-value bets worth jumping on ahead of the first pitch.

2021 MLB Opening Day Schedule (Thursday, April 1)

  • Toronto Blue Jays @ New York Yankees, 1:05 p.m. ET
  • Cleveland Indians @ Detroit Tigers, 1:10 p.m. ET
  • Baltimore Orioles @ Boston Red Sox, 2:10 p.m. ET
  • Minnesota Twins @ Milwaukee Brewers, 2:10 p.m. ET
  • Pittsburgh Pirates @ Chicago Cubs, 2:20 p.m. ET
  • Atlanta Braves @ Philadelphia Phillies, 3:05 p.m. ET
  • LA Dodgers @ Colorado Rockies, 4:10 p.m. ET
  • Arizona Diamondbacks @ San Diego Padres, 4:10 p.m. ET
  • St. Louis Cardinals @ Cincinnati Reds, 4:10 p.m. ET
  • Texas Rangers @ Kansas City Royals, 4:10 p.m. ET
  • Tampa Bay Rays @ Miami Marlins, 4:10 p.m. ET
  • New York Mets @ Washington Nationals, 7:09 p.m. ET
  • Chicago White Sox @ LA Angels, 10:05 p.m. ET
  • Houston Astros @ Oakland Athletics, 10:07 p.m. ET
  • San Francisco Giants @ Seattle Mariners, 10:10 p.m. ET

MLB Opening Day Betting Picks & Winning Odds

Atlanta Braves Win @ Philadelphia Phillies (-115)

Only a couple of Opening Day games stick out as toss-em’s—as far as the odds are concerned, at least—and this is one of them. One week prior to Game 1 and both the Atlanta Braves and the Philadelphia Phillies are -115 for the curtain-raiser at Citizens Bank Park.

Even with Philadelphia housing a few injuries among their first rotation, it’s therefore difficult to see how they can be at even odds with Atlanta for Game 1 but so far behind in the World Series stakes. While the Braves are largely fifth or so with most sportsbooks to win the World Series, priced around +1000, you can find odds of four times that backing Philadelphia.

It’s our belief those stakes speak more generally of the difference in quality between the pair, and Atlanta should get off to a clean start as they seek a fourth straight National League East title.

Cincinnati Reds Surprise St. Louis Cardinals (+140)

One of the few odds upsets we’d actually consider backing would mean the +140 Cincinnati Reds surprising the St. Louis Cardinals, two teams that finished with identical win percentages last season. The Cardinals actually finished above the Reds in the National League Central despite recording one win fewer than their division rivals, aided by the fact they also played fewer games.

Home teams in the National League are actually less dominant than their American League counterparts on Opening Day, but this is one where we expect Cincinnati to emerge on top and improve their record to four wins in their last five meetings with St. Louis:

New York Mets Beat Washington Nationals (-120)

MLB’s betting community is suddenly very hot on the New York Mets following an off-season of aggressive recruitment, evidenced by the fact they open their season as slight -120 favorites to beat 2019 champions the Washington Nationals.

Signing Francisco Lindor and Carlos Carrasco from the Cleveland Indians may not immediately turn the franchise into World Series favorites, but it could certainly give them the keys to a team that matched their 26-34 record in the National League East last season.

Jacob deGrom will start pitching for the Mets and hopes to improve upon his side’s 2-3 record versus Washington in spring training, during which he was getting up to 101mph fastball antics.

Oakland Athletics Beat Houston Astros (-110)

Another of those few coin-toss matchups that could easily go either way in Week 1, the Oakland Athletics and Houston Astros are again primed to battle for top spot in the American League West.

That AL home bias we mentioned earlier should be a factor in play at Oakland Coliseum, where 20 percent of fans are likely to be permitted for the opening game, all of whom must be California residents, per ESPN.

Zack Greinke will make his first Opening Day start for the Astros, though one could hardly tell from the pitcher’s underwhelming response:

Matchups between these franchises is turning into a showcase of its own after last season’s brawl  and the post-season series that followed, with Oakland’s Mike Fiers running back into the team he blew the whistle on in one of sports’ biggest controversies.

Kansas City Royals Beat Texas Rangers (-120)

The Boston Red Sox are the standout selection if we’re talking AL teams eyeing major improvements in 2021, but the Kansas City Royals aren’t far off that.

With that being the case, a -120 price on Mike Matheny’s side to beat a poor Texas Rangers team in their opener looks like an easy pick.

Danny Vietti of CBS recently praised the Royals for their standout work during the off-season, steadily building a more talented roster with the potential to build on an encouraging 2020 campaign.

Texas lost pitching talisman Lance Lynn to the Chicago White Sox during the off-season and will promote Kyle Gibson to the starting role here, but Kansas City should get 2021 started in style.

MLB World Series 2021 Moneyline Odds

Team

Odds

Los Angeles Dodgers

+350

New York Yankees

+550

San Diego Padres

+800

Chicago White Sox

+850

Atlanta Braves

+1000

New York Mets

+1000

Minnesota Twins

+2000

Houston Astros

+2200

Toronto Blue Jays

+2200

Oakland Athletics

+2500

St. Louis Cardinals

+2500

Tampa Bay Rays

+2500

Cincinatti Reds

+3300

Washington Nationals

+3300

Cleveland Indians

+4000

Chicago Cubs

+4000

Philadelphia Phillies

+4000

Los Angeles Angels

+4000

Milwaukee Brewers

+4400

Boston Red Sox

+5000

Miami Marlins

+7500

San Francisco Giants

+8000

Arizona Diamondbacks

+10000

Colorado Rockies

+10000

Seattle Mariners

+10000

Baltimore Orioles

+10000

Kansas City Royals

+10000

Detroit Tigers

+10000

Texas Rangers

+15000

Pittsburgh Pirates

+25000

Odds via Sugarhouse NJ. Bet on MLB Opening Day, get free bet promotions with Betrivers app and William Hill sportsbook. Offers available in 10 states: NJ, CO, IN, IL, TN, PA, WV, VA, TN.

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