Depending on how you look at it, either the American League (AL) is a totally dominating force in the MLB, or its run is coming to an end. Today marks the 89th All-Star game for the league and the AL hasn’t had too much difficulty taking down the National League (NL) the past couple of years when the two met. However, oddsmakers now think the NL is due for a win, and this could prove to be a very interesting matchup.
NL Ahead of the AL in All-Star Odds
In the past 17 All-Star games, the AL has proven to be too much for the NL, taking 14 of the contests and currently sitting on a seven-game winning streak. Being able to count on some of the greatest names in baseball, including Teoscar Hernandez, Gerrit Cole, Chris Bassitt and Mike Trout, doesn’t hurt, but all good things must come to an end. Today might be the day the NL finally finds its revenge.
Oddsmakers have the NL moneyline at around -120, depending on the book. That’s a slight edge on the +100 sportsbooks are giving to the AL. It’s a tight race, with each side sporting a great deal of experience and talent. On the AL side, there’s Shohei Ohtani of the LA Angels, who has been recruited to be the starting pitcher and leadoff hitter. It’s the first time in MLB history that any player has been chosen for both spots and it comes after Ohtani racked up 33 homers and a 3.49 ERA (earned runs average) in 13 starts.
On the other side is Max Scherzer of the Washington Nationals. He’ll be the starting pitcher for the NL, bringing his three Cy Young Awards to back him up on the mound. He has four starts in the All-Star Game and eight straight appearances, and is at home under the lights.
Over/Under Pushes the Envelope
The Over/Under is listed at a high 11. While this is a common score in many MLB games, only one of the last 14 All-Star Games has broken that number. The average across the last ten contests is less than seven and there isn’t much reason to expect a lot of hits today, despite the changes MLB has made to the balls and the use of pitching aids. Ohtani and Scherzer are overwhelming powerful on the mound and it’s difficult to see this game going about eight runs. The Under has hit in 11 of the last 14 contests and this season, because of rule changes, is on track to set a record for the most strikeouts per game and the lowest team batting average in a single season. Runs aren’t likely to be plentiful today.
The runline should be an interesting target for sports bettors today. The NL is predicted to win by 1.5 runs at most sportsbooks (DraftKings currently has them at just a 1-point spread). With a low-scoring game and two leading pitchers taking control, runs will be hard to come by, but both sides have serious batters that will be able to push runners around the bases.