The crack of the bat and snap of the leather are soon to be heard in Florida and Arizona as spring training will open this month. That means Major League Baseball is prepping for the 2023 season. This means you should be looking at futures odds now, to find bargains for your MLB betting.
In this 2023 MLB Preview article, we look at National League MVP odds.
Odds for National League Most Valuable Player 2023
|Fernando Tatis Jr.||Padres||+900||+1000||+1200|
|Ronald Acuña Jr.||Braves||+1200||+1000||+1400|
Favorites to win NL MVP in 2023
Juan Soto, Padres (+600 Caesars)
Everyone’s favorite candidate, Soto will be 24 on Opening Day. He’s still a baby in baseball age. Of the 199 position players to win the MVP in a full season, only 39 have had less than 100 runs batted in. That means 80% of winners have been run producers with at least 100 ribbies.
Soto has only driven in 100 runs once. He’s famously cautious at the plate, refusing (like Ted Williams once did) to pursue pitches outside the strike zone. That’s good for his on-base percentage, but his RBI totals suffer. That’s something to think about when you look at Soto for your NL MVP betting.
Trea Turner, Phillies (+1400 Caesars)
The newest Phillies star is almost a perfect ballplayer. He’s a fine defender, has power, hits for average, makes contact, and is the best base runner in the game. Another thing working in his favor is the absence of Bryce Harper for possibly the first half of the season. That means Turner will be hitting in RBI slots in the lineup for Philly. This means we could see a 300-25-100 season (average-HR-RBI). If he contends for another batting title and adds some power to his game, there’s no reason Turner can’t become the second Phillies shortstop to win this award, joining Jimmy Rollins.
Ronald Acuña Jr., Braves (+1400 Caesars)
He has to have his big season at some point, right? The Braves outfielder has oodles of talent, but he’s struggled with injuries and inconsistency. After he smacked 41 home runs at the age of 21, MLB pitchers have decided to basically never throw him a fastball over the plate unless they have to. Acuña is still trying to learn how to hit breaking pitches more efficiently. Both Bryce Harper and Reggie Jackson (going back a ways) had their breakouts at about the same point in their progression. If Acuña can get back to 40 jacks, he’d have a chance for a 40/40 homer/stolen base season. He’s also a plus-defender in right or center, or wherever Atlanta wants to play him.
Betting Tip: This is our best bet for NL MVP. You can earn $1,400 on a $100 bet from Caesars on Acuña to take the NL Most Valuable Player Award.
Francisco Lindor, Mets (+3000 Caesars)
No Carlos Correa? No problem. The Mets still have a middle infielder superstar. Some have forgotten how dominant Lindor was from 2017-2019 when he averaged 34 homers, 42 doubles, 177 hits, 21 steals, and a .856 OPS. He showed his durability last season, bouncing back from a nagging injury. He’s now a middle-lineup guy who can score or drive in runs. He’s also still a superb defender at short.
NL Most Valuable Player Longshot Betting Opportunities
Bryce Harper, Phillies (+8000 from FanDuel)
Is this a misprint? Yes, you can really get +8000 on Harper to win the MVP from FanDuel Sportsbook. Sure, Harper will miss spring training and the first portion of the season following off-season Tommy John surgery. But, as a designated hitter, his rehab will be much different than that of a pitcher. We’ve seen many athletes bounce back from surgery quicker than expected in recent years (thanks science!), and there isn’t any reason to think The Bearded One will be any different.
I suspect Harper could be back in the lineup by June 1. He won’t need to throw with that surgically-altered wing. Just swing the lumber. And Paul Bunyon he is. If Harper were to smack 30 homers in four months with a 600+ slugging percentage and help the Phils to the playoffs again, why couldn’t he win his third MVP award? Longshot? Yes, but that’s what this section is titled.
Betting Tip: Toss $20 at the +8000 odds on the chance Harper gets back early and at age 30 has a monster 115-120 games. A winning $20 bet would win you $1,600.
Justin Verlander, Mets (+10000 from Caesars and FanDuel)
Ol’ man river
That ol’ man river
he must know something
But he don’t say nothing
Cause he just keeps rolling
He keeps rolling along
The words of that old song might be ringing in Buck Showalter’s ears as he watches Verlander, his new ace, take to the hill as a New York Met. Verlander is coming off his third Cy Young Award, and following surgery two years ago, he looks as great as ever. He’s smarter, and he’s still able to pop the catcher’s mitt at 95+ MPH.
It’s unlikely that Verlander can win the MVP, given the reduced innings starters are working these days. But, imagine a world where he wins 15 games and posts a 1.75 ERA or something, with 10+ k’s per nine. Now imagine 3-4 offensive players split the votes. Is there a scenario where JV wins his second MVP? It’s possible because he just “keeps rolling, he keeps rolling along…”
Betting Tip: Only place a wager on Verlander if you think it will be a competitive season for position players. But even a $50 winning bet (at Caesars) would net you $5,000. That spends in New York or anywhere.