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Baseball Run Line Betting

When betting on baseball you will have three options you can choose from – betting the money line, betting the game total, and betting the run line. Run line betting may be the least popular out of the three because it is a little less known, but it is still very popular with baseball bettors.

Below is a guide for baseball run line betting, which includes an introduction to run line betting for baseball, an example of a run line bet, and any other information you may need to know before you start betting on baseball run lines.

When betting on the run line in baseball you will have two options to choose from; you can choose the team that is favored or you can bet on the underdog team, but it is not as simple as picking the team to win the game (money line betting). With run line betting there will be a “spread” or run line set on the favored team, which is usually 1.5 runs.

In order for a bet on the favored team to win they must cover the 1.5 run line, which means they must win by 2 or more runs. For a bet placed on the underdog team on the run line to win the underdogs must either lose by 1 run or win the game outright. Baseball run line is a little confusing for beginner bettors, so I have included an example of what a run line bet may look like.


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Detroit Tigers +1.5 (+100)
@ New York Yankees -1.5 (-140)

The (+)sign in front of the 1.5 represents that the Detroit Tigers are the underdogs, while the 1.5 number is the set run line (it is almost always set at 1.5 runs). If you were to bet the Tigers on the +1.5 run line you would need them to either lose by exactly one run (1.5 or less) or win the game out right in order for your wager to be successful. In our example above this is paying +100 odds, which is shown in brackets.

The () sign in front of the 1.5 represents that the New York Yankees are the favorite in this game, while the 1.5 number is the set run line for the game. If you were to place a wager on the Yankees on the -1.5 run line you would need them to win by 2 or more runs to win your bet. In the example above this Yankees run line bet is paying -140.

Although the baseball run lines are almost always set a 1.5, sometimes you will be give the option to adjust the run line to 2.5 or even 3.5. The run line works the exact same with the change in numbers, except for the fact that the number needs to be adjusted. If the run line was set at 2.5 then the favored team would need to win by 3 or more, while the underdog could lose by 2 or less or win the game.

There you have it – the basics of baseball run line betting. Take your newly learned sports betting knowledge and start betting on the MLB or your favorite baseball league now!