To round out this series of posts on player props betting for the 2019 MLB season, we are going to take a look at all the awards that can be wagered on. I will not necessarily be wagering on all of these, some of these will just be “forced leans” in order to provide some sort of recommendation, but I will label it as a LIKE or a LEAN to indicate what I personally have wagered on. When all is said and done, some of the leans I may end up taking for the action.
**Unless otherwise noted, all lines are from MyBookie
So let’s get caught looking at these props!
AMERICAN LEAGUE MVP
Personally, I probably would not feel comfortable wagering on anyone to win this award besides Mike Trout at +250. I believe that Trout is just in for a career year that is going to blow all the other fish out of the water, and that no matter if the Angels end up contending or not, Trout’s performance will be amazing enough to take home the hardware. But I am going to throw a couple suggestions out there as LEANS on guys whose odds are long enough to potentially have some value should Trout suffer an injury (God forbid).
Andrew Benintendi (+5000) (LEAN) – Benintendi is all set to leadoff for the defending champions where he will be hitting in front of a couple of pretty okay hitters in Mookie Betts and J.D. Martinez. In that spot, we know that Benintendi will score a lot of runs, but he is going to really have to step up his game in some other aspects in order to make a run at MVP here, but I do see some sort of pathway for him to do it. Firstly, he is going to have to become a .300 hitter. He was a .300 hitter in the Minors, but that was largely in part due to his elite ability to avoid striking out. His 16.0% K% from last year is good, but not elite. If he can cut down on the strikeouts by a few percentage points, then that should be enough for his first .300 AVG season. What also may help his AVG as well as boost his overall resume is if he adds on some pop. This is probably going to be his biggest obstacle. While he has shown 20 HR pop from the 2017 season, it is going to be tough to expect a big progression in this category, especially since he has been quoted this Spring Training as saying his focus is on his AVG and not HR since he is now a leadoff hitter, and his home park is not conducive to left-handed home runs. But being a leadoff hitter now, he may start running more. While not a burner on the base paths, he seems to pick his spots well and is efficient. It may not be out of the question for Benintendi to push 30 SB. So it seems like the best case scenario here is something like a .315 AVG with 25 HR, 90 RBI, 125 R, 30 SB, which would almost certainly put him in the MVP conversation.