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Handicapping tips for the MLB playoff push

There’s about a month left in the MLB regular season and the playoff picture is beginning to take shape. While some clubs have put serious distance between them and their divisional foes, there are a number of divisions still up for grabs. Here are some mlb baseball lines for betting those baseball teams trying to play their way into October:

Pitching

You can’t talk baseball betting without focusing on pitching. Teams in the playoff mix should have a solid staff, and the ones that don’t will quickly fall off the pace. But you need more than just a couple ace arms to get the job done this late in the season.

Perhaps the most important thing is how long a pitcher can last, putting added value on stats like quality starts and ERA with runners on base. Pitchers that can go seven or eight innings usually have great control, can get out of a jam, and don’t dip into the bullpen. Keeping relievers fresh and ready for when they’re really needed will win those toss-up games that make the difference in the standings.

Depth

The marathon that is the baseball season is not without its casualties. Players are worn out by September and even though they may not show up on the injury wire, guys are nursing aches and pains as the push toward the playoffs. Giving key players some time off when afforded is paramount to postseason hopes, which means you need some reliable utility guys to step up every now and then. Bettors should take a look at a team’s possible pinch hitters and super subs and weigh those against their opponent’s reserves.

Managing

You can put all the money you want on the field, but if there isn’t a steady presence to bring order to the clubhouse and keep players focused each and every day, that lofty payroll might as well be spent on popcorn and beer. Savvy managers know how to get teams over the hump when the going gets tough, avoiding late-season collapses while also reminding players of the ultimate goal. When handicapping the World Series contenders, take a look at each manager’s respective resume and see how many have been in this spot before.