Money in the Bank - 1st Edition. PDF Print E-mail
Written by Matt Jennings   
Tuesday, 15 February 2011 12:58
Money in the Bank - 1st Edition. By Matt Jennings 2/15/11
The 2011 KWL season is about to be my coming out party.  I don’t mean that in a “blossoming as a player” sort of way, I’m the reigning FunVP, how much better can I get?  And I’m not talking about any sexual orientation revelations.  It’s not like I’m the fan-boy who has been stalking Justin Bieber.  During the 2011 season I will be openly betting on KWL games for the first time.

I have received a lot of hate mail since that muck raking Ryan Winfield took an “Outside the Lines” type look at my
gambling ‘problem.’  In a way, I feel as though I owe him some gratitude.  The truth really has set me free.  No more secretly rooting against my friends’ teams when I have money on the opposition.  No more sending children from the stands to place bets with my bookie for me.  No more pretending to not be able to explain why I performed so terribly in a game I’ve just thrown.  Now that I’ve found out there is no rule against players gambling on KWL action, I have no reason to be hide my habit.
I am proud to have broken the betting barrier and hope to be an inspiration to those who want to follow me this season.  Without any further ado, here’s a bit of free advice for you gambling noobs out there.

Money for Nothing – sure-fire bets you can’t miss on.

    Total No Hitters thrown this season  O/U 15.5.   Take the over on this one.  I did last year when it was 9.5 and made a killing.  There ended up being 14 of them last year (3 by Snowsuit…*wink, wink*).  There are potentially two more expansion teams this year, which may dilute hitting even more.  Also, if we’re sitting at 14 No No’s going into the final week of the season, don’t be surprised if the team formerly known as Snowsuit becomes the first team to get no-hit for an entire double header (Edit, Lemons were no hit last season in a double header by the Everett Brothers).
    Total Players Used by No Big Deal O/U 7.5.  NBD used an astounding 9 different players last year, and Vegas wants you to think this was just the first year learning curve.  I’m here to tell you it’s not.  Word out of the Fall Ball circuit is that Matt Zobal was offering a contract to anyone that would listen, including spectators.  By now, I imagine he probably has the entire service counter, a few bag boys and the lawn and garden department at Meijer lined up to play.  Combine them with the regular rotation they had going at the end of last year and you should feel safe betting your rent money on the over.
    Best Regular Season Record AL: Industrials 3:1.  Ok, the odds here aren’t the greatest for this type of bet, but this one is rock solid.  The defending champ Friars are still suffering from a championship hangover…Ross got his ring and is disinterested, Mars is still complaining about his sprained ankle or whatever it was, and Buerger is still literally hung over.  They probably won’t start playing like themselves until it’s time for a playoff push.  The Gentleman have Barber back and hopefully a healthy Jennings, but I would never put money on a team that has Dan Meach as their number two power hitter.  The Indies have been solid year in and year out and adding Mason’s brother is going to help hide the flaws in their aging veteran’s games.  Also, I think they realize they are destined to choke in the playoffs, so they will play the regular season like its their playoffs.

Money Down the Drain – The “Fergie” bets.  May look tempting from afar, but do yourself a favor and stay away.

    Wins for Brian Rensch O/U 6.5  At first glance, the over seems like a no-brainer for arguably the most talented pitcher in the league.  However, its his off-field interests that may hold Rensch back.  Last year he reportedly missed a game for a yoga class and my source at the Bronson Athletic Club has informed me he has recently signed up for a spin class and beginners krav maga.  When I think Rensch, I think Barry Zito.  Probably a fun guy to hang out with, but not somebody I’m putting my money on.
    Team Wins: Golden Pony Boys O/U 18.5  The Forties won 19 games in ’09 and 18 in ’10, however this is not the Forties.  The only question is whether they are an improved version, or a less talented version.  Mason’s competitive nature would lead you to believe he ran Steve off in an effort to build a better team.  On the other hand, recent Facebook posts such as this one, “I’m about to turn 30 and realize I have worked my life away.  Time to cut loose and have a little fun.” lead one to believe winning may not be his top priority.  Combine the unknown nature of this team with the fact that the NL will most likely be an even tighter race than last year and I’m staying clear of this wager.
    Will Mike Raber suit up for a team in 2011?  This seems like a simple “no,” the only problem is the odds don’t make it worth your time.  “NO” pays out -5000, meaning you have to put down $50 to win $1.  “YES” comes in at +1000, or 10:1.  The former co-commissioner is a real wild card, capable of anything.  I could see him signing a 10 day contract to pitch against the Indies, but more than likely he has moved on to watching whales from the front porch of his log cabin in Maine.  Feel free to put some money on this prop, but the odds aren’t right for me.

If You’re Feeling Lucky- A gamble in the truest sense of the word.

2011 KWL Champion:  Belly Itchers 12:1  Anytime I can get these kind of odds on a 3 time champion I gotta take it.  Sure, the Itchers were a bit of a let down in 2010, but they also showed a lot of growth in the second half.  Vegas gives the Itchers the 7th best odds of winning the crown (after the Friars, Diablos, Indies, Waterfalls, Gentlemen and Scared Hitless) but if A.J. and Mike return with a focus they are capable of being better than any of them.  And in the KWL you should always expect the unexpected.  For all anybody knows, Adam Bontrager may return as unexpectedly as he left.  Either way, I’m putting a couple large on the Belly Itchers and letting it ride.

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