Baseball Betting Bankroll Management
While analyzing stats and looking for trends is definitely important in baseball betting, bankroll management is the most critical aspect of long-term success. By properly managing your bankroll, you can not only improve your chances of surviving in the game, but also keep from wagering money that you can't afford to lose.
Of course, sound bankroll management requires major discipline and thought. And nobody but yourself can handle the discipline aspect. But if you come up with a good bankroll strategy, it does help out a lot with the discipline. That said, let's cover the process of setting up a bankroll plan as well as how much you should wager on each game.
Establishing a Bankroll and Units
The first aspect to managing your baseball betting money involves deciding how much you can reasonably afford to part with. After all, the point of wagering is to entertain yourself and to possibly make some money. So playing with funds that you can't afford to lose completely defeats the purpose of the activity.
Let's say that you can afford to make wagers with $1,000; you'd then set this amount aside and refuse to bet anymore than $1k. The next step would involve breaking this bankroll down into smaller sizes called "units." The idea behind units is to establish measurable increments of your roll. Most people consider one unit to be 1% of their bankroll, but the size is up to the individual.
How Much should you bet on One Game?
The amount of money that you're willing to bet on a single game often comes down to your bankroll size. For example, if you only had $100 to work with, wagering 1% of your bankroll on a game would merely amount to risking $1. Seeing as how most sportsbooks don't allow you to place such small wagers, the more likely scenario is that you'll need to bet at least 5% or more per game.
But this isn't exactly an ideal figure because lengthy losing streaks can and do happen in baseball betting, no matter how skilled you are. And dealing with a long downswing while risking 5% of your bankroll per game is a recipe for disaster. That said, most experts contend that you bet no more than 1-2% of your bankroll on any single baseball game - provided you're a serious bettor with more than a $100 bankroll.
Using the $1k example that we discussed before, this would mean wagering around $10 - $20 per contest. More experienced bettors will sometimes risk 3-4% of their bankroll if they have a strong feeling about a certain pick. However, this should only be done in the rarest of occasions.
Exploiting an Edge
Another thing to keep in mind with regard to baseball bankroll management is that skilled bettors stand to earn more money with a larger roll. Sure this might seem like commonsense, but it's a point which can escape many bettors until they see it on paper.
To illustrate this point, let's assume that you win 54.4% of your bets, which gives you a 2% edge over the public (10% vig included). Now if you had a $1k bankroll and wagered $10 (1%) of this amount per game, you'd earn $0.20 in profit on each contest. At this rate, it'd take you 1,000 games just to pull in a $200 profit. And while this is still superior to the average bettor, you'd no doubt like to earn a little more for your efforts.
Now let us say that you have a $10,000 bankroll and are able to wager $100 per game. If that 2% edge holds up, you would be collecting a $2,000 profit over 1,000 contests, rather than just $200.
Of course, we realize that not everybody is going to have $10k lying around just for baseball betting. And you should try to experience success in the lower stakes before moving up to larger wagers. But it's important to realize how much more you can exploit an edge over the public when you're able to place bigger bets.
If you can combine good bankroll management with an excellent knowledge of baseball betting strategy, you're bound to make profits eventually. After all, skill and knowledge is what separates a profitable bettor from somebody who just casually wagers on the weekends.
As for how much time you should spend learning baseball betting tips and strategy, the more the better. Of course, most people have regular lives to live so, for the average person, 1-2 hours of studying strategy would be great. And by strategy, we mean both researching specific bets and learning general tips that'll help you in the long-run.
Also be sure to understand the variance of baseball betting because even profitable players can lose money over the short-term. But if you keep learning strategy, bet through the rough times, and exercise good bankroll management, you'll have a great shot at being a successful baseball bettor.