We are very excited for the start of the 2019 MLB betting season at NJ Sportsbooks! We have you covered from World Series Odds, to player prop bets like HR Leaders and most wins for starting pitcher in 2019. The always popular MLB teams over-under wins predictions are also ready to roll.
Opening Day gets started Thursday March 28th. In the tri-state area, you can not avoid the Bryce Harpers hype train in Philly. Check out the latest Bryce Harper odds from NJ sportsbooks before the season begins.
Projecting The Worst Bullpens in MLB
Now lets jump in and take a look at the MLB bullpens we are looking to play against in 2019. Whether you are betting the moneyline against one of these teams or looking bet some overs, keep these bullpens on the radar.
Kansas City Royals Bullpen
I truly feel for you if you’re a Royals fan. I can’t imagine what you really have to look forward to this season with the exception of being able to watch Adalberto Mondesi play every day. It’s a shame he can’t pitch too, right? As it stands right before Opening Day, the Royals look as if they have the worst bullpen heading into the 2019 season. Let’s take a look at what they’ll be working with this season.
The Royals are going to be a popular team to target against this season. They don’t boast an impressive starting rotation to begin with and when they’re out of the game, it could get even uglier. According to the Royals official depth chart, of the seven relievers they’ll carry to open the season, they’re going to have massive control issues. Four of their relievers owned a BB/9 over 4 last season. Wily Peralta, Brad Boxberger, Jake Diekman and Brian Flynn all had issues with their control. Peralta and Boxberger also averaged an HR/9, but they also combined to save 46 games. With both of those guys showed flashes of brilliance last season, it’s hard to feel confident in these guys are your late-inning weapons.
To be fair, this Royals bullpen DOES have some potential. Diekman is a hard-throwing lefty that could emerge as an eighth-inning tool. Kyle Zimmer has had a strong Spring Training but is unproven at the major league level. He sports some impressive strikeout potential but has struggled with his command. On a team that is going to strive to win games, this isn’t a bullpen you’re looking to trust on a nightly basis.
Seattle Mariners Bullpen
No one is to blame for the poor bullpen except the Mariners. Granted, they’re in the beginning stages of a massive rebuild but did they have to get rid of EVERYBODY!? Owners of a solid bullpen last season, the Mariners open up the season without the likes of Edwin Diaz (3.5 WAR 57 SV), Alex Colome (9.5 K/9, 3.44 xFIP) and Nick Vincent (8.9 K/9). Not that we expect them to win many games, to begin with, this is quite an overhaul.
Nothing screams rebuild like a team saying that the relievers don’t have defined roles. Basically, that means, we’ll throw someone out on the mound and hope it works for the best! Hunter Strickland will be their closer and he has fantastic talent. Getting to him is going to be the issue. No reliever had a WAR higher than 0.3 or averaged at least a strikeout per inning from last season. With so many roles in this bullpen undefined, it’s going to be very difficult to trust any type of lead for the Mariners when the ball is handed to the bullpen.
One underrated aspect could be the team’s defense. Newly acquired Tim Beckham is a below average defensive shortstop. The Mariners also traded away catcher Mike Zunino to the Rays, who sports a career .995 fielding percentage. Kyle Seager will also be on the injured list to start the season, keeping the former Gold Glove winner off the field. With a shaky bullpen and the team’s poor defense, it could be quite the adventure for the Mariners, especially to begin the year.
Boston Red Sox Bullpen
I’ve had all offseason to sit and ponder what the plan is here for the reigning World Series champions. If I ever figure it out, I’ll you know because I’m still puzzled. They’ve lost two pivotal pieces in Craig Kimbrel and Joe Kelly and quite frankly, never made any moves to replace them. It seems as if Dave Dombrowski is hoping for a lot to fall into place with the Red Sox and hoping his “Great Value” bullpen turns into a name brand unit.
Ryan Braiser looks to be the closer of choice amongst the group despite never earning a save in the majors. He’s done it plenty in the minors but we all know that’s not a lock once you move to the big club. He’s shown good command and limits the long ball to be a potential closer. Just don’t go and expect a big power performance from him, as he averages less than a strikeout per inning.
Getting to Braiser looks as if it’s the biggest issue. Unless their starters are planning on going seven each night, the Red Sox will have plenty of issues. Like the Royals, the Red Sox bullpen could have an issue with the home run ball. Tyler Thornburg, Heath Hembree and Brandon Workman all averaged over an HR/9 while Brian Johnson was just on the cusp at 0.93. Over these relievers, only two of them had a SIERA below 4. Hembree and Matt Barnes take those honors at 3.36 and 2.78 respectively. With so many question marks for this bullpen and the potential to apply added pressure on the starting staff, we could see quite the disarray on the Sox staff.
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