The other day the oddsmakers at Bovada had the Tigers as the favorite to win the World Series. They now have the Angels:
Los Angeles Angels World Series Odds pre-Josh Hamilton 12-1
Los Angeles Angels World Series Odds post-Josh Hamilton 15-2
Of course, this happened with them last year when they signed Albert Pujols too, so the lesson, as always, is that gambling on baseball is just really friggin’ stupid.
For what it’s worth, Bovada also sets the over/under on the Angels win total at 93 1/2, lays 18/1 odds on the Dodgers meeting the Angels in the World Series and lays 5/1 odds on Hamilton being suspended for substance abuse during the 2013 season.
The more you know.
Bob Nightengale of USA TODAY Sports reports that the Diamondbacks and reliever T.J. McFarland have avoided arbitration, agreeing on a $1.45 million salary for the 2019 season. McFarland, in his third of four years of arbitration eligibility, filed for $1.675 million while the Diamondbacks countered at $1.275 million. McFarland ended up settling for just under the midpoint of those two figures.
McFarland, 29, was terrific out of the bullpen for the D-Backs last season, finishing with a 2.00 ERA and a 42/22 K/BB ratio in 72 innings. While the lefty may not miss a lot of bats, he does induce quite a few grounders. His 67.9 percent ground ball rate last season was the third highest among relievers with at least 50 innings, trailing only Brad Ziegler (71.1%) and Scott Alexander (70.6%).
McFarland was dominant against left-handed hitters, limiting them to a .388 OPS last season, but the D-Backs deployed him nearly twice as often against right-handed hitters, who posted an aggregate .764 OPS against him. It will be interesting to see if the club decides to use him more as a platoon reliever in 2019.