If you have $5,000 and faith in the Astros, you could be a millionaire

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Nick Mathews of the Houston Chronicle tweets that the Astros have the odds stacked against them to win the World Series in 2014 — 200-to-1 odds, in fact. Saving us from having to do the math ($1,000,000/200), he adds that if you wager $5,000 on the Astros to win it all and they do, you’ll end up a millionaire.

Snicker all you want, but longer odds have paid off in recent history. On September 12, 2011, the Cardinals were 500-to-1 to win the National League pennant, and 999-to-1 to win the World Series. A fan in Las Vegas put $250 on both at the MGM grand. As the Cardinals vanquished the Phillies in five games in the NLDS, cut through the Brewers in six in the NLCS, and toppled the Rangers in seven in the World Series, that fan walked away with $125,000 for the pennant wager and $249,750 on the World Series wager for a total of $374,750.

If you have fifty $100 bills  laying around that you were going to throw in the shredder or use to line the bird cage, why not bet on the Astros instead? You may end up looking like a genius.

Fried, Braves go to salary arbitration for 2nd straight year

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Brett Davis/USA TODAY Sports
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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Pitcher Max Fried went to salary arbitration with the Atlanta Braves for the second straight year, asking for $15 million instead of the team’s $13.5 million offer.

The 29-year-old left-hander went 14-7 for the second straight season and lowered his ERA to 2.48 from 3.04 in 2021. Fried was a first-time All-Star last season, was second to Miami’s Sandy Alcantara in Cy Young Award voting and was third in the National League in ERA behind Alcantara and Julio Urias with the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Fried won a $6.85 million salary last year instead of the team’s $6.6 million proposal in arbitration. That was after he pitched six shutout innings in World Series Game 6 as the Braves won their first title since 1995.

Fried, who is eligible for free agency after the 2024 World Series, had his case heard Friday by a panel that’s expected to issue a decision Saturday.

Players have won two of three decisions so far: Pitcher Jesus Luzardo ($2.45 million) and AL batting champion Luis Arraez ($6.1 million) both beat the Miami Marlins. But Seattle defeated Diego Castillo ($2.95 million).

A decision is being held for Los Angeles Angels outfielder Hunter Renfroe, whose case was argued Monday. About 20 more cases are scheduled through Feb. 17.