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Submitted by Richie B. Oddsmakers Consensus on Friday, July 27, 2018 at 12:00 PM

Earlier this week, I talked about how the general public (squares) often overvalue the impact of individual players. Now we get a great way to test that with Aaron Judge out of the lineup for the New York Yankees for a few weeks after suffering a fractured wrist Thursday night.

Do the Yankees become an auto-fade with Judge out? Does this doom the Yankees to a Wildcard because it will be much harder to chase down the Boston Red Sox from behind without Judge? Should you just burn your Yankees futures tickets because there’s no way to win the World Championship if Judge misses 3-4 weeks, then takes even longer to regain his normal form?

Look, his normal form probably isn’t as impactful as you were thinking. Yes, he hits impressive home runs. And, his classic batting line statistics are solid.

Batting Average: .285

On-Base Percentage: .398

Slugging Percentage: .548

Just remember that most sluggers are higher than .548 in that last category. Judge does have 26 home runs this season. But, he only has 20 doubles, and no triples. Judge does draw a lot of walks. But, he’s only stolen six bases while getting caught stealing three times. There’s not a lot Judge does besides hitting a home run once every four games and drawing walks every other day.

Judge had also shown some signs of losing power in recent weeks. Just one home run since July 7. Only two doubles all month! Nobody can replace the “distance” Judge gets on his home runs. It’s not that hard to replace the full picture of what Judge had been contributing lately.

And, THAT’S why there hasn’t been much of a impact in betting markets to the news. Sharps (professional wagerers) know that the Yankees have an easy schedule the next few weeks anyway. If New York starts losing games to the Royals, or Tigers, or Twins…then problems were running deeper than any injury. Odds to win the division, AL, and World Championship were unchanged Friday morning as I put together this article. I’d be surprised if sports books made those odds more attractive because sharps and squares alike might jump on them. Judge should be back for the playoffs anyway. That’s when the AL and World Series will be won.

You will likely be handicapping more injury situations down the stretch with prominent teams. Smart franchises want to protect their prime assets for October. Some guys will just get extended rest breaks because of “strains” or “soreness.” Sharps are ready. Are you?

Here are some tips:

*Don’t just automatically penalize a team for losing a star. Make sure you know how good or bad the backup is at his position. Some teams will see a drop in production with a big name on the bench because the backup is just a place holder on the roster. Others won’t drop because the star is overrated, his backup ready to shine. Ask your grandfather about Wally Pipp!

*Remember that any baseball player’s impact over one game is relatively small. He’ll only bat 4-5 times. He’ll only field a few balls in play. Injuries…if they’re GOING to matter…will impact larger sets of games. Instead of trying to win “max” bets every game he’s out, think more about fading the team over time with “minimum” bets. There’s rarely a one-night lock when a star is out. But, if a pricey team is about to go 5-5 the next 10 games, or 15-15 over a month…grinding is a way to take advantage of that.

*You’ll be better served by evaluating team attitudes. If you get the sense that an entire team is going to take a vacation because the star is out for a bit (which could happen to powers with big divisional leads), then it’s okay to step up with bigger bets against a shorthanded favorite. If you can tell that any team is still playing with fire because there’s little margin for error (definitely the case with the Yankees right now, who also have to worry about Seattle and Oakland in their rearview mirror for the Wildcard), then fading them would probably be a mistake.

Bottom line…it’s easy to overreact to injury news…and you have to bet smart to take full advantage. 

I’m about to transition to football-heavy content with the start of the NFL Preseason next week. The Baltimore Ravens play the Chicago Bears Thursday night in the Hall of Fame Game. This might be the last time I talk about baseball injuries for the season. You might want to print out this article and save it for future reference down the stretch of the pennant races.

Of course, I’ll still be trying to find winners for my daily clients in baseball all the way through the World Series. You can purchase daily BEST BETS from your friend in Las Vegas right here at the website with your credit card. If you have any questions call the VSM office at 1-888-777-4155. Be sure to ask about long term or combination packages that offer the best value.  

More states will be offering legal sports betting in the very near future. Those of you living near New Jersey or Delaware are already having fun. Mississippi and West Virginia are on deck. Welcome to all of you who have just found out about this website and my articles. My job is to teach you how to think like a sharp and bet like a sharp. It’s never too late to start!  

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