Cincinnati Reds remain a long shot after slow start to 2023 MLB season

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Cincinnati Reds' Spencer Steer plays during the fifth inning of a baseball game, Friday, April 7, 2023, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

The Cincinnati Reds have opened the year with a below .500 record, posting a 5-7 clip heading into their weekend series against the Philadelphia Phillies. The baseball season is long, but oddsmakers don’t really believe in Cincinnati’s chances to put much together this summer.

Cincinnati has the worst odds to win the NL Central at +4500 at FanDuel Sportsbook, which comes out to an implied probability of 2.2%. The Reds haven’t won this division since 2012, finishing fourth out of five teams in back-to-back years.

As for the rest of the market, the Milwaukee Brewers have -135 odds of winning the NL Central at FanDuel. The St. Louis Cardinals are priced at +130, despite being last in the division as of mid-April. The Chicago Cubs are +1300, while the Pittsburgh Pirates have a value of +3000.

The remaining futures markets aren’t much better for the Reds.

Cincinnati is +2600 to make the playoffs at FanDuel, a mark that is only better than four teams in all of baseball thus far. The Reds haven’t made the playoffs since 2020, and their current odds give them an implied probability of 3.7%.

The Reds are 150/1 to win the National League pennant and 500/1 to win the World Series right now at FanDuel. This means a $10 bet on Cincinnati to win the World Series would net a juicy $5,000 payout.

That said, Cincinnati fans can still net a payout by betting on their team this year. You just have to be creative when assessing the futures markets, and the National League Rookie of the Year race really stands out in this case.

Cincinnati third baseman Spencer Steer is +2200 to win NL Rookie of the Year, according to FanDuel. That price is actually worse than his offseason number of +2000, despite Steer being second among rookie hitters in WAR to start the year.

Sportsbooks might not be paying too much attention to Steer’s start. Steer is posting a .325 batting average to go along with an on-base percentage of .413 and a slugging percentage of .575.

Steer has blasted a pair of home runs while adding four doubles and six RBIs. He has also managed to draw six walks, collect 13 hits, and score six runs. He has just 40 at-bats through 12 games, but Steer has hit the ground running this season.

In this particular market, Jordan Walker and Corbin Carroll continue to lead the way with +390 odds. Kodai Senga (+460) and James Outman (+500) are not far behind, but Steer is actually fifth on the odds board behind that quartet.

Steer could become a serious contender in this race if he continues to deliver for the Reds.

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