Are Sportsbooks Still Undervaluing Phillies Playoff Odds?

phillies playoff odds
PHOTO CREDIT: Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

On the heels of ripping off five straight wins, the Phillies host the Mets tonight with a chance to take over sole possession of first place in the NL East for the first time since May 7. They also have an opportunity to win a season-best six straight games and move to four games over .500 for the first time since they were 5-1 back on April 7. In other words, it’s a big one down at Citizens Bank Park tonight.

In the midst of the Phillies’ most encouraging run of the season, they have unsurprisingly also seen their playoff betting odds climb. Here is a look at how their price to win the division has moved throughout the season over at DraftKings Sportsbook:

DateRecordGames BackOdds
April 10-00+875
May 113-140+500
June 126-294+800
June 2434-375+850
Today56-530.5+250
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Phillies Playoff Odds Soar

Since falling five games off the division lead following a miserable 13-12 loss to the Nationals back on June 23 — the David Hale game — the Phillies’ division odds at DraftKings have surged from +850 to +250.

Meanwhile, they have even shorter odds to win the NL East over at FanDuel Sportsbook, currently listed at +210 along with the Braves, who also sit behind the Mets at +110 odds.

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Interestingly, however, the Mets’ current position as the clear NL East favorite doesn’t reflect the current postseason odds from a number of popular baseball projection websites.

  • Baseball Reference currently gives the Braves a 41.6% chance to make the playoffs, just ahead of the Phillies at 41.3%. The Mets trail way behind at 17.7%.
  • FiveThirtyEight gives the Braves the nod at 39%, just ahead of the Phils at 37%. Again, the Mets trail well behind at just 29%.
  • FanGraphs plays it a bit more true to the current standings with the Mets holding a 43.1% chance, ahead of the Phillies at 35.9% and Braves at 26.1%.

Betting Value on Phillies Odds

While all three sites present deviation on the Phillies’ current playoff odds, each projection gives them the second best shot at reaching the postseason among NL East squads.

If you take the average of all three projections, the Phillies open their series against the Mets tonight with a 38.1% chance of reaching the postseason.

Stack that number up against the implied probability of their +250 odds to win the NL East — their only real path to the playoffs — and there’s some clear value on locking in the Phillies. Why? Because the implied probably of +250 odds is just 28.6%, meaning bettors are getting a stronger payout than the average baseball projections suggest they should.

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As a point of comparison, the 38.1% postseason odds average of the FanGraphs, Baseball Reference, and FiveThirtyEight projections carries a +162 price. That means bettors who back the Phillies today currently stand to grab an extra $88 of potential payout on a $100 wager.

Similarly, the Braves also present value based against their current price, while the average of the three projection formulas suggest oddsmakers are significantly overvaluing the Mets. For instance, the Mets average just a 29.9% chance of reaching the playoffs but carry a -115 price tag. That 29.9% chance should carry a payout at +234.

In short, while it feels like buying the surging Phillies or Braves in the middle of a hot stretch as the Mets struggle is a square move, the numbers suggest there’s still plenty of betting value to be had in doing so.

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