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Shohei Ohtani raking in bets for AL MVP, Cy Young awards

Jun 21, 2023; Anaheim, California, USA; Los Angeles Angels starting pitcher Shohei Ohtani (17) throws in the third inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Angel Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

Los Angeles Angels two-way star Shohei Ohtani already has a decorated MLB career since arriving in 2018. One honor he has yet to pick up is the Cy Young Award, with the betting public suggesting that is on the verge of changing.

Amid another stellar season, Ohtani has raked in the highest ticket percentage at BetMGM for both the American League MVP award and the AL Cy Young, the sportsbook said Monday.

Ohtani has received 17.8 percent of the total bets along with 42.8 percent of the handle in the MVP category, which is head and shoulders above his closest competition.

Bettors thinking about Ohtani’s chances for the pitching-specific award still like his odds, though seemingly not as much. He leads the pack with 11.6 percent of the tickets, but he’s earned only the third-largest share of the handle at 10.3 percent. The New York Yankees’ Gerrit Cole (18.4 percent) and the Tampa Bay Rays’ Shane McClanahan (14.7 percent) are higher.

Ohtani is the runaway -600 favorite at BetMGM to take home his second AL MVP. He’s at +1200 as of Monday to win the Cy Young, with the Houston Astros’ Framber Valdez the +260 favorite.

Before Monday night’s games, Ohtani led the major leagues with 25 home runs, 61 RBIs, a .623 slugging percentage and a 1.001 OPS. He was recently named to his third straight All-Star Game as the early leading vote-getter in the AL.

The phenom’s pitching numbers are not far off from his past two seasons. The star from Japan is 6-3 with a 3.13 ERA through 15 starts, while last year he posted a 2.33 ERA on his way to a fourth-place finish in the Cy Young race. But his 117 total strikeouts translates to a rate of 11.8 per nine innings, which leads the AL and is similar to his 11.9 rate in 2022.

Atlanta Braves star Ronald Acuna Jr. is a similar runaway favorite for MVP betting on the National League side. He’s received 19.1 percent of the total tickets and 40.1 percent of the handle at BetMGM and currently sits at -130 odds there.

Zac Gallen of the Arizona Diamondbacks, the +160 favorite, leads the NL Cy Young field with 20.1 percent of the bets and 27.4 percent of the money at BetMGM.

–Field Level Media

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