If you read my bio on the website you heard how I used to write programs on my TI-82 graphing calculator in high school. Those programs were my first algorithms. Since then I have written thousands, big and small. I have written algorithms for clients in the financial markets, retail businesses, restaurants and of course the gambling industry.
In the gambling industry I have written algorithms for private betting clients, sports handicapping services as well as my primary clients…sportsbooks and casinos. I love algorithms. Designing an algorithm is like trying to solve a puzzle. You have a goal in mind and now you have to crack the mathematical code to achieve it. Since everything in the world involves mathematics to some extent, there is always a way to crack the code. It’s just some codes are a lot harder than others. I know it sounds boring but it gets the juices flowing for me!
Algorithms are actually how I came to be on Twitter. For years I had a client from my early days in the gambling business. The client was one of the first clients I had when I opened my own business after leaving trading at World Sports Exchange. The client ran a sports service since the 80’s. He and his business partner were in their 40’s and at the time had no clue how to put together an algorithm. What the guys did have was a great idea for one. I took on the contract and provided them their algorithm. In ensuing years I serviced/tweaked the algorithm with them all the way to 2018 when they retired. Upon their retirement they actually sold the algorithm rights and all the company’s intellectual property back to me. Now my creation is all mine! It’s one of my babies because it was one of the first algorithms I designed, in concert with the service operators, that actually had a great long term winning percentage. It is the algorithm which is the basis for my personal plays on Twitter! Sorry for the boasting, I am just very proud of my work on it. Back to where I was going with this…it is also my experience with that client that allows me to say with a 100% guarantee that I will NEVER go into the daily sports service business!!! Some people are built to deal in that business. To deal with clients on a daily basis and with the stresses of winning and losing performances for those clients. Hearing what these two guys would do everyday, no thank you! Not worth it, not even anywhere close to worth it! I like my semi-retirement and the freedom I have as a consultant at this point in my career. I have no reason nor do I have even an inkling of interest in becoming a service. A lot of people ask me so I am just being very explicit while on the topic.
Moving on, the algorithm I want to tackle discuss today involves the “First Inning Run Scored (Y/N)” prop. I got this idea while on vacation recently and from discussions with some of you on Twitter. The idea basically stems from the #FollowTheMoney6 first period NHL totals. I thought if there can be a profitable angle on first periods, why can’t their be one for 1st Innings. Granted the 1st inning is a lot shorter than the first period of a hockey game. However the 1st inning is basically a game within a game and carries set variables that make it unique. Why not decipher those variables which make the first inning unique and find the angles that can be exploited? It is with those thoughts that the algorithm idea for the 1st inning prop was born.
One of the reasons I think the prop (1st inning y/n) can be exploited is because the prop’s odds are based on the total for the game…not the probability of 1st inning runs. If a game has a high total then the “Yes” will be a big favorite. If the total is low then “No” might be a favorite. Right there is a major flaw in the calculation. Just because a game has a high total could mean the bullpens are bad. It doesn’t automatically mean the Yes has a greater chance of hitting to the extent that the books make it.
Some pitchers start out a game strong but then fade as the innings progress. Do to the pitcher fading, they may have a high ERA and thereby their game totals may be high. Because the game total is high the “Yes” in the 1st inning is high. However you know what the flaw is because I said it…while this pitcher sucks over the course of a game, he does start out strong. It is that bit of micro data for the game that changes the value of the 1st inning Y/N price but which is not quantified in the game total.
I believe other angles exist like the pitcher miscalculations I cited above. One could be teams that are great hitting teams but start slow. Or on the contrary teams that are awful hitting teams but always seem to get hits early. All of these micro stats are overlooked in full game stats. Game totals are calculated based on full game stats. The game total the primary source of how the Yes/No is calculated and again, this is where the flaws come in. I have to credit my time at Jigsaw Sports for acquiring code someone there designed but did not finish for the 1st Inning prop. I hope to have a successful season with it!
Those are the angles I will be looking at among others. Those are the angles I will be quantifying in variables. I will then scan for correlations and within those correlations we will hopefully see a proper value formula for the 1st inning yes/no prop. We will then use that value calculation to hopefully, if we crack the code, exploit the yes/no props in MLB!
It’ll be a fun season and I am eager to see what magic I can put together in finding a calculation that gets us a true price for the Yes/No props based on actual 1st Inning calculations and not full game calculations.
It’s coming soon to The Sharp Plays near you! LOL
~The Sharp Plays