Braves Evan Gattis Disrespected by Oddsmaker

Evan Gattis Braves

Gattis is sixth in the NL in homers with 14

Atlanta Braves rookie Evan Gattis has had a storybook start to his major league career.  Gattis has 14 home runs in only 156 at bats and is tied for the Braves team lead with Justin Upton, even though he has 68 fewer at bats.  He is also second on the team in RBI with 37, only 6 behind team leader, Freddie Freeman.  Freeman has had 43 more at bats than Gattis.

Gattis is sixth in the NL in home runs and leads the league in homers/at bat, with a home run in every 11.1 at bats.  He is also 8th in slugging percentage at .603.

What is particularly impressive about Gattis, is not just the raw numbers, but that he has been arguably the best clutch hitter in the National League the first 2+ months.  Where there isn’t an argument, is that Gattis has been the best pinch-hitter in the major leagues, with an astounding 4 home runs in only 8 at bats.

Despite the tremendous power Gattis has displayed, and all the clutch game-winning hits, apparently not everyone is impressed with Evan Gattis.

Bovada Sports Book has established Gattis as having no better than the third best chance in the National League to win the Rookie of the Year Award.  He’s actually tied for third with Dodgers starting pitcher, Ryu Hyun-jin at 5/1 odds.

Dodgers outfielder, Yasiel Puig, is listed as having the second best chance to win NL ROY at 3/2. even though he has only played in eight games this season.  Granted, Puig is off to a great start and is a tremendous talent, but NL teams haven’t even had a chance to break down film and find the holes in his swing yet.

Oddsmakers make numbers based not only on reality, they make numbers also on public perception.  But having Puig ahead of Gattis after having played only eight games is ridiculous.  If Puig was so great wouldn’t he have made the lowly Dodgers coming out of spring training?

The Cardinals’ starting pitcher, Shelby Miller, is listed by Bovada as the favorite to win the NL ROY at 1/1.  Miller is off to a great start in 2013, with a 7-3 record and sparkling 1.91 ERA.  But why is Miller 1/1 when Gattis is 5/1?   That is absurd.

Dodgers starter Ryu Hyun-jin who is the same 5/1 odds as Gattis, is having a good season, but is not making anywhere near the impact that Gattis making.  He is 6-2 with a very good, but not great 2.72 ERA.

Quite frankly, I think Evan Gattis is being disrespected by Bovada.  When I saw that he was 5/1 and tied for third, I was absolutely stunned.

What is interesting, is that when Bovada first sent me the odds, they didn’t even have Gattis on the list.  After I asked why Gattis wasn’t on the list, the Bovada PR guy had to go to his  sports book manager to get a number on Gattis.

Am I just a hopeless Braves homer, or do you also think it ridiculous that Gattis is not getting anymore respect from Bovada than he is, based on the season he is having, and the impact he has made?

In case you are wondering, Julio Teheran is given the 6th best chance to win the NL ROY by Bovada at 25/1.

  • Bob Long

    Atlanta is a mid-market team that has always been competitive, but has underperformed. They have only won one World Series since moving to Atlanta in the mid-sixties. The big-market teams (New York, Boston, Los Angeles, etc) have a long tradition of winning and are under more intense scrutiny than Atlanta. Atlanta gets overlooked, not because it is a mediocre team, but because there is no tradition of winning World Series. Atlanta will continue to be underestimated until they start building teams that capture multiple World Series titles.
    It may be unfair, but it is not a sign of disrespect. The Braves, in their opinion, simply don’t merit their attention because they aren’t perennial winners. The Braves could hit four grand slams in one game and it wouldn’t merit more than fifteen seconds on ESPN.
    As I said, it isn’t disrespect, it’s ignorance!

    • Bob, the Braves have won their share of Rookie of the Year awards over the years despite whatever big market bias there may be. I agree with you about not winning more World Series titles.

  • Not perennial winners? What do you call 14 straight division titles?

  • voiceofreason

    I love discussions like this, and he’s what I think. The oddsmakers are banking that the NL will figure him out. While he’s hit for tremendous power in his limited at-bats, he’s also hitting .263. Bookies are looking to make odds that will invite people to bet. People see 5/1 on Gattis and think the bookie is an idiot and place a bet. Perhaps not to the extent of Gattis, but baseball always has hitters come up and explode to just exponentially cool (see previous Braves outfield Jeff Francoeur, Jay Bruce when he came up with the Reds, Kevin Maas of the Yankees in 1990 might be the best example). I’d say 5/1 might be a bit low, but these guys play on our emotions.

    • I think Gattis is for real. He’s far more fundamentally sound than Francoeur, Bruce or Maas.

      • voiceofreason

        I hope you’re right Jim, Gattis is a great story. I was trying to look at it as objectively as possible. I can’t judge their “fundamentally sound”ness, but I know that Maas and Bruce had VERY similar MILB numbers to Gattis, although they both appeared considerably more at the AAA level. We’ll see how Gattis plays out this season. Frankly, if the Braves have a player that consistently performs as well as Bruce at the MLB level, I wouldn’t be disappointed. To expect more out of a reclamation project like Gattis would be unfair.
        Again, enjoy your writing, and the discussion.

        • Well, Gattis isn’t going to have a chance to NL ROY or make much of an impact if he doesn’t play.