2023 MLB MVP Futures


We’re going to analyze the 2023 MLB MVP futures betting market to see if there’s any late value. With the Major League Baseball (MLB) regular season close to concluding, most futures bets will be graded soon.

Most Valuable Player Trophy - MLB MVP Futures
Most Valuable Player Trophy – MLB MVP Futures

The National League MVP odds are still open, while the American League MVP odds are off the board.

2023 MLB MVP Futures – American League

It pays to bet on MLB MVP futures early in the year and we’ll explain why.

Shohei Ohtani has had a masterful regular season and pulled away in the AL MVP race. Ohtani opened as the favorite (+200 odds) when the 2023 American League MVP odds were released in the offseason.

Aaron Judge (+650), Mike Trout (+800) and Julio Rodirugez (+1000) were next in the market.

Ohtani’s odds started to shorten quickly after the regular season started. By May 1st 2023, Ohtani moved to the odds-on favorite (-101) to win the AL MVP. June is when any value betting on Ohtani to win the AL MVP disappeared, as Ohtani went from -146 odds (June 6th) to -670 odds (June 26th).

AL MVP Opening Odds
AL MVP Opening Odds

By early August, Ohtani was priced at -10000 to win the AL MVP and now the odds are off the board.

Baseball handicappers that bet on Ohtani prior to June are waiting on a nice payout. If you waited to bet on Ohtani until after June, the odds were so bad that there was no longer a reason to place a bet on him.

This is why we always recommend betting MLB MVP futures early to get the best value.

Shohei Ohtani’s Insane Statistics Secure AL MVP Award

Here’s a quick update on the numbers Ohtani has already posted (Stats up to September 3rd 2023):

  • Batting Average: .304 (9th)
  • OBP (On-Base %): .412 (2nd)
  • SLG (Slugging %): .654 (1st)
  • OPS (On-Base + Slugging): 1.066 (1st)
  • Total Bases: 325 (1st)
  • Hits: 151 (10th)
  • Triples: 8 (Tied 1st)
  • Home Runs: 44 (Tied 1st)
  • RBIs: 95 (6th)
  • Runs: 102 (5th)
  • Intentional Walks: 21 (1st)
  • Wins Above Replacement (All): 9.9 (1st)
  • WAR (Position Players): 6.0 (Tied 4th)

Ohtani has also gone 10-5 (.667 W-L %) when pitching with a 3.14 ERA. He has allowed 46 earned runs and 18 home runs in 132.0 innings pitched, while striking out 167 hitters (11.4 SO/9). He has a 4.00 FIP, 1.061 WHIP and 144 ERA+. He is tied for fifth place in WAR for pitchers (4.0).

MLB MVP Futures - Shohei Ohtani will bring home more hardware
MLB MVP Futures – Shohei Ohtani will bring home more hardware

Ohtani is the single most valuable player in baseball and crushed MLB MVP futures in 2023.

2023 MLB MVP Futures – National League

There’s still a competitive race for 2023 MLB MVP futures in the National League.

When the NL MVP odds opened during the offseason, there were six players with odds of +1000 or lower. Those players were Juan Soto (+550), Mookie Betts (+850), Paul Goldschmidt (+950), Ronald Acuna Jr. (+1000), Nolan Arenado (+1000) and Manny Machado (+1000).

NL MVP Opening Odds
NL MVP Opening Odds

Two of those players are battling it out, with Acuna Jr. favored (-195 odds) and Betts (+155 odds) closing the gap. We’ve seen some incredible line movement since early August in the MLB MVP futures market in the NL. On August 7th, Acuna Jr. was priced at -1500 and Betts was priced at +3950.

Betts had an incredible August, batting .455 (1st), with a .516 OBP (1st), .830 SLG (1st) and .561 wOBA (1st). He also had 11 home runs (1st), 30 RBIs (Tied 2nd) and 35 runs (1st) in August. He posted a 3.0 WAR in August (1st). If he remains hot in September, Betts could end up winning the NL MVP award.

Acuna Jr. and Betts Battle it Out for NL MVP Award

Here’s a comparison for the full season stats for Acuna Jr. and Betts (Stats up to September 3rd 2023):

  • Batting Average: Acuna Jr. (.335) vs. Betts (.316)
  • OBP (On-Base %): Acuna Jr. (.416) vs. Betts (.410)
  • SLG (Slugging %): Acuna Jr. (.578) vs. Betts (.615)
  • OPS (On-Base + Slugging): Acuna Jr. (.994) vs. Betts (1.025)
  • Total Bases: Acuna Jr. (318) vs. Betts (313)
  • Hits: Acuna Jr. (184) vs. Betts (161)
  • Doubles: Acuna Jr. (32) vs. Betts (36)
  • Triples: Acuna Jr. (3) vs. Betts (1)
  • Home Runs: Acuna Jr. (32) vs. Betts (38)
  • RBIs: Acuna Jr. (85) vs. Betts (99)
  • Runs: Acuna Jr. (123) vs. Betts (117)
  • Wins Above Replacement (All): Acuna Jr. (6.8) vs. Betts (7.9)
  • WAR (Position Players): Acuna Jr. (6.8) vs. Betts (7.9)

The numbers paint a picture of a closer race than the odds indicate. Betts leads MLB in WAR for position players; he has hit more home runs and RBIs than Acuna Jr. as well. If Betts continues his hot streak and surpasses Acuna Jr. in batting average and OBP, I’d vote for him to win the 2023 NL MVP award.

There are five other players still priced up in the MLB MVP futures market in the NL. Those players are Freddie Freeman (+3500), Matt Olson (+15000), Bryce Harper (+20000), Cody Bellinger (+20000) and Luis Arraez (+20000). Can any of these longshots pull off a miraculous upset down the stretch?

Time is running out and it’s unlikely any longshots will catch Acuna Jr. or Betts.

Season Will Run Out Before Outcome Change

Freeman has had a great season. He has a .335 batting average, .411 OBP, .576 SLG, .987 OPS and 6.0 WAR (4th out of position players). He has hit 51 doubles, 25 home runs and 89 RBIs. Freeman needs to not only have an incredible September, but Acuna Jr. and Betts would both need to struggle immensely for Freeman to upset the 2023 MLB MVP futures odds in the National League.

Harper is coming off a solid August where he had a .361 batting average, 10 home runs and 24 RBIs. The problem is he hasn’t been consistent during the regular season and it’s too late for him to make a run.

One of the top MLB storylines this season has been Cody Bellinger’s comeback season. Unfortunately, he has missed a lot of time and won’t contend for the NL MVP, which he won back in 2019. 

In the 2020 postseason, Bellinger injured his shoulder after hitting a home run in Game 7 of the NLCS. He had to have offseason shoulder surgery and has dealt with other injuries since. Bellinger batted .165 in 2021 (95 games) and .210 in 2022 (144 games). He has missed time this season due to injury, but he has batted .320 (106 games) this season, with 23 doubles, 23 home runs, 84 RBIs and 79 runs.

Bellinger is a free agent this offseason and is looking for a huge contract, but he’s definitely a big risk.

Is There Any Value Left in 2023 MLB MVP Futures?

Based on the statistics, Betts is offering some value at +155 odds to win the NL MVP. With +155 odds, Betts has an implied improbability of 39.2% to win the NL MVP and I estimate his chances are better. 

He has been playing better than Acuna Jr. down the stretch and could end up ranking better in most of the hitting statistics before the regular season concludes on October 1st 2023.

Best Bet: Mookie Betts to Win NL MVP (+155)

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What are MLB MVP futures?

MLB MVP futures allow baseball bettors to wager on which player will win the American League MVP and National League MVP. Odds are released during the offseason and updated as the season progresses. The awards are awarded to the best player in the AL and NL during the MLB regular season.

Which team has had the most MLB MVP futures winners?

The Yankees have had the most MLB MVP futures winners in the AL (21) and the Cardinals have had the most winners in the NL (18). The next closest team is the Giants (13).

Which position has won the most MLB MVP awards?

Outfielders have won the most AL MVP awards (33) and NL MVP awards (35)