Josh Beckett is a Criminal

Once it all has had a chance to settle in a bit I’ll check back in with a look at the trades that have gone down over the last few days in the world of baseball. Before we get to that, though, I feel the need to deliver a kick or three to a guy while he is down. If Josh Beckett were just some journeyman pitcher then he would be having a perfectly acceptable year. He’s Josh Freaking Beckett, though, so this mess he is stringing together is total mess. There’s no excuse for being as average as he has been when you are as talented as he is and you have a good team behind you. He’s only partly to blame, though. As culpable are all of the naive, unthinking bettors who keep throwing their money at him so he can make it disappear like Houdini. Let’s take a look at the carnage:

Beckett is just 9-8, and the team is an even 10-10 when their ace is on the mound. There have been 264 pitchers who have made at least one start so far this season. 231 have been kinder to bettors than Beckett. A bettor who had laid a bet on each of his games would be down about 4.6 units so far on the season. Ugly.

Beckett has not looked like himself, but bettors don’t seem to have caught on to that fact. He has been favored in every one of his 20 outings, and heavily so in many cases. Over his last nine starts the team has won just three times, yet he has had prices of -169 or worse five times. He has lost four of those games. His last start shows just how bad a starter can be for the financial health of bettors. He was up against the Angels, probably the hottest team in baseball, and quite possibly the best. He was at home, but even the advantage of Fenway doesn’t justify a price of -169 given his recent form. It’s especially ridiculous given that he was up against Joe Saunders, a guy with 13 wins coming into the game. Beckett got crushed, and the favorite-loving public lost some serious cash. The books have to love a price like that – no price is too high when the public is blind.

I think that there is something wrong with Beckett. He has looked rough in three of his last four starts, and two of those outings have been his worst of the year. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if he misses a start or more at some point soon with some nagging injury. Until that happens, though, I’ll just sit back and watch the public continue to commit financial suicide.

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