There are plenty of different ways to make money from sports betting. Some are better than others, depending on the kind of predictions that you want to make about an event, team, player or situation. The good news is that all betting markets have something good to offer, as you'll discover in due course. The big strength of moneylines is that that they are some of the simplest betting markets around.

That simplicity is what makes moneylines particularly good for those who are new to betting. All the require you to do is predict the winning team or player in a particular event.

In this article we will give you a brief but powerful overview of moneylines so that you can start moneyline betting with a minimum of fuss. We will divide our discussion into four main areas, as follows:

  • What are Moneylines?
  • How to Read moneylines
  • Moneylines and Sportsbooks
  • Bankroll check and biases 

What Are Moneylines?

I believe that team A will beat team B.

Every bettor in history

We have all said something like this at some point in time. Whether it was at a sports bar or the comfort of our own homes, we have tried to guess the outcome of a sporting event. 

That is exactly what moneylines are all about. The moneyline allows you to make a straight-up bet that focuses only on who wins the game or event. There is nothing else tied to the bet unless you find a variation of the moneyline bet.

Sounds easy, right?

Actually, it is one of the simplest and easiest forms of betting on anything since there is almost always a winner and a loser. Some sporting events can also end in ties, but most don't. 

Whether the event involves flipping a coin, playing a quick game of Rock-Paper-Scissors or scoring more buckets than the opposing team, the moneylines will let you bet on who you think will win.

How To Read Moneylines

The odds on a moneyline bet are pretty straightforward. Let us use baseball for an example:

Moneyline Example

The Cardinals are considered the favorite to win here due to the minus sign that is in front of their quoted odds. At the same time, the Astros have a plus sign in front of their odds, so they are considered the underdog. 

When betting on odds with a minus figure, you need to bet that figure to make a profit of $100. To bet on the Cardinals, you would therefore need to put down $165 to make a profit of $100 if they win.

When betting on odds with a positive figure, you need to be $100 to make a profit of that figure in dollars. If betting on the Astros, you would only need to bet $100 to make a profit of $140 if they win.

If your prediction is correct, your bet will win. Should your prediction be incorrect, your bet will lose. This applies in all sports, so if you understand the moneyline example given here, you will be able to read betting odds and the moneylines available on any other events. 

Moneylines and Sportsbooks 

Moneyline odds can vary from sportsbook to sportsbook. It therefore makes sense to sign up with a number of sportsbooks so that you can shop around and find the best odds available.

For example, we just saw the Cardinals quoted at -165. By looking at a couple of other sportsbooks we might find quotes of -170 and -155. In this case, if you wanted to bet on the Cardinals you would be wise to go with the sportsbook quoting -155. Doing that would only require you to bet $155 to make a profit of $100 if they win.

Getting the best odds isn't the only good reason to sign up with multiple sportsbooks. It could be that some sportsbooks offer more moneylines on your favorite sports than others. In that case, having accounts with several betting sites will give you a broader range of moneylines to choose from. It would also allow you to benefit from several different sign-up bonuses!

Bankroll Check and Biases 

Since the moneyline bet is a simple yes or no type bet, it can be tempting to bet more frequently than you probably should. It is important to know what you are getting into before you start throwing money at each event that you enjoy watching. Learning to be selective is a key to successful betting on moneylines. 

It can also be easy to form a bias around a team that you either like or dislike. Since you are betting on the winner, you might place bets on teams that you would like to win, rather than on those who are likely to win based on form.

A good rule of thumb is only to bet when you actually believe that your selected team or player has the best chance of winning. If that means not placing a bet when your favourite team is playing, so be it. 

Moneyline FAQ

How can I test my moneyline strategy?
One good way to test your moneyline strategy is to write down your prediction before an event to see who you think will win. This is as straightforward as it gets, and you do not have to waste any money in case you lose. 
What is the best strategy for moneyline betting?
You will need to find one that works for you and your betting needs. But as mentioned above, you should be able to take into account the guideline to moneyline bets and apply them to your style of betting. 
Is there anything else to know?
When practicing your moneyline strategy, you need to make sure you have all the information necessary to get the pick right. You need to look up teams' strengths, weaknesses, home versus away, injuries, and just about anything else under the sun that could affect the outcome of an event. 
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