1. Hi Chris! Let us know about yourself. Where are you from?
How did you start your sports investing career.
My name is Chris. I’m 30 years old, I live outside Boston, MA and I work for one of the biggest technology companies in the world as a sales rep for national clients (including ESPN ha). I’m a Sox and Braves fan, Celtics, Bruins, and Patriots. I played Rugby in college, and playing guitar is my favorite hobby. I grew up passionate about sports. As I was going through college, I wanted to have a job associated to sports in one way or another. I took a stab at sports radio and even had my own sports talk radio show on the local radio station, but radio is a tough gig if you want to make it big…and it doesn’t pay well on your way up.
I did some time as a sports writer and wrote a bunch of columns on various teams and even created a blog…but that also doesn’t pay well. I was living on my own and neither industry was going to help me survive without a second job. So I eventually got into the technology industry and became a regular sports fan….until the idea of sports investing came to me.
How I got into this is a rather rocky road. I was driving home from work one day a little over 18 months ago. I was sitting in traffic listening to sports radio, when a big name sports gambling mogul (who we will leave unnamed) came on the radio to promote his handicapping company and gave a special sign up offer for any of the listeners, and even gave away a free pick over the radio. I went home and logged into Bovada. I should probably preface this by saying I had quite a run as a poker player in my late teens-early twenties during the poker boom. In fact, I paid my way through my last year of college solely on poker. But the lifestyle was miserable. That’s a whole other story. In short, I gamble but I gamble smart.
So I signed into Bovada where I played poker online, and make the sports play that was given. It won. While I was watching that game, I spent some time on youtube researching sports gambling related tips and advice. It peaked my interest. I ended up calling into that company and spoke with a rep, and he hooked me into a season long offer for the NFL. The dilemma was that I was getting married in a few months and my bankroll would not be very big. I knew my wife would not approve and how was I going to justify taking a sizeable 5-10K bankroll out of my funds for this? Not to mention the $1K they wanted for the service. So I started a bankroll at $2K. For any of you who have worked with a handicapping service or company, you know by now they are not as good as advertised…ever…and this was no different.
The two problems I faced here, was that the bet sizes I was told to make were 5-10% of my bankroll. Which wouldn’t be a problem if you had Valdemar making your plays…..but these cappers were barely going over 53% against the spread, and were very streaky…which was the second problem. The NFL season was rough that year for gamblers and my bank wasn’t growing. So me being an impatient guy, decided to study the betting world more on my own and make my own plays. Week after week, I scoured the internet for the best sports betting resources I could find. Some were valuable and some weren’t, but it didn’t matter because I was making pitfall decisions left and right. I got very frustrated because my picks weren’t doing much better than the subpar cappers pick and I blew through my bankroll. I did everything wrong. Everything you read about in the Bible here on the Z-Code site about what NOT to do, I did. I was a rookie, plain and simple.
I didn’t start to turn it around until Baseball season. It’s the one sport I know inside out. I coupled baseball knowledge, with my new found interest in Sports Analytics tools such as the ones found here on Z-Code. I threw away all the conventional knowledge and stuck to the numbers. I started to show profits throughout the season. However, I was only flat betting.
No ABC systems or any organized style other than unit size. So while I made money and did well with my picks, I left a good amount on the table with a lack of progression. I came across Z-Code while I was researching more tools and resources, always trying to shop around and find new methods. The analytical tools on this site were very impressive, and I began using them everyday. I didn’t have interest in joining the VIP club because I thought I was efficient on my own. Eventually, I gave it a try.
After going through the Sports investing bible, and really spending time getting to know people and understanding different methods of how the best individuals here make their money, I realized what a gem this site is. It is truely invaluable. I very quickly made big changes in my methods and started developing new habits. I haven’t had a losing month since I joined.
2. I know you have been doing great MLB, NCAAB and NHL systems. What
sports do you prefer to bet on and why?
MLB by far. It’s no secret it’s the best sport to bet on for most people for many reasons. The biggest season with the most games, which equals more opportunities to profit. Also, it has the most numbers. Baseball is all about numbers. With modern day technology, we have so many statistical formulas and ways to evaluate teams and players now in all sports, but Baseball has the most measurements. Hockey would be the second favorite to bet on. Like baseball, spreads are simple, and analyzing moneyline value is easier than analyzing spread value. Football and Basketball fall to the bottom as they have far more variables effecting gameplay considering the rate of scoring, which of course makes Spread betting more complex.
And while I’m not a soccer or tennis fan/expert, they are my other favorites as long as Jake and Josh are on this site.
3. What parameters do you put into prediction and which zcode tools do
you use mostly?
This is a loaded question. Every sport is different. I literally use every tool on this site plus tools not on this site in one way or another. But my main ones on this site are the Oscillators (all of them), LR tool, and Volatility tool. The picking process is a mix of the following:
Tools (How many ZCode tools support/defy this decision?),
Situational Records (How has this team faired when they are Home/Away, Fave/Dog, when the line is A, coming off of a B, against C, when the over/under streak is Y in the last X games….etc),
What is the parody value?(or PVI…applies to standard spread in Basketball and Football, and Totals),
How volatile is this team Home/Away? (Volatility tool)
Who are the sharps putting their money on? (LR tool),
Whats the line movement? (again LR tool), and most importantly for baseball…
What are the starting pitcher’s numbers versus the lineup they are facing?..It’s one of the biggest tells sharps use in baseball.
Pitcher A may be a stud and Pitcher B may be average. But if Pitcher B has great numbers against the other lineup and Pitcher A has been owned by his opposing lineup, then that edge Pitcher A would normally have is gone the other way. OppBA around .200 is good and above .280 is not. Opp OPS is also a great number. I literally ask ALL these questions before I make any decision. And if someone could develop a system that somehow automatically pulls all that data and puts it into an algorhythm, you would be my best friend.
4. I see that Baseball is and will always be your number 1 sport.
Please tell us more about your new MLB system that you just started?
My MLB system is new and evolving. The criteria for the picks themselves I pretty much stated above. But that’s only half the battle. The other half is the MM and knowing how much to wager. It’s really a simple ABC with some tweeks. I have specific criteria at each level. The MM piece of the system is relatively close to JFen’s, who I admire, but how we make our picks is different.
Like I said above, last year I left a lot of money on the table by not utilizing a smarter system of recooping losses and creating progression. I am excited to see how the results develop. I am also appreciative of the feedback some people here have given me on it. It’s helping to improve it.
5. Did you try to backtest your approach ?
5. I would love to. But there are two problems here. One, last year the process of picking games was very different. My resources and tools used were not the same as this year. They were overall inferior to what I use now. So the numbers would be skewed if back tested THIS system.
The second problem is time. I actually schedule most of my meetings for the afternoon just so I can dedicate time in the morning for this.
6. What are the most important parameters in your opinion on MLB?
I probably mentioned it above so I’m sorry for duplicating…Most important to me is the analysis of the Starting Pitcher. Specifically numbers against the opposing lineup. Specifically, OppBA, OppOPS, and WHIP, and current Hot/Cold status with recent numbers overall. All pitchers have teams or hitters that they either dominate or get dominated by, and history has shown us that very rarely does that pattern get deviated. Home/Away record in the last 10,20,40, and season. Home field rating is a major factor in all sports, but is more measureable in Baseball with the large amount of games causing a variance in how hot/cold they are in the short term versus long term. Lastly, Team ranks in hitting splits versus Righty/Lefty pitchers. These are all often underestimated but very important areas to focus.
7. You become famous in Zcode community with your PVI system used for
NHL and NBA. Tell us more about it. Do you plan similar approach for
Yes. So PVI stands for Parity Value Index. It’s based on the theory that in sports, numbers and trends run in cycles. Most specifically, areas where the standard bets are designed to be 50/50 odds (or -110/1.91 odds) which would be NBA and NFL Spreads, and Over/Unders. Think of it like this…If you flip a coin 100 times, you know Heads is going to land somewhere in 40-60 range. But if on the 20th flip the current numbers are Heads 15 and Tails 5 and Heads clearly went on a hot run, then you know that in the next few flips, tails has to catch up.
That’s parody. In sports, we see a similar pattern especially in O/Us and ATS. So the formula is just the average of the long term record and a short term record (3 games) to produce a value that dictates how strong of a chance the next game will go one way or the other. Of course there are other factors that need to be considered. If in Baseball, a team hits the over 4 times in a row, and on the 5th day both teams are going to put a call-up/rookie pitcher on the mound as a scratch starter, then I probably wouldn’t take that Under value knowing there is a much stronger chance it’s a offensive game. Every sport has similar factors like this to consider,. But we know at the end of a season, teams are going to hover between the 40 – 60% mark when looking at their ATS and OU records. Not quite 50/50, but as close as it gets. Baseball and Hockey ATS’s do not apply, as they are not designed for the same odds and have less Parody in those areas.
8. What are tips to those who are just starting out with sports investing?
For anyone starting out, please read the bible (the Z-code Bible..but if you want God on your side for luck purposes, then sure read the Bible too) . Do as much homework as you possibly can about the industry and the market.
Be patient. Follow all the experts on this site and take the information seriously. There are people out there who do exactly what we do, but get paid handsomely by website companies to give picks and the public falls for it by paying $29.99 (or more) for a single pick. Here, there are people who outperform those same ‘experts’ on other websites, and your getting all their picks for free. And lastly, Money Management is 99% of your success. It’s everything.
Be smart and good luck.
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