Sunday, September 12, 2010

Winning bets worth 65% more than losing ones, winning days netting 30% more than losers, and 30 profitable days vs. 20 losers - all blind luck!

(Please scroll down for target betting picks for Wednesday, September 15)

That's what the "experts" say, at least...

Saturday was another solid winning day for target betting, providing me with an opportunity to review how these impossible results are being achieved.

Firstly, picks are being posted here every day ahead of game times, most recently with target betting dollar values included.

Next, the applicable target betting rules are always summarized at the top of each "pick list" - and any change would have an immediate effect on the overall result shown, destroying my credibility in the bargain.

Third, selections are entirely By the Numbers, eliminating any possibility for me to apply subjective judgment or to move options up or down the list to line up with optimum bet values. And selections must "qualify" according to odds ranges that are set ahead of time and are inviolable.

Lastly, results for individual series are being regularly posted here, demonstrating that target betting rules are effective and profitable not just overall, but series by series. Right now, just two series out of 15 being tracked day by day are in the red.

Is it possible that target betting is headed for a dramatic crash-and-burn scenario?

Possible...but very unlikely.

Applying the same by-the-numbers selection and betting rules to the entire 2009 baseball season woulda resulted in an average profit of $195 per day in 195 days (an odd coincidence, but I'm bound to report whatever the databases throw at me!).

In the next few days, I will post a more detailed summary of Baseball 2009, knowing that notional profits achieved retroactively are much less impressive than wins achieved day after day in real time.

I'm going for shorter odds these days, based upon my analysis of more than 8,000 games from the baseball, pro football, hockey and pro basketball databases.

Shorter odds (but never shorter than even money) result in more wins over time, making results for the first 50 days of the current real-time trial (30 wins, 20 losses) predictable but very welcome.

Here are Saturday's results in full, followed by today's target betting selections (a heavier day than usual, and a good thing too!).

Please note that a critical selection rule outside of odds analysis is that whichever sport is the lead on a given day is always listed first - meaning that baseball will head the list until early November, when the NFL schedule will take precedence.

Monday, September 13 at 1:00pm


It would be crass idiocy to pretend that days like Sunday are the norm for target betting - but when a 70% win rate happens and all the bets line up for a big, fat payday...hell, it's worth crowing about.

A pattern might be said to be emerging in the first 51 days of the current real-time trial, given that we have achieved substantially more winning days than losing ones (31 winners averaging +$1,154 and 20 losers averaging -$851).

These days, I am less concerned with proving the efficacy of the target betting principles (been there, done that!) than with improving the win rate by honing my bet selection method.

The range for money-line bets is +110 to +140, and for run-line bets, it's much tighter at +100 to +115.

That's not my idea: The ranges currently being applied are dictated by "the numbers" established in the 2009 baseball season, and 2010 to date.

As I have said before, bookies are not infallible. But they are creatures of habit, and from our point of view, that's a very good thing.

I admit that whenever I'm in the middle of one of these real-time trials, with picks posted ahead of game time and complete transparency applied, I worry that today or tomorrow will bring total collapse.

I have been proved wrong so many times that now that I just tell myself that the moment I assume target betting and my bet selection method are bullet-proof, I'll go down with one to the heart or the head!

Here's the updated chart for results since July 24, followed by selections for today, Monday, September 13.

Tuesday, September 14 at 10:15am

Like I said, life's a roller coaster...

...and the analogy is especially apt in gambling!

It's hard to imagine a roller coaster that did nothing but climb skyward: After a while, gravity would have to intervene, and a backward slide to rock bottom would wipe out prior gains.

Monday brought a disappointing performance by underdogs, resulting in a loss of $775 for target betting.

But target betting, like a roller coaster, needs regular downward plunges to gather the momentum required to climb to a new high when an upward trend comes along.

Hey, just look at the latest chart below!

Today is potentially even scarier than Monday in my view, since most of the selections are run-line bets, and I am still not entirely comfortable betting on favorites.

RL bets don't win as often as ML bets do, at least in the first 7+ weeks of the latest real-time trial for target betting:

As you can see, run-line picks have scored a WR of 39.5% so far, compared with 47% for money-line selections.

Overall, my stricter selection process is averaging a 45% WR, vs. 43% for underdogs so far this baseball season. Two percent doesn't sound like a big deal, but believe me, those "piddling" points really matter!

Monday, my picks delivered 4-4 or a 50% WR.

It didn't help, because the big bets tanked.

C'est la vie...

More updates, including picks for today, Tuesday, September 14:

Wednesday, September 15 at 11:10am

The roller-coaster slipped a few more notches yesterday, giving target betting its second setback in succession.

The charts posted here in the past few days confirm that the current pattern is far from unusual.

There's some big money at stake today (most of it depending on a win for the San Diego Padres in an early game!) and I confess I always feel a little nervous in these situations.

The upside is that wins in the last seven-plus weeks of the current trial mean that today's big bucks don't eat into the opening bankroll.

You gotta speculate to accumulate, remember!

Today's updates...

Thursday, September 16 at 11:45am

One word covers yesterday's final outcome: Ouch!

As always say in this situation, I wish I could win every day, but years of experience and research tell me that's just not possible.

Here are today's updates:

Wednesday's big losers for target betting, the San Diego Padres, highlight the occasional hazards of betting strictly by the numbers.

The rule I apply in the selection process requires me to opt for the shorter odds when the numbers for a run-line or money-line wager are close.

With the Padres, the odds for the RL bet were +130 and the ML bet was at +125, making ML the required "choice" (in quotes because since the rules dictate the bet, it was actually no choice at all).

I have no regrets about the bet because I know that flouting the by-the-numbers rules is a fatal error more often than not.

But I would be a liar if I didn't concede that a situation like this is very frustrating, especially after a boffo succession of wins!

The topic of rule-fudging leads naturally to an update on InvestaPick!

What's going on here...?

IP's slow and steady wins the race performance since I first started monitoring the website's three "funds" always achieves added allure when target betting is demanding huge wagers that go south.

Smaller bets and reduced risk invariably equals smaller wins and less dramatic long-term returns, but after a day like yesterday, I am tempted to think that's an acceptable trade-off.

On the other hand, if IP is suddenly breaking its own rules to keep its funds afloat, the rose's bloom becomes no bloom at all.

Why would a bet that the IP rules (as I understand them - and remember I have no connection or contact with InvestaPick) say should be $260 show up as a WIN worth $520-plus?

How come on other occasions (usually during a losing streak!) the next bet value stands still instead of doubling?

IP's method is (or used to be) a simple Martingale made effective by a selection process that mostly plays it safe, rarely straying from odds shorter than -110.

The policy works, it seems, with the single drawback that I have mentioned many times before: a failure to offset the shortfall from paybacks that return 90 cents on the dollar or less.

Yesterday was the mid-month marker, so I updated my file on how target betting woulda performed against the bets selected by IP in each of its three funds since January 1, 2009.

Given the, let's be gentle here, flexibility of IP's rules of late, I should emphasize that the target betting rules applied throughout are rigid and unchanging.

Here's the latest comparison:

Both InvestaPick and a target betting approach to the same selections show results that call into question the skeptics' axiom that a betting method that prevails against anecdotal outcomes will always fail against games as yet unplayed.

I'm hoping to be back tomorrow with better numbers in the ongoing real-time trial.

And I promise I won't achieve them by changing the target betting rules retroactively...

An important reminder: The only person likely to make money out of this blog is you, Dear Reader. There's nothing to buy, ever, and your soul is safe (from me, at least). Test my ideas and use them or don't. It's up to you. One more piece of friendly advice: If you are inclined to use target betting with real money against online "casinos" such as Bodog, spend a few minutes and save a lot of money by reading this._