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Sports, Politics Do Mix: Congressional Baseball Game Betting Gets Our Vote

Tuesdays are always slow for me. I don’t know what it is, but I tend to struggle to think of compelling baseball content on most Tuesday mornings. Today was no different until I checked the MLB futures at BetUS Sportsbook and was rewarded with a golden topic I can’t wait to dig into: the Congressional Baseball Game.

Even as I write this intro, I have no idea what the Congressional Baseball Game is and never heard of it. But there are MLB odds, and dammit, I’m going to dig into them and find at least a shred of betting value on whatever is going on here.

Sports, Politics Do Mix: Congressional Baseball Game Betting Gets Our Vote
Edwin Perlmutter, Democrats Third base coach - Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images

 

What is the Congressional Baseball Game?

After a quick trip into the rabbit hole of this annual event, here is what I’ve learned about the Congressional baseball game.

Since 1909, the Congressional Baseball Game has been the ultimate bipartisan showdown — apart from the one happening daily in the actual government. The difference here is that U.S. Congress members swap their suits for jerseys and show off their batting skills — or lack thereof. It’s a beloved event that brings thousands together to cheer, laugh and occasionally wonder if these politicians are better at hitting bombs than using them.

Over the past century, this friendly competition has evolved into something even more impactful: the Congressional Sports for Charity Foundation. Launched in 2016, this foundation supports fantastic charities helping vulnerable children and families in the Washington, D.C. area.

The list of beneficiaries reads like an all-star lineup: the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Washington, the Washington Literacy Center and the Washington Nationals Philanthropies. Let’s not forget the United States Capitol Police Memorial Fund, established in heartfelt thanks to the brave officers who heroically responded to the 2017 shooting that occurred during practice for this event.

 

How to Bet on the Congressional Baseball Game

So, how can we entertain ourselves while watching a charity baseball game between a bunch of unqualified, stuffy politicians? We bet on it! The real question is, how do I make MLB picks on a game where the participants are most likely unqualified to hold a baseball bat, let alone swing one?

Before continuing, I want to add that despite this being a charity game, there have been many instances of what I like to refer to as “Gym Class Heroism” in previous years. People have broken bones, we’ve seen pitches clocked at 80+ mph, and you bet a bunch of verbal mud has been slung back and forth.

Before we can bet on this game, we must know what bets are offered for Wednesday’s event.

 

History, Home Run Props Favor GOP

Obviously, we can bet on the winning team. Team Republican is -130 while Team Democrat is -110. Republicans had a tough stretch of losses in the 2010s, but since 2021, they have gone 3-0. At least they can feel good about winning at something.

The prop I like the most here is – surprise! – the one with the longest odds on the board. I’m talking about whether a home run is hit during the game. While this sounds far-fetched, I think at +2500 odds, there is real value in betting on a ball clearing the fences at Nationals Park.

Rep. Greg Steube (R-Fla.) shocked the dozens of people watching the 2021 Congressional Baseball Game by sending a ball into the stands off Rep. Pete Aguilar (D-Calif.) in the bottom of the third inning.

Steube became the first player to hit a home run during the event since it was moved to Nationals Park in 2008. Prior to that, there were two other dingers: one by Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas), of all people, back in 1979 and the other in 1997 by Rep. John Shimkus (R-Ill).

While rare, I can’t pass up the odds that somebody gets a hold of one on Wednesday in Washington. Steube is playing again, as is Sen. Eric Schmitt from Missouri. In his debut last season, Schmitt hit a triple in the third inning that just about secured the win for the Republicans. With a .667 batting average and 1.33 SLG in that game, a little more practice could go a long way.

As for Steube’s career, .786 SLG, 1.39 OPS, and 0.4 WAR in four games give us another potential home run hitter.

Oh, you didn’t think there were Sabermetric stats for this game? It’s like you guys don’t know how insane baseball fans are. If you are one of us, check out this full spreadsheet put together by fellow insane person Nathaniel Rakich.

 

 

Odds and information are accurate at the time of writing. Please check with official sources for the latest updates before placing any bets.

 

Questions Of The Day

What are the odds to win the Congressional Baseball Game?


The Republican team is favored at -130 to beat the Democrats at -110.

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