Just over two months into Major League Baseball’s regular season, some clear contenders are emerging in the 2023 MLB home run odds. This includes the New York Yankees’ Aaron Judge and New York Mets’ Pete Alonso. In mid-June, here are the home run leaders, as well as their odds to finish as the home run king in 2023, according to FanDuel.
|Home Runs (as of June 12)
|Matt Olson (ATL)
|Aaron Judge (NYY)
|Shohei Ohtani (LAA)
|Kyle Schwarber (PHI)
|Pete Alonso (NYM)
|Mike Trout (LAA)
The list above carries a bunch of different conclusions. Aaron Judge has hit 19 home runs in just 49 games, while Matt Olson stands as the favorite and does not even lead the majors. Plus, players like Jorge Soler, Max Muncy, and Mookie Betts have hit more home runs than Mike Trout, but Trout has better odds at holding the crown.
The reason for the ambiguity can be tied to what the player has done in the past. For instance, Judge was the home run king last season. Additionally, Alonso has hit over 50 home runs in his career before. Meanwhile, Trout has hit 40 or more home runs in his 13-year career. These players have the accolades to show they can lead the league in home runs again.
On the other hand, Olson hit nine home runs in May, and while the first baseman has only posted one in June, there is still a lot of baseball left to be played. He’s also healthy, whereas New York’s sluggers are on the injured list. Despite that, here are the reasons why betting on the NY stars is a good idea.
Why Judge Will Be MLB Home Run King in 2023
In 49 games, Judge is in the top 20 in batting average and tied for third in home runs. The Yankees captain is near the top in multiple hitting categories. But, he is in the middle of serving his second stint on the injured list after catching a fly ball against the Dodgers.
Judge’s power is undeniable. In a full, healthy 2022 season, the outfielder hit 62 home runs en route to breaking the record for most home runs in a single season in the American League.
This season, Judge has continued to show that 2022 was not a fluke. Judge returned to the Yankees from his first IL stint on May 9. From that point until the end of May, Judge hit 12 home runs. While Judge’s current toe injury has led to caution and confusion on his timetable, the 2022 American League MVP has shown he can put up home runs in bunches. His injury should not cause concern for his power. These odds might be the best available for Judge in this particular prop bet.
Why Pete Alonso Will Be MLB Home Run King in 2023
Alonso is in a similar boat as Judge. The New York Mets first baseman had 10 of his 22 home runs in May and hit the injured list in early June.
However, Alonso seems like he is on the road back to the field soon. The slugger was seen taking grounders before Tuesday night’s matchup against the Yankees.
The two-time All-Star has led the league once in home runs and has hit at least 40 long balls in two more seasons. This year, it seemed like nothing was slowing down Alonso. If a brief IL stint was not going to stop Judge from raking in the majors, there is no reason to believe that it will stop Alonso either.
The first baseman sits at the top of the home run leaderboard. If he returns in the next couple of weeks and doesn’t show a lack of power due to the bruised wrist bone, he could pick up where he left off.
Don’t Discount Ohtani in Home Run Race
Judge and Alonso are not the only two sluggers having strong 2023 seasons thus far. One name to keep an eye on, especially since he has the same odds as Judge to be the home run leader, is Shohei Ohtani.
June has been a big month for Ohtani. In 11 games where he has gone up to bat, Ohtani has five home runs. If Ohtani continues his hot June and then hits around seven or eight homers (which he did in April and May) in the remaining months, look out for him to take the crown.