Las Vegas Bettors Investigated for Exploiting In-Progress Baseball Games

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistJune 30, 2020

A mobile football game app is displayed at a Buffalo Wild Wings, Thursday, Sept. 5, 2019, in Las Vegas. MGM Resorts International and Buffalo Wild Wings are launching a mobile football game app for customers to pick favorite NFL teams, choose weekly fantasy performers and make proposition picks. Officials said the goal is to expand later at Buffalo Wild Wings in states where sports betting is legal through a mobile app called BetMGM. (AP Photo/John Locher)
John Locher/Associated Press

Nevada Gaming is investigating a series of bettors who capitalized on an error from BetMGM Sunday that allowed them to place wagers on baseball games in Korea and China that had already started, according to Doug Kezirian of ESPN.

Per that report, "the errors could cost the operator nearly a quarter-million dollars because of approximately 50 questionable wagers, including a 10-leg parlay netting $137,000." It's possible that Nevada Gaming could deem the winning tickets invalid and rule that BetMGM doesn't have to pay them out.  

"A trading error was identified this weekend and addressed. We're working with Nevada Gaming authorities on this matter," ROAR Digital, which manages BetMGM, said in a statement. 

Those bets were placed between 1:30 and 3 a.m. PT on games that had started between 1 and 2 a.m. PT but had the wrong start times entered in the BetMGM software, thus allowing it to accept bets on those games after they had already begun. 

One game the bettors took advantage of was the NC Dinos (-110) against the Doosan Bears, with an under of nine runs. Per that report, "The Dinos broke a scoreless tie in the fifth inning with a three-run homer at 2:28 a.m. and ultimately won 5-0. A wager on those two positions at any point in the late innings would have a strong likelihood of cashing."

Two Nevada sportsbook executives told Kezirian that a traditional protocol in this type of situation when it occurs is to either refund the tickets and allow the bettors in question to continue patronizing the site, or to pay them the money but permanently ban them. 

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However, such situations generally occur with much smaller sums of money and are not publicized. Given some of the large winning tickets in this instance, however, Nevada Gaming will get involved.  

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