Betting On The Washington Nationals In Virginia

The time has come. Soon betting on the Washington Nationals from Virginia will be legal and available to Virginia sports bettors. Thanks to new legislation proposed by Governor Ralph Northam, Virginians are now permitted to bet on professional sports. However, a total home run has not been quite hit yet.

Although it is legal to place wagers on teams such as the Washington Nationals, there are a few legal wrinkles that still need to be ironed out. As of January 2021, Virginians have the green light to bet on professional sports teams but with a few caveats. At first, most of the action from bettors will only be booked via online sportsbooks approved by the Virginia Lottery board. Further, the Virginia Lottery has not finalized license applications to permit online sportsbooks to launch.

Most Virginia residents will be eager to be on the World Series. This is because they did not get a chance to back in 2019 when the Washington Nationals took home the Commissioner’s Trophy.

Sportsbooks Options Available For Virginia Bettors

You might be wondering where you can finally place that much anticipated first wager. Virginia is requiring a minimum of 4 online only sportsbook apps and a maximum of 12 total sportsbooks.

It is likely that at least 4 of these licenses will be handed off to casinos already in the construction stage throughout the Commonwealth. The other 8 licenses however are still up for grabs. Virginians shouldn’t worry about gaining any interest though, as applications from various companies have already started pouring in. The top contenders consist of the most well-known favorites in the industry.

With Virginia retail casinos launching in 2022 as well, in the meantime, Virginia bettors look forward to betting at some of the top online sports betting sites in the country.

Here is the breakdown.

CompanyYear FoundedFeatures Of The Sportsbook
BetRivers2009Free tournaments
Initial bonus up to $250 (1x Rollover)
William Hill2012Odds boosts opportunity
Free $500 to new customers
BetMGM1993$600 risk free bet
User friendly UI
FanDuel2009Same game parlays
User friendly UI
Great Bonuses
DraftKings2011Deposit bonus up to $1000
All major sports plus more
Free contests

Where To Bet On The Washington Nationals In The Meantime

If you just can’t wait until the casinos are built or the sportsbooks are open for business, there is some good news. It’s totally legal to travel to a neighboring state to place a bet. This is common with NY and NJ residents. Most New Yorkers are on the sideline waiting for online sports betting to be permitted. If they don’t want to walk into a brick and mortar casino to place a bet, they can drive to NJ and place a mobile wager.

It’s a somewhat similar situation in Virginia. If Virginians are open to a little traveling they can visit some surrounding states to bet on the Washington Nationals. The best option as of now is West Virginia. It’s the closest to bettors in the western parts of Virginia. West Virginia launched legal online sports betting in 2020.

Although both the District of Columbia and Maryland have some type of sports betting available, there are limitations. There are certain geographical restrictions within D.C and this can cause a headache when trying to place a bet. Like Virginia, Maryland is in the beginning stages, limiting the sports betting options.

How To Bet On The World Series In Virginia

What’s great about sportsbooks opening in a new territory is the bonuses that come with it. Most of them have excellent MLB bets available. Because the 2021 MLB season hasn’t started yet, right now is the best time to choose a futures bet. What better way to start out your new sports gambling journey than picking a World Series winner. So how do the Washington Nationals compare to other MLB teams?

William Hill+3000

Considering the Washington Nationals are just two years removed from winning the World Series, 35-1 on your bet is an amazing value. Let’s take a look at the current favorites for the 2021 World Series on DraftKings.

LA Dodgers+450
NY Yankees+550
SD Padres+700

It’s not a surprise to see these three teams at the head of the pack. The LA Dodgers will obviously have the lowest odds due to them winning the World Series last year. The Padres have an amazing batting lineup consisting of two of the top players in the league – Fernando Tatis Jr and Manny Machado. The Yankees are always a favorite to win the World Series as they always have a stacked roster, year in and year out.

Sure, you could take the safe route and bet one of these teams to win the Series but where is the fun in that? Taking a shot on the 35-1 odds on the Washington Nationals is what sports betting is all about.

How the Initial Lines and Odds Are Determined

Now that you have an idea of where you can bet on MLB games, it’s important to understand the basic terms usually associated with placing a wager.

What Is A MLB Sports Bet?

A bet is the process of risking money on an outcome you think might happen. For example, if you think the Washington Nationals are going to beat the Astros in spring training, you could bet money on it and if you are correct, possibly see a return.

What Is A Win?

Virginia is for lovers’ winners. A win is what we aim for in the sports gambling community, and hopefully lots of them. So what constitutes a win? For the most part, it’s quite simple. If you choose the correct side on a wager, your bet will be graded as a winner.

What Are Sports Betting Odds?

Odds are the numeric value given to each bet. The odds are what make a bet either enticing or avoidable. There can only be plus odds, negative odds, and even odds. A favorite to win would have negative odds tied to them. An underdog will have plus odds. And if the bookmakers consider a match to be even, the odds will be even. There are three types of ways odds are displayed.


Most sportsbooks give you the option to change this setting to your preferred way. Although Virginia sports betting apps, like FanDuel Virginia, will mostly default to American odds for Virginia bettors.

What Affects Baseball Odds?

Between the time the initial odds are set and the actual commencement of a game, the odds will most likely fluctuate. This shift can be attributed to a couple of different things. If the majority of MLB bettors are all betting on one team, the odds will reduce and the other teams odds will increase. Another reason why odds change is due to breaking news. If a star player gets injured or doesn’t play, the odds could shift significantly.

The Vig In Baseball Betting

The Vig is a tax the sportsbooks tack on to each and every bet. It’s how the sportsbooks make money. This is the reason why every bet isn’t 1:1 or plus money. Typically the vig is around 10% on most bets and it will be displayed as -110. This means to win $100 you would need to bet $110. Regardless of the outcome, the sportsbooks get $10.

If the sportsbooks did not collect a vig, they would stand to make no profit. Most savvy bettors shop around multiple sportsbooks to find the lowest vig available.

The Basic Types Of Bets In The MLB

A futures bet on the World Series is a bet placed on the outcome of the World Series weeks or even months ahead of time. As the MLB season approaches, there will be more ways to bet on the Washington Nationals other than just a future World Series bet. There are three main types of bets you will encounter when betting on the Nationals.


This is the softball of sports betting. The moneyline bet is basically choosing a team to win and if they do, so do you. The downside to this type of bet is the odds associated with them. If the team you want to wager on is a heavy favorite to win, you will often see undesirable odds such as -300. However, when betting an underdog, you might stand to make a huge profit.

In some situations, the odds for the lesser team can sometimes reach +1200 or more. As the season wears on and teams are eliminated mathematically from winning the World Series, you can see odds set as +10,000 or even +20,000.


The spread is like the moneyline but differing slightly. If there is a huge discrepancy in the two teams talent, you might want to bet the spread rather than the moneyline. The spread can be thought of as a handicap for the teams.


As you can see, giving each team a handicap shifts the odds to even and allows the bettor fair value on both. If you wanted to bet the Yankees, they would need to win by 2 runs or more. On the other hand, if you wanted to back the Braves, they would need to win or not lose by more than 2 runs.

Run Line

Sometimes bettors just have no gauge on what team to bet on. The run line is the total number of runs in the game scored by both teams. If you are certain that both teams will be hitting dingers all day but not sure who will come out victorious, this is the best bet for you. You will typically see the run line displayed as an over or under.

Over 4.5-110
Under 4.5-110


If you want to get real fancy, you might take a swing at an exotic bet.


The most popular exotic wager around is the parlay bet. Many people choose to bet on parlays because with just a small investment, they could see major profit. A parlay is a combination of single bets within one bet. You will often see it structured like this.

3 Team ParlayOdds +3000
Red Sox +300

While there could be a massive payout if this parlay is successful, there is a major caveat. Every leg needs to be graded as a win or the entire parlays fails. This means that all three MLB teams would need to win for the parlay to pay out. This can get quite frustrating when 6 of 7 legs come though and that huge payday slips through your fingers with the last team.

A Better Understanding Of MLB Future Bets

Speaking of massive paydays, a bet that could provide one is an MLB futures bet. A futures bet is a wager that is placed a significant amount of time before the start of what you are betting on. The most popular one in MLB is a futures bet on the winner of the World Series.

As mentioned before, you would want to start looking for these types of bets to pop up before the start of the season. Although you will be able to bet the winner as the season plays on, the best value is before any outcomes start to unfold. It also can be the riskiest.

Prop Bets Available For The Nationals

If you want to switch up the types of bets you place, you should check out prop bets. Props are becoming more popular because they can offer bettors a non-conventional way to make money. Props can vary from the outcome of individual players stats to who will be the World Series MVP. If you had bet $100 on Stephen Strasburg to win MVP of the World Series back in 2019, you would have won $1400. Not too shabby.

Washington Nationals Sports Betting FAQs

Can Virginians legally bet on the Washington Nationals?

Yes, very soon. The state passed legislation to legalize sports betting. Betting on the Washington Nationals will be very popular due to Virginia not having its own professional sports team.

Where can I bet on the World Series in Virginia?

There will be many options available for Virginians to bet on the World Series in the near future. Online sportsbooks will launch in 2021. In 2022, Virginia bettors will be able to bet on the World Series at retail sportsbooks in the state. You can wager in neighboring states such as West Virginia in the meantime.

Is DraftKings legal in Virginia?

DraftKings will be one of the permitted sportsbooks when The Lottery Board finalizes licenses.

Is FanDuel legal in Virginia?

FanDuel will be another permitted sportsbook in Virginia, around January 2021.

About the Author

Amber Hoffman

Amber Hoffman is Managing Editor of A recovering attorney, she's spent almost a decade developing and managing websites and writing for a variety of industries. Amber became a Cubs fan after living a handful of blocks from Wrigley Field, much to the chagrin of her Mets-loving family and Red Sox-loving husband. Amber writes for a number of online sites including the food and lifestyle site Food And Drink Destinations.