Five worst MLB franchises to bet on over the past 20 years

The 10 worst MLB teams to bet on over the past 20 years (1:19)

Doug Kezirian and Preston Johnson take a look at some of the worst MLB teams to bet on in recent history. (1:19)

When and if there will be a baseball season is still a question. While proposals are sent back and forth, we went ahead and decided to break down which teams have given bettors the most trouble over the past 20 years combined.

Here are the five franchises with the most combined units lost over the past 20 years (based on 1-unit bets), based on research from ESPN Stats & Information.

No. 1 Detroit Tigers (-207.9 units)

Just look at the Tigers' two worst seasons for bettors and it's easy to see how they "earned" the top spot on this list. In 2003, the Tigers were down 45.01 betting units; last season, they finished down 41.16. Neither team won 50 games. Over the past two decades, Detroit is 1,511-1,726 with three 100-loss seasons and zero 100-win campaigns. It has been hard to win betting on the Tigers recently.

No. 2: Chicago Cubs (-168.59)

Despite breaking their 108-year World Series drought in 2016 and going 1,624-1,614-1 over the past 20 years, the "Lovable Losers" haven't been so lovable for bettors. The 2002 season was a big contributor to the Cubs' lackluster number, as they failed to meet expectations and finished down 33.90 units. Always a popular team for bettors, the Cubs' best season for those putting their money down on them came in 2015 when Chicago finished up 13.03 units.

No. 3: Arizona Diamondbacks (-136.74)

The Diamondbacks finished down 53.26 units in 2004 alone, the worst of any team in the past two decades. That disastrous season came only three years after their World Series win. One of the rare bright spots for Arizona backers came when the Diamondbacks put together a surprising worst-to-first campaign in 2011 and finished up 24.07 units. The D-backs have a 1,598-1,642 record since 2000.

No. 4: Colorado Rockies (-132.32)

The Rockies have endured 14 losing seasons in the past 20 years and are 200 games under .500 at 1,521-1,721 over that span. They haven't exactly been kind to bettors, either. A 96-loss season in 2014 didn't help, as Colorado had a staggering team ERA of 4.84 and finished down 28.71 betting units. Of course, there's always the memory of 2007, when "Rocktober" became a thing and the Rockies finished up 25.02 units.

No. 5: Baltimore Orioles (-128.96)

The 2018 season was especially bad for the Orioles, who lost 115 games, finished 61 games out of first place and wound up down a staggering 51.78 units, the second-worst number of any team in the past two decades. With a record of 1,453-1785-2 over the past 20 years, it probably doesn't come as much of a surprise. The O's still made the bottom five despite a surprise 2012 season in which they were up 36.49 units, the second-best season mark over the past 20 years.