With the third best record in Major League Baseball and a lead maintained over the long dominating New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox, the Tampa Bay Rays odds to win the 2008 World Series have been cut rather thin - down to +300 at Sportsbook.com with a payout potential of $300 for every $100 bet.
"It's an amazing feat for a team that was expected to go nowhere this year and has been able to fend off two super powers in their own division the way that they have," said Gambling911.com's own Dan Shapiro.
And what would the potential payout be for anyone who jumped on the Rays early on in the season or the months prior to the start of baseball?
$6500 for every $100 bet.
So why are these usual bottom feeders so good this year?
While there are bound to be some religious zealots touting the idea that the Rays dropped the "Devil" from their name (they were previously known as the Devil Rays), the real reason probably has more to do with pitching.
Their young pitchers have lived up to their potential and then some. They added Troy Percival and Cliff Floyd, which has helped to provide veteran leadership to a team that in past years has little in the way of any focus. Manager Joe Maddon likewise has done an excellent job.
In addition to excellent pitching, the Rays have dramatically improved on the defensive front as well.
Last year they were outscored on average, 5.83 to 4.83 per game, and their 5.53 ERA was last in the A.L..
This year they're outscoring their opponents anywhere from 4.72 to 3.96 per game, and their ERA of 3.60 is third in the A.L.
Don Shapiro, Gambling911.com