(Reuters) - A Houston fan is sticking by the Astros, wagering a reported $8.5 million that the American League team, trailing 2-0 to the Washington Nationals, will stage a comeback in the World Series.
Jim McIngvale, who calls himself “Mattress Mack”, originally bet $3.5 million with a Mississippi casino that the Astros would claim the best-of-seven series, the Houston Chronicle reported.
He added another million after the Nationals surprised the Astros in the series opener in Houston on Tuesday.
The Houston furniture store owner also has bets in Nevada and New Jersey which the Chronicle said could bring in more than $15 million if the Astros win the World Series.
But the Astros, who play the Nationals in Game Three in Washington on Friday, have their work cut out, still needing four victories to become world champions.
McIngvale placed the bets as a hedge against the possibility that he will have to refund $15 million or more in mattress purchases made by customers as part of his furniture store’s “Win it All” promotion, the Chronicle reported.
Customers who make qualified purchases of $3,000 or more will receive refunds if the Astros win the World Series.
Reporting by Gene Cherry in Salvo, North Carolina; editing by Ken Ferris