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Odds presented by: DraftKings
It’s arguably the most pivotal game in a five-game series (other than when a team has a chance to clinch) and now it happens between rivals at one of America’s five most iconic stadiums.
The stage will be set for the future first-rounder Hall-of-Famer Max Scherzer, who pitched in the Wild Card game, to pick up a win. The Dodgers have not lost a single one of Scherzer’s 12 starts so it doesn’t make sense to think they will now.
We like the Los Angeles money line and to cover the spread.
Through two games in this NLDS, the Giants have been led by their veterans and frankly that’s been it.
Buster Posey, the 34-year-old catcher, is hitting .500 (4-of-8) his series with a home run and two RBIs. Brandon Crawford, the 34-year-old shortstop is hitting .375 (3-of-8) with a home run and two RBIs, while 29-year-old Kris Bryant is hitting .429 (3-of-7) wth a home run and two runs driven in as well.
Outside of that, only Austin Slater and Tommy La Stella have reached base for San Francisco. That has to somehow change if they win this game but if you’re Los Angeles, you have to make someone else beat you.
Meanwhile the main storyline for Los Angeles appears to be that Cody Bellinger is showing signs of coming back. The former MVP runner-up who has lost his swagger this season but hit a huge two-run double in Game 2, a sign of his former self.
Chris Taylor leads the way, hitting .500 with four runs scored while Mookie Betts is also having a great series, hitting .417 (5-of-12) through two games. After a shutout in Game 1, the Dodgers looked much more Dodger-like Saturday.
Alex Wood is a very good pitcher who had a great season. The 30-year-old enjoyed likely the best season of his career, going 10-4 overall, with a 3.83 ERA, 1.18 WHIP, and 152 strikeouts in 138.2 innings. It only adds to the intrigue that he’s going up against a team for which he spent five years.
Wood has given up two earned runs or fewer in six straight games but unfortunately, things haven’t gone that well against L.A when the two sides have met this year. In three meetings this season, the Dodgers are 0-2 and he has given up nine runs in 17 innings.
However, he has been successful in his career in the month of October. The lefty has a 3.55 ERA in the postseason across 20 appearances — 18 of which came with the Dodgers.
No matter how good Wood has been — or can be — he will never be Scherzer. As mentioned above, Scherzer is unblemished during his time in Dodger Blue. His numbers on the season were truly unbelievable: 15-4 overall with a 2.46 ERA, 0.86 WHIP and 236 strikeouts in 179.1 innings.
That said, he’s struggled uncharacteristically in recent weeks. Over his past three starts, Scherzer has given up 11 earned runs in 14.1 innings, never making it out of the fifth in any start.
The X-factor in this one is Albert Pujols for Los Angeles. Not only is the veteran getting the start at first base — notable in its own right — but he’s one of the Dodgers’ best hitters against lefties.
This year he hit .303 (33-of-109) with 10 home runs, 28 RBIs, and a .953 OPS against southpaws, and manager Dave Roberts is banking on there being more where that came from.
Meanwhile, someone has to wake up for the Giants with Brandon Belt out. We are looking at Wilmer Flores to do just that, even though he’s 0-for-7 with a walk through two games. He hit .382 in September, so maybe that hot bat is still in there somewhere.
|Teams||San Francisco Giants at Los Angeles Dodgers|
|Location||Dodger Stadium, Los Angeles, CA|
|Time||Monday, Oct. 11, 9:37 p.m. EST|
|How to watch||TBS|
Tony writes about baseball for WSN.com after recently graduating with his Masters from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University. Prior to that, Tony was a local sports reporter for MLive Media Group, based out of Jackson, Michigan where he covered everything from high school to professional sports. He graduated from Michigan State in 2015 with a degree in journalism. During his time there he covered the Michigan State football and men’s basketball teams from 2013-15 and hosted a sports radio show on WDBM 89FM.More info on Tony Garcia
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