First pitch: 8:08 p.m. ET
Venue: Globe Life Field (Texas)
Probable pitchers: Clayton Kershaw (6-2, 2.16 ERA) vs. Bryse Wilson (1-0, 4.02 ERA)
Los Angeles Dodgers vs. Atlanta Braves Predictions
Same reasoning as yesterday’s over that won extraordinarily in the top of the first: Los Angeles has arrived offensively.
And they draw another hittable starter tonight, too, in Bryse Wilson, who will also be making his first-ever playoff start and first appearance since Sept. 27 — that was 18 days ago.
Now Wilson is being tasked with trying to hold down one of the majors’ best lineups and prevent them from evening up the National League Championship Series at two games apiece?
That won’t end well for most youngsters, especially this 22-year-old in particular who doesn’t have a great track record to begin with. Wilson owns an undesirable 5.91 ERA and 1.80 WHIP in 15 career games (seven starts) stretched across the last three seasons. Opponents are also hitting .306 off the right-hander in his 42.2 big-league innings, so imagine what the Dodgers will be capable of after their outburst as of late.
Of course, it’s always possible for a shutdown of the other offense considering who Los Angeles has going in this one. That would be former NL MVP and three-time Cy Young Clayton Kershaw, and despite the (incorrect) narrative about his shortcomings in October, Kershaw has enjoyed a very nice postseason thus far.
The future Hall-of-Famer delivered a pair of quality starts in his two playoff assignments, winning both games in the process. Kershaw looked dominant in doing so, crafting a tremendous 14-1 K/BB ratio in 14 combined frames.
But the tipping point for me is that this start comes after Kershaw had to miss his original assignment in Game 2 due to back spasms, meaning he’s getting his first outing in a week. If anything could dispel Kershaw’s current rhythm, it would be an interruption of his routine, and given his counterpart, just a few runs scratched out from the Dodger southpaw would suffice.
That and he’s facing a really good lineup anyway, one that has raked at a .300/.364/.533 clip against left-handed pitching this postseason. With Kershaw potentially being limited by his back, not only does that make him more vulnerable to this fearsome Braves batting order, it’s also possible he doesn’t go a sizable distance. Los Angeles getting to Wilson will be the main factor regardless.
MLB Leans - October 15
2020 MLB Over/Under Betting Record*
Regular season: “19-42-4,” -28.91 units
Postseason: 9-4, +2.90 units
Last Result: Dodgers-Braves Over 9.5 (WIN)
*Each bet graded as if it were to win one unit (postseason 0.5 unit except first one)