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On the night slate of MLB Opening Day, the Arizona Diamondbacks host the San Diego Padres. Ben Rajavuori breaks down the game and shares his pick.

Arizona Diamondbacks vs San Diego Padres Prediction: Can the Diamondbacks Get the Win at Home?

Baseball is finally back, and despite a few scratches due to weather, we have had a full day of action. The night slate will see The Padres starting the season with a trip on the road to face the Diamondbacks at 9:40 p.m. EST. The pitching matchup will be Yu Darvish for the Padres and Madison Bumgarner for the Diamondbacks. The home team is catching a nice +120 line as of writing. Can the Diamondbacks start off the year on the right foot with a win?

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Arizona Diamondbacks vs San Diego Padres Prediction

The Padres took a massive blow in the preseason when Fernando Tatis Jr. suffered a wrist injury that will have him miss a good portion of the start of the season. Kim, who hit .202 with eight home runs and 34 RBIs in his rookie season, will take his spot at shortstop. It's definitely a downgrade, but it's not impossible for the Padres to overcome. The Padres have most of the same lineup from last year's 79-83 team but add Luke Voit from the Yankees as a designated hitter. Voit hit .239 with eleven home runs in just 68 games last year.

After finishing second in the Cy Young vote in 2020, Yu Darvish saw some regression in 2021. His ERA on the season jumped from 2.01 to 4.22 from 2020 to 2021. Darvish also went 2-7 on the road with a 5.54 ERA, compared to 6-4 with a 3.38 at home. More alarming for this matchup specifically, though, is his numbers against the Diamondbacks. It's a small sample size, but Darvish is 0-2 with a 6.65 overall ERA against the Diamondbacks. In five games against the Diamondbacks, he's given up 17 earned runs in 23 innings on 32 hits and four walks. This Diamondback lineup has impressive numbers against the 2020 Cy Young runner-up.

After the leadoff hitter, Daulton Varsho (who is 0-7 all-time against Darvish), the 2-6 hitters all have averages higher than .333. The 2-6 spot is a combined 27-65 (.415) against Darvish. The desert snakes have a few new faces near the bottom of the order, but there is a scary part of this lineup that Darvish has historically struggled against.

As far as Bumgarner goes, I like that he's opening at home. He's not my first pick, but he's historically posted better numbers at home and has a fresh arm to start the season; that helps more since he is getting a little older. In his last two starts against the Padres, Bumgarner went 6.2 innings with two earned runs and 7 innings with two earned runs. Last year, the Padres showed worse numbers against lefties and were 24th in the league against lefties with a .306 wOBA. Bumgarner has also gotten the better of them in the last few meetings.

The Padres lost both meetings that Davish started in Arizona last year, and the Padres overall are 4-15 in their previous 19 games in Arizona. Darvish simply wasn't the same on the road last year, and I can't trust him as a favorite in that situation until he proves otherwise. The loss of Tatis also looms large here, as he was easily their best hitter last year. I trust Bumgarner here on the road, and the Diamondbacks hitters have proven they can hit against Darvish. Take the home dog on opening day here.

Arizona Diamondbacks vs San Diego Padres Pick

Pick: Arizona Diamondbacks ML (+120) (Bet $100 to Win $120)

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Article Author


Ben Rajavuori is a handicapper out of Minneapolis, MN. He has been creating sports content for almost four years now and is an expert in all things NFL, MLB, NBA, UFC, and NCAAB. Ben thrives on diving deep into statistics to find the best angle on every bet. You can follow him on Twitter @WeBeatTheSpread.


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