MLB odds: Dodgers vs. Giants prediction, odds, pick, and more – 7/29/2021
The Los Angeles Dodgers and the San Francisco Giants will wrap up their three-game series on Thursday afternoon. It’s time to continue our MLB odds series and make a Dodgers-Giants prediction and pick.
The Dodgers managed to recover from a devastating loss on Tuesday to win a huge game on Wednesday night. Los Angeles desperately needs to take this rubber match from San Francisco, as they trail their hated rival by two games in the hotly contested NL West. This game is obviously extremely important to the Giants too, who are in danger of letting the Dodgers close the gap to one game. The San Diego Padres are also close behind, trailing first place by 5.5 games. A game with huge implications and a tense rivalry always makes for good baseball, so let’s get into the pick.
Here’s how the oddsmakers have set the lines for Thursday’s game.
MLB Odds: Dodgers-Giants Odds
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Los Angeles Dodgers ML (-118)
San Francisco Giants ML (+108)
Over 8 1/2 runs (-117)
Under 8 1/2 runs (-103)
Why The Dodgers Could Cover The Spread
Los Angeles is in a bit of a jam with their pitching staff, losing players to injuries and legal problems. Luckily for the Dodgers, David Price is still available to make the start in this series finale.
Price is more of an opener than an actual starter, usually pitching three or four innings before giving way to the Los Angeles bullpen. The lefty has been pretty solid in his role, consistently getting through the early innings with very little damage. Price should be able to continue that pattern against a San Francisco team that is slightly worse against left-handed pitching than they are against righties.
The Dodgers lineup exploded for eight runs on Wednesday night, and it’s certainly possible they repeat that performance on Thursday. They will face Giants pitcher Johnny Cueto in this matchup. The Dodgers haven’t gotten a look at Cueto this season, but there are some encouraging stats for the LA hitters.
Cueto sports a 20.9% strikeout percentage, which is lower than average for a starting pitcher. The Dodgers are notoriously patient at the plate, with three of their starters owning strikeout percentages lower than 17%. Cueto also struggles to produce whiffs, earning a poor 23.5% whiff percentage. The Dodgers rarely whiff, proven by five of their starters owning a whiff percentage below 24.5%. Cueto should struggle to get through this lineup, so don’t be surprised if Los Angeles puts some early runs on the board.
Why The Giants Could Cover The Spread
San Francisco owns one of the best offenses in the MLB, ranking inside the top ten in the league in OBP, OPS, and slugging percentage. They should be able to get to David Price and a Dodgers bullpen that has been less-than-stellar lately.
Price has similar problems to Cueto. He doesn’t produce a high strikeout percentage or a high whiff percentage, and he’s facing a lineup that already specializes in both of those areas. It wouldn’t be a surprise to see Price’s pitch count get run up in the first two innings. The Los Angeles bullpen should be pitching the vast majority of this game, which is great news for the Giants.
Whoever’s pitching, San Francisco will have some statistical advantages going their way. The Giants are a significantly better offensive team at home, hitting .252 at Oracle Park, with that average dropping to .235 anywhere else. All of San Francisco’s major batting stats follow suite as well.
Final Dodgers-Giants Prediction & Pick
The Giants probably have the pitching edge on paper, but that doesn’t mean this is a good matchup for Johnny Cueto. The Dodgers should score off of Cueto early and jump out to a nice lead. Los Angeles’s bullpen hasn’t been great lately, but they should regroup in this hugely important game and lead the Dodgers to a series victory.
FINAL PICK: Los Angeles Dodgers ML (-118)