The Los Angeles Dodgers return to LA to start a crucial three game series against the San Diego Padres in an NL West showdown. With serious playoff implications on the line, it’s time to continue our MLB odds series and make a Padres-Dodgers prediction and pick.
Los Angeles currently stands at 88-53 and is 46-23 at home. If you put $100 on every single Dodgers game so far this season, you’d be down $568 on the moneyline.
San Diego currently stands at 74-65 and is 30-34 on the road. If you put $100 on every single Padres game so far this season, you’d be down $1546 on the moneyline.
Here’s how sportsbooks have set the Padres-Dodgers odds.
MLB Odds: Padres-Dodgers Odds
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San Diego Padres ML (+140)
Los Angeles Dodgers ML (-150)
Over 7.5 Runs (-110)
Under 7.5 Runs (-110)
Why The Padres Could Win This Game
Joe Musgrove takes the mound tonight as the Padres attempt to distance themselves from the Cincinnati Reds in the Wild Card standings.
Musgrove has been the Friars best pitcher all year, holding a 2.87 ERA through 27 starts. The Padres have won six of the last eight games that Musgrove has started.
The righty's strength this season has been his ability to punch out batters at a high rate while limiting the free pass. Some pitchers use electric stuff to rack up K's, but on days where their control is not at its best, it leads to multiple walks. Musgrove has done a good job of avoiding this.
In 15 of his 27 starts, he's allowed one or less walk. Considering he's gone at least five innings in all but five of his starts this year, this is a very impressive stat. Pair this with a whopping 519 strikeouts on the year, and Musgrove has emerged as the Padres darkhorse ace.
The Dodgers are usually a very patient team, but they've been struggling to take their walks of late. In their four game series against the Cardinals, the Dodgers drew just five walks while striking out 27 times. Musgrove is primed to continue the trend.
The Padres lineup has the intimidating task of facing Julio Urias tonight, but there are some positive signs heading into the showdown for the Friars bats.
For one, Urias has had mixed results pitching in San Diego this year. He pitched a scoreless outing last time he was in Petco Park, but was only able to go five innings. In his prior outing, the Padres shelled him for six earned runs in only four innings of work.
Secondly, the Padres offense finally showed signs of life on Thursday against the Angels. Fernando Tatis Jr. got his first hit in three games, Manny Machado is on an 11 game hitting streak, and Adam Frazier had his fourth multi-hit game in a Padres uniform.
With Musgrove on the mound, the Padres just need one breakthrough, and their elite bullpen (top five in least walks allowed, ERA, and WHIP) can finish the job.
Why The Dodgers Could Win This Game
As good as Joe Musgrove has been this season, Julio Urias has been even better.
Musgrove has a slight edge in ERA over Urias (2.87 to 3.11), but the Dodgers lefty tops him in several key advanced stats. Urias' xERA is lower (3.30 to 3.61), his HR/FB percentage is a full two percent lower, and he has a slight edge in FIP (3.30 to 3.42).
Additionally, Urias has historically dominated the big bats of this Padres lineup. Tatis, Machado, Eric Hosmer, and Wil Myers are a combined 8-38 against him.
Considering the Dodgers bullpen also has a slight edge against their Padres counterpart (lower ERA and WHIP), the Dodgers hold a firm advantage on the pitching side tonight.
At the dish, the Dodgers have had some success against Musgrove. They recorded two runs in each start they've faced him this year, and won both times Musgrove has been the opposing starter.
The biggest bright spot in their previous matchups was the Dodgers' ability to limit Musgrove's best asset this year, the strikeout. Musgrove struck out nine batters between the two starts, but also allowed four walks.
The Padres righty has limited his free passes all year, but he has let up a little in his last few outings. In the month of August, he allowed 10 walks in only 31 innings of work.
The Dodgers see the most pitches of any team in the league. Their strategy tonight will be to wear down Musgrove, and if he isn't sharp with his control, we'll see L.A. do some damage.
Final Padres-Dodgers Prediction & Pick
With two quality pitchers on the mound and two outstanding bullpens behind them to provide reinforcements, this game will almost certainly be a low-scoring affair. The Dodgers offense was confounded yesterday by Jake Woodford, and Musgrove is a significant upgrade on the mound. The Padres have been almost entirely boom or bust at the plate. In their last three games, they've scored one run in 25 innings, and 11 runs in the other two. It's unlikely Urias self destructs and gives the Padres a big inning. In a game that should have a playoff atmosphere, pitching will reign supreme. Take the under.
FINAL PADRES-DODGERS PREDICTION & PICK: UNDER 7.5 RUNS (-110)