Rays vs. Dodgers

World Series Game 1 Rays vs. Dodgers | 2020 MLB Expert Analysis

Written by on October 19, 2020

The Tampa Bay Rays and Los Angeles Dodgers will play their first-ever postseason game against one another on Tuesday night from a neutral site when they meet in Game 1 of the World Series. The Dodgers are series and Game MLB betting favorites.

How to Bet Rays vs. Dodgers MLB Odds & TV Info

Why Bet on Tampa Bay? | 2020 MLB Expert Analysis

The Rays have one minor advantage in that they have been off since beating Houston in Game 7 of the ALCS on Saturday, while the Dodgers had to play their Game 7 of the NLCS on Sunday. It’s been quite a sporting season in Tampa as the Lightning won the Stanley Cup, the Rays are in their second-ever World Series – they lost to Philadelphia in 2008 – and the Bucs are legitimate Super Bowl contenders with Tom Brady.

It’s expected to be hard-throwing right-hander Tyler Glasnow in Game 1 on the mound. Glasnow warmed up in Game 7 vs. Houston and looked ready to pitch the ninth inning, but Pete Fairbanks was able to get the last out of the game.

Glasnow last pitched in Game 4 of the ALCS last Wednesday vs. Houston, which the Astros would win 4-3. Glasnow served up a couple homers and was charged with four runs over six innings. Jose Altuve hit another first-inning home run in this one and got to Glasnow again in the third with an RBI double. It was George Springer who provided the deciding blow in the fifth with a monster two-run blast. Glasnow’s stuff was certainly there, but his location waned at times, especially with his breaking ball, as the Astros dinged him for eight hits and a couple walks.

Glasnow has allowed two long balls in three of four starts this postseason, and his other outing was essentially an opener assignment when he was starting on just two days’ rest.Glasnow set up shop in the triple digits, throwing 13 fastballs at 100 mph or harder, the fourth-most by a starting pitcher in the pitch-tracking era (since 2008).

“I think I went out there with one pitch,” Glasnow said. “They’re a really good team and a good fastball hitting team, so when you go out there and have one pitch, it just makes my job a whole lot harder. … It’s a matter of falling behind, then everyone knows that the heater’s coming. My offspeed stuff was not there at all. I just wasn’t able to throw it for strikes. Especially when I got behind in the count. I think people were just able to cheat on the heater and get to it.”

Glasnow is the sixth pitcher all-time to make 3 starts in potential clinching games in a single postseason, joining HOU Justin Verlander in 2019, SF Madison Bumgarner in 2014, SF Matt Cain in 2012, STL Kyle Lohse in 2012 and NYY Andy Pettitte in 2009.

Both of Glasnow’s career postseason wins have come in 2020. In Game 2 of the ALDS vs. NYY, he recorded a Rays postseason-record 10 SO and the win after allowing 4 runs in 5 IP, all on Giancarlo Stanton homers in the 2nd and 4th innings. In Game of the Wild Card Series vs. Toronto, he allowed two solo shots to Danny Jansen.

In the regular season, he led the team with 57.1 IP, 91 SO and tied for 2nd with 5 wins behind Pete Fairbanks (6). Glasnow went 5-0 with a 3.00 ERA (42-IP, 14-ER) and 64 SO in his last 7 starts of the regular season, beginning on Aug 19. His 91 SO were 4th in the AL.

Why Bet on Los Angeles? | 2020 MLB Expert Analysis

Presumably, the Dodgers will have 2019 NL MVP Cody Bellinger in the lineup. Bellinger made history Sunday night, becoming the first player to hit homers in two Game 7s of the National League Championship Series. After the second one, he swung his right arm wide for a powerful forearm bash with teammate Kiké Hernandez. However, Bellinger dislocated the shoulder. He had to go to the training room to have it popped back in and should be fine.

I hit Kiké’s shoulder a little too hard and my shoulder popped out,” Bellinger said. “They had to pop it back in so I could play defense. It kinda hurt. I’m going to maybe use my left arm (next time). I’ve never dislocated that one.”

The Dodgers are in the World Series for the third time in four years. It will be the Dodgers’ 12th World Series appearance since moving to Los Angeles in 1958 and the club’s 24th National League pennant in franchise history. L.A. hasn’t won it all since 1988. The Dodgers will serve as the designated home team for Games 1-2 and 6-7.

It’s lefty and future Hall of Famer Clayton Kershaw on the mound. He was available for Sunday’s Game 7 vs. the Braves but not used. Kershaw went five-plus innings while allowing four runs last Thursday in Game 4 of the NLCS against the Braves.

Kershaw allowed seven hits, and he walked one with four strikeouts. He allowed just one run through the first five innings — a solo shot to Marcel Ozuna in the fourth inning. The three-time Cy Young winner able to get through the fifth unscathed, but he gave up an infield single to Ronald Acuna, a double to Freddie Freeman and another double to Ozuna before he was pulled without an out in the sixth.

“I just thought Kershaw was throwing the baseball really well, and there was no reason,” Roberts said when asked about going to his bullpen a little earlier. ball off the bat of Freeman,” Roberts said, adding that Ozuna’s batted ball “wasn’t hit very hard,” even though it traveled at 108 mph.

Kershaw’s career ERAs now look like this: 2.43 in the regular season, 3.68 in the division series and wild-card round, 4.84 in the LCS, 5.40 in the World Series. His postseason ERA from the sixth inning on is 7.31, the worst of any starter with a minimum of 20 innings in that scenario. His three go-ahead hits allowed in the sixth inning or later since the 2013 postseason is tied with Justin Verlander for the second most in that stretch.

Game Trends

  • Rays are 9-2 in their last 11 games following an off day.
  • Rays are 4-1 in their last 5 Tuesday games.
  • Rays are 4-1 in their last 5 interleague games as an underdog.
  • Rays are 12-4 in their last 16 games as an underdog.
  • Dodgers are 43-17 in their last 60 games following an off day.
  • Dodgers are 43-18 in their last 61 during game 1 of a series.
Expert PredictionDodgers 5, Rays 4 
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