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Dodgers vs. Giants NLDS Game 1 Preview and Best Bet

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Dodgers vs. Giants NLDS Game 1 Preview and Best Bet
Logan Webb #62 of the San Francisco Giants. Todd Kirkland/Getty Images/AFP

There have been a lot of great moments in the rivalry between the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Francisco Giants, but the matchup on Friday’s sports betting calendar is the first time they’ve met in an official playoff game.

Los Angeles Dodgers vs. San Francisco Giants

Friday, October 08, 2021 – 09:37 PM EDT at Oracle Park

Okay, I know, the Dodgers and Giants twice decided the NL pennant – in 1951 and 1962 – with an extra series following the end of the regular seasons, but those were not technically playoff games. This best-of-5 not only has the potential to transcend every previous big game in the rivalry, if the MLB futures mean anything, this series is also the real NLCS between the two winningest teams in the majors.

If the numbers we’re seeing at top sportsbooks mean anything, Los Angeles will draw first blood in the series as -120 chalk with Walker Buehler (16-4, 2.47) on the mound. Logan Webb (11-3, 3.03) gets the starting nod for San Francisco, with the total at 7 and leaning ‘under.’

Buehler Facing Giants for 7th Time in ‘21

Los Angeles almost left a lot of folks holding chalky betting slips on Wednesday before walking off the NL Wild Card Game against the St. Louis Cardinals. The 3-1 win made it 8-straight for the Dodgers who closed the campaign with a strong 22-7 month of September and won 18 of their last 21 before the playoffs.

Coming off a solid performance in the regular-season finale, Buehler will be making his 12th postseason start after completing just his third full season. He was thick -270 chalk at (visit our Sportsbook Review) last Sunday when Buehler did his part to get the Dodgers at least a share of the NL West title in a 10-3 win over the Milwaukee Brewers. He recorded 11 strikeouts in just five innings and 79 pitches, Buehler allowing one run while he was on the hill.

Buehler faced the Giants six times in the regular season, and Los Angeles split those contests while the former Vanderbilt standout pitched to a 2.19 ERA across 37 innings. He went 2-1, 3.71 in the three starts at Oracle Park, Dodger hitters helping out by scoring 18 runs on those contests.  

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Webb an ATM Machine at +16.5 Units on Year

It was indeed a magical season for the Giants after being picked to finish a distant third to the Dodgers and Padres in the NL West. San Francisco managed to forge the best record in all of baseball with a powerful lineup that belted an NL-best 241 homers, along with one of the most underrated groups of relievers in the game.

It also helped to have a secret weapon like Webb who hasn’t suffered a loss on his ledger since Cinco de Mayo. Webb was on the hill last Sunday when the Giants clinched the division title and home-field advantage throughout the playoffs with an 11-4 rout of the Padres. He closed as -200 chalk on the MLB betting odds and even contributed his first career home run to the cause.

Webb faced the Dodgers three times in the regular season, and San Francisco won all three while he posted a 2.25 ERA. In the July 27 start at home, Webb held Los Angeles to just three hits and a run over six innings, and the Giants scored late for a 2-1 decision.

Visitors Won 11 of 19 Meetings During Regular Season

That one game difference between San Francisco and Los Angeles in the standings can be found in their season series that went to the Giants 10 games to 9. The two sides met about a month ago in San Francisco, and the Giants basically decided matters than by winning two of three. Both sides actually did a little better as visitors with the Dodgers winning five of nine at Oracle Park and the Giants taking six of 10 in LA. Totals ran 9-9-1 O/U/P overall, 5-4-1 in San Francisco.

Ted Barrett is in charge of the umpire crew for the series and works the dish in Game 3. Carlos Torres calls balls and strikes in Game 1, just his second postseason plate assignment and it comes on the heels of a 16-12 O/U record at the dish in 2021. I’m more interested in how the 1B umpire does on Friday, and in the following games. That would be Angel Hernandez, who presumably moves to the plate for Game 2 on Saturday. The other half of this crew is made up of 3B Pat Hoberg, Doug Eddings, and Gabe Morales.

Action on the Giants has moved this line close to 20 cents from the opener, so it looks like San Francisco is finally getting respect from the betting public. The price drop on the Los Angeles chalk plays well with my free MLB pick on the defending champs.

MLB Pick: (visit our Sportsbook Review)

*The pick reflects the line at the moment the writer made the play, the odds at the beginning of this article show the live line movement. Since the lines might vary, don’t forget to refer back to our live odds.