Home Team Giants Straight Up vs. Dodgers for Your MLB Picks

Willie Bee

Friday, September 12, 2014 2:04 PM GMT

Just two games apart in the NL West race, the Dodgers and Giants begin a weekend MLB odds set in San Francisco with a pair of lefties in the hill.

The stage is set for a big weekend in San Francisco where the Giants host the Los Angeles Dodgers.  A mere two games separate the rivals in the National League West standings, and Los Angeles hopes to widen that gap with its top three pitchers lined up to take on the Giants.

San Francisco has no plans to go quietly into the night, however, and counters with some fine arms of its own.  Madison Bumgarner looks to join a short list of 18-game winners in the majors when he cranks things up for the Giants in Friday's opener (10:15 PM ET), and the MLB odds like his chances with San Fran on a -130 chalk line.  Hyun-Jin Ryu is next up in LA's rotation with 6.5 for the total.

San Francisco has a slim 7-6 lead over the Dodgers this season.  The visitors have won nine of the 13 affairs, LA taking four of the previous six in San Francisco.  Three of those victories came in sweeping fashion the last time the Dodgers visited AT&T Park in late-July, the eighth time Los Angeles has swept a series here since the stadium opened in 2000.  All but one of the games played in San Fran this season stayed 'under' the total.

The rivals have one more series against one another on their regular season schedule, that set taking place in Los Angeles during the final week of the campaign.

 

Dodgers Begin Crucial Road Trip
Los Angeles (83-63, +4.8 units, 70-70-6 O/U/P) begins its final road trip of 2014, and it's a long one with a 3-game stop in Colorado following this series plus four at Wrigley Field against the Cubs next weekend.  The Dodgers just wrapped up a 6-3 homestand with a 4-0 blanking of the Padres on Wednesday.

Ryu will be making his sixth road start in eight trips to the hill, and the Dodgers have won seven of his previous eight assignments overall with the Korean pitching to a 2.23 ERA in that span.  He whiffed nine Diamondbacks the last time out, taking a no-decision in LA's eventual 5-2 triumph.

Friday marks the fourth time he has faced the Giants in 2014, and third at AT&T Park where he is 2-0 with a 2.08 ERA in the first two.  Ryu did get roughed up when he squared off against San Francisco at Dodger Stadium back in April, and the two hitters in this lineup that have given him trouble are Hunter Pence (9-21, .429) and Angel Pagan (5-9, .556).

 

Bumgarner Shooting For 5th-Straight Win
Just three months ago, San Francisco (81-65, +10.8 units, 69-69-8 O/U/P) boasted a 10-game lead in the NL West and seemed destined for the division crown.  The Giants are still very much in the playoff picture at the top of the National League wild card standings, but they'll need to continue their recent fine play -- 12-3 last 15 -- if they're going to displace LA from the top of the division.

Bumgarner is working on a string of four consecutive victories, one of those a complete-game shutout vs. the Rockies who only managed one hit.  He has allowed just two runs and 10 hits in his last three home assignments combined (22 IP).  Like Ryu, this is Bumgarner's fourth start in this series for the season, the 25 year old beating LA twice while recording a 2.41 ERA in the three previous assignments.

The weatherman says it will be in the mid-to-low 60s for the start of Friday's fracas, with clear skies over AT&T Park.  Hitters could get a little help from a NW breeze in the 8-12 mph range (out to right-center).

A case could be made for either southpaw in tonight's tilt, but I'm going to run with Bumgarner and San Francisco for my free MLB pick in Game 1.

MLB pick: Giants -123 at 5Dimes

Season: 117-115 (+1.15)

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