Thanks to a slight altercation during a game between these teams last week LA is down one ace, while San Diego is without one of its main offensive cogs.
The Dodgers are big favorites for Monday's game, and for this series; are they worth a wager, or are the Padres capable of pulling an upset or two? How might some money be made with our MLB picks on this series?
Wednesday's Game Three
By: Ron Patrick
OK, so San Diego scores 16 runs through its previous five games coming into this series, and was playing without its top two sticks. The Padres then score six runs Monday and nine Tuesday in taking the first two games of this series.
Yeah, That Makes Sense.
After beating LA Monday night 6-3, San Diego rapped out 15 hits Tuesday, jumping out to an early 4-0 lead on its way to a 9-2 victory. The Padres, who cashed in as +140 underdogs on the MLB MLB odds Monday, won Tuesday while getting +160.
The first two games of this series have played OVER on the totals.
The Dodgers are having offensive problems of their own, scoring a total of five runs in losing their last three games.
So LA is 7-7, San Diego 4-10 as the teams ready to play the series finale Wednesday night (10:10 pm ET).
On a personnel note the Padres could active Chase Headley for Wednesday's game. Headley, who led the team with 31 homers and 115 RBI last year, hasn't played yet this season because of a broken thumb he suffered in spring training.
Wednesday's MLB Betting Odds
As of Wednesday morning most books were listing Los Angeles and Clayton Kershaw at around -250 over San Diego with Tyson Ross. The OVER/UNDER sat at 6.5.
Wednesday's Pitching Match-Up
Through his first three starts this season, including a quality effort at Arizona last Friday (albeit in a losing cause), Kershaw has allowed just three ER and 12 hits through 23 1/3 innings, with four walks and 25 whiffs. The Dodgers are 2-1 in Kershaw's starts.
Kershaw started four games against San Diego last year, allowing five ER and 21 hits through 21 1/3 innings. LA won three of those four games.
Ross went 2-11 with a 6.50 ERA last year for Oakland, then got traded to San Diego in November. This Spring Ross threw well, giving up six runs in 20 innings of Cactus League prep work.
Ross has started twice so far this season, both times against Colorado, giving up five ER through 9 1/3 innings, walking seven and striking out 10. The Padres lost both those games.
This will be Ross' first-ever start against LA.
Free MLB Pick for Wednesday
We're 0-2 on this series, having lost with the Dodgers both Monday and Tuesday. The only saving grace is that we cut our losses by playing LA on the run line both games.
Hey, nobody says picking these games is easy.
As for Wednesday's game we expect Kershaw to bail the Dodgers out, save them from getting swept. But that price is just too darn high. There's only one way we'd play Wednesday's game, and that would be to take LA on the run line, and hope the bats break loose.
Free Pick: We'll go with the Dodgers on the run line at the -110 offered at Pinnacle for our free MLB pick for Wednesday.
Tuesday's Game Two
By: Ron Patrick
San Diego jumped up and bit LA (and its financial backers) in the ass Monday night, taking the opener of this series 6-3. The Pads cashed in as +145 dogs on the MLB odds boards, and the game played OVER its total of seven.
With both Chase Headley (thumb) and Carlos Quentin (suspension) out for San Diego, we couldn't figure out how the Padres were going to score runs in this series. Then it struck us; their pitchers would hit three-run homers! On top of holding the Dodgers to three runs through six innings, San Diego starter Eric Stults smacked a three-run dinger in the second inning Monday night.
The Dodgers later tied the game at 3-3, but the Padres, with help from six bases on balls by the LA bullpen, scored twice in the seventh and once in the ninth for the victory.
So the Dodgers are 7-6, the Padres 3-10 heading into Game 2 of this three-game set Tuesday night (10:10 pm ET).
Tuesday's Padres-Dodgers MLB Betting Odds
Most books we checked with Tuesday morning opened LA with Chris Capuano as favorites of around -180 over San Diego with Jason Marquis. But many of those shops then dropped the price on the Dodgers to around -165.
Tuesday's Arms Battle
Capuano went 12-12 with a 3.72 ERA last year for LA. Then this Spring he gave up 12 ER in 16 innings of prep work.
So far this season Capuano has made two relief appearances, both against San Diego, allowing zero runs and two hits in 2 2/3 innings. He now steps back into the rotation, with Zack Greinke on the DL with that broken collarbone.
Last year Cappy made four appearances vs. the Padres, allowing eight ER and 18 hits through 23 innings.
Marquis went 6-7 with a 4.04 ERA in 15 starts for the Padres last year. Then this Spring he allowed nine ER in 21 innings, but also walked 15 guys. Marquis then opened this season by allowing five runs in six innings vs. Colorado, but only two of those runs were earned.
Last Thursday against these Dodgers Marquis gave up two runs and seven hits through five innings of a game the Pads eventually lost 3-2.
Free MLB Pick for Tuesday Marquis pitched once against LA last year, and got a win, giving up two runs and six hits through six innings of a 7-2 San Diego victory in July.
We took a hit with the Dodgers Monday night, but minimized our losses by playing LA on the run line.
As for Tuesday we've been a fan of Capuano since his days with the Brewers, and expect a good outing from him. And let's just say when San Diego scores six runs in a game, we throw that in the “fluke” category. So we're leaning toward LA to even this series Tuesday night.
Also, we're not shy of taking chances. So we'll play the Dodgers on the run line.
Pick: We'll take LA giving the run and a half on the run line at +135 offered at Pinnacle for our free MLB pick for Tuesday.
Monday's Series Opener
By: Ron Patrick
Padres-Dodgers Betting Odds
As of Monday AM most MLB odds shops were listing Los Angeles with Chad Billingsley at around -180 for Monday's night game over San Diego with Eric Stults, while the total sat at seven.
Also, a few online sportsbooks were listing LA at -320 to win this series, with San Diego getting +250 as the underdog.
Padres-Dodgers Series Set-Up
The Dodgers just dropped two of three games in Arizona over the weekend, losing 3-0 Friday, winning 7-5 Saturday, then getting shut out again Sunday 1-0. So LA, with all those All-Stars dotting its line-up, has been shut out three times already this season, and been held to three runs or fewer in eight of its first 12 games.
San Diego, on the other hand, just got swept three games at home by Colorado, falling 2-1 Sunday, managing just two hits. Overall the Padres have lost five in a row, scoring a total of 16 runs in the process.
So the Dodgers are a game and a half out of first place in the National League West, while San Diego is bringing up the rear, 6.5 games off the pace.
Monday's Pitching Match-Up
Billingsley went 10-9 with a 3.55 ERA last year, until an elbow injury cost him the last month of the season. He then missed his first start of this season after hurting a finger during Spring Training. But he made his 2013 season debut a winning one, holding these Padres to one run and five hits through six innings last Wednesday.
Last year Billingsley started once against San Diego, and got the win there, too, throwing 8 1/3 innings of three-hit, shut-out ball.
On the other side of this match-up Stults managed to go 8-3 last year with a 2.92 ERA for a Padres team that finished ten games under .500. He then opened this season by throwing five innings of three-hit, shut-out ball against the Mets. Last time out, vs. the Dodgers last Tuesday, Stults gave up four ER and eight hits through five innings and took the loss.
Last year Stults started once against LA and fared well, going six innings, allowing one run and seven hits, getting a no-decision in a game the Padres won.
Padres-Dodgers Recent History
LA took two of three games from San Diego last week down at Petco Park, but of course the real news to come from that little get-together was the broken collarbone suffered by Dodgers starter Zack Greinke, after he hit the Padres Carlos Quentin with a pitch, sparking a small brawl.
Last year LA took the season series from San Diego 11 games to seven. Somewhat surprisingly, the totals tilted toward the OVERS in this series last year by a 10-5-3 margin.
Quentin, one of the Padres' few legitimate sticks, is now serving an eight-game suspension for charging the mound against LA last week, so he's out for this series. On top of that San Diego was already playing without Chase Headley, who led the team in homers and RBI last year, after he broke a thumb this Spring. So we're left wondering how the hell San Diego is going to score any runs for the next week or so.
Padres-Dodgers Betting Trends
San Diego is 5-6 on the OVER/UNDERS this season, and we're trying to figure out how five of its games have played OVER, considering the Padres have been held to three runs or less in eight of their 11 games.
LA is 4-7 on the totals, as Dodgers pitching has held opponents to three runs or less nine times already.
Free MLB Pick for Monday
The Dodgers are clear favorites for Monday's game and for this series; they've got All-Stars all over the place and a solid starting rotation (even without Greinke), while the Padres are just not a very good team at the moment, struggling mightily to score runs.
The problems with betting LA in this spot and this series is the price; lose one game with the Dodgers in this series and you'd have to win the other two just to break even.
Which leads us to the run line, which while we don't normally like using with the home team, seems like a viable option for our sports picks in this spot.MLB Pick: We'll go with the Dodgers getting +132 on the run line at Pinnacle for our free MLB pick for Monday.