MLB Predictions & Free Picks: Scherzer To to keep Dodgers in check In NLDS Game 1

Washington Nationals pitcher Max Scherzer, center, celebrates with teammates

Charles Stark

Friday, October 7, 2016 4:40 PM UTC

Friday, Oct. 7, 2016 4:40 PM UTC

Tonight's matchup is going to be like no other when Clayton Kershaw and Max Scherzer face each other on the mound. Oddsmakers have come out making Kershaw a solid road favorite but is there any value in backing Washington as an underdog?



Los Angeles Dodgers

Clayton Kershaw takes the mound for the Dodgers and comes in with a 1.69 ERA and 0.72 whip while allowing one earned run in seven innings versus the Nationals this season. In that one appearance against Washington back towards the end of June he allowed just six hits and had eight strikeouts, but the game was in Los Angeles. I could go on forever about how good Kershaw is and going against him is never an easy task but I believe there is good value in backing his counterpart today to be equally as good, thus putting value on Washington. Washington has been solid at the plate this season ranking eighth in runs scored per game, and 12th in OPS. Versus left-handers, this season their OPS actually jumps up quite a bit from .751 to .783 which ranks them third in the National League. Of course, you can kind of throw those numbers out the window considering they're facing the best pitcher of this generation. However, if you are going to beat Kershaw it is going to be when he is on the road where his ERA "jumps up" to 2.31 and he has just a 4-3 record this season. 


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Washington Nationals

Max Scherzer takes the mound for Washington and comes in with a 2.96 ERA and 0.97 whip along with a 2.56 ERA and 8-3 record at home. As well, in Washington batters are hitting just .193 against him this season which I believe again puts value on taking a shot with him in this spot to keep Los Angeles in check. He did get lit up in his last start at home allowing five earned runs off of nine hits in just five innings to Miami, but for me, this just puts him in a great bounce back spot and considering it's the playoffs I imagine he will be locked in. Los Angeles has ranked mostly in the middle of the league this season in most offensive categories ranking 14th in runs scored per game, 22nd in batting average, and 19th in OPS. Looking at this game from a value perspective getting plus money on a guy like Scherzer at home versus any pitcher I believe is the right way to go.


Dodgers vs. Nationals

Oddsmakers have come out making Washington a +130 underdog or better across the board. Be sure to check SBR for the best sportsbooks online and for me and my MLB pick I will take Washington at +135 at BetOnline. It's not easy going against the best pitcher of this generation but I am comfortable getting the plus money on one of the best right-handers of this generation.


Free MLB Pick: Washington +135
Best Line Offered: at BetOnline

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