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Tampa Bay Rays vs. Los Angeles Dodgers: World Series Preview and Picks

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Tampa Bay Rays vs. Los Angeles Dodgers: World Series Preview and Picks
Cody Bellinger #35 of the Los Angeles Dodgers beats the tag by Willy Adames #1 of the Tampa Bay Rays for a stolen base. Photo by Jayne Kamin-Oncea/Getty Images/AFP

The Dodgers and Rays battled out their championship series’ where both teams played seven games to move on. Will we have another seven games in store for the Rays and Dodgers in the World Series?

Tampa Bay Rays vs. Los Angeles Dodgers

World Series begin on Tuesday, October 20, 2020 – 08:09 PM EDT at Globe Life Field

We’ve made it to the World Series. It was a rocky start for MLB with plenty of COVID cases and postponements. But here we are. Usually, baseball is the most unpredictable sport. Yet, in an expanded playoff, we’ll have the two number one seeds in their respective leagues face off against each other.

The Rays were up 3-0 in the ALCS and almost lost their spot in the World Series, while the Dodgers were down 3-1 and came back to win their series in the NLCS over the Braves.

Both teams have managers that like to pull the plug on their starters quickly. Management of bullpens will be a critical portion of this game. The reality is, on paper, the Dodgers have a much better lineup, but the Rays have better pitching and especially the more consistent pitching.

Randy Arozarena #56 of the Tampa Bay Rays celebrates the series win against the Houston Astros in Game Seven of the American League Championship Series. Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images/AFP

Tampa Bay Rays

The Rays big three of Blake Snell, Charlie Morton, and Tyler Glasnow has paved the way for this World Series run. The Rays needed some solid pitching as their offense came into the playoffs as the 12th best in the majors with 289 runs scored on the season.

The offense has been nothing special, but Randy Arozarena will have you thinking otherwise. The rookie standout outfielder has hit seven postseason home runs and almost has the most home runs in the playoffs for the Rays. Evan Longoria has nine home runs for the team in his career. Arozarena has seven in his career in just one postseason. He’s been ridiculous.

Going into this series, the Rays will be more rested. The rotation will look very solid for the Rays who have an extra day's rest before action. Most of the Rays relievers are actually going to have three days of rest or more. They’ll be prepared.

We’ll likely see Glasnow get the first game, and Blake Snell will get the second game on normal rest. Then Morton will pitch on normal five day’s rest in the third game. That means if there is a Game 7, we’d likely see Morton again. Cash never allows his starters to go deep, which might be a good thing if this series prolongs.

Clayton Kershaw #22 of the Los Angeles Dodgers looks on during the teams celebrations following their victory against the Atlanta Braves in Game Seven of the National League Championship Series. Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images/AFP

Los Angeles Dodgers

When it comes to the Dodgers, they have a better offense. The Dodgers averaged 5.82 runs per game in the regular season while the Rays averaged 4.82 runs per game.

From top to bottom, the Dodgers offense is scary. Every pitcher must have nightmares before facing this lineup. It starts with Mookie Betts and sometimes ends with Chris Taylor or Kike Hernandez. Scary.

The Rays also led the league in strikeouts. The Dodgers have plenty of pitching that averages high strikeouts including Clayton Kershaw, Julio Urias, Walker Buehler, and many of their relief pitching.

If the Dodgers pitching can limit the Rays from hitting home runs, the Rays might not find too much offense in this series either.

The Rays are currently hitting 71.9 percent of their runs over the wall in the postseason when they hit just 41.5 percent of runs over the wall in the regular season. It’s hard to hit home runs in Globe Life Field, which is a pitcher-friendly ballpark after all.

Prediction

This is going to be a fantastic series. We’ve got the best team in the AL and the best team in the NL facing off in a neutral stadium, with fans and plenty on the line.

The Dodgers have the better hitting while the Rays have the better pitching and fielding. Can the Dodgers pitch well enough to stick around with the Rays? I would think so. The Tampa Bay offense isn’t that bright or amazing. They’ve just scored enough for the dominant pitching.

The reality is, the Rays are much better set up moving forward. The rotation is set. There are no questions about that. On the Dodgers side, who knows how the rotation will play out. Clayton Kershaw will likely get the call for the first game, but he hasn’t been fantastic like he was in the regular season.

Both of these teams just played seven-game series’ in the championship series. That might happen again. No one will complain if there’s a seven-game World Series.

The Rays are currently +1.5 on the spread for the series. Yes, they’re +1.5 for the World Series. That would mean, if we had seven games, the Rays would automatically win this bet. There are so many MLB odds to look at, but giving the Rays a win in the World Series via spread betting the whole series caught my eye.

MLB Pick: Rays +1.5 Spread - Serious Outcome to win the World Series (-112) at BetOnline (visit our BetOnline Review)

Rays +1.5 Games-112
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