Reds at Dodgers Picks and MLB Betting Odds
by Alan Matthews - 7/27/2013
Are the Dodgers just fattening up on mediocre-to-bad teams? There's certainly nothing wrong with that, and it's what good teams should do. But here are the teams against which the Dodgers have won series in winning 23 of 29 since June 21: San Francisco, Philadelphia, Colorado, San Francisco again, Arizona, Colorado again (split four games), Washington and Toronto. There probably isn't a playoff team in that group.
That's why I am still skeptical about how good this team is, especially after losing the opener of its four-game home series with likely playoff team Cincinnati on Thursday night (maybe Dodger Stadium is the problem as L.A. has won a team-record 10 straight road games). We should find out what the Dodgers are here in the next few weeks. After the Reds, they host the Yankees, visit the Cubs (yeah, forget them as they are trading everyone), visit the Cardinals and host the Rays. If L.A. is still leading the NL West then, I will believe. Of course, 87 wins might take the NL West this year. L.A. also made news on Thursday by designating lefty starter/reliever Ted Lilly for assignment. That's surprising. Yes, Lilly has been hurt most of the year and is just 0-2 with a 5.09 ERA, but the guy isn't that far away from being a good pitcher. He signed a three-year, $33 million deal with L.A. before the 2011 season. Oops. Someone will pick him up.
Reds at Dodgers Betting Story Lines
The Dodgers on Saturday go with rookie left-hander Hyun-Jin Ryu (8-3, 3.25), who was one of the key guys keeping the team afloat when it was scuffling. Ryu certainly deserves some NL Rookie of the Year consideration, although I'm sure teammate Yasiel Puig will win it. Being as this is the first series of the season between the Reds and Dodgers, Ryu has never faced Cincinnati or a member of the team outside of perhaps in the Cactus League this spring. Ryu could be hitting that proverbial rookie wall. He had gone 10 straight starts without allowing more than three earned runs in a game. In the past two, one before the break and his first after, he has allowed a combined nine earned runs and 16 hits in 10.1 innings. The Dodgers managed to win both and haven't lost one of his starts since June 19. Ryu has been way better at home this year, going 4-1 with a 1.90 ERA. That loss came in his big-league debut way back on April 2. Oddly, lefties are actually hitting much better against Ryu (.294 to .238) than right-handed batters.
The Reds counter with right-hander Bronson Arroyo (9-7, 3.19). He has been great with quality starts in eight of his past nine outings. Last time out was his best start of the season, throwing a complete-game seven-hitter at the Giants with six strikeouts and no walks. It was his sixth career shutout, 15th complete game and career win No. 100. In July, Arroyo is 3-1 with a 1.61 ERA. He has struggled on the road this season, going 3-5 with a 4.13 ERA. He's 2-3 with a 4.82 ERA in six career starts at Dodger Stadium.
It's too bad Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp is back on the disabled list as he rakes Arroyo, going 11-for-26 with two homers. Hanley Ramirez is 7-for-21 with a homer, Skip Schumaker 18-for-48 with four RBI, and Andre Ethier is 10-for-34 with a homer. Puig hasn't faced Arroyo but seems to be heating up again after a bit of a cold stint. He had two hits Thursday for his third straight multi-hit game and is batting .303 with two homers this month. How cool will it be to see Puig face Reds closer Aroldis Chapman? Chapman, a fellow Cuban, is the hardest-throwing pitcher in baseball. The two just missed facing off Thursday night, when Chapman threw a 103 mph fastball to Carl Crawford on the game's final pitch with Puig on the on-deck circle. Chapman vs. Puig would be pure power against power, and they have never faced one another, even in Cuba.
Reds at Dodgers MLB Betting Odds and Trends
At BetOnline, the Dodgers opened at -130 and the Reds at +120 with a total of 7.5. All trends entering Friday: Cincinnati is 50-49-4 “over/under” (26-24-3 on road) and 51-52 on the runline. The Dodgers are 52-45-4 O/U (28-21-2 at home and 52-49 on the runline.
The Reds are 1-4 in their past five Game 3s of a series and 1-5 in their past six against lefties. Cincinnati is 5-0 in Arroyo's past five Saturday starts. It is 2-6 in his past eight against teams with a winning record. The Dodgers are 5-0 in their past five Game 3s. L.A. is 7-1 in Ryu's eight home starts. The under is 10-0-1 in the Reds' past 11 Game 3s of a series. The under is 7-3-1 in Cincinnati's past 11 against a lefty starter. The under is 5-2-1 in Arroyo's past eight road starts against teams with a winning record. The over is 4-0 in Ryu's past four Saturday starts. the under is 5-2-1 in Arroyo's past eight starts vs. L.A. The Reds have won four of Arroyo's past five against the Dodgers.
Reds at Dodgers Picks and Betting Predictions
Cincinnati usually doesn't play well in L.A. or against the Dodgers overall, for that matter. I fully expect the Reds to have lost Friday's game against Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw, but I think that makes them poised to bounce back with a big offensive effort on Saturday against Ryu. Take the Reds and the over.
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