- Second and third in the NL West standings, the Dodgers and Padres currently occupy both wild-card spots
- Los Angeles won Friday’s game 3-0 and has a 14-game lead over its rival
- Read on for a preview, full odds and a best bet for this important Saturday night matchup
The San Diego Padres (74-66, 30-35 away) visit the Los Angeles Dodgers (89-53, 47-23 home) on Saturday, September 11th, for the second of a three-game series that could be a possible preview of the NL wild-card matchup in the National League. While Los Angeles has designs on the division title, currently 2.5 games back of the San Francisco Giants, San Diego is currently clinging on to the second wild card and trying to stay ahead of a hard-chasing Cincinnati squad.
After Friday’s shutout defeat, San Diego is turning to Chris Paddack to get things back on track here, with his 7-6 record and 4.95 ERA. Los Angeles follows up a masterful performance by Julio Urias by turning to another of its all-star cadre of elite pitchers here: Walker Buehler. The right-hander is 13-3 with a 2.31 ERA this season, and is unbeaten in eight career starts against the Padres.
Padres vs Dodgers Odds
|San Diego Padres||+175||+1.5 (-120)||Over 8 (-105)|
|Los Angeles Dodgers||-210||-1.5 (+100)||Under 8 (-115)|
Odds as of September 11th at DraftKings
The pressure is on Paddack to register his first win at Dodger Stadium on Saturday night, with the Padres in the thick of the postseason race. The right-hander hasn’t had his best of seasons, and has struggled with injury at times.
Chris Paddack was asked how he felt about the way he pitched today: pic.twitter.com/dkzxtzKiZn
— 97.3 The Fan (@973TheFanSD) September 6, 2021
He is unlikely to get an easy ride here on Saturday, as in five career starts against the Dodgers, he is just 1-2 with a 6.94 ERA over 23.1 innings. Tougher still, four of those five starts have come at Dodger Stadium, where he is 0-2 with a 7.79 ERA across 17.1 innings.
Paddack vs Buehler Stats
On the plus side, San Diego has won each of Paddack’s past five starts, although he only took the decision in the first three, before he went on the IL with a strained oblique. Since his return, he pitched 4.2 innings and surrendered one run in a win over Arizona, while last time out he gave up three runs in a six-inning start that resulted in a win over Houston.
Batting Average vs Starting Pitchers
|Dodgers Batters||Batting Average vs Chris Paddack|
|Padres Batters||Batting Average vs Walker Buehler|
|Fernando Tatis Jr.||.250|
In the midst of another all-star season, Walker Buehler will make his fourth start of the season against San Diego, having allowed just five runs across 19.2 innings so far. However, he has yet to earn a decision in any of those games.
Over his career, he is 4-0 with a 1.54 ERA in eight career starts against the Friars, with the Dodgers going 6-2 in those eight games.
Brandon belts one off Walker Buehler to give the Giants an early lead! 💥
— NBC Sports EDGE Baseball (@NBCSEdgeBB) September 5, 2021
However, if there is a ray of hope for San Diego, it is that Buehler struggled in his last start, last Sunday at San Francisco, where he allowed a season-high six runs, lasting just three innings for his shortest outing of the season and taking the loss.
The series between the Dodgers and Padres has been perfectly split down the middle so far this season, with seven wins apiece. However, after losing four straight earlier in the season, the Dodgers have now won the past four and will be going for a fifth straight over their rivals on Saturday.
On top of that, of their seven victories, only one has been a one-run game, a 5-4 victory back in April.
Dodgers vs Padres Prediction
With momentum on their side and Walker Buehler on the mounds (with his career mastery over San Diego in tow), it seems there will be only be one winner at Dodger Stadium on Saturday night.
Pick: Dodgers -1.5 (+100)