- The Dodger bats made their presence felt in Game 1, winning 8-3
- Blake Snell will start Game 2 for the Rays while Tony Gonsolin goes for the Dodgers
- First pitch for Game 2 is at 8:08 pm ET from Globe Life Field in Texas
The LA Dodgers made a statement in Game 1 of the World Series.
Despite a brief moment where it seemed the Rays may mount a rally, LA scored eight runs over three innings and never looked back. Clayton Kershaw silenced his critics for at least a night with eight strikeouts over six innings, and six different Dodgers drove in a run.
Tampa Bay will look to tie the World Series at 1-1 on Wednesday night (October 20th) at 8:08 pm ET from Globe Life Field.
Rays vs Dodgers Odds – Game 2
|Tampa Bay Rays (B. Snell)||+132||+1.5 (-154)||Over 8.5 (+100)|
|Los Angeles Dodgers (T. Gonsolin)||-152||-1.5 (+130)||Under 8.5 (-122)|
Odds as of Oct 21st from FanDuel.
Despite the initial uncertainty surrounding LA’s starting pitcher ahead of Game 2, the Dodgers still enter as favorites. After the ‘Over’ hit in the sixth inning of Game 1, the total enjoyed a slight nudge upwards.
Rays Must Break the Mold With Snell
Blake Snell has consistently proven that he’s one of the better arms in the American League.
Yes, the lefty struggles with walks, but he also has big strikeout capability. He’s a massive weapon at the top of the Rays’ rotation, but he’s not always deployed like it.
2020 Postseason Usage
|Game||Result||Innings Pitched||Earned Runs||Hits||Strikeouts||Walks||Pitch Count|
|ALWC Game 1||W, 3-1||5.2||0||1||9||2||82|
|ALDS Game 1||L, 9-3||5.0||4||6||4||2||84|
|ALCS Game 1||W, 2-1||5.0||1||6||2||2||105|
|ALCS Game 6||L, 7-4||4.0+||2||3||4||4||82|
In the regular season, Snell started 11 games, finishing with a 3.24 ERA and an 11.3 K/9, but he never completed the sixth inning.
With the Dodgers abusing pitch counts against the Braves, and then Tyler Glasnow in Game 1, that’s a bad omen. The one positive for Kevin Cash is that Tuesday night got out of hand quickly and he only had to use three relievers.
Blake Snell is not happy about being taken out pic.twitter.com/GutDNWA8h1
— Baseball Quotes (@BaseballQuotes1) October 16, 2020
But they have to get some length out of Snell.
Dodgers Will Get Creative With Pitching
No one will begrudge Dave Roberts for using an ‘all hands on deck’ approach to win Game 7 of the NLCS, but Wednesday night is where LA will feel it.
Roberts announced that Tony Gonsolin will get the start. But how deep will he go? He appeared in Game 7 on regular rest, but he’ll have just three days off before Game 2.
So is it possible the Gonsolin/Dustin May tag team re-appears?
Gonsolin, May 2020 Postseason
|-2.76||Base-Out Runs Saved||1.06|
Gonsolin retired the first nine Braves he faced in Game 4 before the wheels fell off. He relieved May in Game 7, but neither pitcher looked comfortable. He threw 41 pitches while May threw 18, so they may simply be flipping the two.
Dodgers starter Dustin May begins Game 7 with 8 straight balls.
Braves have 2 on with 0 outs. pic.twitter.com/e6kKRgtl4s
— FOX Sports: MLB (@MLBONFOX) October 19, 2020
Both have big-time strikeout potential, which plays well against a free-swinging Rays lineup. But if the gamble doesn’t pay again, it’s unnecessary stress on the bullpen.
Dodgers Big Bats Shine in Game 1
Once the Dodgers’ offense struck in the fourth inning, there was no looking back.
Mookie Betts, Max Muncy and Cody Bellinger combined to go 5-for-12 with five RBIs, five runs scored, two home runs and two stolen bases. Both belonging to Betts.
Mookie Betts is the 2nd player in World Series history with a walk and multiple stolen bases in an inning, joining Babe Ruth in 1921.
Ruth did so in the 5th inning of Game 2 of the 1921 World Series against the Giants. pic.twitter.com/wN6fQaO9sk
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) October 21, 2020
In the fifth inning Betts stole second and then stole third. Then, on a contact play, he scored to put the Dodgers ahead 3-1.
Betts is no stranger to the Rays thanks to his time with the Red Sox, and they have to figure out a way to stop him. It’ll be tough considering he’s hit .310 with 16 homers and 20 steals for his career against Tampa.
Rays Must Make a Statement
This is a crucial game for the Rays. Some will count them out after Game 1 got out of hand, but that’s a hasty decision.
They have the advantage on the mound in Game 2 and got an extra day of rest for some key bullpen arms. Their offense also showed signs of life early against Kershaw, and after he exited the game.
Expect a strong counter-punch from the Rays in Game 2.
The Pick: Rays (+132), Over 8.0 (+100)
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