Los Angeles Dodgers vs. Washington Nationals NLDS Game Four - 10/11/16 MLB Pick, Odds, and Prediction
Washington Nationals (96-68) at Los Angeles Dodgers (92-72)
MLB Baseball: Tuesday, October 11, 2016 at 5:05 pm (Dodger Stadium)
Joe Ross (7-5) (3.43) vs. Clayton Kershaw (5-2) (3.39)
The Line: Los Angeles Dodgers -235 / Washington Nationals +214 --- Over/Under: 7 See the Latest Odds
The MLB playoffs are back on Tuesday, as the Washington Nationals visit Dodger Stadium once again for Game 4 NLDS action against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
In Monday’s Game 3, things were pretty tight with a 4-3 Nationals lead heading into the ninth inning. Washington proceeded to blow the game open in that inning, scoring four runs to secure an 8-3 victory and a 2-1 lead in the series.
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The Nationals will be rolling with RHP Joe Ross in Tuesday's game. Over 19 starts and a 7-5 record in the regular season, Ross put up a 3.43 ERA with a 1.30 WHIP in 105 innings. Ross' last start came against Arizona on the 29th, when he went four innings with three hits and one earned.
Washington has a pretty capable offense on their side. Jayson Werth led the charge in Game 3, bagging a 3-of-4 line with a ninth-inning homer, two runs and two RBI. Anthony Rendon also homered in Monday’s game, finishing with a 1-for-4 line for two RBI and a run. Ryan Zimmerman also had a pair of RBI on a 2-of-4 line Monday, and also contributed a run for the Nationals.
Over on the Dodgers’ side, they've opted to go with star pitcher Clayton Kershaw for Tuesday's game. L.A. was originally expected to start Julio Urias, but facing elimination they're playing it safe. Kershaw started 21 games in the regular season with a 12-4 record, a 1.69 ERA and a 0.72 WHIP over 149 innings.
Los Angeles needs to get their bats moving in Game 4 if they want to extend the series. Carlos Ruiz was just about the only offensive bright spot on Monday, providing a fifth-inning homer with two RBI in a pinch-hit role. Corey Seager was the only other Dodger to get an RBI, finishing 1-for-4 on the day.
The Nationals are 4-1 in their last five road games versus a left-handed starter, and 5-2 in their last seven games overall versus a left-handed starter. Washington is also 38-18 in their last 56 game fours of a series, and 3-5 in their last eight playoff games.
Meanwhile, the Dodgers are 5-1 in their last six game fours of a series, and 15-5 in their last 20 Tuesday games. Los Angeles is also 6-1 in Urias’ last seven home starts, and 9-2 in Urias’ last 11 starts overall.
This has been a very tight series overall (aside from the top of the ninth in Game 3), and it may even take the full five games to decide a winner. That said, I think the Dodgers have a decisive advantage here with Kershaw on the mound. Over his previous 19 innings (three starts) on short rest in the postseason, Kershaw has a 1.89 ERA and a 23:4 K:BB ratio. With those numbers, it's hard to imagine an L.A. loss as long as the bullpen holds up. I'll take the Dodgers, even with the thick line.