MLB Picks Today: Dodgers at Cubs NLCS Game 3
Can Cubs Break Through Dodgers Excellent Pitching?
The Cubs may be down 0-2 in the NLCS, but they hope to sweep this three game homestand and head back out west with the lead. But first things first: That offense needs to step it up... in a major way. They play the Dodgers well at Wrigley, but if they continue to score just 1 or 2 runs, it won't matter how good their pitching is. They do have a good starting rotation, so best not to waste it.
We had the Dodgers in Game 2 of this series, which was a win. It was a tense game for awhile, but you could tell the home side would eventually break through, and they did. We did suffer a loss with the Houston Astros on Monday, so that brings our record to 15-5. We hope you've been following, but if not, be sure to start now because the playoffs still have a ways to go!
The Cubs opened as slight favorites for this game, close to even. Not much line movement to speak of yet.
The Los Angeles Dodgers at plus money is a rare sight, but we welcome it. Everyone will pounce on the defending champs here as small favorites at home, but until their offense starts clicking, we just can't take a chance on them.
Even if they wake up tomorrow, the Dodgers will have to have an off night for the Cubs to stand a chance. We see the home side getting hits here, sure, but the Dodgers, if they don't get to Hendricks, will get to that bullpen hard later on in the game.
It will be a close, so if you can get the Dodgers on the RL of +1.5 go for it. Because the game's in the Windy City though, the RL and Total aren't available overnight.
Pick: Los Angeles Dodgers (+105) at Sports Interaction
Dodgers vs Cubs NLCS Game 3
The Los Angeles Dodgers look to get at least a win on their stay in Chicago, but history isn't on their side. They lost two of three there in last year's NLCS, and another two of three in April. They are 2-6 in their last 8 at Wrigley. Even worse, the Dodgers are 1-10 in their last 11 NLCS road games.
Perfection has graced them this psotseason though, as they've won all their games so far in these playoffs. It was a bit in question on Sunday night, before Justin Turner's three run bomb in the bottom of the ninth. In his five postseason games, he's 9 for 21 with 10 RBIs.
Yu Darvish (1-0, 1.80 ERA) gets the road start for this one. On the heels of Clayton Kershaw and Rich Hill, Darvish hopes to keep the Chicago bats quiet for a third straight game. The 31-year-old has only encountered them once, back in 2016 on the road with the Rangers. He took the loss allowing two runs in 4.1 innings.
Since moving to the Dodgers though, the Japan native went 4-3 with a 3.44 ERA in nine starts. Darvish's last four starts have been stellar, as he allowed just two runs total in that span, while striking out 28.
His last postseason game was a win, allowing one run and striking out seven in 5 innings against the Diamondbacks in the NLDS.
As for the Chicago Cubs, if they can't figure out a way to deal with the Dodgers' starters, they might get humiliated at home as well. Kershaw and Hill are understandable, but they need to get to Darvish. The team as a whole is hitting a laughable .117 in the series, and stars Kris Bryant and Anthony Rizzo are a combined 1 for 14 with 6 SO. Javier Baez is 0 for 19 with 8 SO in the entire postseason.
Their starters haven't been bad, but not producing enough offense can get a starter taken out sooner than they otherwise would have been, and that leads to the Cubs' mediocre bullpen giving up runs late in games, something we've seen in both Game 1 and 2.
Kyle Hendricks (1-0, 3.27 ERA) didn't fare too well in that crucial Game 5 of the NLDS against the Nationals, allowing four runs, including two homers, in just four innings. Luckily the Cubs ended up winning that one, and Hendricks gets the chance to show what he can really do.
In his nine postseason starts, the 27-year-old is 2-1 with a 2.60 ERA. He threw in the clinching game of the NLCS last year against the Dodgers, throwing 7.1 innings of no-run ball. The righty hasn't faced the NL West champs this year yet, but in three career starts, Hendricks is 2-1 with a 3.15 ERA. If he makes any mistake, that could be disastrous, because without a great bullpen or offense, the Cubs need to rely on starters.
Do you agree with our pick? Or will the Cubs offense finally wake up? Let us know what you think in the comment section below, and be sure to share and follow us for more MLB postseason picks!
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