MLB NLCS Game 1 Los Angeles At Chicago Expert Picks
On Thursday afternoon, Dodgers manager Dave Roberts got in front of the press and said that ace Clayton Kershaw was not available to pitch in the fifth and final game of this National League Division Series. After all, on Tuesday, Kershaw had thrown 110 pitches and willed his Dodgers to victory in Game 4, just to send matters back to the nationâ€™s capital for a fifth and final game. Of course, since Roberts used his closer for 2 â“ innings, totaling 51 pitches, and since Kershaw, the presumptive Game 1 starter, got the last two outs in Game 5 and has left the Dodger rotation in chaos, now they open an NLCS in Chicago, facing a Cubs team that has rested since their dramatic Game 4 comeback win over the San Francisco Giants and has ace Jon Lester on the hill, ready to go. Check out all of our online betting picks for this weekend.
MLB NLCS Game 1 Los Angeles Dodgers At Chicago Cubs Expert Picks
When: Saturday, October 15, 2016, 8:00 pm ET
Where: Wrigley Field, Chicago
Radio: ESPN Radio
Live Stream: MLB.tv
MLB Odds:Â TBA
Pitching Matchup: TBA (LA) vs Jon Lester (19-5, 2.44 ERA) (CHI)
Why should you bet on the Dodgers?
When you have a player like Clayton Kershaw on your roster, who is willing to do whatever it takes to get your team a victory when they need it most, that attitude feeds the entire roster. So when Kenley Jansen, the Dodgersâ€™ closer, failed to get a 1-2-3 ninth, Kershaw asked Roberts if he could warm up, and Roberts assented, after checking with his training staff. When Jansen left, utterly gassed after those 51 pitches, Kershaw came in and got slugger Daniel Murphy to pop out to second, with runners on first and second. Then came Wilmer Difo, the last bench player for Washington, hitting in the pitcherâ€™s spot, and Difo went down on strikes. So who will start for the Dodgers? The team hasnâ€™t spoken yet. However, that clutch Dodger offense will be ready to take on Lester.
Why should you put your money on the Cubs?
Lester has not pitched since Game 1 of the NLDS against San Francisco Giants, when he shut the Giants down for eight dominant innings. Lester has thrown 106 postseason innings since the 2007 season, which leads all active pitchers. The Cubs enter this series with the bitter NLCS loss from last year fresh in their minds, but they have added right fielder Jason Heyward and utility star Ben Zobrist to their lineup. They have filled in the gaps that last yearâ€™s talented roster exhibited, which is why they skated to 106 wins during the regular season.
Expert Pick and Final Score Prediction
I like the Cubs to withstand a few innings of adrenaline from the Dodgers before using their rest (and Lesterâ€™s arm) to roll to a win in Game 1. I predict a final score of Chicago 6, Los Angeles 1.