The Los Angeles Dodgers look to sweep the New York Mets Sunday, after taking the first
two games of this series by scores of 7-6 Friday and 8-5 Saturday. Both of those
games played OVER on the totals. Eovaldi pitches for L.A. against Niese for N.Y.
So the Dodgers, with a three-game winning streak and at
51-44, remain 2.5 games behind first-place San Francisco in the NL West.
The Mets, losers of eight of their last nine games, have
fallen back to .500 for the first time since April and now trail the Braves by
five games in the battle for the second NL Wild-Card spot.
L.A. has gotten a much-needed boost from the returns of Matt
Kemp and Andre Ethier to the lineup. Since coming back from stints on the DL, those two have combined to go 21-58 (.362) at the plate with three homers and
Lefty Jon Niese (7-4, 3.58) will start Sunday's series
finale (1:10 pm Eastern, TBS) for New York against rookie righty Nathan Eovaldi
(1-6, 4.33) for Los Angeles
Niese is 10-18 on quality starts this year, and six for his
last eight. In his only start so far since the All-Star break, he held the
Nationals to one run on three hits through seven innings, walking none and
striking out eight, although the Mets lost that crazy game 5-4 in extra
On the season Niese has allowed 98 hits, including 16
homers, in 111 innings, walking 32 and whiffing 99.
This will be Niese's first start against L.A. this year; in
two starts vs. the Dodgers last year, he gave up six ER on 12 hits through 12
2/3 innings, and New York won both those games.
Eovladi's numbers don't show much, but he's actually thrown
in some tough luck this season. Out of his nine starts, he's given up more than
three runs just twice, and the Dodgers have lost games he's started by scores
of 2-1, 3-2, 1-0, 2-1, 4-1 and, most recently, 3-2. If you took away his one
real bad start, back in June vs. the Giants in which he got gouged for eight
runs, his ERA would be 3.25.
Also, the totals have leaned toward the UNDERS in
Eovaldi's starts by an 8-1 margin.
However, his other worst outing came vs. the Mets back in
June, when Eovaldi gave up five runs in 5 1/3 innings of a 5-0 Dodgers loss
As far as the baseball odds go on Sunday's game, the Mets could be
played at -140 at Bovada, while the Dodgers could be gotten at +147 at
Matchbook. And most online sportsbooks are listing the total at eight.
Free MLB Pick
The Dodgers seem to
be regaining a bit of their mojo, while the Mets are fading badly. So we like
LA with the underdog price
For Saturday's pitching matchup, New York will go with Miguel Batista (1-2, 4.33) while L.A. will counter with lefty Chris Capuano (9-5, 2.75).
Here's what we're looking at
Batista comes out of the bullpen to start Saturday. He gave
up two runs in less than an inning Wednesday vs. the Nationals, and on the
season, has allowed 48 hits and walked 28 in 44 innings. But with Dillon Gee on
the DL the Mets don't have too many choices with this spot in the rotation.
Batista has made one appearance vs. Los Angeles this season, allowing one
unearned run in two-thirds of an inning three weeks ago.
Warming up over in the other bullpen, Cappy is 12/18 in
quality starts this season, and the Dodgers are 12-6 in games he's started. In
his latest outing Capuano gave up four runs, none earned, in 6 2/3 innings vs.
the Padres, and he's got five QS in his last six outings. On the season the
former Met has allowed 99 hits in 118 innings, walked 36 and struck out 103.
This year Capuano has started once vs. New York, giving up
three ER on five hits through seven innings of a 3-2 Los Angeles loss one month
In perusing MLB odds makers Saturday morning we found the
Dodgers at -126 for Saturday's game at Matchbook, while the Mets were getting
+127 at Heritage.
And most baseball betting books are listing the total on this game at 8.5.
Free MLB Pick
We figured New York
would eventually fade from contention in the NL East, and thanks to some
injuries in the starting rotation and one of the worst bullpens in baseball, that's exactly what's happening. L.A., meanwhile, may have found some new
enthusiasm with the return of Kemp and Ethier. So, we'll go with the Dodgers