Sunday MLB Betting Odds, Preview, Prediction for Angels vs. Dodgers: Pitching Should Shine in Battle of Los Angeles (August 8)

Sunday MLB Betting Odds, Preview, Prediction for Angels vs. Dodgers: Pitching Should Shine in Battle of Los Angeles (August 8) article feature image
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Daniel Shirey/MLB Photos via Getty Images. Pictured: Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Walker Buehler.

  • The Los Angeles Angels take on the Los Angeles Dodgers in a crosstown battle on MLB's stacked card.
  • Walker Buehler gets the ball for the Dodgers, who will face pitcher Reid Detmers.
  • Kenny Ducey breaks down the meeting below and explains why he's expecting a low-scoring matchup.

Angels vs. Dodgers Odds

Angels Odds +280
Dodgers Odds -350
Over/Under 8
Time 4:10 p.m. ET
TV MLB Network
Odds as of Sunday morning via FanDuel.

After splitting the first two games of the series, the Los Angeles Dodgers and Los Angeles Angels will battle it out at Chavez Ravine on Sunday in a game that should mean something to both sides.

The Angels are on the outside of the playoff race looking in, but with a manageable number of games to make up in the wild-card race, some wins here in August could make things interesting down the stretch.

Speaking of interesting, we have an elite pitcher going against matched up against one who has been riding the struggle bus. Is there more to this game or should we target the total? Let’s take a look at the numbers below.

Angels Still in American League Playoff Hunt

Yes, it’s not over yet for the Angels. Saturday’s loss to the Dodgers was their first in five games, and during that time they’ve closed to within 10 of the Houston Astros in the AL West and seven in the wild-card chase.

Though a run to the postseason seems improbable, there’s still plenty of time left and games remaining against the teams currently blocking them from a spot in October playoff baseball.

That’s why this game should mean something to the visitors, and why this line looking like it’s for a team that’s out of the running is a bit unfair. That said, the Angels have a few things working against them.

For starters, there’s Walker Buehler.

The right-handed pitcher has one of the best fastballs in the game, and the Angels have struggled all year against that pitch. They have a negative run value for the season and the sixth worst in the second half.  He’s also a big strikeout pitcher, and the Angels rank 11th in K% since the break.

‘There’s some hope, considering the Angels rank 10th in contact rate during that time, and Buehler has allowed a higher number of barrels than he’s used to this season.

Then, there’s Reid Detmers. The No. 10 overall pick in 2020 has dominated and racked up strikeouts everywhere he’s gone, but his first big-league start was one to forget. He allowed six runs on six hits, including two homers, over 4 1/3 against the Oakland Athletics, with just two punch-outs. He’ll be looking for something better this time around.

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Dodgers Having Issues Facing Southpaws

It’s another night and another lefty trying to shut down the Dodgers. Los Angeles still has a pedestrian .725 OPS against southpaws, which ranks 19th among big-league offenses, and the strikeouts have been a bit of an issue for them in this split. That’s really the only potential hang-up against Detmers, who averaged 15.9 strikeouts per nine in his only minor-league season.

The Dodgers have also been a .500 club since the All-Star break, with their numbers since not being the prettiest. A .181 ISO and 107 wRC+ just aren’t up to the standards of the defending champions, plus there has been some pain points, such as Cody Bellinger. Still, with Trea Turner now in the fold, this infield looks great once again and Mookie Betts is being allowed the time to work his way back to 100% as he deals with a hip issue.

So, while things are good and not great with the Dodgers offense, they are pretty solid with Buehler. As mentioned above, there aren’t a whole lot of holes in his game right now. Buehler did see a dip in his spin rates when the league cracked down on foreign substances, but he’s recovered quite nicely and continues to rack up strikeouts each time out.

Buehler has had a bit of a bout with walks of late, but the Angels have walked at one of the lowest clips in the league since the break, so there’s not a whole lot to be concerned with there. This should be another ho-hum day for the prized righty.

Angels-Dodgers Pick

I’m more bearish on Detmers than most, considering his insane performance at Louisville that helped him go high in last year’s draft, and his first minor-league season which saw him tear up the competition.

The Athletics have a tricky lineup to deal with, and had he debuted against a team like the Cleveland Indians, we’d probably be looking at this game a bit differently.

I’m not expecting a shutout, but I think it’s fair to project five innings and three runs charged to Detmers, considering the Dodgers’ issues with lefties and larger concerns at the dish over the last month.

That should be more than enough to get us to the under with Buehler pitching against a team that has severely lacked power.

Pick: Under 8 (-110)

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