Tuesday’s MLB Over/Under to Consider: What To Do With Kershaw?
The first defeat of the season had to come at some point, and unfortunately, it came as the result of a couple of rare occurrences — Lance Lynn’s career-high-tying six walks and .196-hitter Colin Moran’s second-career home run (which also happened to be a grand slam with two outs… yikes) — as Twins-Pirates Under 8 falls by one. But we move on to the next day.
Zylbert’s 2018 MLB Over/Under Betting Record: 3-1, +1.8 units
Yesterday’s Result: Lynn vs. Taillon Under 8 (loss)
*Each bet graded as if it were to win 1 unit
Los Angeles Dodgers @ Arizona Diamondbacks
9:40 p.m. ET
Probable Pitchers: Clayton Kershaw vs. Zack Godley
When it comes to an under bet in baseball betting, there is nobody in the world more reliable than the great Clayton Kershaw, the game’s best pitcher of this generation.
After a perfectly spotless spring training (0.00 ERA in 21.1 innings), the former MVP and Cy Young award winner got his 2018 campaign out to a fine start, yielding one run in six innings of work at home versus San Francisco on opening day.
This evening, he gets the rival Diamondbacks, a team he’s generally fared very well against, owning a 2.55 ERA, 1.12 WHIP and .219 batting average against in 26 career meetings. He was even stingier than that a year ago opposite the D-backs, who could only muster one run and a .118 average opposite Kershaw over two starts, spanning 15 total innings.
In other words, he’s not the ideal pitcher to face one day after a five-hour, 45-minute marathon — the longest game, time-wise, in Chase Field history, by the way — which makes an extremely tough assignment even tougher for the Arizona lineup.
Facing the Dodgers ace will be the improved Zack Godley, fresh off his breakout 2017 where he registered a nifty 3.37 ERA and .221 batting average against in 25 starts (and one relief appearance). Perhaps even more impressive, he also crafted a terrific 9.58 K/9 rate, largely due to a much-improved curveball. That could come in handy when dealing with LA, the club that has logged the third-most strikeouts amongst National League offenses thus far.
Having been a fan of Godley since he first came up three years ago (I actually own a customized D-backs shirt with his name on the back), it’s possible I’m a little biased, but there’s enough evidence to believe Godley can keep it going into the new year, or at least begin his fourth season in the Major Leagues in a positive way.
Godley had a nice spring, posting a 2.21 ERA across 20.1 innings, as opposing batting orders hit just .134 versus the 27-year-old right-hander. In addition, he owns a 3.38 ERA and 0.99 WHIP for his career when on the mound against the Dodgers. It’ll also be helpful that he doesn’t have to worry about Justin Turner, who did some notable damage off Godley in their meetings last season. Yasmani Grandal’s hot bat will probably be out of the lineup, too, after catching all 15 innings last night.
Also remember, with Arizona now using a humidor to store baseballs before use, Chase Field has shed its reputation of being a haven for hitters. Giving someone like Kershaw an advantage like that certainly can be beneficial for any under. So long as Godley can do his part and contribute something decent, this under will be in a favorable position to win.
Play: UNDER 7.5 (-120)
Top Photo: San Francisco, CA, USA; Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw at AT&T Park. Credit: Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports