Dodgers vs Diamondbacks Odds, Picks, Predictions | MLB Betting Preview
Pictured: Julio Urias. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
- The Dodgers host the D'backs in Opening Day action.
- The Dodgers are heavily favored, but our expert is targeting the total as Julio Urias and Zac Gallen take the mound.
- Kenny Ducey is expecting a low-scoring game and shares his best bet below.
Diamondbacks vs. Dodgers Odds
+100 / -122
+100 / -122
Opening Day will conclude in Los Angeles, where the perennial World Series contenders will play host to division rival Arizona.
Two excellent young arms will get the nod for their respective teams, creating what should be a tantalizing matchup between teams with plenty of youth.
Let’s dive into the best way to play this one and round out an exciting day of baseball as we make some picks and predictions for Diamondbacks vs. Dodgers.
The Diamondbacks have finished fourth or worse in the NL West for the past three seasons, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re a lock to hang around the basement again in 2023. Rookie Corbin Carroll is set to bring his scintillating speed to the top of the lineup, and he’ll be followed by an intriguing collection of high-contact guys and power bats.
Josh Rojas continues to improve each year and Christian Walker is an established home run hitter. Ketel Marte still plays on this team, and Alek Thomas might be one of the sneakier bottom-of-the-order bats in the division. While this team traded away a good hitter in Daulton Varsho, getting Lourdes Gurriel back gives Arizona a much-needed power bat to compliment Walker.
So, there’s hope here that the offense can back up what should be yet another good start from Zac Gallen. Now 27, the former Marlins farmhand has really grown into his own at this level and posted a career-best 2.54 ERA to go along with a 3.17 expected ERA last season. His strikeout numbers remain firmly above league average and his fastball was nearly untouchable last season as opponents hit just .165 against it.
Gallen was exceptional against the Dodgers last year, shutting them out across six innings in April before spinning eight innings of one-run ball with 13 strikeouts in Los Angeles later in the year.
The Dodgers have a much different look and feel than last year’s behemoth of a team, and while it’s generally a safe bet to trust this incredible organization to win 90+ games on a yearly basis, there are certainly some questions that will need to be answered in the early going.
After Mookie Betts and Freddie Freeman (we can probably throw Will Smith in there, too), there are plenty of unknown commodities. Max Muncy dealt with injuries throughout a rough 2022 and this team is going to desperately need his bat in the middle of the order now that Trea Turner and Justin Turner are gone. J.D. Martinez and David Peralta are both going to turn 37 this season and it’s anyone’s guess what they have left in the tank. Trayce Thompson was a spark-plug last season off the bench, but can he handle a full season as the starting center fielder?
Weirdly, the hitter I feel best about after the first three in the order is highly-touted rookie Miguel Vargas, who has done nothing but hit throughout his career.
As is always the case with this team, though, the Dodgers can always fall back on their pitching. Despite so much turnover through the years, they should still have one of the best bullpens in baseball and get to trot out left-hander Julio Urias on Opening Day.
All Urias did last season was post a ridiculous 2.16 ERA across 175 innings (31 starts), proving once again that he’s arguably the most reliable pitcher in baseball. While the nay-sayers will point to Urias’ 2.81 xERA as a reason to doubt him, I’d counter with the fact that not only is a 2.81 ERA still an excellent mark, but Urias was once again in the top 9% of the league in hard-hit rate. His strikeouts came down a bit, but there’s no question he’s one of the hardest pitchers to make quality contact against. A long-deserved Cy Young campaign could be in the cards.
Diamondbacks vs. Dodgers Betting Pick
I’m definitely a fan of buying low on Arizona this year, but one thing that’s likely going to be a bit tricky for this team is hitting lefties. Carroll, Rojas and Thomas are all left-handed and it’s hard to see Torey Lovullo removing any of them from the Opening Day lineup considering his bench consists of Evan Longoria, Kyle Lewis and Geraldo Perdomo.
Marte hits lefties far better than righties and Gurriel’s right-handed power bat should help balance the offense out a bit, but I still fear runs will be tough to come by.
On the other side of the coin, Gallen has continued to improve with each year in the league and we just may see the best version of him in 2023. Given his history against the Dodgers and the abundance of question marks in the LA lineup, I don’t foresee an offensive explosion from them, either.
With that, I feel comfortable grabbing the under here to seven runs. Arizona’s bullpen might quietly be decent this year with Andrew Chafin coming off an incredible season and some somewhat effective arms like Kevin Ginkel and Miguel Castro. The Diamondbacks likely won’t need those guys if Gallen pitches as expected, but it’s always worth noting when we’re talking about a full-game under.
I’ll back Urias and Gallen to give us at least 14 quality half-innings, and these bullpens should be able to handle the rest.
Pick: Under 7.5 | Play to 7
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