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Dodgers vs. Padres Odds, Picks, Predictions: Fade Yu Darvish Against Former Team (April 23)

Dodgers vs. Padres Odds, Picks, Predictions: Fade Yu Darvish Against Former Team (April 23) article feature image

Christian Petersen/Getty Images. Pictured: Yu Darvish.

  • The Dodgers are favored against a familiar face in San Diego on Saturday night.
  • While Los Angeles leans on its bullpen, the Padres will start Yu Darvish.
  • Kenny Ducey breaks down how he's fading Darvish below.

Dodgers vs. Padres Odds

Dodgers Odds -120
Padres Odds -100
Over/Under 7.5
Time 8:40 p.m. ET
Odds via BetMGM. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.

The Dodgers have only lost three games this year, and will try to keep this torrid pace going against the Padres, who they shellacked by a score of 6-1 on Friday night.

With old friend Yu Darvish on the hill, should it be more of the same? Let’s get into this one.

Surging Dodgers Send Anderson To Mound

The Dodgers are straight dominant right now. While it was rather expected, it is just ridiculous at this point. They’ve got a +37 run differential, and they’ve not only won nine of the last 10 but covered the run line in every one. L.A. has only allowed more than two runs in three of those 10 games, and only twice did it fail to score five runs.

Put simply, none of these games are even close. That includes Friday’s win over San Diego, where Julio Urias shoved for five innings and handed things off to the bullpen which allowed just a hit over four scoreless innings.

The scary thing there is that aside from Daniel Hudson, L.A. wasn’t even forced to use its high-leverage relievers, meaning even if things get close on Saturday the Dodgers will be able to lean on their best relievers.

Tyler Anderson starts this one for L.A., and he has been excellent in two appearances this season. He has twice been the piggy-back long reliever behind Tony Gonsolin and has spookily posted identical lines in each appearance. That line was four innings with just a run against him on two hits with four strikeouts. That means he’s allowed two through eight frames with eight punchouts to this point. We know Anderson to be capable of shoving and it appears he’s a trustworthy pitcher.

So, How Good is Yu Darvish?

For yet another season, the Padres are a clear notch below their bitter rivals. To be fair, they are probably a few notches below at this point with better rosters in years past. San Diego has mustered up just a 103 wRC+ through 15 games, going 9-6 with six of those wins coming against Arizona and Cincinnati.

This offense hasn’t been awful at getting guys on, posting a 11.1% walk rate and ranking ninth in on-base percentage. That’s about the only good thing you can say about San Diego, which has struck out in 24.3% of its plate appearances and ranks 18th in hard-hit rate. Walking doesn’t do much when you can’t make contact with the baseball — and weak contact whenever you do.

I have tired myself out talking about Darvish so much through the last seven months, so I apologize if I sound dismissive and don’t get too much into the nitty gritty. The bottom line here is that his spin rates from June on last year seemed to indicate the crackdown on Spider Tack affected him in some way, and his performance was downright horrendous with an ERA over six runs in the second half.

Darvish has started this year with a 6.28 ERA and 5.00 xERA, but somehow he found his A-stuff on national television against the Braves. It was very odd, and given the number of bad outings I have watched I’m willing to write it off as a weird outlier and nothing more.

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Dodgers-Padres Pick

Darvish has been a mess since the 2021 All-Star break, and he’s gearing up to face a Dodgers lineup which is not only the best in baseball but may be on pace to be one of the best in history. These guys do not lose, and they will always pile up runs. When you get a pitching mismatch like this, it can be a scary sight.

Tyler Anderson, on the other hand, has been excellent this year and will have a well-rested bullpen behind him. This line would seem to indicate people are buying into Darvish’s last start, but it’s a hard sell for me. Trap or not, you are going to want to be on L.A. here.

Pick: Dodgers ML (-115)

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