MLB Odds, Preview, Prediction for Giants vs. Dodgers: Value on Road Underdog (Tuesday, June 29)
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images. Pictured: Kevin Gausman #34 of the San Francisco Giants.
- The San Francisco Giants and Los Angeles Dodgers meet on Tuesday night for Game 2 of their NL West regular-season series.
- LA pulled off a 3-2 win in Game 1 despite 11 hits from San Francisco, so was Monday's outcome a fluke?
- MLB betting analyst Kenny Ducey previews Giants vs. Dodgers, including updated odds, plus his picks and predictions for Tuesday's rematch.
Giants vs. Dodgers Odds
|Over/Under||7.5 (+102 / -124)|
|Time||10:10 p.m. ET|
|Odds as of Tuesday morning and via DraftKings.|
The Giants and Dodgers played one of the more bizarre MLB games on Monday, with Los Angeles winning on the strength of three solo shots despite 11 hits for the Giants.
Tuesday’s rematch offers a compelling pitching matchup rich in name value. Yet, there’s reason to believe but that one of these sides may break through in the midst of a tight National League West race.
Below, I analyze Giants vs. Dodgers to determine which side offers the most betting value in Tuesday’s MLB nightcap (10:10 p.m. ET on ESPN).
San Francisco Giants
Kevin Gausman has just been really, really good this season. His 2.67 expected ERA (xERA) ranks seventh among MLB starting pitchers. Furthermore, Gausman’s .269 xwOBA and 1.49 real-life ERA complement his 2.67 xERA exceptionally well. Best of all, his spin rates have been more-or-less normal during the past month, which is more than we can say about many top-10 pitchers in xERA.
Gausman has only allowed more than one earned run three times this year. He has only allowed more than two earned runs once — when he was torched for five runs by the then-hot Cincinnati Reds in April. He’s been the model of consistency for a Giants team that has witnessed some of its exciting starting pitchers fall off during the last month or so.
He has the benefit of facing a Dodgers team that’s pretty lost at the plate, and it’s fair to assume that the Giants offense won’t need to muster up much to get the job done on Tuesday.
Still, it’s worth mentioning that — even despite a loss on Monday — this San Francisco offense has been a real treat. It picked up 11 hits in that game (and only scored two runs) but has led the league in wRC+ over the past two weeks. The Giants should be in their bag against a right-handed pitcher, against which they’ve posted a .762 OPS.
Los Angeles Dodgers
Speaking of that righty, we need to have a conversation about Walker Buehler.
Is he good? Well, sure; he’s got solid numbers. But, for the third straight season Buehler’s xERA has teetered on the brink of looking like a back-end starter’s. Additionally, his strikeouts are down and his hard contact is up this season.
On top of that, this year Buehler has not flashed the consistency we’ve seen from him during his big-league career. He has allowed five earned runs in 13.1 innings during the past two weeks, which is emblematic of how he’s pitched all season long. Buehler’s scoreless outings have been scattered. Furthermore, although he has only imploded on two occasions, he’s still yet to really string together dominant outings.
His fastball velocity is down this year, and now he has to deal with his spin rate plummeting. Buehler’s average fastball velocity was in the 2300-rpm range in his latest start — a low-water mark that Buehler hasn’t posted since 2019. Moreover, his cutter — which pushes towards 3000 rpms — sat just around 2506 in that start.
Buehler’s decline in spin rate in the “post-sticky stuff” era compounds his preexisting issues this season, which makes backing him relatively anxiety-inducing. It’s also slightly terrifying considering that Los Angeles reports a pedestrian 104 wRC+ during the past two weeks. That mark ranks among the middle of the league, so it’s disconcerting that LA relied purely on solo homers to win Monday’s game. Those long balls shouldn’t be there for them against Gausman on Tuesday.
The Dodgers have been out of sorts at the plate all year, but that has been particularly true of late — even with Cody Bellinger back in the lineup. Gausman has been exceptional, and I have full confidence in him to keep on shoving against a slumping lineup that won on a fluke yesterday.
Gasuman has not shown any signs of decreased performance since MLB announced crack downs on foreign substances — but Buehler has. It was already bad enough that his fastball velocity and strikeouts are down this year; now, the righty is heading for some real trouble.
I love the value here with the Giants as road underdogs, and I think this offense will vent some of its frustration following Monday’s 3-2 loss with 11 hits. The Giants should score in bunches and take the second game of the series.
Pick: Giants ML (+125)