Dodgers vs. Braves MLB Odds, Picks: NLCS Game 6 Betting Projections (October 23)
Edward M. Pio Roda/Getty Images. Pictured: Atlanta’s Freddie Freeman and Ozzie Albies.
- The Dodgers remain favored tonight even after the news broke that Walker Buehler would start on short rest in place of the fatigued Max Scherzer.
- The underdog Braves are looking to clinch their first NL pennant since 1999, while the Dodgers are attempting to force a Game 7.
- Continue reading for Sean Zerillo's full breakdown and betting projections for tonight's huge matchup.
Throughout the MLB postseason, I will provide a daily breakdown summarizing my thoughts on futures and individual games.
Let’s talk series prices and World Series futures before digging into Saturday’s NLCS Game 6 between the Braves and Dodgers.
Series Moneyline Corner
Here are my updated ML projections for the two league championship series matchups:
The Braves’ pennant chances improved by 2% – from 72% to 74% – with news that Max Scherzer will miss his start in Game 6.
With Scherzer, I would have needed +285 to bet the Dodgers on the series ML. Without him, I would need +317 (24% implied) to back the defending champions to win Games 6 and 7 on the road.
Conversely, you could lay up to -257 (72% implied) on Atlanta to close out the NLCS at Truist Park.
However, I’m still not interested in laying any price near that number, with a pennant ticket (+700) and a series ticket (+130) already riding on the Braves.
World Series Futures Update
Here are my updated World Series projections for the four remaining teams, alongside listed odds at DraftKings:
Atlanta is the one team showing value in the World Series futures market.
I would bet Atlanta to +233 (30% implied) at a 1.8% edge compared to my projection.
It’s a much better price than you’ll get before Game 1 of the World Series against the Astros, where I would project Atlanta closer to 43%, or +130 implied.
And I would likely add more on Atlanta before an NLCS Game 7.
As a refresher, here’s how my World Series projections have evolved throughout the season:
Dodgers vs. Braves, Game 6
8:08 p.m. ET start
Game 6 of the NLCS was supposed to be a rematch from Game 2, with Ian Anderson (4.30 xERA, 3.96 xFIP, 4.38 SIERA) facing Max Scherzer.
However, Scherzer joined the Dodgers’ rapidly growing injured list, including Justin Turner and Joe Kelly from within the past few days.
David Price (4.03 xERA, 4.49 xFIP, 4.52 SIERA) will replace Kelly on the roster. The southpaw pitched 73 2/3 innings over 39 appearances this season (11 starts) while posting his worst strikeout minus walk rate since 2009 (9.8%, a 12% decrease relative to his 2019 season.)
The Braves roughed up Walker Buehler in Game 3 (3 2/3 IP, 6 H, 4 R, 3 BB, 3 K), but L.A. will go back to him on short rest on Saturday.
Offensively, the Braves performed much better against righties (100 wRC+, 11th) than lefties (93 wRC+, 25th), a split which held up after the trade deadline with their retooled outfield (13th and 19th, respectively). And I project their base lineup as a quarter of a run worse per game against southpaws.
As a result, I would expect to see lefties Justin Bruihl (2 IP, 1 H, 5 K) and Alex Vesia (3 IP, 3 H, 5 K) – who have excelled in this series – get into Game 6.
Dodgers rookie Justin Bruihl fanned a pair as he retired all three batters he faced. pic.twitter.com/QPBVyg2gMQ
— MLB Pipeline (@MLBPipeline) October 17, 2021
Price offers the two-pitch types (cutter, changeup), which have slowed this Atlanta offense (15th and 19th on a per-pitch basis) since the trade deadline.
Bruihl also throws a heavy dose of cutters (58%), while Vesia has a sneaky-good changeup (10% usage) to pair with his fastball-heavy approach (72%).
Anderson was lifted after three shaky innings for Atlanta in Game 2 (3 IP, 3 H, 2 R, 3 BB, 2 K). The former No. 3 overall pick relies on his changeup against both lefties (36.6%) and righties (26.6%).
He carries reverse splits (.262 wOBA vs. lefties, .298 vs. righties) as a result, and through his curveball (21.1% usage) is a solid offering, it pales in comparison to the changeup (50-grade vs. 70-grade).
However, the Dodgers have struggled against curveballs relative to other pitch types, and Anderson only threw 9 (16%) in Game 2 – generating one called strike and zero whiffs.
The Dodgers’ lineup and bullpen have undoubtedly taken a hit with their recent cluster of injuries. Still, I project their position player group as the better team by about a half run per game (offensively and defensively), and I give them the better bullpen by 0.15 runs per game.
That’s enough to make the Dodgers slight road favorites in Game 6, even without Max Scherzer:
With Buehler starting, I would need -114 (53.3% implied) or better to bet the Dodgers ML at a 2% edge. Conversely, I would need +134 or better to bet the Atlanta ML at a similar advantage.
And I would set the price targets for the First Five Innings (F5) at -129 and +152, respectively.
Concerning the totals, I would bet an Over 8 (to -113), an Over 8.5 (to +105), or an Under 9 (to -105).
For F5 totals, look to bet an Over 4 (to -125) or an Under 5 (to -112).
- Atlanta ML (bet to +134)
- Atlanta — To Win World Series (value to +233)
- Braves/Dodgers, F5 Over 4 (bet to -125)
- Atlanta F5 ML (wait for +152)
- Atlanta — Series ML (value to -257)
- Braves/Dodgers, Over 8 (to -113), Over 8.5 (to +105), or Under 9 (to -105)