MLB Odds, Preview, Prediction: Padres vs. Dodgers Betting Preview (Friday, September 10)
Matt Thomas/San Diego Padres/Getty Images. Pictured: Joe Musgrove
- The Padres and Dodgers meet on Friday night in Los Angeles.
- Joe Musgrove takes the ball for San Diego and will be opposed by Julio Urias.
- Ready below for complete betting odds and a breakdown of this NL West matchup.
Padres vs. Dodgers Odds
|Time||10:10 p.m. ET|
|Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute MLB odds here.|
The San Diego Padres head to Los Angeles for a three-game series with the Dodgers. This will be the 14th meeting between the two teams, and San Diego leads the season series 7-6. Interestingly enough, if the regular season ended today, both teams would actually face one another in the Wild Card Series.
This series opener figures to be a good pitching matchup with Joe Musgrove getting the start for the Padres against Julio Urías for the Dodgers. It’s no surprise that Los Angeles is a heavy favorite for this game at -160 odds. After all, they’re very much a public side and likely overpriced.
However, these teams are much closer than that line suggests, and it wouldn’t surprise me if we end up with a one-run game on Friday night.
San Diego Padres
Musgrove was acquired in the offseason to fill out the backend of the Padres rotation. It turns out he’s been even better than expected as he leads the team in major categories such as wins, quality starts, innings pitched, and WAR. Overall, he’s 10-8 with a 2.87 ERA and a 1.01 WHIP. While his 3.42 FIP does point to some regression, I would still consider that number above average.
He’s allowed more than two runs just once in his last six outings, and four of them registered as quality starts. He’s done well to strike out over 10 batters per nine innings — the second-highest rate of his career. In addition, his Called + Swinging Strike Rate of 31.7% is considered elite.
Musgrove’s average velocity on his four-seamer has increased over his last two seasons. He’s also shown more velocity with his sinker and slider by almost 1-2 mph. Along with those three pitches, he also throws a curveball, cutter, and a changeup. What’s even more impressive is that he throws each of the four pitches at least 18% of the time. That means he’s more than capable of throwing any one of them in any count.
Another thing I like about Musgrove is he’s untraditional in that he pitches backward. By that, I mean he throws more offspeed pitches than his fastball.
Per Baseball Savant, he throws his slider 28.5% of the time, and his curveball is second at 23.2%. FanGraphs Pitch Info actually values his slider at 15.6 runs above average while his curveball is 13.5 runs above average. Coincidentally, the Dodgers have also struggled against both pitches as FanGraphs has them -13.7 runs below average against the slider and -12 runs below average against the curveball.
Los Angeles Dodgers
Urías has always been one of my favorite pitchers because I can remember when he was first called up as a 19-year old in 2016. After only watching him for a few innings, you could tell he was special. At times I thought the Dodgers were coddling him too much by not pitching him every fifth day. However, it’s hard to argue with his recent results as Urías went 3-0 in his 10 starts during the pandemic-shortened season last year.
This year he’s followed that up with a 16-3 record with a 3.11 ERA and a 1.05 WHIP. If we look at his advanced numbers, his 3.30 FIP does point to a slight regression. However, the disparity isn’t enough to warrant major concern.
Urías has the qualities you’d like to see in a starting pitcher. He has a 9.67 K/9 ratio and is walking fewer than two batters per nine innings. One thing that’s really impressed me is how often he gets ahead of hitters. His first-pitch strike rate of 70.9% is the highest I’ve seen of any starter while doing a preview this season.
However, one area where his numbers have gone in the opposite direction is his home runs allowed. He’s become much more of a flyball pitcher over the last three seasons, but this is the first time his HR/FB rate (11.4%) has reached double digits. Furthermore, his 5.9% barrel rate is the highest of any of his six seasons.
That could be problematic against a Padres lineup with a .233 ISO and a .344 wOBA in 73 at-bats.
It’ll be interesting to see how Urías utilizes his pitch mix. He uses his four-seamers the most, 48.3% of the time, and his curveball is second at 34.1%. His four-seamer is actually -4.7 runs below average, while his curveball is 18.4 runs above average. However, San Diego is 1.7 runs above average against the four-seamer this season and 8.3 runs above average against the curveball.
The Padres have often found a way to play their best games against the Dodgers. There’s definitely a bit of a big brother-little brother rivalry in this series between these two teams. In fact, San Diego has relished going into Dodgers Stadium and winning three out of the four games this season.
Again, this line is just too high for me, and while I’m not sure if the Padres win the game, it wouldn’t surprise me if these teams are separated by just one run.
It’s worth noting that the Dodgers are very minding full of Urías’ workload this season as he’s up to 156 1/3 innings and has never pitched more than 80 innings in a regular season. As a result, Los Angeles has kept him to just five innings in four of his last six outings.
This Dodgers team has the third most blown saves (26) in the league despite having the second-most overall wins with 88. I don’t think the Padres will fear them in the latter innings of this game.
If you’re still not convinced on the Padres as an aside, here’s an interesting nugget I came across in my research.
NL West teams on the road that are off a game in which they scored eight runs are 175-131 for 17.64 units and a 5.8% ROI against the spread.
That trend is active tonight with the Padres, so I’m comfortable backing them on the run line at -150.
Pick: Padres RL +1.5 (-150)