Lo Duca’s World Series Preview: Do the Dodgers Have Value Against the Red Sox?

Oct 23, 2018 11:20 AM EDT

USA Today Sports. Pictured: Alex Cora, Dave Roberts

World Series Betting Odds

  • Dodgers series price: +135
  • Red Sox series price: -155

The Dodgers and Red Sox will meet in the World Series for the first time in their storied histories. The Red Sox have home-field advantage and are -155 favorites with the Dodgers coming back as +135 underdogs. Game 1 is set for Tuesday at 8:09 p.m. ET on FOX.

Boston put together a historic regular season. The Red Sox led the majors with 108 wins and had a +229 run differential. Los Angeles finished with a 91-71 record (not including a win over Colorado in the NL West tiebreaker) and a +194 run differential, which ranked third in MLB.

The Red Sox have dropped just two games this postseason. They beat the Yankees, 3-1, in the AL Division Series and ran through the defending champion Astros, 4-1, in the AL Championship Series. Alex Cora’s charges have won four games in a row and have scored 57 runs and allowed 35 in nine postseason games.

The Dodgers’ ride to the finale has been a little less straightforward. Los Angeles disposed of Atlanta in four games in the NLDS but needed seven games to get by Milwaukee in the NLCS. Overall, the Dodgers are 7-4 with 43 runs scored and 32 allowed in 11 games.

Both of these teams can score runs. The Red Sox led the majors in OBP (.339), OPS (.792) and xwOBA (.339) this season and were third in wRC+ (110). The Dodgers led the league in wRC+ (111) and ranked third in OBP (.333), OPS (.774) and xwOBA (.330).

The numbers from the regular season suggest that the Dodgers have an edge in pitching. Los Angeles’ starting rotation led the MLB with a 3.36 xFIP while Boston’s starters finished ninth with a 3.83 xFIP. The Dodgers’ bullpen also posted better numbers than Boston’s. LA’s relievers had a 3.77 xFIP while Boston’s logged a 4.05 xFIP.

The Red Sox certainly were baseball’s best team over the regular season, and to this point they’ve been the best team in the postseason, too.

But does that justify their price in the market? 



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