Washington (2-1) at LA Dodgers (1-2)
When: Tuesday, October 11th 2016
Where: Dodger Stadium, Los Angeles, CA
Time: 5:05 ET | TV: FOX Sports 1
The Washington Nationals are one win away from their first postseason series win since they were the Montreal Expos way back in 1981 when they face the Los Angeles Dodgers on Tuesday. The Nationals used a pair of four run innings on Monday to put the Dodgers on the brink of elimination. Anthony Rendon and Jayson Werth each homered to back Gio Gonzalez and the bullpen. Both teams are still undecided on who will pitch Game 4 as the Dodgers are wary of pitching ace Clayton Kershaw on short rest and could instead go with Julio Urias. The Nationals won’t pitch their ace Max Scherzer on short rest and will instead go with Reynaldo Lopez or Joe Ross, or both since they used six relievers yesterday. Nationals SS Danny Espinosa is 0-for 7 with six strikeouts in the series but has been hit by a pitch three times, while the Dodgers’ Justin Turner is 4-for-8 with four walks and three runs scored. Corey Seager, who hit homeruns in each of the first two games, had an RBI double for the Dodgers.
Ross had his innings carefully monitored down the stretch after returning from injury and pitched a total of 9.2 innings over his last three starts and allowed three runs. Ross allowed two runs in 6.1 innings at Los Angeles on June 22nd and could work the first few innings before yielding to Lopez, who was hit hard by Los Angeles on July 19th. Lopez allowed six runs and 10 hits in just 4.2 innings in that game.
Kershaw allowed three runs and eight hits over five innings in Game 1 but came away with the win to improve to 3-6 with a 4.65 ERA in his postseason career. Kershaw missed over two months with a back injury before returning in September and could instead go on regular rest in Game 5 if Los Angeles could win Game 4 behind Urias. The rookie did not allow more than two earned runs in any of his final eight appearances during the regular season and is 3-0 with a 3.05 ERA in nine home games – seven starts.
It looks like it will be Ross vs. Kershaw today. Kershaw will be going on three-days rest and wasn’t overly impressive in Game 1. He hasn’t been very good in his postseason career and I’m not laying 2.5/1 on him. I’ll take a shot with the Nationals today.
Pick: Nationals +225