Entering tonight, the San Diego Padres are eight games out of the final Wild Card spot and have an elimination number of ten, so if they want to make one last playoff push, the margin for error will have to be slim to none. San Diego did open their series with the Dodgers last night with a win, so with a chance to secure the series tonight, we’ll preview the game before going over my play on the total.
Like they have for most of the season, the Dodgers offense put their team in a good spot to win last night. By scoring eight runs, LA has now scored six or more runs in four straight games, and last night, it was the usual suspects who provided most of the offense. Mookie Betts ended the night with a double, home run, and four RBIs, while Max Muncy would also leave the yard.
Due to the fast start, the Dodgers' offense got off to they entered the 7th inning with a 7-4 lead, but because of a rough night from their bullpen, that lead would disappear and result in an 11-8 loss. With their current standing in the division, one loss won’t hurt them, but as they look to at least even the series tonight, LA will have Lance Lynn on the mound.
The trade deadline acquisition has resorted to his early season form over his last two outings by allowing a combined 15 earned runs on 14 hits, six of which were home runs. Turning things around tonight won’t be easy for Lynn since he takes on a Padres lineup that put up a 14 in the hit column last night. Two of those hits were home runs off the bat of Manny Machado, as he and Juan Soto combined for seven RBIs in the win.
With every game being a must-win for San Diego moving forward, their pitching staff can’t have a performance like they did last night. Getting the ball today will be veteran Michael Wacha, who is coming off a loss to the Phillies, in which he allowed three earned runs on seven hits across four innings of work.
The total for this inter-state matchup is currently set at 9, and I’ll be taking the over for my play. For starters, the Dodgers have cashed their team total over in 37 of their last 63 home games, and the Padres have hit their F5 team total over in ten of their last 13 games. The Dodgers have consistently put runs on the board this season, especially at home, and the Padres have their backs against the wall while getting to face a struggling starter.
Lance Lynn comes into the matchup in the 37th percentile in expected batting average, 25th percentile in expected ERA, and with a 5.28 xFIP in the second half of the season. Those numbers give the advantage to a Padres offense that is hitting .261 and ranks 13th in OPS, 12th in wRC+, and 11th in wOBA against right-handed pitching over the past 30 days.
While Michael Wacha’s overall numbers look strong, his advanced numbers show that he is liable to implode down the stretch. The right-hander has a 2.99 ERA, but he has a 4.51 xERA and a .251 expected batting average against. Wacha also has a 4.47 xFIP on the road and now takes on a Dodgers team, hitting .281 with a .842 OPS and the 3rd best wRC+ in the league against righties at home over the past month.
Over 9 (-120)