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Underdog Braves On The Brink Of World Series Appearance

Eddie Rosario & Braves one win away from a World Series.

Last night, Eddie Rosario singled, doubled, and homered twice on his way to carrying the Atlanta Braves to an important Game 4 NLCS win and a commanding 3-1 series lead. The Dodgers, who were favored to win the NLCS before the series started, are now +360 underdogs to advance. However, last year L.A. came back from a 3-1 series deficit against Atlanta to win the NLCS and eventually the World Series. Can the Dodgers do the improbable two years in a row?


Atlanta Braves vs Los Angeles Dodgers
  • Date/Time: Oct 21, 8:08 p.m. ET
  • Stadium: Dodger Stadium
  • TV Coverage: TBS
  • Opening Odds: Los Angeles -140 | O/U 8 (Line History)
  • Braves vs Dodgers Matchup Report

Opening Odds Analysis

It is the Braves who won Game 4 convincingly and it is the Braves who hold all the momentum currently in this series. However, it is the Dodgers who opened as strong -140 favorites at home for Game 6.

The total for Game 6 opened at 8 and remains there currently. There is a little bit of juice on the OVER and a chance some sportsbooks get to 8.5 before the first pitch.

Starting Pitchers Analysis  

In Game 1 of the NLCS, Max Fried went six innings, allowing only two Dodger runs in a game the Braves eventually went on to win. L.A. did get eight hits off Fried, who was able to limit the damage. The 27-year-old lefty has had a terrific postseason so far. In his two starts, he is 1-0, with a 1.50 ERA and 14 strikeouts in 12 IP.

The Dodgers are expected to go with a bullpen game for Game 5 and didn’t name a starter for tonight’s game. Dave Roberts has used Corey Knebel to be the opener twice this postseason already and may turn to him again for this one. Knebel didn’t pitch yesterday in Game 4. The 29-year-old right-hander has given up two runs in two appearances in the NLCS, over 1.1 IP.

Atlanta News & Notes

In the 9th inning of Game 4, Eddie Rosario stepped to the plate a triple shy of hitting for the cycle. The bad news for Rosario is that he didn’t get that elusive triple. The good news is that instead he hit a three-run home run, his second long ball of the night, and turned a 6-2 lead into a 9-2 blowout.

The red-hot Rosario is now 10 for 17 in the NLCS, with two home runs and six RBI. Rosario has also hit safely in every Braves playoff game this year and is hitting .467 this postseason.

In the first two games of the NLCS, Freddie Freeman was 0-8 with seven strikeouts. In games three and four, the reigning NL MVP has found his stroke and is 5 for 8 with a home run, and is now hitting above .300 in the playoffs.

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Los Angeles News and Notes

In 44 postseason at-bats this year, Trea Turner has more strikeouts (11) than he does hits (8). Turner hit .328 in the regular season but has yet to find his stroke in the playoffs.

Yesterday the Dodgers top three hitters of Mookie Betts, Corey Seager and Turner combined to go 0-11 with a walk. Of those three electric players, only Betts (.214 BA) is hitting above .200 this postseason.

How Atlanta Will Win:

Yesterday Atlanta went with a bullpen game, allowing Max Fried to pitch Game 5 on regular rest. Fried has been great so far this postseason and another quality start today could send the Braves to the World Series. Eddie Rosario is not considered the best baseball player in the world, however, he is currently the hottest player in the game right now. If Rosario and Freddie Freeman continue to swing the bat well in Game 5, Atlanta could erase their 2020 demons against the Dodgers and close this series out.

How Los Angeles Will Win:

Corey Knebel, Blake Treinen, and Alex Vesia may not be household names for the Dodgers, but all three of those pitchers had fantastic regular seasons coming out of the bullpen for L.A. With the Dodgers forced to use their bullpen in this win-or-go-home game today, those three relievers might be the difference and the reason why the series goes back to Atlanta for a Game 6. Betts, Seager, and Trea Turner are all-star caliber players currently scuffling at the plate. Any or all of them are capable of snapping their slump and producing a lot of runs. Maybe today is the day their fortunes turn.

Computer Pick: Atlanta Braves ML (+119)

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Shark Bites
  • Atlanta is 9-3 SU in their last 12 games on the road and snapped a 0-6 winless streak last night at Dodgers Stadium
  • LA Dodgers are 18-2 SU in their last 20 games at home
  • Last year the Dodgers trailed Atlanta 3-1 in the NLCS before winning the next three games and eventually going on to win the World Series