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Dodgers Favored Over Rays in Game 1 of World Series

Corey Seager (5) of the Los Angeles Dodgers throws to first base during Game 7 of the NLCS between the Atlanta Braves and the Los Angeles Dodgers at Globe Life Field on Sunday, October 18, 2020 in Arlington, Texas.

The Los Angeles Dodgers and Tampa Bay Rays have split eight games they’ve matched up in since 2016. These teams earned their spots in the World Series with grueling seven-game series in the last round, and on Tuesday night they’ll begin the best-of-seven Fall Classic to determine a champion.

Tampa Bay Rays vs Los Angeles Dodgers
  • Date/Time: October 20, 8:09 p.m. ET
  • Stadium: Globe Life Field
  • TV Coverage: Fox
  • Opening Odds: Dodgers -165 | O/U 8 (Line History)
  • Rays vs Dodgers Matchup Report

Opening Odds Analysis

The Dodgers opened as -165 favorites but have since been bet up slightly to -170. Tampa Bay is going off at +155 to score an upset in Game 1. The total was set at 8 runs but has been bet down to 7.5. The Rays are 11-4 in their last 15 games as a betting underdog.

Starting Pitchers Analysis

Tyler Glasnow found himself in the loss column for the first time since September 8 when he allowed eight hits and four earned runs in a 4-3 loss to the Houston Astros in Game 4 of the ALCS. Prior to that loss, the Rays were 11-0 in Glasnow’s previous 11 trips to the mound. The right-hander owns a 4.66 ERA and a 1.29 WHIP in 19.1 innings pitched this postseason.

Clayton Kershaw appeared to be on his way to another heartbreaking postseason exit when he allowed seven hits and four earned runs in a 10-2 loss to the Atlanta Braves in Game 4 of the NLCS. But the Dodgers clawed back from a 3-1 series deficit to win the National League pennant, and Kershaw will have the chance to add a World Series title to his Hall of Fame resume. Kershaw has a 3.32 ERA and a 1.17 WHIP through three starts this postseason.

Tampa Bay News & Notes

Tampa Bay took a commanding 3-0 lead over the Astros in the ALCS and appeared to be on its way to a nice break before the World Series began. Instead, the Rays lost each of their next three games, forcing a Game 7 and putting the series in doubt.

But with Charlie Morton pitching a gem on the mound and Randy Arozarena continuing his incredible postseason with another home run, the Rays advanced to the World Series with a 4-2 win.

Arozarena is now batting .382 with 14 runs, seven home runs and 10 RBIs in 14 playoff games. Only Barry Bonds (2002), Carlos Beltran (2004) and Nelson Cruz (2011) have ever hit more homers in a single postseason with nine each. The 25-year-old Arozarena has already set the rookie record for most home runs in a postseason.

Los Angeles News & Notes

The Dodgers lost the first two games and three of the first four in the NLCS to the Atlanta Braves, putting themselves in position to need three straight wins to advance to the World Series.

Teams that are down 3-1 in a best-of-seven series have gone on to win the series just 15 percent of the time in MLB history, but the Dodgers joined that exclusive group with a 7-3 win in Game 5, a 3-1 win in Game 6 and a 4-3 win in Game 7.

Los Angeles finished the regular season ranked best in the majors on offense with 5.82 runs per game and best in pitching with a team ERA of 3.02. That dominance has continued into the postseason with 5.75 runs per game and a 3.36 team ERA. The Dodgers and Rays both have excellent pitching, but Los Angeles has a clear advantage on offense.

Betting Pick: Tampa Bay +155

Los Angeles should win this series. But the price is a bit too steep here with Glasnow on the mound, and it wouldn’t be surprising to see the Dodgers have a bit of a letdown game after leaving it all on the field in three straight elimination games. This contest offers some nice value on the Rays.

Shark Bites
  • Tampa Bay is 5-1 in its last 6 games vs NL opponents.
  • Los Angeles is 13-3 over its last 16 games.
  • The UNDER is 8-1 in Tampa Bay’s last 9 games.