Dodgers vs. Reds Pick MLB – September 8th

There is a decent chance tonight’s baseball game will get lost in the NFL blitz of the day, but if you are flipping around during Sunday Night Football, you might want to check out some Sunday Night Baseball as well.  Tonight’s ESPN game is an absolutely fantastic one, and a possible NL Playoff preview a few weeks early.

Let’s get back on the winning track and finish the week off with a winner – and let’s dig into tonight’s fantastic matchup between the Dodgers and Reds.

Today’s Free Pick:

Los Angeles Dodgers -121 at Cincinnati Reds +115 (Total 6.5)

Clayton Kershaw vs. Homer Bailey

These two pitchers met earlier this season and it was pretty fantastic action.  Homer raised his game and was “no-hitter level” Homer instead of the sometimes erratic and volatile pitcher that popped up often in his first four seasons in the bigs and went pitch for pitch with the presumptive NL CY Young winner, eventually falling 2-1.  I’d expect Kershaw to be on his game tonight after a rough outing last time out, but don’t discount Homer Bailey, especially at home.

Kershaw was roughed up for five runs in five innings against the Rockies.  So is he vulnerable tonight?  Well, consider it was his FIRST non-quality start since the All-Star break and in his eight prior starts he allowed just SEVEN runs.  That’s about as lights-out as starting pitching gets, so to expect a second straight off-outing is pretty unlikely.

Meanwhile, Home Bailey has been quietly churning out #1 starter-like performances lately.  In his last five starts he has a 2.42 ERA and has earned the win in each game.  In his last three outings he has a sterling 1.33 ERA with a WHIP of just 0.89.  He has pitched 20.2 innings, which is huge for shortening the distance between starter and Aroldis Chapman.

I like this game to follow the trend these two teams have played to all season; low-scoring and tense pitcher’s duels.  In their previous six meetings this season the UNDER is 5-0-1.  Tonight’s number is set pretty low at 6.5, but I still like it to stay beneath the low ceiling.  Both pitchers have the stuff to dominate, and I expect this game to be managed very much like the playoff game these two will be experiencing in just a few short weeks.

The Reds aren’t a bad value at +115.  They’ve won five in row with Homer on the mound, including a pair of wins over a good St. Louis team and the Dodgers are just a surprising 17-12 in games Kershaw has started.  But my official play tonight is the UNDER.

Enjoy the game if you can break away from a little football…

Free Pick:  Run TOTAL UNDER 6.5

Chris Scheeren / Author