The Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres are at it again on Saturday in the most highly anticipated series of the season thus far. The Dodgers got the party started with a 11-6 win at Petco Park on Friday evening in extra innings. Going into the 12th of a 6-6 game, the Dodgers scored 5 runs in the inning to pull away for the win.
It was an entertaining game that saw the Dodgers take a 6-5 lead in the 9th, blow it in the bottom half, and then took care of a depleted Padres’ bullpen in the 12th. The Padres burned through ten pitchers in that game, nine out of the bullpen following 3.2 innings of work from Ryan Weathers.
That was the game plan for the Padres. They wanted a bullpen game with Weathers not going more than 3 innings on the bump. Weathers allowed just 1 hit and no runs during that time, but the Padres stuck to the plan. If they knew that the game was going to go to 12 innings, I don’t think the Padres would have pulled Weathers so early.
Walker Buehler lasted 6 innings with 7 hits and 2 earned runs conceded. David Price was used as the closer for the Dodgers, as he made his first save in 13 years. Kenley Jansen was unavailable after blowing the game in the 9th inning. He might have actually helped the Dodgers out in a weird way going into Saturday.
The Padres’ bullpen is taxed after having to work overtime last night. The fact that the Padres had a bullpen game doesn’t help matters. Fortunately, the Padres are putting an ace on the bump to start things out on Saturday night. Yu Darvish will be called on to make his fourth start as a member of the padres this evening.
The veteran spent his last three years in Chicago with the Cubs, and is coming off a career-high in 2020. Darvish has gone from overrated to solid to an ace more than once in his career. He’s heard just about it all from the public and media. If you go through his career, which started in 2012 with the Rangers, you can hear just about every opinion regarding the guy. He will have a big assignment with Clayton Kershaw countering with the Dodgers tonight. Head below for our free Dodgers vs. Padres pick on April 17, 2021.
Los Angeles Dodgers vs. San Diego Padres MLB Betting Odds:
Dodgers vs. Padres Prediction:
Yu Darvish had a standout season for the Cubs during the shortened 60-game campaign. We don’t know if Darvish would have regressed during a full season, but he held up well in 12 starts. Darvish posted an ERA of 2.01 and 0.96 WHIP through 76 innings of work. In his first season with the Cubs in 2018, Darvish appeared in just eight games before leaving with an injury.
He recorded an ERA of 4.95 and 1.43 WHIP through 40 innings for a disappointing start to his career with the Cubs. This was a year after Darvish was a rental for the Dodgers in 2017. Darvish had a 3.44 ERA and 1.15 WHIP in nine starts with the Dodgers. The idea was to trade for Darvish to give their rotation more depth in the playoffs, but they had to wait to finally win the World Series.
Darvish is off to a decent start with a 3.06 ERA and 0.96 WHIP with the Padres in three starts. It was not a pleasant debut for him with the Padres, though. The Diamondbacks hit Darvish for 8 hits and 4 earned runs through 4.2 innings. He was tagged for 2 long balls as well, with Darvish exiting the game with a 7.71 ERA. Two productive performances against the Giants and Pirates helped bring his numbers down, but the Dodgers are going to be a much tougher out than those two offenses.
He might have to go long in this game against the Dodgers. If Darvish has early problems like he did against the Diamondbacks, the Padres are going to have to depend on a tired bullpen. That doesn’t seem like a good plan against this Dodgers’ offense. The Dodgers are second in the major leagues with 6.03 runs scored per 9 innings. They are leading with a .282 batting average and a .861 OPS. The Padres might have Fernando Tatis Jr. and Manny Machado, but they don’t have the depth of the Dodgers.
Clayton Kershaw will be in the saddle for the Dodgers on the bump tonight. Kershaw is off to a solid start with an ERA of 2.89 and 1.07 WHIP. He is looking to stay hot following yet another dominant campaign for Kershaw. Kershaw posted an ERA of 2.16 and 0.84 WHIP through 58.1 innings a season ago. The Dodgers are second in the majors with just 3.3 runs allowed per 9 innings as a pitching staff. This current roster of the Padres is hitting .190 against Kershaw in 111 innings. In a game that could be tight and come down to the bullpens, I feel more confident in the Dodgers tonight.