Johnny Cueto (0-0, 4.97 ERA) vs. Clayton Kershaw (1-0, 0.00 ERA)
The Los Angeles Dodgers made easy work of the San Francisco Giants on Friday night. They cruised past the Giants for a 7-2 win on a night that we saw Mookie Betts return to the lineup. Betts had a productive night at the dish, as he connected on 2-for-4 hitting and an RBI. Will Smith led the Dodgers with 2 RBI and a home run. When your catcher is providing power numbers, you know it has to be a good night.
If 23-year-old Julio Urias can maintain the form he’s in and stay healthy, the Dodgers are going to be doubly dangerous. Their rotation is just far too deep for other teams to match. There will eventually be a day that they shake the choking tag and with all of the talent they’ve accumulated, it can’t be before long that the Dodgers are celebrating a World Series, right? They likely won’t have the Houston Astros to worry about in the World Series.
While the Astros won’t be there to cheat, the New York Yankees would prove to be a challenge. I don’t care for the Yankees or Astros, but that would make for one entertaining World Series. On paper, they are the best in the major leagues, but that’s why they play the games. While Betts is back for the Dodgers, they lost Corey Seager to lower-back discomfort.
Seager recently made his return before Betts, but didn’t last very long before having to sit down again. There are some teams that wouldn’t be able to lose a guy like Betts and Seager and still have success, but it’s different for the Dodgers in Los Angeles. They can still put a lineup together that can hit the ball. Dave Roberts has the easiest job in baseball when he has to come up with daily lineups.
Clayton Kershaw missed his first start of the season in the opener, but has returned to the mound since. Dustin May ended up pitching in that game against the Giants, so no damage was done. Kershaw was sharp in his 2020 debut and hopes to build on that performance today. Cueto will be back in the saddle for the Giants in this one. Head below for our free San Francisco Giants vs. LA Dodgers pick for August 8, 2020.
San Francisco Giants vs. LA Dodgers MLB Baseball Betting Odds:
San Francisco Giants vs. LA Dodgers Prediction:
The rest of the league was likely hoping that the Kershaw injury was going to keep him out for the season, at least the World Series contenders. However, Kershaw is around and was strong in his first performance of the season. He slowed down the Diamondbacks for just 3 hits and no runs in 5.2 innings.
It was a terrific season debut by Kershaw, as he left the game with an ERA of 0.00 and 0.53 WHIP. We all know what Kershaw brings to the table. For his talent, though, last season was a bit of a down year with an ERA of 3.03 and 1.19 WHIP. It’s the first year since his rookie campaign in 2008 that Kershaw had an ERA above 3.00. Overall in his career, Kershaw has a 2.44 ERA and 1.19 WHIP after entering the majors in 2008.
Kershaw has seen a lot of Giants’ hitters throughout his career. He’s handled them well, with the Giants hitting just 3 home runs off him in 339 at-bats. The Giants are hitting .217 with a .245 OBP in that stretch. That accounts for current Giants on the roster.
Expect to see Kershaw to be in fine form for the Dodgers once again on Saturday. I’m not too concerned with Kershaw running into problems, but if he does, the Dodgers’ offense should be able to handle Johnny Cueto. He enters today with an ERA of 4.97 and 1.58 WHIP in three games across 12.2 innings.
While Cueto hasn’t been all that strong, he did pitch well against the Dodgers in the season opener. He held the Dodgers to 1 run in 4 innings. However, Cueto was chased out of the game after 4 innings. He was getting into problems and the Giants didn’t waste time pulling him out of the game.
Cueto responded for a poor showing against the Padres, as he left after allowing 4 runs in 3.2 innings. He appeared in just four games a season ago because of an injury. Cueto posted an ERA of 5.06 and 1.25 WHIP. In his most recent full season, Cueto recorded an ERA of 4.52 and 0.91 WHIP in 2017. I certainly don’t believe he’s the same pitcher that he was in his prime years with the Reds. I’m behind the Dodgers for the second consecutive day on Saturday.