The San Francisco Giants are just one win away from the NLCS ahead of Tuesday’s game against the Los Angeles Dodgers. Four pitchers combined for a shutout in San Francisco’s 1-0 win in Game 3 on Monday night, putting them one win away from knocking off their rivals and advancing to the NLCS.
Of course, to avoid going home for a decisive Game 5, the Giants will have to win Tuesday as road underdogs.
The current betting odds for Game 4 have the Dodgers favored with a moneyline of -155, while San Francisco’s moneyline is listed at +135. But since the Dodgers haven’t officially announced a starting pitcher as of Tuesday morning, those lines could change. There is also an over/under of 7.5 runs.
Tony on the Mound
The Giants will send Anthony DeSclafani to the mound in Game 4 in what will be his first career playoff appearance. It was a great year for DeSclafani, who went 13-7 with a 3.17 ERA over his 31 starts. He also gave up just five runs over his last 21.2 innings, so he finished strong down the stretch, although he hasn’t pitched at all in 11 days.
DeSclafani will be facing a Los Angeles lineup that’s been the definition of hot and cold during the postseason. The Dodgers have been shut out in Games 1 and 3 of the NLDS, although they pounded out nine runs in Game 2, showcasing what they’re capable of doing offensively. Mookie Betts and Chris Taylor have stood out during the playoffs thus far, but outside of a couple of home runs, the rest of the LA lineup has struggled.
Also, the last time the Dodgers saw DeSclafani in early September, they were shut out over six innings, managing just two hits. Of course, the Los Angeles lineup was able to do some damage against him early in the season. While it’s in somewhat of a limited sample, Gavin Lux, Corey Seager, and Will Smith all have good career numbers against DeSclafani.
A Second Tony on the Mound?
As mentioned, the Dodgers haven’t officially announced a Game 4 starter, although Tony Gonsolin is a safe bet to appear at some point with LA hoping that he can give them some length. Injuries limited Gonsolin to just 15 appearances this season, although he went 4-1 with a 3.23 ERA. The caveat is that he was just 0-2 with an 8.68 ERA in his four postseason appearances last season.
Meanwhile, the Giants haven’t exactly gotten their offense going during this series despite leading 2-1. San Francisco had just three hits in Game 3, although an Evan Longoria home run was enough to get the win. Outside of Longoria’s home run, hits by players other than Brandon Crawford, Buster Posey, and Kris Bryant have been almost non-existent, so the Giants will need some help from their supporting cast in Game 4.
Of course, the Giants scored three runs on five hits over 3.1 innings when they faced Gonsolin in July. However, most of their roster doesn’t have more than one or two career at-bats against him. Plus, the Dodgers are likely to have a short leash on all pitchers, so every San Francisco hitter could face a different pitcher in every at-bat in Game 4.
The Saga Continues
Despite losing Game 3, the Dodgers continue to have the more potent lineup in this series. Los Angeles is at home and has to play with the desperation of an elimination game. That’s enough to bet on the Dodgers winning Game 4 and forcing a Game 5.
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