- The Los Angeles Dodgers’ odds to win the World Series shortened to -455 following their 8-3 win over the Tampa Bay Rays in Game 1
- LA was a -177 favorite when the World Series matchup was first set
- It’s been 32 years since the Dodgers won the World Series
The Los Angeles Dodgers couldn’t have been much more impressive in Game 1 of the 2020 World Series. Cody Bellinger homered; Clayton Kershaw checked the Tampa Bay Rays on two hits over six innings; and the Dodgers took Game 1 of the World Series by an 8-3 score.
The dominant performance led to LA’s World Series odds improving from -177 to -455.
Rays vs Dodgers World Series Odds
Odds taken Oct. 20 at DraftKings.
Game 2 of the best-of-seven series goes Wednesday, with an 8:08 pm ET first pitch. The entire series is being played at the neutral site of Globe Life Field in Arlington, Texas. LA will be the designated home team again in Game 2 (along with Games 5 and 7, if they’re needed).
Dodgers Flex Their Muscles
The biggest perceived difference between these two clubs heading into the best-of-seven series was on offense. That disparity was certainly on display in Game 1.
LA, which averaged 5.82 runs per game this season, a full run better than Tampa Bay, pounded Rays starter Tyler Glasnow for six earned runs in 4.1 innings. Bellinger and Mookie Betts homered.
Mookie Betts is the 2nd player in World Series history with a walk and multiple stolen bases in an inning, joining Babe Ruth in 1921.
Ruth did so in the 5th inning of Game 2 of the 1921 World Series against the Giants. pic.twitter.com/wN6fQaO9sk
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) October 21, 2020
The Dodgers slashed four extra-base hits and stole four bases. They became the first team to swipe three bases in one inning of a World Series game since the 1912 New York Giants. Betts is the first player to accumulate two runs, two stolen bases, and a homer in a World Series game.
Meanwhile, LA ace Kershaw, whose postseason struggles are well documented, found his mojo. He allowed just one run on a two-out solo homer by Kevin Kiermaier.
[email protected] silenced the doubters. #WorldSeries pic.twitter.com/dQkty5gIVT
— MLB (@MLB) October 21, 2020
The three-time NL Cy Young Award winner and former MVP struck out eight against one walk to improve to 12-12 in the playoffs.
Perhaps the most puzzling choice of Game 1 was the decision of Rays manager Kevin Cash to stay with an ineffective Glasnow for so long. Glasnow threw 112 pitches and walked six.
It was almost as if Cash was giving up on the game, determined to save his bullpen for Game 2. Lefty Blake Snell (2-2, 3.20 ERA) gets the nod on the hill for the Rays in the second game of the World Series.
I am dying to know the strategy by Cash. Pulls a dominating Morton after 66 pitches. Now Glasnow, struggling, is in there after 111 pitches.
— Peter King (@peter_king) October 21, 2020
Snell was effective in two ALCS starts against Houston Astros. However, he’s yet to go beyond the fifth inning in any start this season, so Cash is aware he’ll need his bullpen to deliver the goods.
LA is countering with a bullpen game against Snell. That has to have bettors leaning toward the Rays in Game 2. With the likelihood of Rays de facto ace Charlie Morton toeing the rubber in Game 3, it’s far too early to be counting out Tampa Bay.
Blake Snell has now gone 19 straight starts without going 6 IP, the longest active streak in MLB among non-openers (regular season and playoffs).
The last time Snell completed 6 innings was July 21, 2019. pic.twitter.com/cTDI3vgbn3
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) October 16, 2020
In fact, at the moment, it’s very tempting to jump on the Rays at +333. But in order to make their mark on the series, they’ll need to show some offensive life in Game 2.
They hit just .187 as a collective in Game 1. Playoff hero Randy Arozarena was 0-for-3.