The Los Angeles Dodgers and the San Francisco Giants get to renew their storied rivalry tonight, and the stakes couldn’t be any higher. It’s game 5 of the NLDS with a date in the ACLS against Atlanta Braves, the prize that awaits. These two teams have won 109 games apiece when you combine the regular season and the playoffs. Most would say this series should’ve taken place next round, with the records both of these teams achieved. Most would say this should be a best of 7, and not a best of five. I say those most are wrong.
What if this series was between Chicago and say Arizona. Would most be saying the same thing? I doubt it. Every year, when a New York or Los Angeles team is in this position, be it the wildcard play in, or this round of five, pundits say changes need to be made. Each team knows the rule of playoffs at the start of the year. It’s an equal playing surface each year…..but I digress, let’s get back to tonight’s game.
Tonight it is going to be bullpen by the committee for The Los Angeles Dodgers, and they start reliever Cory Knebel, but will more than likely use Julio Urias in the bottom of the second inning. San Francisco is going to counter with Logan Webb, who pitched 7 and 2/3 scoreless innings in game 1. The Dodgers are going to try to cut down on the platoon possibilities of the Giants who went heavy right-handed bats against Urias in game 2.
The bats have been silenced for the most part in the series, for the Dodgers, however. They did awaken in game 4 in Chavez Revine, but can they solve Logan Webb. Even if Webb proves to not be effective, Kevin Gausman will be ready with full rest just in case. Max Scherzer will not be available in the bullpen…at least that is what Dave Roberts, the Dodgers skipper says. But when it gets down to crunch time, who knows.
It’s been fun watching this band of old-timers win for San Francisco. Los Angeles obviously has more talent on paper. Both teams have matched each other, win for win, game to game. Cody Bellinger, MVP front runner, Justin and Trae Turner, Mookie Betts, not to mention that vaunted pitching staff. You’d think the Dodgers would be the favorite, actually, I think they are -110. But I think it will come down to a freak play or something odd. Wild Pitch, past ball….error….but who will make it? I am going to say……Giants in a close game, ending at 1:30 am ET. 5-4 in a walk-off. Should be a fun game to watch! Baseball’s time to shine!
~Lou Gamelin, 12oz Sports Writer & Talk Show Host on Tuesday nights at 8 pm ET