Moneyline: Dodgers (-116) Brewers (+106)
Starting Pitchers: Dodgers (Kershaw) vs. Brewers (Estrada)
Remember a few weeks ago when everyone was talking about how tight the NL Central was? The Milwaukee Brewers have made that a distant memory. The St. Louis Cardinals are now seven games back, and everyone else in the division is completely out of it. That is because the Milwaukee Brewers have absolutely played the best baseball in the major leagues over the past month. Milwaukee has taken the first three games of this series from the Dodgers. This time they’ll have to beat the Dodgers ace, Clayton Kershaw. Can the Brewers finish off a four game sweep?
Clayton Kershaw is quickly becoming one of the best pitchers in baseball. In previous years his main problem was that he was inefficient with his pitches, but he has improved on that immensely this year. The best evidence of that is Kershaw’s WHIP, which is just 1.03 this season. Matt Kemp continues to have an amazing season, and Andre Ethier has been very good as well. Other than those two, the Dodgers have struggled mightily on offense. Los Angeles averages 3.63 runs per game, which is 28th in the majors. James Loney and Casey Blake have both had a disappointing year thus far for the Dodgers.
Marco Estrada is making only his fifth start of the season on Thursday. Estrada has a 4.46 ERA this year, but most of his appearances have been out of the bullpen. The Brewers have been red hot largely because of their offense, which has been tremendous. Ryan Braun is batting .329 with 23 homers and 78 RBI’s. Prince Fielder is hitting .302 with 27 homers and 89 RBI’s. Is there a better tandem in the middle of the order anywhere in baseball? Corey Hart, Nyjer Morgan, and Jonathan Lucroy are all having good seasons as well. The Brewers have really shored up their bullpen of late, and they are tough to beat if you are playing from behind.
The Dodgers are 6-1 in Kershaw’s last 7 starts, but the Brewers are on fire right now. Kershaw has a more mediocre 3.73 ERA on the road, and at plus money I think the Brewers ML is worth a play.
Free MLB Pick: Brewers ML
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