The Oakland Athletics (33-20, 13-12 away) travel south along Interstate 5 to take on the Los Angeles Dodgers (38-16, 16-8 home) in the first of a three-game interleague series in the final week of the regular season. Even with their proximity to each other, this will be the first meeting between the two teams this season.
Both teams have safely punched their tickets to the 2020 postseason. The first pitch of Tuesday night’s contest is scheduled for 9:30 p.m. EST at Dodger Stadium. The Dodgers are the money line favorite and are plus-money +105 on the run line.
What to Know – Oakland Athletics
The Athletics enter the final week of play with a six-game cushion in the American League West standings. Oakland enters Tuesday night just 1.5 games behind the Tampa Bay Rays for the best record in the AL. After the three-game series in Los Angeles, the Athletics will battle the Seattle Mariners in a four-game set to close out the regular season.
Frankie Montas (3-4, 5.86 ERA, 1.53 WHIP) takes the mound for the A’s. Montas has had an underwhelming season after a stellar 2019 champaign, collected just three victories in nine starts. The right-hander has tossed 43 innings this year, allowing 28 earned runs on 46 hits with 44 strikeouts. Montas is 2-3 in road starts this season.
Oakland’s offense took a big hit when Matt Chapman went down for the season due to injury. The hard-hitting infielder had blasted ten home runs and driven in 25 RBI over 37 games played. Matt Olson isn’t hitting above the Mendoza Line, but the slugger has recorded a team-high 14 home runs and 42 RBI this year. Outfielder Stephen Piscotty is second on the team with 29 runs driven in.
What to Know – Los Angeles Dodgers
Los Angeles hasn’t skipped a beat from last season, putting together the best record in baseball. The Dodgers have totaled a +119 run differential this season, 50 runs higher than the nearest team. Los Angeles gets to stay in L.A. for the remainder of the season with the crosstown Angels coming to Chavez Ravine at the end of the week.
Dustin May (1-1, 2.68 ERA, 1.09 WHIP) heads to the bump for the host. The 23-year old has pitched spectacularly this season with over 47 innings of work. May has collected 34 strikeouts and allowed just 14 runs on 40 hits. Typically throwing on a pitch count, May has not yet recorded a victory at home.
The Dodgers have five starters that have hit ten or more home runs during this pandemic-shortened season. Mookie Betts leads all Dodgers with 16 home runs as well as a team-high 39 RBI. Corey Seager has put together an excellent bounce-back season sporting a team-high .311 batting average with 13 home runs and 37 RBI.
The Pick is In
These teams are locked into the playoffs and looking to build momentum as they enter the postseason. The Dodgers have been lights out, winning six of their last eight games. Los Angeles has the advantage in both the offensive and pitching matchups, and it is hard to believe that Montas will be able to slow down this Dodgers lineup.
The question will be how long the leash is for May as L.A. tries to keep him fresh and healthy for a postseason run. Expect the Dodgers to come out on top in this one with a comfortable margin of victory. Don’t be hesitant to side with the Dodgers on the run line.