MLB Baseball: Los Angeles Dodgers vs. San Francisco Giants Preview, Prediction & Odds - Sept. 3, 2021

by Chuck Sommers

Game time: 9:45 p.m. ET
Venue: Oracle Park, San Francisco, CA
Where to watch: SportsNet LA, KNTV, MLB Network

Opening Odds at USA Sportsbooks

DraftKings: Dodgers -115, Giants -105
Caesars: NL

Season record
Dodgers: 85-49 (T-1st place, NL West)
Giants: 85-49 (T-1st place, NL West)

Larry Ness closed August having earned +$21,301 (at $100/unit) in MLB since Opening Day. He opened September with a 2-1 Wednesday (+$857), highlighted by his 10* win on Boston over the Tampa Bay Rays. 'Light' Thursday MLB card but you "won't want to miss" Larry's 10* Division Total of the Year (all O/U plays 8-4-1 in August MLB).

Dodgers - Giants preview and analysis

Recent form
Dodgers: 7-3 in last 10, won 3 straight
Giants: 5-5 in last 10 

Welcome to the closest thing we can get to a heavyweight fight in Major League Baseball.

The winner of this series will take the outright lead in the National League West. The loser will begin an uphill climb with three weeks to go in the regular season.

Friday’s game between the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Francisco Giants is their first meeting since July 29. Things have changed a tad since then. Not only did the Giants’ long run of first place in the NL West finally come to an end, but the Dodgers have since added Max Scherzer and Trea Turner to the mix to bolster an already-stacked pitching rotation and a reliable force at the top of the lineup.

Both teams come in with an 85-49 record after the Giants defeated the Milwaukee Brewers 5-1 in the series finale at Oracle Park on Thursday. The Giants ended their four-game losing streak and were able to salvage a victory against the dangerous Brewers to avoid a four-game sweep.

That losing streak knocked the Giants out of a four-month-long process of being in first place, while the Dodgers swept the Atlanta Braves at Dodger Stadium to get to this point.

While both teams have talented offenses, the pitching is going to dominate this series. Friday is set to have a thrilling opener when the Dodgers send David Price to the mound against Giants right-hander Anthony DeSclafani.

The Dodgers will turn to aces Julio Urias and Walker Buehler for the Saturday and Sunday meetings, so the pressure is on Price to deliver a gem that is reminiscent of his World Series-winning days. Price is 4-2 this season with a 3.88 ERA and has not won since July 4 against the Washington Nationals.

DeSclafani is not talked about with the likes of Logan Webb and Kevin Gausman, but he’s still a reliable No. 3 with an 11-6 mark, a 3.38 ERA and a WHIP of 1.11.

Imagine if this ends up being the Division Series matchup because of the wild card stipulation. Can you imagine not getting five great pitching matchups between Dodger Stadium and Oracle Park? What a time for this series.


You should feel more comfortable with the Dodgers as the weekend progresses. If L.A. turns to the bullpen as they have in Price’s recent starts, it could get ugly. The Giants have timely bats that can make any staff pay. Expect the Giants to make a statement in this first one.

Betting trends

The Dodgers are 6-11 when the money line is between +125 and -125.

Following losing four or five of their last six games, the Giants are 5-1 (+4.4 net games).

San Francisco is 16-9 this season when DeSclafani starts.

Players to watch

Dodgers: Trea Turner has turned into a lethal weapon at the top of the order. The star shortstop is batting .375 in his last 16 games, which the Dodgers are 13-3 in that stretch.

Giants: If there was a time for Buster Posey to start swinging the bat and connecting on some pitches, it’s now. Since Aug. 13, Posey is batting .137 and has struck out 18 times.

Projected lineup

Trea Turner (R) 2B
Max Muncy (L) 1B
Mookie Betts (R) RF
Justin Turner (R) 3B
Corey Seager (L) SS
AJ Pollock (R) LF
Chris Taylor (R) CF
Austin Barnes (R) C
David Price (L) P

Austin Slater (R) RF
Kris Bryant (R) 3B
Brandon Belt (L) 1B
Darin Ruf (R) LF
Thairo Estrada (R) 2B
Brandon Crawford (L) SS
Curt Casali (R) C
Mauricio Dubon (R) CF
Anthony DeSclafani (R) P

Statistical leaders

Batting average: Justin Turner (.281)
Hits: Justin Turner (123)
Home runs: Max Muncy (30)
RBI: Max Muncy (78)
Stolen bases: Chris Taylor (13)
Wins: Julio Urias (15)
Saves: Kenley Jansen (30)
ERA: Walker Buehler (2.05)

Batting average: Buster Posey (.303)
Hits: Brandon Crawford (111)
Home runs: Mike Yastrzemski (21)
RBI: Brandon Crawford (74)
Stolen bases: Austin Slater (12)
Wins: Kevin Gausman (12)
Saves: Jake McGee (29)
ERA: Kevin Gausman (2.52)

Don't miss our champion handicappers' free picks and expert baseball picks today. And if you enjoyed this Los Angeles Dodgers - San Francisco Giants prediction, be sure to drop by every day for our daily MLB projections and previews.

Chuck Sommers

About the Author:

Chuck Sommers has camped outside of sportsbooks since he can remember, learning the tricks and nuances of the trade. He still has nightmares of betting $5,000 on the Raiders in the Tuck Rule game but has since turned that to 25 years of veteran handicapping greatness. You can find him mostly in the shadows at the Red Rock or Aliante casinos wondering if the over is cashing on any given Sunday.

All photographic images used for editorial content have been licensed from the Associated Press.

© 2022 Al McMordie's All Rights Reserved.