New York Mets vs. Los Angeles Dodgers: Preview, Prediction & Odds - Aug. 21, 2021

by Chuck Sommers

Game time: 4:05 p.m. ET
Venue: Dodger Stadium, Los Angeles, CA
Where to watch: WPIX, SportsNet LA

Season-to-date (entering Friday)
Mets: 60-61 (3rd place, NL East)
Dodgers: 76-46 (2nd place, NL West)

Recent form (entering Friday)
Mets: 4-6 in last 10
Dodgers: 9-1 in last 10, won seven straight

Projected lineup


Mets:
Brandon Nimmo (L) CF
Jeff McNeil (L) 2B
Pete Alonso (R) 1B
Michael Conforto (L) RF
J.D. Davis (R) 3B
Dominic Smith (L) LF
Jonathan Villar (S) SS
Patrick Mazeika (L) C
Rich Hill (L) P

Dodgers:
Trea Turner (R) 2B
Max Muncy (L) 1B
Justin Turner (R) 3B
Corey Seager (L) SS
Will Smith (R) C
AJ Pollock (R) LF
Chris Taylor (R) RF
Cody Bellinger (L) CF
Max Scherzer (R) P

Odds at USA Sportsbooks


DraftKings: Dodgers -290, Mets +230
BetMGM: Dodgers -250, Mets +200
FanDuel: Dodgers -295, Mets +240

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Mets - Dodgers preview


The Los Angeles Dodgers and New York Mets will continue their four-game series at Dodger Stadium on Saturday with the third game of the installment.

At the time of publishing, Game 2 has yet to be fully entrenched yet, but the Dodgers are sending Walker Buehler. You can catch our preview for that game here.

The Dodgers come in with a seven-game winning streak and enter Friday 2.5 games back of the San Francisco Giants for first place in the National League West. They’re likely going to be the most dominant wild card team ever at this rate. Los Angeles is 9.5 games up as the first wild card.

Game 1 resulted in a 4-1 victory for the Dodgers on Thursday night by way of seven -- yes, seven -- relievers holding the New York offense to six hits. Trea Turner went 2-for-4 with an RBI. The All-Star second baseman has batted .304 in 46 at-bats since being traded from the Washington Nationals at the trade deadline.

Speaking of trade acquisitions from the Nation’s Capital, the Dodgers will send Max Scherzer to the mound. This will be Scherzer’s fourth start with the Dodgers; he’s won two of three (2-0) to go with a 2.20 ERA. Scherzer is the impromptu ace with Clayton Kershaw continuing to improve from his forearm injury, and now dealing with Julio Urias’ calf injury. The fact they’re 30 games above .500 says a lot to where they are with injuries piling up.

The Mets are not fully out of the woods yet when it comes to a playoff run. Despite losing six of their last 10, the Mets are still within five games back of the Atlanta Braves for first in the National League East.

But the problem remains that the Mets have continued to struggle at the plate. This time, it was the top of the order that did its job on Thursday; Pete Alonso, Michael Conforto and J.D. Davis combined for four of those hits. Even as somewhat solid of a solid start as Taijuan Walker gave them (6 innings and four earned runs), it’s not enough for that push the Mets need to get to October.

The Mets offense needs to pick up now that Javier Baez is on the IL, but it might be too little, too late. New York’s inability to string consistency has been their problem like we’ve talked about the past few weeks.

Rich Hill is expected to take the mound for New York.

Betting trends


The Mets are 22-26 against teams with winning records and 7-14 in the second half.

New York’s 12-23 when facing a National League team that has a collective batting average of .255 or worse during the second half of the season.

The Dodgers have put together a 39-20 mark against teams with a losing record.

Teams are 7-2 when Scherzer starts against a team with a losing record (+3.9).

Prediction

The talent trumps all. And we expect Scherzer to have another big outing with his new team. It's hard to bet against Scherzer unless the bats cool off. Dodgers win 6-1.

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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.

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