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Last Updated Aug 30, 2021, 13:49 PM

Game 3 Predictions & Odds: Dodgers vs. Rays

  • October 23, 2020
  • By Tom Wilkinson

We had a rarity during the 2020 MLB postseason on Thursday. Neither the Tampa Bay Rays nor the Los Angeles Dodgers had yet to experience an off day in the middle of a series.

Both teams surely appreciated the time off, but now it’s time to return to action on Friday. The Rays will be the nominal hosts in Game 3 on Friday, October 23, shortly after 8:00 p.m. ET, and it will be broadcast on FOX.

World Series Game 3 Preview and Predictions

Betting Resources

Game 3 Betting Odds - Dodgers vs. Rays

Line Movements

Odds Subject to Change

Game 2 Recap

Tampa Bay evened the series with a 6-4 victory over LA on Wednesday. Blake Snell was masterful until the fifth inning, and the Rays’ bullpen got the job done from there, allowing only three hits and two earned runs in the final 4.1 innings.

Brandon Lowe was the hero of the day for the Rays. Lowe has struggled throughout the postseason, but he opened the scoring with a solo home run off Tony Gonsolin in the first inning and hit a two-run blast off Dustin May in the fifth inning.

For the second straight game in this series, the 'over' tickets cashed for the game and in the first-five inning wagers as well.

Tampa Bay connected on both of those wagers as well, leading 5-2 after five innings and prop bettors looking for early action also saw the Rays score in the first inning, which may have helped or hurt your wagers.

If you follow our 2020 Playoffs Betting Results, you can see that the run-line favorites have been a great return for bettors while those tinkering in the totals market have seen great back-and-forth decisions.

Game 3 Pitching Analysis

Starting Pitchers

  • Walker Buehler
  • Charlie Morton

The Dodgers will send their ace to the mound on Friday. Walker Buehler has been electric for each of the last two years. He came into his own in 2019 with a 14-4 record coupled with a 3.26 ERA and a 1.04 WHIP. Buehler showed excellent command with a 5.8 K/BB, and while his walk rate is up, his WHIP was even better in 2020. He finished the season with a 3.44 ERA and a 0.95 WHIP in 36.2 innings of action.

Buehler has been great in four playoff appearances over the last month. He has allowed just 15 hits in 19 innings of work, striking out 29 batters and posting a 1.89 ERA. However, he has had some issues with control. He has walked 11 batters during that span, and that may be due to his blister issues. Buehler has been dealing with multiple blisters on his pitching hand for the last month.

Charlie Morton will head to the bump for the Rays. Uncle Charlie has been a reliable postseason starter throughout his long career. He has appeared in 12 playoff games, and he boasts a 7-2 record with a 2.84 ERA and a 1.16 WHIP. His command has improved in October with a 9.6 K/9 in the postseason, and Morton has won all three of his starts for the Rays in these playoffs.

Morton faced the Dodgers in the 2017 World Series when he was on the Houston Astros, and he was lights out in two games. He posted a 1.74 ERA and a 0.58 WHIP in 10.1 innings of work, and he closed the door on the Dodgers in Game 7 of that series.

Postseason Team Records with Pitchers

Dodgers - Walker Buehler (3-1)

  • Oct. 17 - L.A. 3 Atlanta 1
  • Oct. 12 - L.A. 1 Atlanta 5
  • Oct. 5 - L.A. 5 San Diego 1
  • Sept. 30 - L.A. 4 - San Diego 2

Rays - Charlie Morton (3-0)

  • Oct. 17 - Tampa Bay 4 Houston 2
  • Oct. 12 - Tampa Bay 4 Houston 2
  • Oct. 7 - Tampa Bay 8 Houston 4

Game 3 Bullpen Analysis

Rest brings Rewards

The day off means that both bullpens will have a little extra time to recharge.

That is a little more beneficial to the Dodgers, as they used six relievers in Game 2 after using four relievers in Game 1. Dylan Floro, Victor Gonzalez, Alex Wood, and Dustin May might not see much action since all four pitchers have thrown at least 24 pitches in the first two games, and postseason standout Julio Urias won’t be available since he is starting Game 4 on Saturday night.

Tampa Bay used all three of its best relievers on Wednesday with Nick Anderson and Pete Fairbanks each seeing a lot of work.

Diego Castillo had a three-pitch outing, so he is likely to be one of the first arms out of the bullpen, and either John Curtiss or Ryan Thompson will probably take the hill too.


Players to Watch - Dodgers

Corey Seager’s great postseason continues to get better. Seager became the first shortstop to hit seven home runs in a single postseason after his solo blast off Fairbanks in the eighth inning in Game 2. He was the only Dodger with multiple hits on Wednesday, picking up two of LA’s five total base knocks, and he currently has a 1.161 OPS in these playoffs.

The Dodgers have the best one to six line-up in the majors, and that has paid huge dividends already in this series.

Manager Dave Roberts has not tinkered with the batting order, and his stars continue to answer the call with all six players getting on base at least once in each game against the Rays. Seager has been the best, reaching base five times, but the consistency down the line has been impressive.

Players to Watch - Rays

It took 16 games for Brandon Lowe to finally make an impact in the postseason. Lowe had just six hits and one home run prior to Game 2 on Wednesday night, but Kevin Cash has stuck with his young star. He was rewarded with his two home run outing, and the Rays are hoping he can build off that. To highlight his struggles these playoffs, Lowe only has a .476 OPS after those long balls.

Randy Arozarena has made a lot of history over the last month, and he added to his list of achievements on Wednesday. He recorded his 22nd hit of the postseason, tying Derek Jeter for the most hits in one postseason by a rookie. Arozarena has carried the Rays to the World Series with seven home runs and a 1.222 OPS. The next highest mark on the team is Manuel Margot with five home runs and a .962 OPS.

Tampa Bay is one of the biggest examples of the three true outcomes era of baseball. Collectively, the Rays have struck out in nearly 30 percent of their at-bats this postseason, but they also have 28 home runs and 52 walks. This team is only hitting .213, yet they are making the most of the long ball.

After watching the first two games in this series, Seager and Lowe are both listed at 11/1 odds to win the World Series Most Valuable Player award.

World Series Game 3 Predictions

The two previous games in this series have gone over, but the under is the right side for Game 3. Morton is a reliable postseason starter that won’t let the moment affect him, and Buehler will befuddle the Rays’ hitters with his stuff.

  • Score Prediction: Los Angeles 4 Tampa Bay 1
  • Best Bet: Under 7.5
  • Best Bet: Rays Team Total Under 3.5

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