The Los Angeles Dodgers (98-61) are locked into the two-seed in the NL playoffs while the San Francisco Giants (78-81) have officially been eliminated from Wild Card contention, robbing this season-ending series between two arch rivals of much of its juice. Still, things are never boring when these two get together, so count on some fireworks as the opener gets underway from Oracle Park at 10:15 p.m. ET. Lance Lynn (12-11, 5.83 ERA) will audition for a spot in the postseason rotation for L.A., while Keaton Winn (1-2, 3.89) goes for the Giants.
The Dodgers enter as -142 favorites on the moneyline at DraftKings Sportsbook, with San Francisco at +120. The run total is set at 8.5.
Dodgers-Giants picks: Friday, September 29
Out: RP Yency Almonte (knee), RP Tyler Cyr (shoulder)
Day to day: 1B/3B J.D. Davis (shoulder)
Out: SP/RP Jakob Junis (cervical strain), RP Scott Alexander (hamstring), SS Brandon Crawford (hamstring), SP Alex Cobb (hip)
Lance Lynn vs. Keaton Winn
The depleted Dodgers will need Lynn to be a big part of their postseason pitching plans, and they’ll have to hope that they get the version of the righty who showed up last time out against these very same Giants. Lynn allowed just two runs on five hits (albeit with three walks) and six Ks over six innings of work in a no-decision last weekend, his fifth quality starts in nine outings since coming over to Los Angeles at the trade deadline. Of course, the other four starts have been very far from quality — when things go bad for Lynn, they go really bad, as he’s allowed outings of seven and eight earned runs already with his new team (and has given up a league-leading 43 homers on the year).
Winn will be making his return from the COVID IL tonight after nearly two weeks on the shelf. When last we saw him, he was struggling at Coors Field, but prior to that he was pitching well, striking out nine in six innings of three-run ball against the Rockies in San Francisco and starting September with five shutout innings against the Padres. Like a lot of splitter-heavy pitchers (he throws the pitch some 55% of the time), Winn can be hard to predict: When he has the split working, he can be very effective, but things go south in a hurry when he doesn’t.
The last time Lynn faced this Giants offense, it ended in a 3-2 final in which the fifth run didn’t come until extra innings. At a pitcher-friendly place like Oracle Park and against a struggling San Francisco lineup, I’m expecting Lynn to pitch well again, which puts a lot of pressure on the Dodgers to hit this total. Winn has yet to allow three runs in any outing so far this season, and with Los Angeles on cruise control ahead of the playoffs, I’m expecting a relatively low-scoring affair.
Pick: Under 8.5
The Giants haven’t proven they can hit Lynn or really any big-league starter with a pulse of late. The Dodgers are expected to still play most of their big guns, at least for a few innings, so I’m backing them here against a San Francisco team that doesn’t really look like it wants to finish out the string of a lost season.
Pick: Dodgers -142