St. Louis Cardinals vs Los Angeles Dodgers Preview: Look for Early Runs in Tense Tilt in L.A.

By | October 6, 2021

One game down, one to go. Last night, the Red Sox saw off the Yankees to advance to the ALDS. Tonight, the reigning World Series champs and baseball’s hottest team down the stretch get their turn in the spotlight, as the Dodgers host the Cardinals with an NLDS matchup against the San Francisco Giants awaiting the winner. Through all of the issues that they have faced, the Dodgers have maintained a familiar place in MLB betting odds throughout the season. But if they don’t take care of business tonight, a new team will assume the mantle as the favorites to win the World Series.

In any other year, the Dodgers’ 106 wins would have been enough to win the NL West and not have to deal with this pesky playoff. But the Giants defied all of the expectations that they would eventually let it slip, edging out their fierce rivals by a game to earn the division title and the extra prep time that comes with a guaranteed spot.

The unlucky loser has the unenviable task of facing the Cardinals, who put the other NL wild card beyond anyone else’s reach with a stunning 17-game winning streak in September. After doing what they did to get here, can they eke out a big win tonight?

Just as the Red Sox and Yankees did last night, the Cardinals and Dodgers send their aces to the mound for tonight’s showdown. The move worked out well for the Red Sox; which team’s ace will fire their team to victory in this matchup?

St. Louis Cardinals (90-72) vs Los Angeles Dodgers (106-56), TBS, 8:10 p.m. ET

Pitching Matchup

  • St. Louis Cardinals: Adam Wainwright (17-7, 3.05 ERA)
  • Los Angeles Dodgers: Max Scherzer (15-4, 2.46 ERA)

St. Louis Cardinals vs Los Angeles Dodgers MLB Betting Odds


  • St. Louis Cardinals +194
  • Los Angeles Dodgers -235


  • OVER 7.5 (-102)
  • UNDER 7.5 (-120)

Run Line

  • St. Louis Cardinals +1.5 (-111)
  • Los Angeles Dodgers -1.5 (-108)

St. Louis Cardinals vs Los Angeles Dodgers odds are via FanDuel Sportsbook as of Wednesday, October 6, 2021 at 3:55 p.m. ET. Want to see MLB betting odds from several top online sportsbooks for each matchup throughout the MLB playoffs? Check out our MLB odds.

St. Louis Cardinals vs Los Angeles Dodgers MLB Betting Consensus


  • 20% St. Louis Cardinals
  • 80% Los Angeles Dodgers

Total (at O/U 7.5)

  • 40% OVER 7.5
  • 60% UNDER 7.5

Run Line (at +/-1.5)

  • 60% St. Louis Cardinals +1.5
  • 40% Los Angeles Dodgers -1.5

St. Louis Cardinals vs Los Angeles Dodgers Matchup: MLB Betting Picks, Odds, Stats and More

St. Louis Cardinals vs Los Angeles Dodgers Betting Outlook

After winning the World Series last season, the Dodgers were expected to dominate once again in 2021. And after starting the season 13-2, it sure seemed like they were well on their way to steamrolling the field.

But between the Giants coming out of nowhere to have an unbelievable season and the many issues that occurred for the Dodgers over the course of the season, the Dodgers were left playing catchup. But while they couldn’t catch up in the end, it wasn’t for a lack of trying. In fact, as hot as the Cardinals were at the back end of the season, the Dodgers were plenty hot themselves. They wrapped up the regular season by winning seven in a row and 18 of 21 to tie the franchise record for wins.

That record was previously held by their 2019 team, which saw its season end in the NLDS at the hands of the Washington Nationals, who went on to win the World Series. Scherzer had a hand in that upset, but now he’ll be looking to prevent one tonight. Scherzer played a chief role in the Dodgers’ push to chase down the Giants after he was acquired at the trade deadline, and he could end up winning his fourth Cy Young as a result.

However, Scherzer comes into the postseason off of the back of two bad starts to end the regular season. In those starts against the Rockies and Padres, he allowed 10 runs and 16 hits in only 10.1 innings. It may well have cost him the chance to be a bigger MLB betting odds favorite over the likes of Corbin Burnes and Zack Wheeler, but it didn’t cost the Dodgers, who won both games.

Can Wainwright Work His Magic Against Muncy-Less Dodgers?

The Dodgers won both of those games thanks to big performances at the plate, which were hot to close out the regular season. In their last five games, the Dodgers scored 45 runs. So Adam Wainwright will certainly have his hands full tonight, though he will not have to deal with one of the Dodgers’ most dangerous hitters.

First baseman Max Muncy suffered an elbow injury in a collision with Jace Peterson in Sunday’s season finale against the Milwaukee Brewers. He didn’t suffer any ligament damage, but his status for the entire postseason is uncertain. Muncy hit a career-high 36 homers this season, so his bat will certainly be missed tonight and beyond if the Dodgers advance.

That makes Wainwright’s task only marginally easier, given how the Dodgers have been hitting lately. That said, he should be up to the task. While he didn’t draw a lot of love for the Cy Young, he was one of the NL’s best pitchers over the last four months of the season. In his last 21 starts of the season, Wainwright went 14-2. Wainwright finished fourth in the majors in quality starts with 22, and 17 of those last 21 starts were quality starts.

One of those four starts that wasn’t a quality start came against the Dodgers last month, but he came out the winner in that outing. He was brilliant for the first eight innings before running into some ninth-inning trouble, but the Cardinals closed out a 5-4 win.

Scherzer, meanwhile, is 2-0 in two starts against the Cardinals this season, and he shut them down in both. He tossed six shutout innings in a win with the Nationals in April, and he allowed one unearned run and struck out 13 in a win last month.

MLB Betting Trends to Consider for St. Louis Cardinals vs Los Angeles Dodgers

  • In the 55 regular season games in which the Cardinals were a road underdog, the over went 32-22-1.
  • The Dodgers were favored in all 81 of their home games in the regular season. The over was 34-41-6 in those games.
  • In the Cardinals’ non-division games in the regular season, the over was 38-45-2.
  • In the Dodgers’ non-division games in the regular season, the over was 35-44-7.

St. Louis Cardinals vs Los Angeles Dodgers Best Bet

1st 5 Innings OVER 3.5 Runs

While the best bet for last night’s Yankees vs Red Sox matchup was one that I really, really liked, there isn’t a play in this game that similarly jumps out. The over 7.5 has been getting a lot of love, but I’m going to err on the side of things settling down over the course of the evening.

Both pitchers have allowed first-half runs in their last few starts, and while these veterans have seen and done it all, some early nerves–and some early runs to go with them–wouldn’t be a surprise in such a tense occasion. There were four first-inning runs in Wainwright’s last start against the Cardinals. Can we get the same outcome tonight to knock this one out right off the bat?

The post St. Louis Cardinals vs Los Angeles Dodgers Preview: Look for Early Runs in Tense Tilt in L.A. first appeared on Betting News.

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