(MLB) LA Dodgers vs. Atlanta, 10/16/2021 8:08 PM, Score: 2 - 3
Money Line: 118.00 Atlanta (Home)
Result: Win
10* Atlanta (8:08 ET): First off, please note that this play stands regardless of whom the Dodgers officially elect to go with as their starter for Game 1. At some point, we will probably see Max Scherzer. But despite that and the fact they won 18 fewer games in the regular season, the Braves look to have some key advantages heading into the opener of the NLCS. Despite the inferior WL record, they have the home field advantage due to being a division winner. Ludicrous as that rule may be, I don’t think anyone in Atlanta is complaining.

In addition to the home field edge, the Braves also have Max Fried set to start Game 1. Fried led all of MLB with a 1.74 ERA after the All Star Break and was 8-2 in 13 starts. That run of dominance carried over to the LDS against Milwaukee where he tossed six shutout innings with nine strikeouts in a 3-0 victory. It was the third time in his last four starts that Fried did not give up a single run and he now has a 0.41 ERA and 0.455 WHIP in the last three. Remember that the Dodgers scored two runs or fewer in three of the five games vs. the Giants (and were shut out twice).

The only time the Braves have lost with Fried on the mound since the start of August was to the Dodgers, by one run, back on September 1st. Fried allowed only three hits in 6 IP, but two were solo homers. The Dodgers would go on to sweep that series, which puts the revenge angle here in play for Atlanta. Another disadvantage for the Dodgers is they had to go to Game 5 vs. the Giants while the Braves have been off since Tuesday. I like Fried to lead them to a “surprise” Game 1 win. 10* Atlanta