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LA Dodgers - Tampa Bay Rays: odds in the series of the MLB World Series 2020

The Los Angeles Dodgers take home game one of the MLB World Series but don’t cash in your chips yet as the Tampa Bay Rays still have a fighting chance. 

People view a television broadcast of Game 1 of the 2020 World Series between the Los Angeles Dodgers and the Tampa Bay Rays at an outdoor bar and restaurant, with seating on the street due to COVID-19, on October 20, 2020 in Los Angeles, California.

A truly historic World Series is under way with covid-19 upending the regular season cutting it to just 60 out 162 regular season games. After an extended playoff season both teams finished with the best record in each division league being only the fourth time since wild-card era began. Combined the Dodgers and the Rays had the highest winning percentage for a regular-season at .692 of all-time beating the average of the Chicago Cubs and White Sox at .690 in 1906. It will be only the second time two teams have played all seven games in the same ballpark since the Fall Classic was played in St. Louis in 1944.

By all accounts the Tampa Bay Rays are the underdogs in this contest but scraggly as they might seem they have a better chance than at first glance according to FanGraphs ZiPS with the Dodgers squeaking out just a four-point advantage over the Rays to win the MLB World Series 2020. The Los Angeles Dodgers are the best team in baseball this year with 43 wins and have the money invested in their line-up with big-name players having outspent the Rays by nearly four to one. Regardless of the money advantage the Rays have a deep bullpen that can counter the Dodgers hitting strength and a surprise this season in Randy Arozarena.

Both teams have a desire to win MLB World Series 2020 this year

The Dodgers are returning to their third World Series in just four years and are looking to overcome a 32-year drought having not won since 1982. They breezed through the regular season with their star-studded line-up and pitchers with their 43-17 record at the end. They made short work of the Milwaukee Brewers 2-0 in the National League Wild Card round and then the series win against the San Diego Padres 3-0. The race toward the World Series 2020 was only slowed by the Atlanta Braves who had them bested 3-1 before their offence brought them back to force a deciding game seven.

The Rays for their part are returning for their second run at winning their first crown their last attempt was in 2008. They were a powerhouse in the regular season finishing with over 40 wins the only other team to do so this year for a final record of 40-20 giving them the top spot in the American League. They swept through the Wild Card round against the Toronto Blue Jays 2-0, but went to game five against the New York Yankees. The Rays seemed to be making short work of the Houston Astros with 3-0 lead, only for it to be decided in the seventh game. Again it was the pitching that played a big roll in their victory giving up just five total runs.

Who’s going to win the MLB World Series 2020

Both teams have great pitching staff. Clayton Kershaw is their number one and has experience in the Fall Classic. Not alone in skill he is backed up by Walker Buehler, Dustin May and Julio Urias but the bullpen isn’t as deep as the Rays’, if the Rays can force the Dodgers to use their bullpen they have a good shot. The Rays’ starting lineup in Tyler Glasnow, Blake Snell and Charlie Morton have been very effective at throwing heaters across the plate denying the batters the opportunity to hit. At the end of the regular season both the Dodgers (3.01) and the Rays (3.56) had the first and third best ERAs.

As for batting in the post-season the Rays have shown that you don’t need a big salary to hit big. One stand out name for the Rays this post-season has been Randy Arozarena who hit a two-run home run in game seven against the Astros. However, the Dodgers have quite the lineup with Mookie Betts, Cory Bellinger, Corey Seager, Max Muncy and Justine Turner who can drive the ball long. On the bases the Dodgers have speed as was seen by Betts in game one which the Rays will have to stop. Also the Dodgers have a run differential more than double the Rays’. But never give up faith the Ray’s haven’t collapsed when the chips were down and FanGraphs ZiPS projection has them bringing home a win tonight by nearly the same margin as the Dodgers last night.

We'll have to wait to see if they can make up for last night's rout. I should be a fun series to watch. Check out the times below to see when and where.

MLB World Series 2020: Dodgers-Rays matches up baseball's best

  • Game 1: Tuesday, 20 October at 8 p.m. (FOX)
  • Game 2: Wednesday, 21 October at 8 p.m. (FOX)
  • Game 3: Friday, Oct. October at 8 p.m. (FOX)
  • Game 4: Saturday, 24 October at 8 p.m. (FOX)
  • Game 5*: Sunday, 25 October at 8 p.m. (FOX)
  • Game 6*: Tuesday, 27 October at 8 p.m. (FOX)
  • Game 7*: Wednesday, 28 October at 8 p.m. (FOX)

* If necessary


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