The Los Angeles Dodgers and Arizona Diamondbacks close down their three-game series at Chase Field on the first day of August, and the visitors will have a huge motive to get this one. The hapless D-backs pulled off a huge upset in the opener last Friday, outlasting the reigning champs as +183 home dogs, 6-5, thanks to Asdrubal Cabrera’s walk-off double in the bottom of the tenth. 

The Dodgers will seek revenge, opening as firm -215 favorites for Sunday’s closer (the middle contest has been excluded from the analysis). Arizona is a +196 dog with a total of 9.5 runs on BetDSI Sportsbook, so let’s see what’s the best Dodgers vs. Diamondbacks betting pick. 

The Blue Crew have struggled since the All-Star

The LA Dodgers fell to 62-43 on the season following that narrow loss at Chase Field. It was their second defeat on the spin and eighth over the last 12 games overall, but the Dodgers are still somehow sitting at the second spot in the NL West, three games behind the Giants and two and a half ahead of the third-placed Padres.

LA Has struggled mightily at the plate since the All-Star break, posting the ninth-worst OPS in the majors (.722) while batting just .237. The Dodgers have hit only 21 doubles in their last 14 outings, so Corey Seager’s return from the IL will certainly help.

https://twitter.com/Dodgers/status/1421568056560545792

On the pitching side of things, the Dodgers own the lowest ERA in baseball (3.21), but that went up to 3.71 in the second half of the season. Julio Urias will take the hill Sunday in Arizona, and he’s been terrific in July, going 3-0 in five starts (31.1 innings) and yielding just eight earned runs on 25 hits and seven walks.

The 24-year-old southpaw is 12-3 with a 3.54 ERA and 1.06 WHIP in 21 starts this term. Urias won his lone start against Arizona in 2021 and is 4-1 with a shiny 1.75 ERA in his three career starts and three relief appearances against the Diamondbacks.

The D-backs have a lot to prove

The Arizona Diamondbacks’ season is already ruined, but they’ve been solid in the second half with seven wins out of 12 games. Since the All-Star break, the D-backs have recorded the ninth-best OPS in the majors (.791) while hitting 33 doubles in the process.

However, their pitching woes continue, as Arizona has registered a 4.25 ERA over the last 12 contests overall. The Diamondbacks own the second-highest ERA in the majors this season (5.27), while their bullpen has a 5.24 ERA and 4.84 FIP.

https://twitter.com/Dbacks/status/1421571178242600960

Caleb Smith will toe the slab Sunday against the reigning champions, and the 30-year-old lefty is 0-1 with an awful 8.10 ERA and 1.90 WHIP in a couple of starts and relief appearances against the Dodgers this season.

Smith is 3-7 with a 4.61 ERA and 1.32 WHIP in 29 games (11 starts) this term. In four outings in July, the southpaw has yielded a whopping 21 earned runs across 19.2 innings of work.

Trends:

LA Dodgers:

  • 16-3 in the last 19 games against Arizona

Arizona:

  • 2-7 in the last nine home games against the Dodgers

Los Angeles Dodgers vs. Arizona Diamondbacks Picks

LA’s offense is coming through a rough patch, and this is an excellent opportunity for a strong performance at the plate, considering how poor Caleb Smith has been lately. The Diamondbacks bullpen won’t help much, while the current Dodgers have a .815 OPS against Smith.

I’m expecting the Dodgers to destroy the D-backs pitching staff, so give me the visitors to cover a 1.5-run spread. The moneyline odds are not attractive, though it’s a nice betting pick for a two-game parlay.

The Total:

I would stick with the Dodgers to cover. The totals seem tricky, as the hosts could struggle to hit well against Julio Urias and the Dodgers bullpen. The Diamondbacks’ offense has done a good job in the second half of the season, but the current D-backs have a poor .634 OPS against Urias.

Anyway, I’m backing the over because of the Diamondbacks’ lousy pitching, and I’ve already mentioned that Los Angeles’ bats desperately need to break out of their funk.  The over is 5-1 in the last six encounters between the Dodgers and Diamondbacks.