Diamondbacks vs. Dodgers prediction and odds for Saturday, April 1 (Kershaw has plenty left in the tank)

Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw
Los Angeles Dodgers starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw / Kiyoshi Mio-USA TODAY Sports

Who would’ve ever thought that Madison Bumgarner vs. Clayton Kershaw would be the third game of an opening series and somewhat of an afterthought as far as the pitching matchups in the NL West go.

These two once dominated that division, but now Bumgarner, in his fourth year as a member of the Arizona Diamondbacks, will look to bounce back from 4.67 and 4.88 ERAs in the past two seasons. 

Clayton Kershaw has continued to have success into his later years, when he’s healthy. He made 22 starts last season and finished with a 2.28 ERA. 

After they’ve split the first two, let's take a look at the odds for Game 3 of this four game opening series between the Diamondbacks and Dodgers. 

Diamondbacks vs. Dodgers odds, run line and total

Diamondbacks vs. Dodgers prediction and pick

Kershaw and Bumgarner’s careers have run parallel since 2008 and 2009 when they broke into the MLB. They’ve been two of the defining pitchers of this era. Kershaw for his regular season excellence and Bumgarner for his postseason dominance. The only difference is that one man is still bolstering his resume while the other is damaging his. 

Bumgarner hasn’t had a good year since he turned 30 in 2020. He’s had a 6.48 ERA, and then the 4.67 and 4.88 in the two most recent seasons. Last season, he was one of the worst pitchers in all of baseball.

He was in the bottom 10% of all MLB pitchers in expected ERA, average exit velocity, expected slugging, expected batting average, strikeout rate, whiff rate, and fastball velocity. There isn’t anything he does well anymore and it’s sad that at just 33 he is completely washed up. 

Kershaw on the other hand was in the top 10% of all pitchers last season for expected ERA, expected slugging, walk rate, and barrel percentage.

He was top 20% in just about everything else, save for fastball velocity. He’s still an incredible pitcher at 35, maybe the best on the LA pitching staff, and he’ll be far and away the best guy on the mound today. 

Pitchers aren’t everything, but LA has a better lineup and better bullpen too, this one is easy. 

Pick: Dodgers -1.5 (-112)

Follow all Josh Yourish’s bets HERE

Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change