Clayton Kershaw got off to a very bumpy start this season. But now the three-time Cy Young Award winner is giving the appearance of coming on like a freight train, and the Los Angeles Dodgers certainly hope that he continues in that direction on Monday night as they take on the Chicago Cubs at Wrigley Field. The first pitch is scheduled for 8:05 PM Eastern time, And keep in mind that with Vietbet, you can wager on a lot of things after the game begins, including the side, total and various props, through the facilities of Live Betting Extra.
The Dodgers had lost five of their previous six games before knocking out Tim Lincecum in the second inning of a 10-2 Sunday night victory, which moved them 1.5 games ahead of the San Francisco Giants in the National League West. The Cubs took two out of three games from the Minnesota Twins in an interleague series this past weekend, and they are at 37-30, in third place in the National League Central, seven games behind the St. Louis Cardinals, but only one game out of the second wild-card spot. They are a solid 18-13 at home, while the Dodgers have left something to be desired as the visiting team (12-18).
Kershaw comes into this game with a record of 5-4 and an ERA of 3.29, while his opponent, Tsuyoshi Wada, Is 1-1 with a 3.68 earned run average. Wada has made two starts against the Dodgers last season, allowing three earned runs in 10 2/3 innings. And he is coming off seven scoreless innings against Cleveland five nights ago.
In the baseball betting odds on this game as they are posted at Vietbet, the Dodgers with Kershaw are considerable favorites:
Los Angeles Dodgers (Kershaw) -180
Chicago Cubs (Wada) +170
Under 9 runs -125
Over 9 runs +105
Kershaw had a 4.32 ERA after his first nine starts, but he has dropped his ERA more than a run over his last five outings. He has been particularly overpowering during that stretch, striking out 49 batters in 34 2/3 innings.
Of course, it is obviously hard to beat the kind of numbers he's been compiling over the last four seasons, where is WHIP ratio has combined to go under the 1.00 mark. And he is allowing about a run and a half more per nine innings that he did last season. But of course, that ERA was a staggering 1.77, which helped propel his 21-3 record. What is interesting about Kershaw this season is that some of his metrics show him to be more overpowering over hitters. or example, his strikeouts per nine innings are the highest in his career at the moment, at 11.8, and that is a full strikeout more than he had last season, when he led the National League. His ratio of strikeouts to walks (5.30) is better than any year in his career except for last season, when he also blew people's doors off at 7.71.
Of course, Vietbet patrons might have noticed that the ratio of runs allowed two hits allowed is quite a bit different. For his career, Kershaw has given up 1110 hits and 450 runs, a ratio of 2.47. This season, that ratio is 1.97, which is a little closer to the major league average. But we are thinking that number ought to increase as the season progresses, because of his relative dominance over hitters. After all, he has still only allowed 98 baserunners in 93 innings.
But Kershaw has been a decidedly less effective pitcher on the road than he is at home. While his strikeout/walk ratio is 7.78 in Dodger Stadium, it is only 3.71 as the visitor. And while the opposition hits only .195 against him, with an on-base percentage of .244 at Chavez Ravine, those figures are .240 and .300 on the road. And with a 4.27 earned run average when traveling, if you were going to get Kershaw in a vulnerable position, maybe this is it, althought it must be noted that his career ERA in Wrigley Field is 2.45.
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