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Kershaw Out to Dominate Mets Again

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Updated: .June 19, 2017

By Charles Jay

The New York Mets have not experienced very much success against Clayton Kershaw, even in their World Series season. So the question of what they’ll do different this time might be asked, rather reasonably, as Kershaw takes the mound against them at Dodger Stadium on Monday night, with game time slated for 10:10 PM ET. Both of these teams are tied for second place in their respective divisions, but the Los Angeles Dodgers are in much better shape, as we’ll explain. America’s Bookie customers will have the opportunity to place wagers on this game after it is started, using two different “Live Betting” options in the user-friendly sportsbook interface.

The Dodgers come into this game having won nine of their last ten games, and they need to be hot, because they are in a very competitive race in the National League West which could be thrilling all the way to the finish. With a 44-26 record, they are tied with the Arizona Diamondbacks for second place, one game behind the Colorado Rockies, and these are two teams that are in wild card position. This means that the Mets, who are 31-37, are a dozen games away from even a wild card spot and 10.5 games behind the Washington Nationals in the NL East.

Kershaw has always been a pain in the neck for the Mets, with an 8-1 career record and 1.49 ERA. But he has been even more effective over the last couple of seasons, as he has a 0.83 ERA, 0.55 WHIP and 41-3 strikeout-walk ratio. So naturally it’s going to be a challenge for the Mets to be competitive here.

In the baseball betting odds that have been posted on this game, the Dodgers are obviously big favorites:

Los Angeles Dodgers (Kershaw) -300
New York Mets (Wheeler) +250

Dodgers -1.5 Runs (-145)
Mets +1.5 Runs (+125)

Under 7 Runs -113
Over 7 Runs -107

Zack Wheeler (3-4, 4.48 ERA) attempts to continue his comeback for the Mets. Of course, those who follow what happens with this team closely are aware that Wheeler basically came up to the majors with Matt Harvey, and they were considered to be the 1-2 punch of the future. But Wheeler developed injury problems – first a torn UCL in his elbow, which required Tommy John surgery, then a flexor strain in his arm, and this caused him to miss the entire 2015 and 2016 seasons. As he returned this year, it has actually been a blessing for the staff, because he is a “healthy” arm. Noah Syndergaard and Harvey are on the DL, and Steven Matz and Seth Lugo have just come off. Manager Terry Collins wants to go with a six-man rotation, to relieve the pressure on everybody.

Both of these teams have recently welcomed back big hitters; the Mets have Yoenis Cespedes in the lineup again, and he hit a grand slam in his first game against Atlanta. The Dodgers have Justin Turner in the fold again, and he blasted one out against the Cincinnati Reds on Sunday.

Wheeler is coming off a whipping, as he gave up eight runs in 1-2/3 innings in a 14-3 loss to the Chicago Cubs last time out. But he has always been a good road pitcher, and he is posting a decent number (2.76 ERA) in a small sampling of starts as the visitor this season.

We don’t want to go against Kershaw’s numbers, however. Yes, his hits-per-nine (6.8) is his highest since 2010. But it’s still 6.8, and it’s tenth-best in the league. His stirkeout-walk ratio is fourth-best in the NL, although it pales in comparison to what he did last season. The truth of the matter is that we are looking at the guy who leads the league in ERA and has a WHIP under 1.00. And even though it’s not a foregone conclusion that the Dodgers are going to win, we feel the play here is to lay the run and a half, laying a price of -145, as the Charles Jay / America’s Bookie Challenge continues on Monday night.

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