2020 World Series: Dodgers vs. Rays Game 5 odds and preview
A bold tactical move by Los Angeles Dodgers manager Dave Roberts in Game 4 completely backfired, allowing the Tampa Bay Rays to tie the World Series at two games apiece on Saturday night.
Struggling former closer Kenley Jansen was called on to seal the deal in the ninth inning, but Brett Phillips came off the bench with two outs and delivered the winning hit as the Rays took the game 8-7 (a pair of inexplicable Dodger fielding gaffes helped).
Will Tampa be able to build on this momentum, or will L.A. recover and push the Rays to the brink? We break down a pivotal Game 5 below.
Los Angeles Dodgers vs. Tampa Bay Rays, 8:08 p.m. ET, FOX
Mon, October 26 2020, 12:08 AM
TB Rays[T. Glasnow]
LA Dodgers[C. Kershaw]
Clayton Kershaw might have had a chance to record the win in a decisive Game 5 and finally shake off his postseason demons for good, but Jansen and company snatched defeat from the jaws of victory late in Game 4. He would certainly settle for six quality innings, just as he did in Game 1. If Kershaw provides that, L.A. stands a good chance at a victory.
Kershaw was lights-out in Game 1 on Tuesday night, allowing only one run on two hits and a walk while striking out eight before being lifted on 78 pitches. It was not surprising to see the Rays struggle against the southpaw, as they were 19th in batting average against lefties in the regular season (.237) and are batting just .214 against them this postseason. Outfielder Kevin Kiermaier was particularly impressed with Kershaw’s Game 1 outing.
"Kershaw threw the ball great, very deceptive up there, threw us off balance and not a whole lot of cold, hard contact," he told ESPN. "And he did a great job limiting the damage and keeping the bats very quiet."
As long as Roberts doesn’t make the same mistake twice, Dodger fans and bettors should feel safe if Kershaw leaves with the lead in this one.
Tyler Glasnow could be in for another rough night after getting rocked in Game 1. Six runs were charged to him on three hits and an unfathomable six walks in just 4 1/3 innings. L.A.’s offense certainly wasn’t to blame for the Game 4 defeat, especially not Corey Seager, who had four hits – including a home run – and two RBI. Justin Turner was equally impressive, also collecting four hits, one of which was a homer.
The Dodgers lineup clearly isn’t afraid of the Rays’ bullpen, which continues to get more and more exposed, especially after tossing 5 2/3 innings on Saturday night. Expect L.A. to lead from start to finish on Sunday.