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Coach Fletcher’s Wednesday Free Pick

7:05 Los Angeles Dodgers at Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim

The Pick Angels -133

Richards Tries to Keep Angels Relevant

The Dodgers are in first place not due to their great hitting but due to their superb pitching. In h=the final game of their 3 game Freeway Series against the Angels the Dodgers won’t have the pitching edge.

The Pitchers

Mat Latos, Dodgers

Latos has been a huge disappointment to the Dodgers He may even be fighting for a starting role in the playoffs. He’s 4-9 with a 4.92 era on the year but since coming to the Dodgers he’s been even worse. In his last start Latos only threw 54 pitches before being lifted. In that start he gave up 4 runs in 4 innings against San Diego. He’s only made it through the fifth inning only 1 time in his 5 starts since arriving in LA. His era is 6.56 with LA. Latos has been better on the road where he is 2-5 but an era of only 3.70. He’s got a 6.75 era in his last 3; 4.95 in his last 7; 4.70 in his last 15. So clearly he is declining. Since coming to the Dodgers his era in night games is 6.7. His September era is 9.00 . The one positive point is that in an 8/2 start against the Angels at Dodger Stadium, Latos went 6 innings and only gave up 4 hits and 0 runs.

Garrett Richards, Angels

Richards probably has the best stuff on the Angels. His problem is location, location, location. Getting behind in the count he has a tendency to split the middle of the plate instead of the corners and he pays the price. Richards is 13-10 with a 3.77 era. He’s done well at home where he is 9-4 with a 3.08 era. He has one shabby start in his last 3 where he gave up10 hits and 7 earned runs to the Blue Jays in 5 innings. Since that outing he’s faced the Indians and given up 3 runs on 7 hits in 7 innings at and the Rangers where he went 6 innings allowing 5 hits and 2 runs. Richards has tossed a quality start in 5 of his last 6. Richards is 1-0 against the Dodgers with a 1.74 era. In his last start against them he threw a complete game 9 inning shutout allowing only 5 hits (2014). The Angels have won all 3 of his starts against the Dodgers.

The Bullpens

Dodgers – 5.01 era on road ; 39 saves and 19 blown saves

Angels – 3.35 at home ; 34 saves, 15 blown saves

The Dodger pen is a disast3r. Dodger fans and bettors close their eyes and cross themselves every time the Dodgers go to the pen.

The Angels have a sizeable edge in pitching and the bullpen.

The Hitters


The Dodgers are a sneaky hitting baseball team. They score 4.1 runs per game with a .252 batting average. They slip 4.0 on the road and .249. They go up to 4.2 against RHP but stay in the same zone hitting .253. They’ve gone a little nuts in their last 7 hitting .269 and scoring 4.7 rpg. They score 4.3 at night hitting .256. Their Achilles’ heel is interleague play where they only score 3.5 and hit just .237. The Dodgers are 6th in all of MLB with 1.18 home runs per game. They rank 2nd in all of MLB in on base % at .329. That’s what I mean when I say they are sneaky. Their numbers aren’t mind blowing but then they sneak up on you with power and on base %.


The Angels will probably not make the play offs and their fans will be disappointed once again. Despite 2 of the HR leaders in the Al, Trout and Pujols, the Angels are only 12th in MLB in HR per game at 1.04. They sit at 25th in on base % at .306. They score 4.0 runs per game hitting just .244. At home they average 3.9 and hit .245. Against RHP they average 4.2 with a .252 batting average. Like the Dodgers they have improved in their last 7 hitting .275 and scoring 5.4 runs per game. At night they score 4.1 while hitting .247. In interleague play, they are weak like the Dodgers hitting .235 and only averaging 3.4 runs per game.

The Dodgers are the better hitting team. The numbers are all pretty even but the on base % and HR per game numbers show why the Dodgers are better – and of course, 2 guys named Greinke and Kershaw.

Odds And Ends


The Dodgers pretty much have the NL West cinched since the Giants have won only a couple of games in the last 2 weeks. They’ve been in first place almost the entire year. They are 79-58 and have a PLUS 0.5 per game run differential. Since the Angels run differential is a MINUS 0.1, you can understand the Dodgers success. One area where the Dodgers do not succeed is as a road dog of +100/+125. They are 1-4 in that situation. In fact, their road game needs some improvement as well since they are 32-37. They are plowing on in September with a 6-1 start. They are an even 9-9 in interleague play. The LAD are successful at night with a 58-44 record and they are 62-44 vs RHP. They are 45-38 against teams with winning records.


The Angels are right there in scoring with the Dodgers, but they are in a different league with pitching statistics. But taking Greinke and Kershaw out of the occasion makes this a different ballgame. The Angels are a disappointing 69-68. They have a MINUS 0.1 run differential. Their big number is going 1806 as home favorite of -125/-150. The Dodgers are 1-4 in the same situation. Big edge to Halos. The Angels are 4-2 in September and 41-29 at home. That’s another edge over the Dodgers – home vs away numbers. They are a poor 7-11 in interleague and 53-49 at night. They are 49-50 vs RHP only 29-44 against teams with winning records – far from what the Dodgers evidence.

Coach’s Conclusion:

The Angels have some big edges in this one. It’s a home game where they excel. They have a good size pitching edge and a huge bullpen edge. Other than power, their hitting is similar. I like the fact that they are 18-6 at home in this odds range and the Dodgers are but 1-4. I’m going with the Halos here.

The Play Angels -133