How the Giants can beat the Dodgers in the NLDS

Dodgers Wildcard win
The Dodgers matchup with the Giants in the Division Series. Photo from The Athletic.
  • It’s time to get stuck into a Giants Dodgers NLDS prediction
  • San Francisco and Los Angeles meet for the first time in postseason history
  • Read below for the series keys

The moment all baseball fans were waiting for is finally here: Giants, Dodgers, NLDS. What else could you ask for after such an incredible season?

The two biggest rivals in the National League West will meet again when it matters the most. And, even though the Giants finished the season with the most wins in all of Major League Baseball, some oddsmakers still favor the Dodgers.

That’s easy to understand in theory. On paper, the Dodgers not only have the strongest roster but also boast the most overpowered starting pitching rotation in the Majors. Then, as you may know by now, there are many things that come into place when making MLB picks.

So, now that we’ve got the Giants vs Dodgers playoffs series we wanted, let’s take a look at how and why the Giants have a huge shot at dethroning the reigning champions and moving on to the National League Championship Series.

Giants Dodgers NLDS Prediction: This is how the Giants can beat the Dodgers

Dodgers and Giants faced off 19 times this season, with San Francisco winning 10 of those matchups. It doesn’t get any closer than that. As a matter of fact, that sole win was the difference between going straight to the NLDS without having to play a Wild Card game.

Most people do their MLB picks out of pure names but that’s not a winning formula. Albeit with no big names or bonafide superstars at this point in their careers, the Giants actually set a franchise record for most wins (107) this season, topping the 1904 record of 106 from their days in New York. That’s not your average underdog.

The Los Angeles Dodgers have a dominant rotation in Max Scherzer, Walker Buehler, Julio Urías, and Tony Gonsolin. On the flip side, the San Francisco Giants haven’t been that bad either, with Kevin Gausman, Anthony DeSclafani, Logan Webb, and an elite bullpen leading the way.

Both teams are well-coached and feature explosive offenses that can produce runs in a variety of ways, so it’s not like either of them has a clear edge over the other. Then again, we’re talking about a Giants team that doesn’t know what it’s like to go home early in the postseason. Historically, this is the time when they thrive the most, as opposed to their lifelong rivals.


So, if you were to ask me the key to beat the Dodgers, I’d say that the Giants should do exactly what they did in the regular season: Be aggressive, yet disciplined on the plate, and continue to trust their arms on the mound.

The Giants are for real

The Giants rank 6th in runs scored (804), 7th in batting average (.249), 7th in OBP (.329), 4th in slugging (.440), and 4th in OPS (.769). Their offense has raked throughout the whole season with 241 home runs, trailing only the Toronto Blue Jays in that regard.

They’ve been even more impressive when it comes to their pitching. They rank 2nd in ERA (3.24), 2nd in shutouts (18), 1st in saves (56), 2nd in WHIP (1.15), and 5th in opposing batting average (.230).

Obviously, the Dodgers have also been quite impressive in most of those aspects and are the only team in the league with better pitching than them, but it’s not like the Giants barely made the playoffs and need to game plan exclusively for Dave Roberts‘ team. Also, they were 54-27 at home so the Dodgers will have a tough time getting their way at Oracle Park in this best-of-five series.

This Giants-Dodgers NLDS will be one for the ages, that’s for sure. Taking a look at most of the stats, this will be a bit of a toss-up.

This is the first time these lifelong rivals meet in the postseason and in a year where they both set franchise records, so this will be a battle to the death from start to finish. So, for those expecting the Dodgers to completely blow out the Rivals, we’ve got bad news.

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