The battle for NL West supremacy comes down to one single game. Thursday night, the San Francisco Giants and Los Angeles Dodgers will play the decisive Game 5 of their National League Division Series at Oracle Park. The Dodgers won Game 4 earlier this week to extend the season. The Game 5 winner will face the Atlanta Braves in the National League Championship Series. The loser goes home after winning 109 total games in 2021.
You can view the full postseason schedule by clicking here. With that throat-clearing out of the way, let's get to the important stuff for Game 5.
How to watch
Date: Thursday, Oct. 14 | Time: 9:07 p.m. ET
Location: Oracle Park (San Francisco, California)
TV channel: TBS | Live stream: TBS.com
Odds: SF -111; LAD +101; O/U: 6.5 (via Caesar's Sportsbook)
Starting pitchers: RHP Logan Webb (11-3, 3.03 ERA) vs. LHP Julio Urías (20-3, 2.96 ERA)
In Game 1, Webb was brilliant, holding the Dodgers to five hits in 7 2/3 scoreless innings. He struck out 10. Urías was not quite that dominant in Game 2, though he limited the Giants to one run in five innings. Each pitcher's entire body of work -- regular season and postseason -- suggests we're in for a heck of a pitchers' duel in Game 5.
For the Giants, they're hoping their offense shows up Thursday. They've scored only nine runs in the series, including four runs in Game 1 alone. Buster Posey and Kris Bryant are a combined 11 for 29 (.379) in the series. The rest of the Giants are 12 for 96 (.125). Either Posey and Bryant continue carrying the load, or someone else has to come through with a big hit in Game 5 to avoid an early offseason vacation.
Los Angeles has been shut out twice and scored at least seven runs in twice in the series. They've been hot and cold offensively, or at least as hot and cold as a team can be four games into a best-of-five series. Infielder-turned-outfielder Gavin Lux reached base four times in Game 4 and will be in the lineup in Game 5. He's an X-factor.
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It's too bad this is only a best-of-five series, because I really want to see these two teams go at as long as possible. I picked the Dodgers to win the NLDS (and World Series) coming into the postseason and I'm not going to deviate from that now. The bet here is Webb is excellent again, but Urías is just as good, and the Dodgers break through against the San Francisco bullpen late.
Pick: Dodgers 2, Giants 1
2021 MLB postseason gear now available
The 2021 MLB Playoffs start Oct. 5 and 6 with the AL and NL Wild Card games. In celebration, 2021 MLB postseason gear is now available for select teams. Shop hoodies, shirts, and more here.
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