Braves vs Dodgers NLCS Game 4 Picks and Predictions: Will L.A. Grab Its Second Chance?

The Dodgers avoided a 3-0 series hole last night and now are the heavy favorites to win on Wednesday to level up the series. Our MLB picks look at whether the Braves can pull out a win — and where to find the betting value.

Last Updated: Oct 20, 2021 4:01 PM ET Read Time: 4 min
Cody Bellinger Los Angeles Dodgers MLB
Photo By - USA TODAY Sports

Cody Bellinger possibly saved the Los Angeles Dodgers’ season yesterday with a game-tying three-run homer in the eighth inning, which would later turn into a 6-5 Dodgers victory over the Atlanta Braves. The win turned a possible 3-0 Atlanta series advantage into a 2-1 lead and has given the Dodgers life ahead of Game 4 at home. 

Dave Roberts will turn to Julio Urias in the pivotal game while the Braves will get creative with a bullpen day, which doesn’t sound promising for Braves fans after yesterday’s late collapse. The Dodgers opened as heavy -200 MLB betting favorites with the total set at a flat 8.

Here are our free picks and predictions for Braves vs. Dodgers for Wednesday, October 20.

Braves vs Dodgers odds

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Braves vs Dodgers picks

Picks made on 10/20/2021 at 11:44 a.m. ET.
Click on each pick to jump to the full analysis.

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Braves vs Dodgers game info

Location: Dodger Stadium, Los Angeles, CA
Date: Wednesday, October 20, 2021
Time: 8:08 p.m. ET
TV: TBS

Braves vs Dodgers betting preview

Starting pitchers

Bullpen (Postseason: 2.70 ERA): Atlanta manager Brian Snitker will go to bullpen day in Game 4. The Braves' relievers have thrown 12 innings in this series so far and have surrendered six runs, with four of those coming yesterday. Huascar Ynoa and Drew Smyly have yet to throw in this series. The Atlanta offense will have to do the heavy lifting if the Braves want to make this series 3-1. 

Julio Urias (Postseason: 1-0, 3.60 ERA): Julio Urias will make his fourth postseason appearance and second start. The 20-game winner was great in the Divisional Series allowing two runs over nine innings of work but got hit by Atlanta in Game 2 of the NLCS, allowing two runs in one inning of relief and blowing a 4-2 lead in the process.  Urias made two starts against Atlanta this year and went 2-0 with a 2.45 ERA striking out 13 over 11 innings. 

Braves vs Dodgers series odds (ATL leads 2-1)

Braves: +105
Dodgers: -125

Weather

Be sure to monitor the gametime conditions with our MLB weather info.

Key injuries

Braves: Ronald Acuna OF (Out).
Dodgers: Max Muncy 1B (Out).
Find our latest MLB injury reports.

Betting trend to know

The Dodgers are 5-0 in Urias' last five starts as a home favorite. Find more MLB betting trends for Braves vs. Dodgers.

Braves vs Dodgers predictions

The Dodgers were on life support yesterday but were saved by Atlanta reliever Luke Jackson, who forgot that Cody Bellinger can’t hit a curveball. Bellinger erased a terrible 2021 season with a game-tying three-run blast that breathed life into an L.A. team that was staring a 3-0 series deficit in the face before the heroics.

L.A. will have a chance to keep the momentum going as heavy -200 ML favorites Wednesday night and gets to face a bullpen day from the Braves, who used one of its better middle relievers and usual piggy-back starter Jesse Chavez yesterday. Chavez was up and down three times in the bullpen and threw a lot of pitches. We wouldn’t be surprised if he was unavailable today.

Atlanta will likely ask for some innings out of Huascar Ynoa today. The young right-hander has made just one appearance for the Braves in the postseason and looked out of place in one inning of work versus the Brewers, which saw him give up two runs (one HR) and a walk over six batters. If Brian Snitker has to use Ynoa and Drew Smyly — both have yet to throw a ball this series — the Dodgers might not need a gem out of Julio Urias.

Either way, the Dodgers’ lefty will be making his fourth postseason start and 22nd appearance overall. Urias has pitched in big games before and shouldn’t be fazed by the pressure despite coming off a rough relief appearance. His last start versus the Braves, back in late August, yielded positive results as he allowed just four hits over six innings in a 5-3 L.A. win. He also struck out seven and walked none. The plan is likely to have Urias go five and have a combination of Joe Kelly, Corey Knebel, Blake Treinen, and Kenley Jansen clean things up. Los Angeles is in a great spot to tie up this series and it's going to take a few major mistakes from L.A.’s pitchers to blow this one.

The Dodgers’ offense is getting great production from the bottom of the order as Gavin Lux (two BBs), Cody Bellinger (HR), and Chris Taylor (2 for 4) all got in on the action yesterday. The Dodgers are also a perfect 8 for 8 in stolen bases in the series and can manufacture runs by means other than the home run.

The -200 ML is a hefty price to pay in the postseason but +103 on the run line isn’t a terrible price, considering the advantage the home team has on the mound.

Wednesday’s total sits at a flat 8 which is the same total as Game 1 (Fried vs. Knebel) and Game 2 (Scherzer vs. Anderson). Today’s pitching matchup seems more probable to the Over 8 than either of those two matchups, as Atlanta does not have a loaded bullpen that can throw seven pitchers and not get into trouble. 

Yesterday’s Over took until the eighth inning to hit but the first five innings saw seven total runs scored. Both the Dodgers and Braves stranded 10 runners each in a game that featured arguably the two best starters from each team. Now we’re getting a total that is just a half run more than yesterday.

The Braves being on a bullpen day helps the Over twofold. First, the Dodgers get to go clubbing against the weakness of the Braves and, secondly, Atlanta will be constantly batting for the pitcher in the nine spot, giving us some non-NL at-bats throughout the game. 

The Over is a combined 7-3 across both clubs’ last five games and Dodgers Stadium is playing positively to home runs, per Ballpark Pal, and playing short out to centerfield with a nine mph wind blowing out to right-center field.   

This could be a one-sided game but the Atlanta bats have gotten to Walker Buehler and Max Scherzer. Getting to Urias, who they already hit around for two runs, isn’t impossible.  

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