Baseball Plays of the Day for October 6: Free MLB Betting Picks

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Adam Wainwright #50 of the St. Louis Cardinals. Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images/AFP

Well, it all comes down to this. The Dodgers won 106 games in the 2021 season, yet they’ll still have their fate decided by a one-game playoff when they take on the St. Louis Cardinals at home. The Cards famously earned themselves this spot by going on a ridiculous 17-game winning streak in September and have a supply of offense that could pose problems to the Dodgers’ pitchers. 

With the stage set, let’s get into who wins this game. We’ll go over the MLB odds and give out our MLB pick at the top-rated sportsbooks. 

St. Louis Cardinals vs. Los Angeles Dodgers 

Wednesday, October 6, 2021 – 8:10 PM EDT at Dodger Stadium 

Can the Bats Do the Job?

The biggest question here will be about the Cardinals’ offense. We know Max Scherzer will bring it, we know Adam Wainwright should do well to match him. We know both of these bullpens come in on a high. We have no idea what we’re going to see out of this St. Louis lineup. 

Rounding out the season in the last month and change in September and October, the Cardinals ranked seventh in wRC+ with a mark of 113, which checked in one spot higher than the Dodgers’. They walked in just 6.9% of plate appearances, which is an anomaly among the teams up in the top half of the league in wRC+, and they struck out in 23.5% of them. These aren’t numbers that offer much confidence, and the only reason the Cardinals are in this position is because of their fantastic .217 ISO. 

St. Louis has hit a dumb number of home runs in September and October — 56, to be exact — making it very difficult to stop this team. Making matters worse for opponents, they have stolen 23 bases. The Cardinals, unlike teams like the Yankees, have a collection of fantastic athletes. They can play defense, steal bases, and still get it done in the power department. It’s a very unique look

Let’s talk about Adam Wainwright, who is coming off a fantastic season in which he turned back the clock in a big way. He finished up with a 3.05 ERA against a 3.84 xERA, bringing his strikeout rate up a hair to 21% and taking his hard-hit rate down to 35.6%. He’s featured a very effective curveball and comes in with a 2.50 ERA since the All-Star break, meaning he’s gotten even better as the season’s gone on. 

No Muncy Could Hurt This Offense

The Dodgers are wounded in a big way right now, and Max Muncy’s elbow injury is the icing on the cake. Muncy, who was arguably the Dodgers’ best hitter this season, has led the charge in the walk department and has socked plenty of home runs along the way. He’s been so effective at getting on base this season for the Dodgers that he’ll be sorely missed. 

This offense is being carried at the moment by A.J. Pollock and Trea Turner, and while those aren’t the names we’re used to they’re certainly doing a good enough job. L.A.’s 9.1% walk rate and 19.8% strikeout rate are right in line with the great ratios we’ve seen all year, and 51 homers do well to match the pace set by the Cardinals. 

Max Scherzer enters with a complicated postseason record. While he’s pitched to a 3.38 ERA in the postseason and is coming off a 2.40 ERA in the Nationals’ 2019 World Series run, his FIP was 3.98 thanks to plenty of walks. He’s also finished the season ominously, with five earned runs in each of his last two outings and three homers allowed in those games. 

Pick 

The Cardinals have the goods to get the Dodgers, here considering Scherzer’s struggles of late and his complicated postseason track record. Wainwright has been good enough to turn this game into a coin flip, and if you're going to side with one offense right now I think it’d have to be the Cardinals’. The Dodgers will be missing too much with Muncy out of the lineup and the Cardinals should be in a position to pounce on the road. 

MLB PickCardinals +206 with BetOnline (visit our BetOnline Review)

Cardinals +206
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*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.