Game 1 of the World Series has come and gone and it did not disappoint. The Dodgers won 3-1 with Clayton Kershaw and Dallas Keuchel dueling to kick-off the fall classic. The game came down to home runs. Keuchel gave up a home run to Chris Taylor to lead off the game and then a sixth inning home run to Justin Turner (my series MVP prediction). Kershaw gave up a solo shot to Alex Bregman (who actually kills lefties–more on this later) in the top of the fourth. Keuchel made one more bad pitch than Kershaw and that made the difference.
With no further adieu, it’s time to break down game 2.
Justin Verlander vs. Rich Hill
These two pitchers could not be any more different. Verlander’s career has been on the Hall of Fame track almost since the moment he first stepped foot on a big league mound. Meanwhile, Hill’s journey from the Long Island Ducks to being this generation’s Jamie Moyer and getting a 3-year $48 million contract has been well-documented. Now they’re both here squaring off in the World Series.
While these two veterans are squaring off, look for the young players to make a difference. Bregman kills lefties and proved as much by taking the best pitcher of this generation deep. He might not go yard again (don’t be surprised if he does) but I expect he’ll leave this game with a couple hits and maybe a few RBIs. Against Verlander, look for Corey Seager and Cody Bellinger to have an impact. Seager had two hits in Game 1 and Bellinger looks more relaxed at the World Series than anyone. Seager will be an igniter for the Dodgers and this could be the game where Bellinger hits his first World Series home run. Verlander already gave up one home run to a young stud in Rafael Devers, it’s not impossible it happens again with Bellinger. If not Verlander, Bellinger stands a good chance against Houston’s bullpen.
My prediction: Dodgers win 5-3
Verlander won’t get his first loss with the Astros, but he won’t move to 10-0. He’ll leave with a lead after out-pitching Hill, but the battle of the bullpens will go to the Dodgers. Kenta Maeda will get the win and Chris Devenski will pick up the loss as the Dodgers take a 2-0 lead.
Either way, Game 2 should be every bit as good as Game 1!