The 2023 World Series shifts to Chase Field in Phoenix, Arizona, for Game 3 tonight as the Texas Rangers and Arizona Diamondbacks try to take a commanding 2-1 series lead.
The Rangers will give the ball to Max Scherzer (0-1, 9.45 ERA), while the Diamondbacks will send Brandon Pfaadt to the mound (0-0, 2.70 ERA). Pfaadt has been one of the surprise stories in the postseason, as his last three starts against the Dodgers and Phillies were spectacular. Texas will look to put a damper on Pfaadt’s postseason success as they’ve been road warriors in this year’s playoffs, sporting a spotless 8-0 record away from Globe Life Field.
Can the Diamondbacks build off their 9-1 win in Game 2? Or will Scherzer turn back the clock and quiet down Arizona’s bats in a pivotal Game 3? Below, we’ll break down Game 3 of the 2023 World Series and provide our prediction using odds courtesy of FanDuel Sportsbook.
Probable Pitchers for World Series Game 3
- Texas: Max Scherzer (righty) – 13-6, 3.77 ERA
- Arizona: Brandon Pfaadt (righty) – 3-9, 5.72 ERA
This postseason, Scherzer has an inflated 9.45 ERA after allowing seven earned (two home runs) in his first two starts in the ALCS.
Meanwhile, Pfaadt has a 2.70 ERA in this year’s MLB playoffs and has given up five earned runs across 16.2 innings pitched.
Rangers vs. Diamondbacks Odds, Run Line and Total
Rangers vs. Diamondbacks Prediction and Pick
Scherzer hasn’t looked like the same pitcher from postseasons past, but the Rangers will need him to pitch like an ace tonight against the Diamondbacks. Arizona pounded Texas in the late innings of Game 2, scoring seven runs against their bullpen. The Diamondbacks taxed Texas starter Jordan Montgomery for nine hits and four earned runs after only recording six hits on Nathan Eovaldi in Game 1.
Scherzer has only allowed nine hits in his first two postseason starts, which isn’t horrible for a veteran starting pitcher who hadn’t pitched since Sept 12. However, manager Bruce Bochy has only allowed the 39-year-old pitcher to throw 6.2 innings across two starts.
Will Bochy allow Scherzer to go at least five innings tonight after using relievers Dane Dunning, Martin Perez, and Andrew Heaney in Game 2? That’s a question we will find an answer to early tonight.
As for Pfaadt, he’s been Arizona’s second-best starting pitcher in the postseason behind Merrill Kelly. The 25-year-old rookie hasn’t been phased by the bright lights of the playoffs, which is a good thing. Pfaadt went into Citizens Bank Park for Game 7 of the NLCS and held Philadelphia to four hits, two earned (one home run) while striking out seven in only four innings.
The rookie starting pitcher did not pitch well at home during the regular season (2-5, 6.46 ERA) but completely flipped the script in the postseason, allowing four hits and zero earned runs in two starts.
The Rangers are batting .254 against right-handed pitchers in the postseason, which gives them a slight advantage over the Diamondbacks, who are slugging .240 against righties. It wouldn’t be shocking to see both teams lean on their bullpens tonight after not playing since Friday night.
With Pfaadt on the bump this postseason, the Diamondbacks are a stellar 4-0, and that trend continues tonight, with Arizona setting the tone at the top of the order and winning Game 3. Finally, I could also see the UNDER 9 runs (-108) hitting tonight, especially with both bullpens executing their pitches.
Pick: Diamondbacks (-104) and UNDER 9 (-108)
Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change