Arizona Diamondbacks vs. Texas Rangers: Predictions, Odds, Best Bets, Starting Lineups for World Series Game 1 (10/27/2023)
The 2023 World Series between the Texas Rangers and the Arizona Diamondbacks gets underway with Game 1 on Friday (10/27/23) at 8:03 p.m. ET. The Rangers are -175 favorites to win the series and -165 on the moneyline to win Game 1 at home.
This article provides Diamondbacks vs. Rangers Game 1 analysis, predictions and best bets including a recommendation to bet on the Rangers -1.5 against the spread.
Diamondbacks vs. Rangers World Series Game 1 Prediction
Starting pitchers: RHP Zac Gallen (2-2, 5.24 ERA this postseason) vs. RHP Nathan Eovaldi (4-0, 2.42 ERA)
A World Series matchup nobody could have foreseen promises to be just as unpredictable as the Rangers’ and Diamondbacks’ improbable runs to the Fall Classic.
Among the most improbable aspects of each team’s run is that they both won Games 6 and 7 on the road to overcome 3-2 deficits and clinch their respective pennants. In fact, all four of the Rangers’ wins in the ALCS came on the road, and these teams are a combined 14-2 on the road in the postseason.
Can the Diamondbacks continue that trend by stealing Game 1 in Texas and seizing home-field advantage? We have some concerns about Zac Gallen pitching on the road in this game, so our money is on the Rangers riding Nathan Eovaldi to a 1-0 series lead.
Gallen’s 2.47 ERA at home this season was nearly 2 full runs better than his 4.42 road ERA. Three of his four postseason starts have come on the road, which could be part of the reason he has struggled to a 5.24 ERA in the playoffs. While that number belies his talent as a pitcher who started this year’s All-Star Game and will garner some Cy Young consideration, it’s also hard to ignore that he has not been that guy so far in the playoffs.
Eovaldi is the more experienced postseason pitcher (15 career appearances, 10 starts) who has proven over a large sample size to be an excellent playoff performer. He has earned the win in every game he’s started so far in these playoffs.
The Rangers have the superior lineup in this series, so the Diamondbacks need their pitching and defense to keep them in games. They were able to do that against the Phillies in the NLCS by taking advantage of aggressive hitters who consistently chased pitches out of the strike zone. They will not have that luxury against the Rangers’ more patient hitters.
If this game stays close late, the Diamondbacks could stage a late rally against the Rangers’ shaky bullpen. But if Eovaldi can go at least six innings then the Rangers should be able to get by with Josh Sborz, Aroldis Chapman and José Leclerc closing things down. Eovaldi has pitched at least six innings in each of his previous 4 starts, and we expect nothing less in this game.
We can’t count out the feisty Diamondbacks, but we expect the Rangers to capitalize on a matchup with a better starting pitcher, a more potent lineup and and home-field advantage (even if it’s not much of one). Take the Rangers not only to win Game 1 but to cover the -1.5, which represents a better value at +120 than taking them on the moneyline.
Diamondbacks vs. Rangers Game 1 Prediction: Rangers win 6-3 | Best Bet: Rangers -1.5 (+120)
Diamondbacks vs. Rangers Odds
ARI @ TEX
Oct. 28, 12:03 AM
Odds updated October 28th, 2023, at 4:08 am
The Rangers are the betting favorites to win Game 1 at -165 on the moneyline, while the Diamondbacks’ moneyline odds are at +140.
The Rangers are laying -1.5 runs on the spread at +120 odds, while the Diamondbacks are getting +1.5 runs at -145 odds.
The over/under is set at 8 runs with -115 odds on the over and -105 odds on the under.
Diamondbacks vs. Rangers Key Matchups
Here are the key matchups that could decide Diamondbacks vs. Rangers.
Zac Gallen vs. top of the order
The biggest reason we picked the Rangers -1.5 in our Diamondbacks vs. Rangers Game 1 prediction is that we have more confidence in Eovaldi than we do in Gallen. If Gallen can overcome his recent struggles and regain the form he showed over the first half of the season, then he will give the Diamondbacks a much better chance to take a 1-0 lead in this series.
The key for Gallen will be controlling the top of the Rangers’ lineup: Marcus Semien, Corey Seager, Evan Carter and Adolis García. Both Semien and Seager have had plenty of success against Gallen in their careers. Semien is a scorching 5-for-8 (.625) with a 1.542 OPS while Seager is 7-for-21 (.333) with a .745 OPS.
García, of course, is fresh off earning ALCS MVP after smashing homers in each of the final four games of that series and going 4-for-5 in Game 7. He is the hottest and most dangerous hitter in this series, but he is 0-for-5 lifetime against Gallen. If Gallen can keep García from doing any damage in his first few at-bats, that will go a long way toward him turning in his best performance of the postseason so far and giving the Diamondbacks a chance to steal this game.
The Diamondbacks’ bullpen has been fantastic in the postseason, particularly the late-inning combination of Ryan Thompson, Kevin Ginkel and closer Paul Sewald. Ginkel and Sewald have not allowed any runs in the postseason and have a combined 24-3 K/BB ratio. Thompson has pitched the most innings of the Diamondbacks’ relievers (10-2/3) with a solid 2.53 ERA.
The Rangers’ trio of high-leverage arms – Sborz, Chapman and Leclerc – has not been quite as reliable, but the bigger problem is that manager Bruce Bochy doesn’t have much else behind them. The Rangers are using a stable of former starters to round out their bullpen, but they have mostly been effective in middle-inning and long-relief roles and are shaky options in high-leverage situations. That’s why it’s so important for the Rangers to get some length out of Eovaldi tonight.
Diamondbacks vs. Rangers Starting Lineups (Projected)
Diamondbacks Starting Lineup
RF Corbin Carroll (L)
2B Ketel Marte (S)
C Gabriel Moreno (R)
1B Christian Walker (R)
DH Tommy Pham (R)
LF Lourdes Gurriel Jr. (R)
CF Alek Thomas (L)
3B Evan Longoria (R)
SS Geraldo Perdomo (S)
Rangers Starting Lineup
2B Marcus Semien (R)
SS Corey Seager (L)
LF Evan Carter (L)
RF Adolis García (R)
DH Mitch Garver (R)
C Jonah Heim (S)
1B Nathaniel Lowe (L)
3B Josh Jung (R)
CF Leody Taveras (S)