Diamondbacks vs. Rangers prediction and odds for Game 1 of World Series

Breaking down why the Rangers are the best bet to make in Game 1 of the World Series.

Oct 16, 2023; Houston, Texas, USA; Texas Rangers starting pitcher Nathan Eovaldi (17)
Oct 16, 2023; Houston, Texas, USA; Texas Rangers starting pitcher Nathan Eovaldi (17) / Thomas Shea-USA TODAY Sports

The first pitch for Game 1 of the 2023 World Series is set for Friday night as NLCS champion Arizona Diamondbacks will head to Globe Life Field to face ALCS champion Texas Rangers.

The Diamondbacks will send ace Zac Gallen (2-2, 5.24 ERA) to the mound, while the Rangers will counter with Nathan Eovaldi (4-0, 2.42 ERA). Arizona has played well away from Chase Field this postseason, sporting a 6-2 record. Meanwhile, Texas hasn’t had a lot of success at home in this year’s MLB playoffs with a 1-3 record.

Can Gallen set the tone for the Diamondbacks on Friday night? Or will Eovaldi continue his postseason success and lead the Rangers to a win? Below, we’ll break down Game 1 of the 2023 World Series and provide our prediction using odds courtesy of FanDuel Sportsbook.

Diamondbacks vs. Rangers probable pitchers for Game 1

  • Arizona: Zac Gallen (righty) – 17-9, 3.47 ERA
  • Texas: Nathan Eovaldi (righty) – 12-5, 3.63 ERA

Eovaldi has a stellar 2.42 ERA this postseason and has only allowed two or fewer earned runs in three out of four starts.

Diamondbacks vs. Rangers Odds, Run Line and Total

Diamondbacks vs. Rangers Prediction and Pick

Gallen hasn’t had the best postseason compared to his pitching counterpart in Eovaldi. The 28-year-old Gallen was roughed up in the NLCS by the Phillies, allowing nine earned runs (five home runs) in Games 1 and 5. Coincidentally, the Diamondbacks lost both of those games.

For the Diamondbacks to steal a game on the road, they will need Gallen to pitch how he did in the wild-card round and NLDS against the Brewers and Dodgers. The right-handed pitcher only allowed four earned runs (one home run) and struck out eight batters in 11.1 innings.

In the NLCS, Gallen gave up multiple home runs to lefties Kyle Schwarber and Bryce Harper and now has to face Rangers shortstop Corey Seager. Seager is slashing .333/.483/.644 with three home runs, five doubles, and six RBI in the postseason. Over his career, Seager is 7-for-21 (.333) at the plate with a double and RBI against Gallen.

As for Eovaldi, he’s been outstanding for Texas this postseason. The 33-year-old right-handed pitcher has pitched at least six innings in all four starts and only allowed two home runs. Eovaldi is coming off an impressive ALCS, where he held the Astros’ offenses to only five earned runs and struck out 13 batters in 12.1 innings of work.

The veteran starting pitcher will look to carry that momentum into Friday night’s game at Globe Life Field, where he’s already had a tremendous start in the playoffs. In his lone home start vs. the Orioles, Eovaldi allowed five hits, one earned run, and struck out seven batters in seven innings as the Rangers won 7-1.

During the regular season, Eovaldi was 6-3 at home with a 3.70 ERA and held opponents to a .221 batting average (.262 BAbip). If he can keep Corbin Carroll off the base pads to start the game, it will go a long way in helping the Rangers secure the win. 

Friday’s game will likely not have a ton of offense, so bettors should take the under 8.5 runs (-120). However, I see the Rangers being able to walk away with a close win as their star hitters capitalize on a big inning from Gallen.

Pick: UNDER 8.5 (-120)

Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.