Wake Forest vs. Stanford College World Series 2023: Odds, Preview, TV Start Time
The No. 1 overall seed Wake Forest Demon Deacons (52-10) face the No. 8 overall seed Stanford Cardinal (44-18) in the opening round of the College World Series. Wake is a convincing -210 favorite over Stanford. The game begins Saturday, June 17 at 2:00 p.m. ET from Omaha, Nebraska. You can watch the game on TV via ESPN or stream it on ESPN+. Below, we’ll compare Wake Forest vs. Stanford odds on the best sports betting sites.
College World Series: Wake Forest Vs. Stanford Odds
No team has a more talented or deeper pitching staff than Wake Forest. Ace Rhett Lowder remains unbeaten on the year and boasts a 1.80 ERA in 17 starts. He and Josh Hartle (11-1, 2.28) combined for 262 strikeouts this season and just 41 walks, with Hartle ringing up 131 batters in just 86.2 IP. The Demon Deacons’ third starter is either Sean Sullivan (5-1, 2.47) or Reed Mascolo (7-1, 3.99), with the former coming in for relief duty more often this postseason. As a whole, Wake leads the tournament field in FIP (3.72).
Wake Forest is far more than a pitching-focused team. The Deacs are second in the tournament in wOBA (.439) and bring a lot of power to the plate. Third baseman Brock Wilken leads the team with 30 home runs and first baseman Nick Kurtz adds 24 of his own. Eight of their nine starters bat over .300. Regardless of opponent, the Demon Deacons offer the toughest test and will be favored throughout the CWS.
Stanford required a bit of luck to reach Omaha. A lost pop fly walk-off win against Texas stopped a nearly-blown lead by Stanford and sent them to the CWS. They have the highest FIP in the field of eight (5.43), although the pitching staff improved in the Regional and Super Regional rounds. Ace Quinn Matthews is the lone arm on the staff with an ERA under 4.00. He threw 156 pitches in Game 2 of the Super Regionals en route to an 8-3 – a move that brought head coach David Esquer under fire.
But it’s not all luck for the Cardinal. They boast a +16 run differential this tournament in games against Texas A&M (24th in RPI), Cal State Fullerton (65th), and Texas (21st). Six of their hitters have 14 or more home runs and three have an OPS over 1.000. Outfielder Alberto Rios leads the team with 18 homers and .387 batting.
Starters for Wake Forest vs. Stanford likely won’t be released until a day or two beforehand. However, based on previous rotations, we can make an educated guess at who we will see on the mound Saturday.
- Wake Forest: Rhett Lowder (15-0, 1.80 ERA, 3.33 FIP)
- Stanford: Quinn Matthews (10-4, 3.60 ERA, 4.21 FIP)
Lowder’s stats look like something out of a video game. In 115 innings pitched, he’s allowed just 80 hits, 23 earned runs, and walked just 21 batters (131 strikeouts). Two pitchers in this tournament are nearly a pencilled-in victory: Lowder and LSU’s Paul Skenes. Lowder notched his 15th win in Game 1 of the Super Regionals against Alabama, where he allowed three runs.
As mentioned, Matthews finished his marathon start against Texas in his last start. He rung up a staggering 16 batters and allowed three runs in the complete game.
Wake Forest Vs. Stanford Odds Analysis
Wake Forest is the heaviest favorite in their opening game for a reason. Projections from College Baseball Nation suggest Stanford may be undervalued, but, considering Rhett Lowder is on the mound, I’m not betting against Wake.
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