The Colorado Rockies showed a rare glimpse of some heart last night as they found a way to hold off the Atlanta Braves. The game itself played out much differently than most people, myself included, had predicted. The game total was thirteen runs, so when the game hit the ninth inning a 1-0 game, I was pretty shocked. The Braves managed to score against this decimated Rockies bullpen in the ninth to tie the game up, and it looked like the Rockies were going to find a way to lose their fifth straight game.
But in the bottom of the ninth, Ryan McMahon blasted a line drive over the fence and walked the game off for the Rockies. While the win isn’t going to do much for the Rockies playoff chances, they are still eleven games back of even the second wild card in the National League, it was a nice win for the fans that have had to watch this team underachieve all season long.
For Atlanta, it was their first loss in nine games, and it was always going to be a tough spot as they had to travel all the way from New York City where they had played the Mets the day before to Colorado. To make matters worse for the Braves, they are forced to head all the way back to the East Coast tonight and play the Toronto Blue Jays. Now if that isn’t a brutal travel schedule, I don’t know what is! For today’s bet we will stay right here in Denver as the Rockies host the defending World Series Champion, Boston Red Sox.
The Boston Red Sox continue their West Coast road trip tonight as they are in Colorado to face the Rockies for game one of a quick two-game set. The Red Sox took care of business on the first leg of this trip as they took two out of three games from the San Diego Padres. Boston got the day off to travel yesterday and should be rested as they hit Colorado for a series they must win.
The Rockies found a way to beat a road-weary Braves team last night and will look to make it two straight wins tonight. But unfortunately for Colorado, this team is just a shell of its former self as they have lost many players to injury recently including Jon Gray, Kyle Freeland, German Marquez, Scott Oberg, David Dahl, and Raimel Tapia.
Starting for the Rockies is Rico Garcia (0-0 0.00 ERA) making his major league debut, and for the Red Sox it is former Cy Young award winner Rick Porcello (11-10 5.49 ERA). The game total over-under is set at thirteen and a half runs. The Red Sox are -129 road favorites. First pitch is scheduled for 5:40 PM PST from Coors Field in Colorado.
Rico Garcia will make his MLB debut tonight, and not because he is ready to be in the big leagues. Garcia was called up as the rest of this Rockies rotation is in shambles and they need somebody to eat innings up. Garcia started his season out in double-A ball and had solid results. He was 8-2 with a 1.85 ERA in double-A and was quickly promoted to triple-A Albuquerque.
But that is when he really started to struggle against the increased competition. In twelve starts in triple-A, he had an ERA of over seven runs, and he got blasted for thirteen home runs in just over fifty-five innings pitched. He also really struggled with his command as he had twenty-four walks. Those results don’t bode well for him tonight as he has to face one of the hardest hitting lineups in the game and at Coors Field no less, where balls never seem to stay in the park. I would be absolutely shocked in the Red Sox don’t find a way to hit at least one ball out of the park against Garcia tonight.
Rick Porcello doesn’t look a lot like the guy that won the Cy Young Award a couple of years ago. But he has been a decent back of the rotation innings eater for the Red Sox this season, and despite his inconsistent results, they seem to win quite a bit when he takes the mound. After losing his first three starts of the year, Boston has a 15-8 record when Porcello pitches.
And recently, he has actually pitched somewhat better as his ERA in August is 4.09, which is much better than it had been in June and July where his ERA was over seven runs. Porcello is averaging over seven runs a game of run support, that is amongst the highest of any qualified starter in the game right now.
The Red Sox have scored nine runs or more with Porcello on the mound eleven times this season. He had five straight starts earlier this summer where Boston scored him double digits of support. It is hard to lose when your team goes out and scores you ten runs a game.
This is a mismatch. The Rockies, despite finding a way to knock off the Braves last night, are not playing good baseball right now. Even though they play at Coors Field, they can’t score runs right now with so many of their best players on the IL. We saw that yesterday when they could muster just one run on the Braves for the first eight innings.
I don’t see Porcello shutting the Rockies down, because let’s be honest, the guy just doesn’t shut anybody down at this point in his career. But I do think a matchup between a recent Cy Young award winner and a guy making hid MLB debut, that couldn’t get anybody out in the minors, is surely a mismatch.
I am shocked to see this number as such a tight one. -129 is a reasonable number for a game that could very easily get out of hand. I glanced at the run line, and it does offer an attractive +105, but I am not sure thirty-four cents is enough of a premium for me to pull the trigger on laying that run and a half. So, I will just back Boston on the money line and feel like I am getting way the best of it. Give me the Boston Red Sox as road favorites tonight in game one from Colorado at -129!