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Cardinals vs. Rockies Pick MLB – Sept 19th

We lost a rain-shortened game yesterday as the Braves took down the favored Nationals 5-2 in seven innings.  It was still a very profitable week overall, but never pleasant to end it on a losing note.  Alas, we have a whole slate of fresh new series as the second to last week of MLB regular season baseball commences.

Across the NL five of the six team in the playoff picture all lost.  Chicago and Washington have looked a little flatter this weekend, which makes sense as they are just biding their time until October.  Same for Los Angeles, who now owns a five game lead with their series with the Giants beginning with tonight’s Kershaw/Bumgarner gem.  The only team to WIN yesterday?  Of course, it was the “we aren’t ever really dead” St. Louis Cardinals.  They mustered a 3-0 victory over the Giants to get themselves right back into the thick of things.  Entering tonight, the Cards are just a single back of the Giants and two back of the Mets.  They have a tricky series beginning in Coors while the Mets host the Braves.

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Today’s Free Pick:

 St. Louis Cardinals -110 at Colorado Rockies +100 (Total: 11.5)

Carlos Martinez (14-8, 3.15 ERA) vs. Tyler Anderson (5-5, 3.65 ERA)

It isn’t often you see Carlos Martinez involved in a game with a Vegas run total of 11.5, but such is life in the wacky distorted world of Coors Field.  Alas, the Cardinals number one will toe the rubber against another pitcher with good stuff and good numbers in Tyler Anderson.  And ERA under four when you make your home in Colorado is nothing to scoff at, and his 5-1, 3.04 ERA home splits are downright impressive.

It makes for an interesting matchup.  If you like the Cards with their top pitcher at next to even money, I can’t fault you.  They have a knack for winning when it matters most and they have a lineup that should enjoy Coors.  But at the same time, to get a guy with a 5-1 record and excellent home numbers pitching in a park he will be far more familiar navigating than his opponent, I can’t fault you there either.

So why am I even touching this game?  Because I like the pitchers more than the overall line.

Both guys have some real cushion to work with in an 11.5 total, and both have had success lately.  Prior to his last start against the Cubs where he allowed four runs, Martinez had delivered six straight quality starts.  Anderson is exactly the same at home – with the lone exception being the Cubs, he has delivered five straight home quality starts.

There are plenty of runs to spare, even if the mile high air rattles either just a bit.  I like the total to tuck under the dozen mark and to cash an UNDER winner.

Free Pick:  Run TOTAL UNDER 11.5