Kyle Freeland (0-0, 0.00 ERA) vs. Corey Kluber (0-0, 0.00 ERA)
The Colorado Rockies and Texas Rangers got into a close one on Saturday. Colorado were able to put one more runner across the plate, which was ultimately the difference in a 3-2 win. The Rangers scored a late run and brought the winning run to the plate, but that was as close as they were getting to a comeback bid.
It was a tough day for the offense on Opening Day as well. However, 1-run was all they needed to win 1-0. The good news for the Rangers, as they open the season at 1-1, is that their pitching has been locked in. Lance Lynn and Mike Minor were both dealing for the Rangers. A little help from the offense on Saturday and they’d be off to a 2-0 start in 2020.
With more teams eligible to make the postseason in this shortened season, the Rangers might have a case for getting in. That more than likely doesn’t mean the Rangers are going to compete with the serious contenders, but they might be able to show considerable improvement from 2019. The Rangers finished third in the AL West with a record of 78-84 last season.
Touching the Astros in the division seems highly improbable, but getting in as a wildcard is an achievable goal for the Rangers. They brought in Corey Kluber off a season where he had to leave with a broken arm. Kluber took a line drive off his arm and the impact shattered his arm. There was some hope that Kluber would return with Cleveland in 2019, but he pitched just 35.2 innings in his final season as a member of the Tribe.
The Rangers were able to get Kluber at a cheaper price than would have been the case if he didn’t break his arm. He also didn’t look like vintage Cy Young Kluber prior to the injury as well. Parting ways with Kluber wasn’t difficult for the Indians. He was coming off one of the worst seasons of his career with a broken arm. However, if the Rangers get Kluber in good form this season, they have a serious 1-2-3 punch with Lynn, Minor, and Kluber. Head below for our free Rockies vs. Rangers pick for July 26, 2020 in MLB.
Colorado Rockies vs. Texas Rangers MLB Baseball Betting Odds:
Colorado Rockies vs. Texas Rangers Prediction:
The Rockies will look for much better results from Kyle Freeland following a turbulent 2019 from the 27-year-old. The native of Colorado is living a dream pitching for his childhood team. However, the lefty must get back to 2018 form if he wants to stick in the Rockies’ rotation. Freeland was a major contributor to the Rockies two years ago.
In just his second season in the majors, Freeland posted an ERA of 2.85 and 1.24 WHIP. He was one of only a handful of pitchers that had control of the ball at Coors Field. Pitching in Colorado as a youngster growing up helped prepare him for that. However, I don’t believe Freeland was prepared for what was coming his way last season.
After such a promising sophomore campaign, Freeland went off the rails in 2019. He finished with an ERA of 6.73 and 1.58 WHIP in 22 starts. Freeland was sent down to the minor leagues to try to work out the kinks. He was heading back on track in his final two games of the season, as he held the Giants and Dodgers to a run across 5 innings.
The Rockies were quick to pull the plug on him after allowing 1 earned run and 3 hits against the Dodgers in his season finale of 2019. Freeland was adequate in 5 innings of spring training ball. He gave up 2 earned runs in 5 innings for a 3.60 ERA. This game is a battle of which pitcher is going to bounce back from a poor 2019 the quickest on Sunday. Former Cy Young winner, Corey Kluber, is looking for a fresh start in 2020 with the Rangers.
Kluber had no control last season and his numbers more than proved that. Before breaking his arm, he had an ERA of 5.80 and 1.65 WHIP. This after a 2.89 ERA and 0.99 WHIP in 2018, along with a 2.25 ERA and Cy Young in 2017. In 7 innings of exhibition ball, Kluber recorded an ERA of 3.86 and 1.14 WHIP. It’s an encouraging sign, considering Kluber was KO’d last spring training and it carried over to the regular season. I don’t know if Kluber finds Cy Young form with the Rangers, but he should have the upper-hand over Freeland on Sunday. I’m backing the Rangers to oust the Rockies at Globe Park Field today.