We picked up yet another money line underdog winner last night when we backed the Colorado Rockies as road underdogs against the Arizona Diamondbacks. This line just didn’t make any sense to me at all. Kyle Freeland has been on another level the last couple of months for the Rockies, and to see him getting dog money against an Arizona team that had clearly given up on the season was shocking. So, I scratched my head wondering who could possibly see the DBacks as the side to take in this one and fired my bet.
The game went pretty much according to plan. Freeland was untouchable yet again, he pitched seven innings and didn’t allow a run, and the Rockies led the entire way out, and we cashed our ticket. With the win, the Rockies picked up the sweep over Arizona and kept pace with the Los Angeles Dodgers in the National League West Division race. For Arizona, they fall to 5-15 in the month of September and are officially out of the playoff chase. A disappointing end to a promising season to say the least for the DBacks. For today’s pick, I am going to stay with Arizona as they now host the Los Angeles Dodgers.
The Los Angeles Dodgers are head to Arizona Monday for game one of a four-game series with the DBacks. This series could have been one to decide the division title out west, but instead, the Dodgers will look to lock up the division title over the Rockies, not the DBacks, this week. The Dodgers have caught fire in September, as they have won nine out of their last eleven games.
Starting tonight for the DBacks in game one is Robbie Ray (6-2 3.92 ERA), and for the Dodgers, it is Clayton Kershaw (8-5 2.45 ERA). The Dodgers are -156 road favorites. The game total over-under is set at seven and a half runs. First pitch is scheduled for 6:40 PM PST from Chase Field in Arizona.
All season long it looked like a three-headed race for the National League West crown. Most figured that at least one of these runner-up teams out west would snatch up a wild card spot, if not both of them. But now as we enter baseball’s final week of the season, it looks like the west might only end up with one team in the playoffs. The team that everyone knew eventually would get their act together, the Los Angeles Dodgers.
The Dodgers have been all over the place this season with major injuries to guys like Clayton Kershaw and Corey Seager. And they made a huge splash in the trade market when they made moves to pick up Manny Machado and Brian Dozier. It took a while, but things are finally coming together for the Dodgers at just the right time. With the playoffs right around the corner, LA has its best players back on the field, and they should be considered a World Series caliber team in the wide-open National League.
Clayton Kershaw gets the start tonight, and the Dodgers are hoping he can get them a big win. Kershaw has spent much of his season injured as he had to endure two long stints on the DL this season. Heading into the All-Star break, this guy was 1-4 and banged up, and many wondered if these many injuries over the years had finally taken their toll.
But in true Kershaw fashion, he got healthy, and he is back to his old ways of dominating games. He has had one losing decision since April, and his ERA has been hovering right around the two-run mark for the entire second half of the season. His bad back is always a concern, but in August and September he has gone 4-0 with an ERA close to two runs and has pitched at least six innings in every start. Kershaw has pitched well this season against Arizona as he has pitched a combined twenty-six innings and has allowed just seven earned runs in four starts.
Robbie Ray missed two full months with injury as well this season. And when he first returned, he really struggled. In July, he was 0-2 with a 6.12 ERA in six starts. But he has shaken off the rust recently as in September he is 2-0 with a 1.52 ERA in four starts. Ray hasn’t lost a decision since July 12th. He faced these Dodgers last month and threw five and a third innings of one-run ball and picked up the win.
The Arizona Diamondback bats have completely shut off this month. They have struggled with consistency at the plate all year long, and right now it’s getting ugly. In their recent series against the Colorado Rockies, the DBacks could manage just a total of three runs in three games. Nine times this month, nearly half of their games, they have scored two runs or fewer. I don’t see any way that they get to Kershaw in a meaningful way in this one.
Clayton should cruise tonight. But I Don’t see Robbie Ray getting pounded either. Ray is pitching for a lot as his season stats are down year over year and he wants to finish strong. I expect Ray to pitch nearly as well as Kershaw tonight. So, I will make today’s pick a double pick. I am going to give you the Dodgers straight up, because how can you not like them in this one? They are the much better team right now, and the DBacks are in freefall. And I will also suggest the under. I very rarely go under a game total so low, but this game has 2-1 written all over it. So, give me the Los Angeles Dodgers as road favorites at -156 and the under seven and a half runs at -125 tonight in game one!