The Arizona Diamondbacks and Colorado Rockies begin their three-game series at Coors Field in Denver on Tuesday.
Both NL West rivals dropped their respective opening series with the Diamondbacks losing their first three games to the San Diego Padres before avoiding the sweep and winning the fourth game of the series. The Rockies meanwhile, stunned the Dodgers in Game 1 of their series but went on to lose the next three games.
These teams split their season series last year at 5-5 and their head-to-head matchup is close with Colorado holding a 26-22 edge. However, Arizona has won three out of the last four meetings between these two teams including an 11-3 victory at Coors Field last September 27, 2020, in their most recent meeting.
The Arizona Diamondbacks were outclassed by the San Diego Padres in the first three games of their opening series but got a great pitching effort from Taylor Widener to win their first game of the season. A two-run triple in the top of the first inning by David Peralta started the ball rolling. He would an RBI groundout two innings later and that proved to be enough for Arizona to beat San Diego who only had a total of six hits in the game while going scoreless in the first eight innings. Widener threw six scoreless innings, allowing three hits and three walks with five strikeouts in his first career start.
Luke Weaver will start on top of the mound for the Diamondbacks. Weaver didn’t have the best spring training as he gave up a total of 14 runs across 14.2 innings with an ERA of 8.59. Last season, Weaver posted a record of 1-9 with an ERA of 6.58 and led the league in losses. His WHIP of 1.58 was his highest since his rookie year while his k/9 dropped from 9.7 in 2019 to 9.5 in 2020. In six career games against the Rockies, Weaver has five starts and a record of 1-2 with a 7.40 ERA, allowing 17 earned runs in 20 ⅔ innings pitched against Colorado.
The Colorado Rockies looked good in their season opener as they defeated the defending World Series champions Los Angeles Dodgers 8-5. However, they went on to drop the next three games and head to this game needing to right the ship. The offense was their issue last season and has looked like a problem early in 2021 with only two players hitting over .300 so far with Chris Owings hitting .400 in 10 at-bats and Ryan McMahon batting at .333 with one homer. The team traded Nolan Arenado during the offseason and his absence is already felt early on.
German Marquez will start the opener for the Rockies. Marquez didn’t have a bad 2020 at all as he posted a record of 4-6 with an ERA of 3.75 while leading the league in innings pitched. He started for the Rockies on opening day against the Dodgers and he struggled with his location, walking six batters and giving up six hits.
However, he allowed just one run and earned a no-decision in a game where the Rockies rallied to win. Marquez has 16 starts against the Diamondbacks and he has a 4-5 record with an ERA of 4.24 against them. He has surrendered 15 homers against Arizona but has struck out 101 hitters in 93 ⅓ innings pitched against them.
Arizona is 13-27 in their last 40 games played. The Diamondbacks are 7-19 in their last 26 games played, 8-19 ATS in their last 27 games against a right-handed starter, 7-20 in their last 27 games against the NL West, 8-25 in their last 33 games as road underdogs, 1-4 in their last five road games against a right-handed starter, and 1-5 in their last six games as underdogs.
Colorado is 1-4 in their last five games played. The Rockies are 2-7 in their last nine games played at home, 7-15 in their last 22 Tuesday games, 3-7 in their last 10 games after a loss, 9-23 in their last 32 games against a right-handed starter, 15-41 in their last 56 games after scoring two or fewer runs in their previous game, and 0-6 in their last six games against an opponent with a winning percentage below .400.
Luke Weaver has not been able to get his game going since returning from injury and Colorado is not the best place for him to try and regain the feel for his breaking pitches. Weaver is coming off a terrible 2020 and has been one of the league’s worst pitchers in the last couple of years due to his elbow injury.
While he wasn’t sharp with his command during his opening day start, Marquez’s ability to avoid walks and home runs in altitude is crucial, and having a pitcher like him who knows how to win at Coors Field is going to be a major advantage for the Rockies. Colorado also has a very good record as home favorites, being 61-28 in their last 89 games as such. Give me the home team here.
Prediction: Colorado Rockies -117
The total has gone under four out of the last five games played by the Diamondbacks in April. The under is 5-1 in their last six games played on the road, 3-0-1 in their last four games when the total is set between 9-10.5, 5-1 in their last six games as underdogs, 5-1 in their last six games as road underdogs, and 4-1 in their last five games against a right-handed starter.
The total has also gone over in six out of their last eight Tuesday games. The total has gone over in five out of the last seven games played by the Rockies. The over is 5-2 in their last seven games played against the National League, 5-2 in their last 7 games against the NL West, 3-1-1 in their last five games after an off day. However, the under is 4-1-1 in their last six games against a right-handed starter, 3-1-1 in their last five games as favorites, 8-3-2 in their last 13 home games, and 49-24-2 in their last 75 Tuesday games.
Colorado had one of the worst lineups in the majors last year and now that they no longer have franchise cornerstone Nolan Arenado, only Trevor Story remains as a feared hitter in their lineup. On the other hand, the Diamondbacks ranked last in every batting category last season and they didn’t make a significant firepower upgrade during the offseason. Marquez has been a steady pitcher when starting at Coors Field and the Colorado bullpen played well enough against the Dodgers’ tough lineup. I know things can get wacky at Coors Field but these aren’t two high-powered offensive teams and the total set is in double digits. I think 10.5 is too high.
Prediction: Under 10.5
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