Each day LT Profits Sports seeks an MLB overlay that has a better chance of cashing than its odds, offering long term value. Here is their Underdog Value Play for Thursday.
In a matchup of two winless pitchers Thursday night, the underdog that has actually pitched better than his record offers value when Vidal Nuno and those Arizona Diamondbacks (62-90, 30-44 away) pay a visit to fellow southpaw Yohan Flande and the Colorado Rockies (61-91, 41-36 home) in the first game of a long four-game series from Coors Field in Denver, CO at 8:40 ET in a game available on ROOT.
The posted money line at Bet365 has Arizona as a road underdog for this contest at current odds of +109.
Battle for Worst Record in NL
This series will in all likelihood determine who finishes with the worst record in the National League, as the Rockies currently “lead” in that department while sitting last in the NL West at 61-91, but the Diamondbacks are “gaining” fast after losing two out of three at home to the San Francisco Giants in a series that concluded Wednesday, as their lead over Colorado is down to just one game while in fourth place.
The Rockies helped close the gap by being surprising MLB picks the last two days while beating the first place Los Angeles Dodgers, and remember that Colorado is now actually five games over .500 here at Coors Field this season at 41-36. The Rockies undoing has been going an abysmal 20-55 on the road. Despite that winning home record, the Rockies may be a bit overvalued here with the winless Flande on the mound.
Better Than His Record
Yes, the Arizona starter Nuno is also winless since coming over to the Diamondbacks at 0-6, although he did win two games for the New York Yankees before being traded earlier this year. But the difference between these pitchers is that Nuno has actually pitched well and deserves a better fate.
Granted Nuno allowed six runs in five innings vs. the San Diego Padres in his last start last Friday, but that snapped a streak of five consecutive starts where Nuno allowed two runs or less. In fact, he has now made 12 starts for Arizona, and in those starts Nuno has allowed three earned runs or less nine times including allowing two earned runs or less eight times and one earned or less three times!
Add that all up and Nuno has a 3.68 ERA and a very nice 1.02 WHIP since coming over to the National League with a great ratio of 56 strikeouts vs. just 15 walks. That does not exactly sound like the resume of an 0-6 pitcher, does it?
Not Ready for Prime Time
As for Flande, he is 0-5, and while it may be harsh to say his numbers support him being winless, it does appear that there was a good reason that he toiled in the minor leagues for 10 seasons before finally getting his first call-up to the majors this year. He has just two Quality Starts in eight outings and he has usually not even pitched well enough to keep Colorado in games, as the Rockies as a team are 1-7 in the games that he has started.
And remember that Flande is the favorite in this game! He comes in with a 5.04 ERA overall and a 6.75 ERA at Coors Field, where he also has a lofty 1.50 WHIP. His command numbers are nothing to speak of, especially in Denver where he has only 11 strikeouts vs. eight walks in five home starts totaling 28 innings.
Finally, the Diamondbacks have not had much success vs. many teams but they have against the Rockies going 8-2 in the last 10 head-to-head meetings overall and 4-0 in the last four meetings at Coors Field.
We have no qualms about backing the winless pitcher that has actually pitched well and is now an underdog vs. a struggling winless hurler, so we recommend a play on Arizona at a dog price at Colorado on Thursday.
MLB Pick: Diamondbacks +109