Double Play: Fade Padres' Inability to Hit Fastballs

Mark Lathrop

Tuesday, May 15, 2018 12:55 PM UTC

Tuesday, May. 15, 2018 12:55 PM UTC

Our MLB handicapper, Mark Lathrop, looks to stay hot with two West Coast games. Here he looks at public fades as the way to go, as the value is hidden deep beneath the typical stat lines.

2018 MLB Record: 70-45-7, +22.87, 18.60% ROI (1 Pending)
Note: Record includes official Twitter selections (@mlathrop3)

MLB Tuesday: Double PlayColorado Rockies (22-19 SU) vs. San Diego Padres (16-26 SU)Free MLB Pick: Rockies -119 MLBest Line Offered: 5Dimes

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The line has been moving against me since I placed my wager here, so hopefully you can get a better price than me, but I believe the Rockies have excellent value today. One of the reasons I believe that is the velocity that Colorado starter, German Marquez, can bring to the table. He’s been a little wild to start the season with a 4.42 BB/9 rate, but his fastball should allow him to be aggressive against this San Diego lineup. No batter in the Padres lineup can square up a fastball over 94 mph very well, and the ones that hit Marquez specifically well are on the DL. His secondary pitch is a curveball coming in 16 mph slower than his fastball, which should perform against a Padres lineup that has whiff rates exceedingly high against that pitch.

Jordan Lyles gets his second start of the year out of the bullpen, after a pretty good opening volley against the Cardinals last week. He pitched 5 innings after not going more than 2 in any other start this season. What I don’t like about Lyles in this particular matchup are his personal splits against this Colorado lineup and his climbing fly ball rates. He has one pitch that he can use to tame the Rockies lineup – his slider that he throws 17% of the time. His other offerings play into the Rockies strengths including a mid-90’s fastball that only induces swinging strikes 12.6% of the time. In the end I believe Marquez is underrated in this matchup and will take the winning record of the Rockies on the moneyline as one of my Tuesday MLB picks.

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Someone else wanted in on the homerun fun. 😉 pic.twitter.com/ym0gNchQU8

— Colorado Rockies (@Rockies) May 15, 2018
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Cincinnati Reds (14-27 SU) vs. San Francisco Giants (20-21 SU)Free MLB Pick: Giants -111 MLBest Line Offered: 5Dimes

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The Cincinnati Reds began their series with San Francisco a very hot team, and on the MLB odds board the opening lines of their second game -- before the first was even over -- showed heavy line movement toward them as they face Giants starter Ty Blach. Blach has a repertoire that should give the Reds trouble; however, as he throws a sinking fastball more than 58% of the time and the Reds lineup really struggles with this pitch. They don’t have one batter on their roster with a contact rate over 80% against a sinker and only one batter, Jesse Winker, hits the sinker with a hard-hit rate over 40%. Blach is tough on lefties as well with a wOBA of .262, and the Reds are currently deploying a lineup that is lefty heavy.

The Reds will counter with Tyler Mahle, who exhibits a very definitive fastball/slider combination that plays well into the hands of the Giants. The Giants have multiple batters that hit the fastball with hard-hit rates over 40% in Gregor Blanco, Evan Longoria, and Austin Jackson. They are a little less prolific against sliders, but the slider Mahle is throwing this year is getting smoked. The other thing I don’t like about Mahle is that his line-drive rate has skyrocketed in his sophomore season to 23% from 14.8% last year. I’ll take this opportunity to back the Giants at home here where their bullpen pitches much better and take them on the run line at -111 as another of my Tuesday MLB picks.

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