How Safe Are Diamondbacks' & Rockies’ Holds On NL Wild Cards?

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Willie Bee

Friday, August 18, 2017 1:18 PM GMT

Friday, Aug. 18, 2017 1:18 PM GMT

The Colorado Rockies and Arizona Diamondbacks are well out of the NL West race, but still knotted together for the two wild card seeds as we check in on baseball futures odds.

While the Dodgers have been rolling through 2017 making a mockery of the NL West race and owning a double-digit lead for home-field advantage through the World Series, the general consensus has been both Arizona and Colorado were comfortably in line to earn the wild card slots in the National League. Indeed, though they’re a whopping 19 games behind LA in the division, the Diamondbacks and Rockies still sit deadlocked in the two WC spots as of Friday.

Los Angeles leads all comers on baseball futures odds as a 4/1 favorite – even shorter in some cases – to win its first championship in nearly 30 years. Washington, as the only team above .500 in the NL East, checks in next among Senior Circuit teams on a 6/1 to 7/1 price. By virtue of leading the NL Central, Chicago is next (15/2 to 9/1) to defend its World Series title.

 

D-Backs Have More Experience On Pitching Staff

Arizona and Colorado follow, BetOnline listing the Rocks and Snakes with better Series odds than any AL Wild Card hopeful. Colorado is 11/1 with Arizona close behind at 14/1, though each has been displaying cracks in their armor recently. The Rockies have dropped seven of 10 and are 4-10 on the road since the break; the Diamondbacks are 4-8 their last dozen and also struggling away from home.

If we were to rate the teams based solely on pitching, an argument could be made that Arizona is the stronger of the two and a better bet to end up with one of the Wild Cards. The Diamondbacks have the 2nd-lowest ERA in the NL behind LA, Colorado sitting 11th though some of that is tempered due to the Coors Field factor.  The Arizona Double-Zack Attack of Greinke and Godley have been making money for bettors whether they’re playing the money line (+15 units) or totals (14-22-5 O/U/P) on the MLB odds. Rookies Kyle Freeland, German Marquez and Antonio Senzatela have been outstanding for the Rockies, but Greinke’s experience certainly trumps any of them in a 1-game playoff.

It could be argued Colorado has a more dependable closer in Greg Holland than the D-Backs do in Fernando Rodney. Holland does sport the lower ERA, but aside from a rough April and a wild outing vs. the Dodgers just before the break, Rodney has been very effective and has a solid bridge in front of him with Archie Bradley, Andrew Chafin and David Hernandez.

 

Clubs Face Each Other 7 More Times

Whether or not either team can maintain its hold on a playoff slot could come down to how well they do against each other, as well as other NL West opponents with the end of the schedule division-heavy. The Rockies and Diamondbacks have seven games left head-to-head, three in Denver to begin September and four in Phoenix a week later. Arizona has won six of its last nine at home in the series and 5 of 8 at Coors.

The Rockies have two series each left against the Giants, Padres and Dodgers, closing the regular season at home against Los Angeles. Could the Dodgers rest some regulars at that stage and keep its top arms off the mound to set up the postseason rotation? The D-Backs have two sets vs. the Padres and Dodgers, and three against the Giants. Arizona will end the year on the road in Kansas City, where the Royals could still be fighting for an AL playoff spot. You can count on SBR providing analysis and free baseball picks for those games and others all the way through the postseason.

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