The best pitcher in all of baseball will have to be on point at the hitter-friendly Coors Field this evening. Will Clayton Kershaw and the Dodgers get the job done as the MLB odds-on favorites?
Whenever Clayton Kershaw's pitching, you know the Dodgers are going to be favored, regardless of the circumstances. That's certainly the case for tonight, as Los Angeles is listed at -185 or so to grab the victory in Denver. If you're confident in the Dodgers, you can consider backing them on the run-line, which is available at roughly -105 on the MLB odds board.
We see a higher than normal total for tonight's game, which again is testament to how much influence venue can have. Coors Field is notorious for having a lot of fireworks when it comes to run production, but it's safe to say most of that production is going to come from the Dodgers side here.
Colorado Rockies (De La Rosa)
Things are getting ugly for the Rockies. After a hot start which saw them go 7-2 through their first nine games, the Rockies have since gone 4-14 over their past 18. They will take an eight-game losing streak into tonight's game after seeing yesterday's opener (a 2-1 Dodgers win) get called early because of inclement weather.
We're having a hard time projecting a better outcome tonight considering the vast pitching mismatch. Jorge De La Rosa will get the starting assignment, and he's been a mess through his first three starts, getting tagged for a 9.00 ERA and 2.00 WHIP. His strikeout numbers have been there, but he's yet to go past the fifth inning in any of his outings.
Funnily enough, however, De La Rosa did have far better numbers at home at Coors (10-2, 3.08 ERA) in 2014, so it'll be interesting to see if he can maintain that kind of form here in 2015. We're not all that confident.
Los Angeles Dodgers (Kershaw)
Whereas the Rockies have been on a significant downswing lately, the Dodgers have been playing well. They've won seven of their last nine and are 19-10 overall on the season.
Another win seems likely tonight with their stud ace on the mound. Kershaw's numbers so far this season (1-2, 3.72 ERA, 1.14 WHIP) don't scream out dominance, but those stats are muddied by a couple shaky starts - he's still allowed three or fewer earned runs in four consecutive starts ahead of tonight. The southpaw is sporting a 51:7 K:BB ratio through 38.2 IP in 2015.
Kershaw has already faced this Colorado lineup once this season, holding them to six hits and one earned run in six innings of work. He struck out 12 and walked only one. That start came at home, so now the reigning Cy Young will have to try and replicate that showing (or be even more dominant) out on the road.
We tend to roll with Kershaw whenever he's on the mound, as he's just that good.
Things are obviously a little bit more difficult whenever you're at Coors, but Kershaw is more than capable of showing up with another big-time outing in this spot. He's done so before at this ballpark, most recently in 2014 when he went 2-0 with a squeaky clean 0.69 ERA and 17:1 K:BB ratio in his two visits. Pretty good numbers, right?
As you can see, altitude doesn't matter much when you've got filthy, shutdown stuff, and Kershaw certainly has that. We also don't think the hot Dodgers offense will have much trouble getting after De La Rosa, who's been pretty darn terrible so far this season. With your MLB picks, don't be afraid to take a chance by picking Los Angeles to beat the struggling Rockies by two or more runs..
Free MLB Pick: Los Angeles Dodgers -1.5 (-105) at 5Dimes