MLB Free Pick: Can Greinke & Gray Stop Potent Rockies and Diamondbacks Lineups?

Colorado Rockies

Willie Bee

Tuesday, October 3, 2017 8:17 PM GMT

Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2017 8:17 PM GMT

It’s a playoff matchup nobody saw coming back in March, and the MLB odds heavily favor the Arizona Diamondbacks at home against their NL West rivals from Colorado.

Neither the Colorado Rockies nor the Arizona Diamondbacks were given much chance to make the playoffs before the 2017 season began with 10/1 and 18/1 odds, respectively, to win the NL West. The winner of their NL Wild Card showdown tonight won’t be given much chance against the Dodgers when the NLDS begins Friday in Los Angeles.

Both teams proved to be more than capable of beating LA, however, by taking their regular season series from the team with MLB’s best record, and it’s a shame that one has to be eliminated. Jon Gray (10-4, 3.67) and Zack Greinke (17-7, 3.20) are the first lines of defense for their clubs, and it’s the Diamondbacks who are drawing a -172 money line at Bookmaker where the total is 8½.

 

Teams Split 10 Regular Season Matchups In Phoenix
Yes, the Rockies led the National League scoring 5.09 runs per game, but it was a close race at the top with the Diamondbacks fourth just 0.08 behind Colorado. In the end, it was the effort of young arms in their rotation and a solid job in the bullpen by Greg Holland and Chris Rusin that got the Rockies to October. Gray was definitely one of the contributors in the rotation as he helped Colorado to a 13-7 record in his 20 assignments. Two of those victories came in Phoenix where he recorded a 2.77 ERA with 20 strikeouts in 13 innings.

Greinke was equally tough pitching at Chase Field this year, Arizona winning 15 of his 18 home starts to help anyone following the MLB odds in those games to more than 11 units of profit. The veteran of 14 MLB seasons pitched well enough against the Rockies, as his 3.41ERA in five starts would indicate, yet the Diamondbacks dropped three of those contests, two of those defeats at home.

 

Umpire Notes, Final Thoughts & A Free Pick

The 6-man umpire crew this evening has Gary Cederstrom celebrating his 62nd birthday as the chief, and the 29-year vet will be at first base with Jim Reynolds working the plate. The Massachusetts native finished the regular season 17-11-2 O/U/P after three of his final four games behind the mask went ‘over.’ It’s Reynolds’ 12th postseason series to work; he called Game 4 of the 2016 ALCS in Toronto, the only Blue Jays victory and it fell short of the total.

With the thermometer climbing into the upper-90s and this being a 5 PM local start, expect the roof to be closed. This is as low as any totals the teams played to in 10 regular season games here, and six of those 10 games finished ‘under’ along with a pair of pushes. I’m going contrarian to that trend with a free baseball pick on the high side of the mark.

Free MLB Pick: Rockies-Diamondbacks Over 8½ (-115)

Best Line Offered: at 5Dimes

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