MLB Pick on De La Rosa to Continue Coors Dominance

LT Profits Sports Group

Wednesday, August 20, 2014 4:00 PM UTC

Wednesday, Aug. 20, 2014 4:00 PM UTC

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 Wednesday.


A pitcher that for some reason has always excelled pitching in high altitude should give the home underdogs value Wednesday night when Kevin Duffy and the Kansas City Royals (70-55, 37-27 away) pay a visit to fellow southpaw Jorge De La Rosa and those Colorado Rockies (49-76, 31-32 home) in the second game of a brief two-game interleague series from Coors Field in Denver, Co at 8:40 ET in a game available on ROOT.

The posted money line at Bet365 has Colorado as a home underdog for this contest at current odds of +113.
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Surprising Division Leaders
Practically the entire world assumed that the Detroit Tigers would run away and hide in the American League Central once they acquired David Price, but apparently the Royals never got that memo as they have gone 22-5 in their last 27 games to open up a two-game lead over the Tigers after their 7-4 win here in Colorado last night.

Meantime the Rockies remain the worst MLB pick in the Major Leagues at 49-76 overall, but they have still been a different team at home where they are a much more respectable 31-32 while batting .311 as a team and averaging a whopping 5.81 runs per game in the altitude. Colorado took three out of four games from the playoff-hopeful Cincinnati Reds to begin this home stand before tasting defeat on Tuesday vs. James Shields.

Loving Life at a Mile High
While Coors Field is obviously a hitter’s paradise, De La Rosa is one pitcher that has defied logic as his numbers in the altitude have been downright staggering over the years, with this season being no exception. De La Rosa did it again in his last start here on Thursday, holding the Reds to three runs and five hits in seven innings in a 7-3 victory.

De La Rosa may be only 12-8 with a 4.32 ERA overall, but even in a year where the Rockies have the worst record in the league, he has gone 8-2 with a 3.30 ERA and 1.18 WHIP in Denver with Colorado as a team going 9-2 in those starts. Unbelievably, that improved De La Rosa to 43-14 lifetime at home as a member of the Rockies, and even more remarkably the Rockies have gone 45-8 in his last 53 home starts!

Outperforming His Sabremetrics
Duffy meanwhile is having a nice year on the surface for the Royals despite his 8-10 record, as he has an excellent 2.60 ERA and 1.09 WHIP and he has now allowed two earned runs or less in six of his last seven starts after limiting the Texas Rangers to two earned runs and six hits Friday, albeit in only 5.1 innings.

However, Duffy has been outperforming his sabremetric numbers all year long, and yet he has somehow continued to stave off the negative regression we have been waiting for to this point. You see, while Duffy has a half-decent 6.86 strikeouts per nine innings, he has a high walk rate of 3.27 per nine and has been extremely lucky by allowing an abnormal .232 BABIP, all of which has helped lead to a 3.80 FIP and an even worse 4.54 xFIP!

Frankly we are not sure how Duffy has continued to get away with those kinds of sabres, and we will stick to our belief that he is overvalued at the moment.

Not a Good Coors Experience
And this seems like a likely spot for that expected regression to begin as Duffy did not pitch well in his only career appearance at Coors Field so far, allowing five earned runs on nine hits in five innings. Yes that start came three years ago in 2011, but this is still a unique experience for any pitcher that is not used to it and there are practically no American League parks that are at high altitude.

So despite this being a Worst vs. First matchup, we are backing last place Colorado with De La Rosa on the bump to beat first place Kansas City at Coors Field on Wednesday.
MLB Pick: Rockies +113

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