MLB Pick: Underdog Value Play Monday

LT Profits Sports Group

Monday, July 29, 2013 4:00 AM GMT

Each day LT Profits Sports seeks an overlay underdog that has a better chance of winning than its odds, offering long term value. Here is their Underdog Value Play for Monday.

A pitcher makes his first start since Tommy John surgery Monday night after missing just over a year, but his opponent may hold all the value when the red-hot Jorge De La Rosa and the Colorado Rockies (51-55, 20-29 away) pay a visit to the returning Brandon Beachy and the Atlanta Braves (60-45, 34-15 home) in the first game of a four-game series from Turner Field in Atlanta, GA at 7:10 ET.

The posted money line at Pinnacle Sports has Colorado as a road underdog for this contest at current odds of +125.

The Braves are coming off of an emotional three-game sweep of the team with the best record in baseball in the St. Louis Cardinals, and they are welcoming back Beachy, who injured his elbow on his last Major League start on June 26th, 2012 and went under the knife. Beachy was off to a terrific start at the time he was injured, but it may take some time to regain that form.

Then again, the Braves could afford to take a look at what Beachy has right now as they are sitting cushy in the National League East with an 8½-game bulge over the second place Washington Nationals. The Rockies meanwhile are in a divisional race of their own despite being four games below .500, as they are in third place in the National League West and only six games behind the first place Los Angeles Dodgers.

The Rockies were struggling offensively until this past weekend, but they have continued to get good pitching for the most part, especially from Tyler Chatwood, Jhoulys Chacin and tonight’s starter De La Rosa who is 10-5 with a sparkling 2.97 ERA despite pitching half his games in altitude. De La Rosa is also in raging current form, having allowed three runs or less in his last eight consecutive starts!

Perhaps the best news for Colorado and its playoff chances is that its offense seemed rejuvenated during a three-game weekend series vs. the Milwaukee Brewers after the Rockies had scored the fewest runs in the Major Leagues during the month of July entering that series. The Rockies promptly erupted for 19 runs on 29 hits in the three games, making them dangerous in Beachy’s comeback start.

The Braves have the best home record in the Major Leagues at 34-15, a key reason why they have the biggest lead of any division leader. With that being said, winning tonight may not be as important as Beachy looking sharp, although it is unrealistic to expect him to immediately return to the form he had when he was injured last year, when he was sitting on a 2.00 ERA and 0.96 WHIP while yielding just a .171 batting average.

Yes, it is true that pitchers returning from Tommy John surgery often come back stronger than they were before the operation, but it still usually takes a bit of time to build that arm strength back up.

Thus, we are opting to go for the value here with the pitcher that is in very good current form in De La Rosa and his Rockies as underdogs on Monday.

[gameodds]3/240201/?r-1=238-92-43-349-192/us[/gameodds]

MLB Pick: Rockies +125